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Do German Student Biology Teachers Intend to Eat Sustainably? Extending the Theory of Planned Behavior with Nature Relatedness and Environmental Concern

Alina Weber (), Alexander Georg Büssing (), Raphael Jarzyna () and Florian Fiebelkorn ()
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Alina Weber: Didactics of Biology, Osnabrück University, 49076 Osnabrück, Germany
Alexander Georg Büssing: Working Group of Biology Education, Institute of Science Education, Leibniz University Hannover, 30167 Hannover, Germany
Raphael Jarzyna: Didactics of Biology, Osnabrück University, 49076 Osnabrück, Germany
Florian Fiebelkorn: Didactics of Biology, Osnabrück University, 49076 Osnabrück, Germany

Sustainability, 2020, vol. 12, issue 12, 1-19

Abstract: Non-sustainable food choices are responsible for many global challenges, such as biodiversity loss and climate change. To achieve a transformation toward sustainable nutrition, it is crucial to implement education for sustainable development (ESD), with the key issue “nutrition”, in schools and teacher training. Biology teachers are crucial for promoting ESD competences. Thus, the main aim of the study is to investigate the social and environmental psychological factors that may affect the intention of student biology teachers to eat sustainably as an integral part of their action competence needed for teaching this topic effectively. We conducted a paper-pencil questionnaire ( N = 270, M age = 22.9; SD = 2.8) based on the theory of planned behavior (TPB) and expanded the model by integrating environmental concern and nature relatedness. A path model is reported to show the relationships between the variables. The results show that the extended TPB model is suitable for predicting the intention to eat sustainably. Nature relatedness and altruistic concern positively predict attitudes and the intention to eat sustainably. This study suggests further research on the importance of (student) teachers’ nutritional behavior, as a possible determinant of the intention to teach this topic in their future school career.

Keywords: sustainable nutrition; pre-service biology teachers; attitudes; subjective norm; perceived behavioral control; environmental concern; nature connectedness; teacher training; education for sustainable development (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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