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Children's Attitudes About the Humane Treatment of Animals and Empathy: One-Year Follow up of a School-Based Intervention

By Frank R. Ascione, Claudia V. Weber

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Abstract

This study assessed the maintenance of the effect of a year-long school-based humane education program on fourth grade children's attitudes toward animals. Generalization to human-directed empathy was also measured. Using a pretest-posttest (Year 1) follow-up (Year 2) design and ANCOVA, we found that the experimental group (children who experienced the program) humane attitudes mean was greater than the control group mean at initial posttesting and at the Year 2 follow up. At both Year 1 and Year 2 posttesting, the enhancement of attitudes toward animals generalized to human-directed empathy, especially when the quality of the children's relations with their pets was considered as a covariate. The results contribute to the growing literature on the significance of the relations between children and animals, and serve to encourage humane education efforts.

Date 1996
Publication Title Anthrozoƶs
Volume 9
Issue 4
Pages 188-195
ISBN/ISSN 0892-7936
DOI 10.2752/089279396787001455
Language English
Additional Language English
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Tags
  1. Child behavior
  2. Children
  3. Empathy
  4. Humane treatment
  5. peer-reviewed
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  1. peer-reviewed