Animal welfare, environmental beliefs, NEP Scale, social work education


An online survey examined environmental beliefs and concern about animal welfare among 105 social work students in the U.S.- Mexico border region. Environmental beliefs were measured using items from the revised New Ecological Paradigm (NEP) Scale (Dunlap, Van Liere, Mertig, & Jones, 2000). Higher concern about animal welfare was significantly related to three dimensions of the revised NEP Scale: (1) belief in the fragility of nature's balance, (2) belief in the possibility ofan ecological crisis, and (3) rejection of the notion that humans have a right to dominate nature (anti-anthropocentrism). The findings suggest that by making explicit connections between the needs of the natural environment, animals, and people, social work educators may foster a broader ecological worldview that encompasses the well-being of all species and ecosystems.

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