More is not always better: A study of country-level factors associated with adolescents’ environmental attitudes using a multilevel analysis of PISA 2006




PISA, ecological footprint, environmental attitude, environmental knowledge, multilevel modeling


In recent decades, environmental problems have rapidly worsened to become a planetary crisis, and mounting scientific evidence supports that this crisis is anthropogenic. With the growing concern over the anthropogenic ecological crisis, there has been more attention to the factors influencing people’s pro-environmental attitudes. However, limited research on the adolescent population exists, and country-level factors were rarely explored with mixed findings. This study examines whether and how three country-level factors of national consumption, national average environmental knowledge, and national income level significantly impact students’ environmental attitudes, using multilevel modeling methods. The analysis results show that adolescents’ environmental attitudes are negatively related to the national consumption and environmental knowledge level after controlling for important individual-level factors while having no significant relationship with the national income level. This study concludes with a discussion on the future direction of environmental education and studies.


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Author Biographies

Byoung-gyu Gong, University of Utah

Byoung-gyu Gong, Ph.D., is a data scientist and senior research analyst of the Sorenson Impact Center in the David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah. His research interest lies at the intersection of educational policy and data analytics. He uses computational social science methods such as text mining, network analysis, and predictive modeling to gain new educational policy insight and map out the educational terrain across the countries and states. He is also interested in promoting data-driven decision-making in non-profit and public sector. As a data scientist, he currently engages in projects to create a data dashboard providing an institutional map and visualization of predictive modeling of higher education in the US. In addition, he provides data literacy training for policy decision-makers.

Yi Zheng, Arizona State University

Yi Zheng is an associate professor of educational measurement at Arizona State University. She specializes in measurement theories, computerized adaptive testing, developing and validating measurement instruments, and quantitative data analysis. Dr. Zheng is also an associate editor of Applied Psychological Measurement.

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How to Cite

Gong, B.- gyu, & Zheng, Y. (2021). More is not always better: A study of country-level factors associated with adolescents’ environmental attitudes using a multilevel analysis of PISA 2006. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 29(August - December), 125.



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