Bibliographies of Camp-related Research

Bibliographies of Camp-related Research

Benefits of Residential and Nonresidential Youth Summer Camps
Ross, D.M. and Driver, B.L.
Journal of Outdoor Education, 22 (1988) 14-20

Determine whether residential camps provide greater or different types of benefits than nonresidential camps.

567 youths enrolled in Youth Conservation Corps environmental education camps (326 enrolled in residential camps, 241 enrolled in nonresidential camps).

Mail questionnaires with payment of $3 for completion.

  • Format of Questionnaire: 36 benefit scales, 121 statements related to positive dimensions of attitudes, skills, behavior, and environmental understanding, using a 7-point agree/disagree response format. 15 scales retained after initial analysis.
  • Data Analysis: A procedure based on Bonferonni's inequality used to select 15 scales. ANOVA on differences in mean scores on 15 scales for residential and nonresidential camp participants and differences categorized by gender, race, and population of home community.


  • Significantly higher mean scores for residential camp participants on the following scales: increased interest in environmental problems, tool skills and safety, personal and conservation actions, planning and organizing work, willingness to help at school, caring about others, independence on work tasks, and dependability.
  • No difference in mean scores on the following scales: leadership, pride in personal work, ability to work with others, acceptance of other races, ease with others, enjoy people, healthy diet.
  • Significantly higher mean scores for participants in residential camps when analyzed by category in the following categories for the indicated scale items:
  • Increased interest in environmental problems: females, whites, population < 50,000
  • Tool skills and safety: male, female, white, population < 50,000
  • Personal conservation actions: female, white, population < 50,000
  • Planning and organizing work: non-white, population < 50,000
  • Willingness to help at school: female
  • Caring about others: female
  • Independence on work tasks: population < 50,000
  • Dependability: population < 50,000
  • Enjoy people: female
  • Healthy diet: population > 50,000