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Plant Blindness

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0044228/00001

Material Information

Title: Plant Blindness An Exploration and Instrument Development using the Delphi Technique
Physical Description: 1 online resource (150 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Slough, Deidra L
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2012

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: blindness -- delphi -- plant
Agricultural Education and Communication -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Agricultural Education and Communication thesis, M.S.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: Plant blindness has been an understudied construct for the past decade. While an in-depth theoretical examination of constituents affecting plant blindness exists, and programs have been developed to reduce the effects of plant blindness, little research bridges the gap between theory and application. This study attempts to bridge that gap by creating an evaluative measure of plant blindness to identify its influential factors and determine its prevalence. A Delphi design was used to examine the four definitional elements of plant blindness laid out by Wandersee and Schussler (1999). Participants were asked to generate and evaluate a list of factors that influence one’s ability to notice, appreciate, and recognize the importance of plants as well as factors that affect individual’s comparison of plants to animals. The factors that maintained consensus through the end of the three-round Delphi process were utilized to create an instrument that evaluates one’s predisposition towards plant blindness.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Deidra L Slough.
Thesis: Thesis (M.S.)--University of Florida, 2012.
Local: Adviser: Irani, Tracy A.

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2012
System ID: UFE0044228:00001

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0044228/00001

Material Information

Title: Plant Blindness An Exploration and Instrument Development using the Delphi Technique
Physical Description: 1 online resource (150 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Slough, Deidra L
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2012

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: blindness -- delphi -- plant
Agricultural Education and Communication -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Agricultural Education and Communication thesis, M.S.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: Plant blindness has been an understudied construct for the past decade. While an in-depth theoretical examination of constituents affecting plant blindness exists, and programs have been developed to reduce the effects of plant blindness, little research bridges the gap between theory and application. This study attempts to bridge that gap by creating an evaluative measure of plant blindness to identify its influential factors and determine its prevalence. A Delphi design was used to examine the four definitional elements of plant blindness laid out by Wandersee and Schussler (1999). Participants were asked to generate and evaluate a list of factors that influence one’s ability to notice, appreciate, and recognize the importance of plants as well as factors that affect individual’s comparison of plants to animals. The factors that maintained consensus through the end of the three-round Delphi process were utilized to create an instrument that evaluates one’s predisposition towards plant blindness.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Deidra L Slough.
Thesis: Thesis (M.S.)--University of Florida, 2012.
Local: Adviser: Irani, Tracy A.

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2012
System ID: UFE0044228:00001


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1 PLANT BLINDNESS : AN EXPLORATION AND INSTRUMENT DEVELOPMENT USING THE DELPHI TECHNIQUE By DEIDRA L. SLOUGH A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS F OR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF SCIENCE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2012

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2 2012 Deidra Lynn Slough

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3 To my family and friends for your continuous inspiration

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4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Sincere thanks are in order for the National Foliage Foundation. You r assi stance helped me reach higher goals than I could have imagined for myself as a new graduate student from an academic perspective as well as in terms of personal and professional development. The board members were both encouraging and engaging. This combi nation helped me feel like a part of the family and I hope to continue my relationship with these individuals far into the future. It is truly a pleasure to thank my advisor who made this thesis possible She continuously pushed me intellectually and hel ped me learn to make the best out of opportunities presented to me. Thank you for steering me through the initial turbulence that every new graduate student faces and for continuously helping me along the path to completion of th is phase of my life I am c onfident that wherever I go from here I will be accompanied by the knowledge that you have bestowed upon me. You are truly a guiding light. I would also like to thank my mother who has supported me through thick and thin. I know it was not always easy, but you never faltered in your support of my every decision. It is because of you that I had the confidence to attempt graduate school. Thanks go out to all of my friends who provided me with much needed distractions when I was elbows deep in theories and conclusions that I did not fully understand. I will never again underestimate the power of a solid night off (even when I have a pile of work to do). And finally, I thank my dog for always being there and providing me with a cuddle buddy when all seemed lo st.

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5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 4 LIST OF TABLES ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 8 LIST OF FIGURES ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 10 ABSTRACT ................................ ................................ ................................ ................... 11 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 12 Tentative Solutions ................................ ................................ ................................ 17 Research Problem ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 20 Purpose and Objectives ................................ ................................ .......................... 2 0 Significance of the Study ................................ ................................ ........................ 21 Limitations and Basic Assumptions ................................ ................................ ........ 22 Chapter Summary ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 23 2 LITERATURE REVIEW ................................ ................................ .......................... 24 Overview ................................ ................................ ................................ ................. 24 Theoretical Framework ................................ ................................ ........................... 24 Physiological Considerations ................................ ................................ ............ 26 Psychological Considerations ................................ ................................ ........... 29 Sociocultural Considerations ................................ ................................ ............ 33 Chapter Summary ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 34 3 METHODS ................................ ................................ ................................ .............. 36 Research Design ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 36 The Role of the Researcher ................................ ................................ .................... 38 Delphi Procedures ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 39 Participant Selection ................................ ................................ ......................... 39 Questi onnaire Design ................................ ................................ ....................... 41 Data Collection and Analyses ................................ ................................ ........... 42 Round one ................................ ................................ ................................ 43 Roun d two ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 43 Round three ................................ ................................ ............................... 45 Instrument Development Process ................................ ................................ ........... 45 Assumptio ns and Limitations ................................ ................................ .................. 46 Chapter Summary ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 46 4 RESULTS ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 50

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6 Demographic P rofile ................................ ................................ ............................... 50 Objective One ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 51 Round One ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 51 Round Two ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 51 Round Three ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 58 Objective Two ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 60 Round One ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 60 Round Two ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 61 Round Three ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 66 Objective Three ................................ ................................ ................................ ...... 69 Round One ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 69 Round Two ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 69 Round Three ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 74 Objective Four ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 77 Round One ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 77 Round Two ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 77 Round Three ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 82 Objective Five ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 84 Summary ................................ ................................ ................................ ................ 86 5 CONCLUSIONS ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 122 The Concept of Plant Blindness has Two Distinct Dimensions, Context Specific and Personal. ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 123 The Occurrence of Plant Blindness is Context Dependent. ................................ .. 124 The Proposed Definition of Plant Blindness is Inconsistent with the Proposed Indicators of the Phenomenon. ................................ ................................ .......... 125 Psychological and Sociocultural Elements are Perceived to have a Greater Impact on Plant Blindness than Physiological Elements. ................................ .. 127 The Definition of Plant Blindness is in Need of Revision. ................................ ...... 127 Recommendations for Further Research ................................ .............................. 129 Assess the Impact of Neurological and Physiological Considerations on Plant Blindness. ................................ ................................ .......................... 129 Assess the Contribution that Each Factor Affecting Plant Blindness Ultimately Lends to The Prevalence of Plant Blindness. ............................. 130 APPENDIX A RESEARCH DERVIED PRINCIPLES ................................ ................................ ... 132 B INITIAL CONTACT LETTER ................................ ................................ ................. 134 C LETTER TO INITIATE DATA COLLECTION FOR ROUND ONE ......................... 135 D LETTER TO INITIATE DATA COLLECTION FOR ROUND TWO ........................ 136 E LETTER TO INITIATE DATA COLLECTION FOR ROUND THREE .................... 137

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7 F FOLLOW UP LETTER ................................ ................................ .......................... 138 G THANK YOU LETTER ................................ ................................ .......................... 139 H PREDISPOSITION TOWARD PLANT BLINDNESS INSTRUMENT .................... 140 LIST OF REFERENCES ................................ ................................ ............................. 142 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................................ ................................ .......................... 150

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8 LIST OF TABLES Table page 3 1 Comparison of traditional survey with Delphi method ................................ ......... 48 4 1 ................................ .......... 88 4 2 (N=25). ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 89 4 3 Frequency and percentage of responses by item related to noticing plants (N=25) ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 90 4 4 .............. 94 4 5 Final frequency and percentage of respo nses by item related to noticing plants (N=25). ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 95 4 6 ............. 96 4 7 ................................ ... 97 4 8 plants (N=25). ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 98 4 9 Frequency and percentage of responses by item related to appreciating plants. ................................ ................................ ................................ ................. 99 4 10 e plants. ..... 102 4 11 Final frequency and percentage of responses by item related to appreciating plants. ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 103 4 12 Final reduction of .... 104 4 13 ...... 105 4 14 importance of plants (N=25). ................................ ................................ ............ 106 4 15 Frequency and percentage of responses by item related to recognizing the importance of plants. ................................ ................................ ........................ 107 4 16 importance plants. ................................ ................................ ............................ 110 4 17 Final frequency and percentage of responses by item related to recognizing the importance of plants. ................................ ................................ .................. 111

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9 4.18 cognize the importance of plants. ................................ ................................ ........................ 112 4 19 ........................ 113 4 20 Means and stand to animals (N=25). ................................ ................................ ............................ 114 4 21 Frequency and percentage of responses by item related to the comparison of plants to animals. ................................ ................................ .............................. 115 4 22 animals. ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 118 4 23 Final frequency and percentage of responses by item related to comparing plants to animals. ................................ ................................ .............................. 119 4 24 animals. ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 120 4 25 Elements to include or remove from the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument. ................................ ................................ ....................... 121

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10 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 2 1 Model of social cognitive t heory by Bandura (1986) ................................ ........... 35

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11 Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Scien ce PLANT BLINDNESS: AN E XPLORATION AND INSTRUMENT DEVELOPMENT USING THE DELPHI TECHNIQUE By Deidra L. Slough May 2012 Chair: Tracy Irani Major: Agricultural Education and Communication Plant blindness has been an understudied construct for the past dec ade. While an in depth theoretical examination of constituents affecting plant blindness exists, and programs have been developed to reduce the effects of plant blindness, little research bridges the gap between theory and application. This study attempts to bridge that gap by creating an evaluative measure of plant blindness to identify its influential factors and determine its prevalence. A Delphi design was used to examine the four definitional elements of plant blindness laid out by Wandersee and Schus sler (1999). Participants notice, appreciate, and recognize the importance of plants as well as factors that affect The fact ors that maintained consensus through the end of the three round Delphi process were utilized to create an instrument toward plant blindness.

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12 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Plants have played an important role in human life from the earliest developmental stages. In addition to providing necessary food sources, plants were utilized for medicinal purposes as well as rituals/ cultural practices (Halivand, Prins, Walrath, & McBride, 2006). Thousands of years later, plants are st ill utilized to fulfill the same objectives, with many more additions. Plant substances have now been adapted to provide shelter and create fabrics, various types of beverages, dyes, cork, and much more (Simpson & Ogorzaly, 1995). Plants are so widely used that humans currently In addition to the physical uses, plants possess an aesthetic quality that can reduce stress and create a positive environment (Nyholm, 2009). American cultural practices, such as presenting flowers at funerals, weddings, and in hospital rooms, provide evidence for this claim. The effects of this aesthetic quality are measurable. Studies examining the benefits of floral presences in hospital rooms (Park & Mattson, 2009) and urban environments (Mattson, 2010) continue to demonstrate the multitude of plant uses and prove their importance. Unfortunately, the public is often unaware of the significance of plant life, rendering them blind to plants (Wanderse e and Schussler, 1999) Since its introduction in 1998 at the 3rd Annual Associates Meeting of the 15 Laboratory, plant blindness has been an understudied construct. Fewer than 50 studies have been based on James Wandersee and Elizabeth pal publication hidden placement amid botanical literature. However, the concept of plant blindness

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13 holds major implications for all plant related fields because it examines four areas of attentional biases that could have major impacts on perceptions of farming and horticulture, from both industry and academic perspectives as they relate to increased consumer knowledge and research ventures respectively. These areas are as follows: recognize the importance of plants in the biosphere and in human affairs; (3) the inability to appreciate the aesthetic and unique biological feature s of the life forms that belong to the Plant Kingdom; and (4) the misguided anthropocentric ranking of plants as 1999). The initial investigation into the theory of plant blindness was rooted in a variety of literature bases that documented the insufficiencies of the American education system in providing adequate botanical education and stimulating lifelong interests in plant related domains (Wandersee & Schussler, 2001). In 1919, in one of the earliest study of its kind, the composition of course structure in the presentation of botanical and zoological knowledge was examined by Nichols. His findings demonstrated the importance of the content differences between the two fi elds and suggested that they be studied independently. This article represented one of the earliest investigations into the inadequacy of general biology courses in the instruction of botanical content. A later investigation pointed out deficiencies in pr ecollege state and national academic guides, textbooks, teacher competencies, and teaching strategies in the presentation of plant related content and lessons through biology courses (Uno, 1994). (1919) claim that general

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14 noted three problems with teaching guides on state and national levels that have hindered the transfer of plant knowledge: 1. Universal biol ogical concepts often are not applied to plants. 2. Suggested botanical activities tend to be static and boring for students and teachers. 3. A rigid following of the guides would exclude teaching about plants in certain situations. (pp.263) In many cas es, the specific competencies and performance objectives that could be addressed through plant based studies and activities are examined by using human or animal proxies (Uno,1994). Textbooks present similar problems relating to equal coverage of plants and animals. Uno (1994) analyzed the content of the six best selling high school biology textbooks in the United States and found that less that 15% of the chapters were devoted to plant life while over 40% of the chapters were devoted to animal life. Addi tionally, the interactive lab activities with in the textbooks integrated 12% more animal based content than plant based. The lack of detailed, comprehensive academic guides and adequate textbook materials makes it difficult for teachers to include suffic ient plant based lecture material and activities. Uno (1994) argued that teachers tend toward the subjects that they know best, causing them to use plants less frequently as an educational tool. This opinion was substantiated by a study completed by the Ed ucational Testing Service in 1993, which found that only 10% of class time was devoted to the study of plants while 19% was devoted to the study of nonhuman animals. Honey (1987), Uno (1994), and Hershey (1996) noted that that prepared lecture and textbook materials on plants were

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15 uninteresting for both teachers and students, which may help explain the lesser amount of class time allocated to the subject. The responsibility falls on the teacher to determine how to make learning about plants interesting (Her shey, 1992). Courses that have more horticulturally geared themes are offered in applied disciplines in many colleges of agriculture or agriculture education and rural high schools but the pool of genuinely engaged students is subject to lower enrollment as is exemplified in the University of enrollment rates that are significantly lower than other colleges such as engineering or liberal arts and sciences ( University of Florida Fact Book Enrollment, 2012; Enrollment Profile Report, 2012). Hershey (1996) added to the list of reasons why botanical material has been undermined with greater emphasis in biology classes placed on relating biological constructs to animals r ather than plant structures He also examined the common practices in higher education settings in plant related fields and discovered an overwhelming tendency for institutions to focus on research rather than teaching. The term research chauvinism refers universities that give more prestige and rewards to faculty who excel in research chauvinism has led to fewer initiatives to improv e teaching strategies and content in botany and plant sciences. The lack of adequate botanical education has led to botanical illiteracy and zoochauvinism (Hershey, 1996). Firn (1990), Storey (1989), and Wood Robinson (1991) suggest that teachers and t he general public are generally uneducated in botanical

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16 topics. Uno (2009) described this lack of knowledge as botanical illiteracy, stemming from several interrelated factors such as a general lack of interest in plants and infrequent exposure to plants a nd plant science. The lack of attention given to plants in both academic and public settings creates the opportunity for increased interest in animals. Zoochauvinism results when people consider plants to be inferior to animals (Bozniak, 1994). This positi on of inferiority extends from public perceptions to academic teachings. The writings on zoochauvanism, botanical illiteracy, and insufficient teaching mechanisms developed into investigations of plant blindness. Wandersee & Schussler (1999) identified nin take notice of, or focus attention on the plants in one's daily life; (b) thinking that plants are merely the backdrop for animal life; (c) misunderstanding what kinds of matter and ener gy plants require to stay alive; (d) overlooking the importance of plants to one's daily affairs (Balick & Cox, 1996); (e) failing to distinguish between the differing time scales of plant and animal activity (Attenborough, 1995); (f) lacking hands on expe riences in growing, observing, and identifying plants in one's own geographic region; (g) failing to explain the basic plant science underlying nearby plant communities including plant growth, nutrition, reproduction, and relevant ecological considerations ; (h) lacking awareness that plants are central to a key biogeochemical cycle the carbon cycle; and (i) being insensitive to the aesthetic qualities of plants and their structures especially with respect to their adaptations, coevolution, colors, dispersal diversity, growth habits, scents, sizes, sounds, spacing, strength, symmetry,

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17 Although plant blindness occurs on a micro level (individual level), it is established through a combination of micro level and macro level (system wide) forces. A vast list of research derived principles was developed by Wandersee, Clary, and Guzman (2006) to help explain the occurrence of plant blindness (see Appendix A for complete list ) The list detailed four constructs involving psychol ogical, social, and physical factors that contribute to the experience of plant blindness. Psychology plays an important role in determining perceptions and attitudes toward surrounding objects while social interactions and upbringing determine individual exposure and education as it relates to various forms of agriculture and horticulture. Physical factors, which may have risen as the result of evolutionary modifications, also play an important role in selective attention. From an evolutionary perspective, lesser time focusing on non threatening objects decreases cognitive load and increases the opportunity to respond to genuine dangers. Thus, the need to focus attention or cognitive effort on plants was never realized. Tentative Solutions Wandersee and Sc hussler (1999) launched a campaign in the late 1990 s to prevent plant blindness. The campaign distributed over 22,000 posters with the words lined river. The definition and symptoms of plant blindness w ere printed on the back along with education exercises to increase awareness and appreciation of plants. These posters intend to heighten awareness of plant blindness and promote educational materials that overcome the conceptual filter that disregards pla nt life. More than ten years after their initial introduction, researchers are still trying to overcome the effects and prevalence of plant blindness but not many advances have been made in identifying solutions to its occurrence.

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18 Uno (1994, 2009) identi fies learning theory as a primary conceptual foundation in (2003) seven principles of learning, Uno (2009) offers suggestions regarding what can be done in classes to ad vance student knowledge: Principle 1. Learning with understanding is facilitated when new and existing knowledge is structured around the major concepts and principles of the discipline. Principle 2 Learners use what they already know to construct new und erstandings. Principle 3. Learning is facilitated through the use of metacognitive strategies that identify, monitor, and regulate cognitive processes. Principle 4 Learners have different strategies, approaches, abilities, and learning styles that are a f unction of the interaction between their heredity and their prior experiences. Principle 5. Learners motivation to learn and sense of self affect what is learned, how much is learned, and how much effort will be put into the learning process Principle 6. The practices and activities in which people engage while learning shape what is learned. Principle 7. Learning is enhanced through socially supported interactions. The majority of solutions to plant blindness that have been proposed or employed unknowing ly utilize aspects from the seven principles of learning to complete their objectives. Wandersee and Schussler (2001) infer that age and socialization influence various aspects of the seven principles of learning. They declare that: early and iterative, we ll planned, meaningful and mindful education (both scientific and social) about plants coupled with a variety of personal,

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19 guided, direct experiences with growing plants may be the best way to overcome what we currently see as the human "de fault condition plant blindness. argument. Research completed by Wandersee and Schussler (2000) has shown that working with plants under the guidance of an experienced and friendl y adult early in life is a good predictor of later interest in, attention to, and scientific understanding of plants. plant related experiences a parent will provide for a child. A Giverny Award winning in 1999 actively target ed the impact of early exposure to plants. The 40 page book, complete with illustrations, introduces 4 8 year old children to plant care and encourages them to engage in hands on activities relating to plants. This book is the first of many that present ed scientific concepts to young children in a fun and appealing way. The Giverny Award, founded in 1998, is meant to ensure this by recognizing science topics) to children in an indirect and interesting manner (Wandersee & Schussler, 2001). A measure of the importance of these early experiences with plants has been captured in a qualitative writing template (Wandersee, Clary, & Guzman, 2006). The intellectual states as they relate to memories of plants in their youth. This tool is divided toward connections with biological concepts. A content analysis of 74 responses on the writing template has shown that 87% of students are able to reconnect to the wonder and enjoyment o f specific plants

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20 that were a part of their youth and 66% of students are more receptive to learning plant biology when reconnected to childhood memories. Additionally, the template heightened botanical awareness and appreciation in 59% of the respondents and initiated the sharing of plant related stories in 80% of respondents (Wandersee, Clary, & Guzman, 2006). Research Problem The research problem in this study was to determine how plant blindness can be measured. No nationally recognized measure of pl ant blindness exists that evaluates the factors that contribute to plant blindness. The study intends to examine the factors that influence the components of plant blindness identified by Wandersee and Schussler (1998) to determine how to approach the asse ssment of plant blindness with in individuals. Purpose and Objectives The purpose of this study was to generate a questionnaire that (1) identifies the factors affecting plant blindness and (2) test s the influences of these factors on ind ividuals. The obje ctives were to : 1. Identify the factors that influence the extent to which individuals notice plants; 2. Identify the factors that influence the extent to which individuals appreciate plants; 3. Identify the factors that influence the ability of individual s to recognize the importance of plants; 4. Identify the factors that influence how individuals compare plants to animals; and 5. Develop an instrument that incorporates the various factors of plant blindness as d plant blindness

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21 Significance of the Study A fully developed understanding of the components influencing, and symptoms arising from, plant blindness can provide knowledge that could lead to the ability to overcome the effects of plant blindness (Wander see & Clary, 2006). Decreases in plant blindness could be beneficial for the general public, academia, and the environment. Familiarity and awareness of plants can be advantageous for individuals for both economic and health reasons. People who understand the biological features of plants are better equipped to maintain the plants they have purchased, thus saving them money on recurring purchases. For example, horse and cattle ranchers who understand the specific qualities and needs of the grass they use wi ll not only save money on upkeep of their grazing land but they could also benefit economically through improvements in the condition of their livestock. The ability to recognize and understand the functions and features of plants is also important for i ndividual well being. Herbal remedies have long been utilized in various medical capacities. For the modern lay person, knowledge of plants can serve a much more basic function. These include 1) familiarity of the appearance of harmful plants, such as Toxi codendron radicans (Poison Ivy), 2) awareness of the biological make up of toxic plan t s such as Diffenbachia and Narcissus (Daffodil), and 3) knowledge of functions of useful plants, such as Aloe vera Plants in various forms are responsible for a large po rtion of deaths in the United States. Perhaps a greater understanding of and appreciation for the biological qualities of plants will help people conceptualize the importance and strength of plant functions. Decreases in plant blindness among the general public could have a major impact on academic fields involving agricultural research, especially in the

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22 specializations of education, communication, and extension. Basic knowledge and appreciation of the biological make up and functions of plants co uld increase the credibility of such fields of study and create more receptive audiences. By enabling people to recognize the importance of plants in their everyday activities, decreases in plant blindness could lead to a greater appreciation of the academ ic work that focuses on advancements in agriculture. This notion is presented because of the nested nature of plant based concepts in agricultural studies but it could also be particularly true if it were discovered that an overarching concept of agricultu re blindness existed. recognition it deserves. Finally, environmental impacts can be managed much more meticulously by addressing and correcting symptoms of plant blind structures and gaining hands on experience growing plants, people will be able to environmentally friendly landscaping options i n lieu of poor designs with non native plants that elicit high maintenance costs. The Florida Friendly Landscaping Program (2012) is an excellent example of this principle in use. Following simple principles to keep plants at maximum health with minimal im pact, people can successfully reduce water usage, decrease water runoff that could pollute bodies of water, and maintain a balanced ecosystem. Limitations and Basic Assumptions An analysis of current literature shows that a severe lack of research has been conducted in this area. With minimal exploration into areas affected by plant blindness the ability to generate a comprehensive list of items to include on the questionnaire is

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23 restricted. This remains the principal limitation of this study. Currently, th is study rests on the assumptions that the characteristics outlined by Wa ndersee and Schussler (1999) were comprehensive and adequate indicators of the concept of plant blindness. However, a preliminary test of the plant blindness indicator will be a usefu l platform to build future studies on. Chapter Summary Plant blindness is a construct that has been under examined since its introduction. To date, treating plant blindness has been largely dependent on educational programs that address the specific elements and symptoms that define it. However, assessments of these programs are not possible without the development of a measure of plant blindness. framework for understanding the elements of contributors to plant blindness and provide a foundation to build elements of measurement for plant blindness upon.

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24 CHAPTER 2 LITERATURE REVIEW Overview Barriers to processing visual and cognitive i nformation regarding plants have been th eoretic ally and empirically linked to symptoms of plant blindness. The ability to piece together the elements that contribute to one predisposition to be plant blind comes from the recognition of the importance of a variety of factors on the occurrence of plant blindness Three important groupings for these barriers include physiological, psychological, and socio cultural considerations. An inductive approach to acquiring information on contributors to plant blindness will ultimately lead to t he generation of measures to evaluate the occurrence of the phenomenon. Theoretical Framework Social cognitive theory presents a model through which the various elements contributing to the occurrence of plant blindness can be tied to the behavioral implications of the phenomenon. Bandura (1977 1986 ) explains behavior as a product of the interaction b etween environmenta l influences, personal idiosyncrasie s and additional influential behavioral elements These behavioral elements examine the influences result of prior behavioral experiences that moderate future behavioral engagements. Each aspect of this triadic re lationship influences its constituent parts in a reciprocal manner and the theory takes into accou nt the alterations that occur as a result of changes in a given element. Figure 2 interpretation of the triad where P represent s personal factors as they relate to cognitive, affective, and

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25 biological components of human development; B represents behavioral factors; and E represents the external environment (Figure 2 1) As it relates to plant blindness, expectations of beha vior are largely consumed by the actual occurrence of plant blindness. In the indicators of the presence of plant blindness outlined by Wandersee & Schussler (1999) t his is examined in notice plant s ( or lack thereof ) in plant related activities es. The environmental forces that contribute to plant blindness have not been firmly identified in the literature but can be presumed to include elements of the physical environment in which the individual is situated Bandura (1986) would argue that envi ronmental forces a product of the sociocultural elements an individual is exposed to However, for adapta tion in this study, the environmental component follows more closely the definition of the natural environme nt as presented by Johnson et al. (1997) and the sociocultural element is considered a personal force As an environmental component the physical plants themselves, and the context in which they are presented, play an integral role in movement toward or a way from plant blindness. This study focuses on the influence of the personal forces on plant blind behaviors while taking into consideration the fact that the environment plays a major role in determining the overall occurrence of plant blindness. Thus, t his study attempts to build the foundation for a holistic understanding of plant blindness by identifying personal

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26 toward being plant blind and providing a platform for additional research to be completed Further r esearch should assess the contribution of environmental factors on the exhibitions of behavior as well as the effect of the dynamic relationship that is presented by the model. The three main personal factors that surface in the literature on plant blindne ss include physiological, psychological, and sociocultural considerations. Physiological Considerations Physiologically, two main anatomical processing units must be evaluated to determine the role they play in visual perception; the eyes and the brain. Obvious defects in either entity can result in a decrease in the ability to process visual stimuli and/ or accompanying educational material. The most profound defects in the eyes can result in partial or complete blindness. A series of measurement tools h ave been created to measure visual acuity ( Colenbrander, 2002 ). Unfortunately, numerous visual impairment s are not treatable ( Colenbrander, 2002 ). In these cases, other sensory mechanisms, including touch, smell, and sometimes taste, can be utilized to acq uire first hand knowledge of plants. Teaching strategies for the presentation of biological content to the blind was presented by Arthur Bryan in The American Biology Teacher in 1950. Bryan (1950) drew particular attention to the handicaps that blind stude nts faced in the laboratory setting such as the inability to use microscopes to look at the cellular make up of plants. While the lack of vision certainly has provided barriers to the acquisition of knowledge, Bryan (1950) suggested that with adequate at tention and diverse teaching methods blind students can develop a healthy understanding of plants and biology as a whole.

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27 It has been establish that the brain receives only .0004% of the information the eye extracts from the surrounding envir onment and only 40% of that is fully processed by the brain (Zimmerman, 1986). This means that only .00016% of what an individual sees is ultimately processed by the brain. According to Nrretranders (1998), the assumption is that the remaining information subliminally affects subsequent thoughts, feelings, and actions, since so little of the data produced by the eyes is considered consciously. Based on the large amounts of visual data that are discarded, Nrretranders contends that, "what is presented [to our conscious attention] is precisely that which is relevant (p. 242). The visual information that is fully processed in the brain is further divided into patterns of sp ace, time, and color (Haber, 198 3). These divisions help to structure the visual exper ience and establish static proximity a visual cue that enables people to group objects into bulk visual categories (Zakia, 1997). Gopnik, Meltzoff, and Kuhl (1999) suggest that people often focus their attention on individual objects, rather than general scenes. These objects are identified by people based on their edges. However, Wandersee and Clary (2006) suggest that plants in landscapes are not characterized by well defined edges that would make them easy to identify as individual objects. According t o Wandersee and Schussler (2000), this patterned grouping behavior provides a significant barrier to the visual perception of plants because they provide fewer spacing, time, and color based visual cues to attract human attention (except during times of po llination and dispersal). Bernhardt (1999) suggested that plants took advantage of herbivore perceptual capabilities in an evolutionary track toward survival. Modifications in plant appearances

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28 that resulted in nondescript edges presented an evolutionar y advantage. Thus, it is apparent that the physiological make up of both humans and plants contribute greatly to plant blindness. Iyengar and Lepper (2000) further developed concerns with the concept of variety and patterns in the plant world by noting that too many options may contribute to interest levels and subsequent purchase behaviors of subjects when presented with an extensive choice condition and a limited choi ce condition. The data showed that initial interest was higher for the extensive choice condition but deeper consideration by the subjects was significantly more likely to occur in the limited choice condition. Choice overload, either with in a specific group of plants or amongst various elements of the general surroundings, brings into question the physiological capability of maintaining high levels of perception under conditions of divided attention. Divided attention occurs when multiple stimuli are p resented and multiple simultaneous actions are required to process and/or respond to the stimuli (Kahneman, 1975) Corbetta, Miezin, Dobmeyer, Shulman, and Petersen (1991) found that selective and divided attention requirements activated completely separat e areas of the brain and that greater acuity in image perception resulted from selective attention. The particular attentive fields investigated by Corbetta et al. (1991) included shape, color, and speed. They utilized three dimensional functional maps gen erated by positron emission tomography a method of medical body function imaging, to investigate neural activity and location specific brain activation when presented with tasks intended to isolate perceptions of shape, color, and speed under selective an d divided attention conditions. The study

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29 found that the brain is better equipped to activate the specific areas needed to process between multiple stimuli Corbetta et al. (19 91). Further, Craik, Govini, Naveh Benjamin, and Anderson (1996) found that when attention is divided during the presentation of a stimulus, prospective memory recall capabilities are dramatically reduced. Psychological C onsiderations Perception through v ision involves both physiological traits and psychological characteristics. Solso (1994) argues that people perceive things in the way they want to see them, not necessarily the way they actually are. The psychological capability of the brain is very power ful and complex but can be understood given the right methodological protocols. In addition to the physical barriers that divided attention poses, attention theories also contain a psychological element. Such theories provide insight into how and why diffe rent people are affected by specific stimuli. Wandersee and Schussler (1999) suggest that the nonthreatening nature of most plants has allowed humans the opportunity to ignore and dismiss the importance of plants with few consequences. Since plants typical ly lack dangerous attributes and are familiar backdrops, conscious attention can be focused on opportunities that may present higher risks. Accordingly, attributes may be di scarded to make visual processing easier (p.86). Haber (1973) supports this notion of visual perception from a psychological perspective. He suggests that evolution influenced how people select and encode characteristics of the visual environment that are the most important and need the most attention.

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30 Other authors (e.g. King, 2005) present an evolutionary argument that counters unworthy of consideration. This argumen t maintains that acuity of vision developed as an evolutionary advantage that facilitated the based food products such as fruit. These two arguments are not necessarily mutually exclusive, however. It is possible that visual acuity developed first and changing conditions, such as the development of subsistence agriculture, maneuvered plants from a high level attribute to a low level attribute. The cognitive decision, either consciously or subconsciously, to att end to visual information has been well documented. The amount of attention that individuals give to an object and the meaning they assign to it are continuously cited as determinants of cognitive processing pathways f or visual information (Neisser & Beckl en, 1975 ). In influences how they are visually attended to, cognitively processed, and encoded into memory. The degree of attention an observer pays to an object or event and the meaning he or she assigns to it determine how it will be remembered. A series of visual cognition s tudie s completed by Neisser and Becklen (1975 ) provide d evidence of the significance of attention in the process of perception These researchers d evised procedures intended to simulate divided attention tasks In Neisser subjects viewed production s that utilized two different events. One event was a hand slapping game between two stationary people and the other was set of three people passing a basketball while moving in irregular patterns. Subjects were asked to monitor one or both of the events and press a button for each

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31 attempted hand slap or pass of the basketball, respectively A series of ten trials u tilized these p rocedures with variations on the production content and participant demands to further understand the psychological orientation of attention. Trial one and trial two presented each of the events individually. During the third and four th trials, both events were shown simultaneously, but participants were instructed to follow only one at a time. On the fif th and six th trials, subjects attempted to respond to both events For the final four trials, subjects were instructed to respond to only one event and une xpected event s were introduced. O n trial seven, the hand slapper stopped to shake hands. On trial eight, one of the players threw the basket ball out of the game. The players pretend ed to pass the ball and t he ball was returned after twenty seconds of fake throws. On trial nine the hand slappers stopped their game to pass a ball back and forth. On the final trial, all the basketball players stepped ou t of view and were replaced by wome n. A fter twenty seconds, the original players returned and resumed their game In each of these trials, an overwhelming percentage of respondents failed to notice the irregularities. The results of subjects could easily focus their attention on a single event while ignoring events that occupied the same space. However, subjects had difficulty simultaneously responding to both events. From trial seven, only 17% mentioned the hand shake. From trial eight, not a single subject reported the disappearance of the basketball. Only 13% rep orted the ball in the hand slapping game on trial nine and only 13% reported the exchange for women on trial ten Interestingly, participants who detected an unusual event were the most likely to detect subsequent unusual events Over half of the participa nts did not see any of the

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32 unexpected events and the subjects who did could not accur ately report their details Further studies show that these astounding results persist even when opacity of the images and differences in ability to meet the demands of th e task were controlled for (Simons & Chabris, 1999; Simons & Jensen, 2009). unusual occurrence were likely to notice subsequent peculiarities, Mack and Rock (1998) found that i nconsistencies are more likely to be cons ciously perceived once they acquired meaning for the observer. Inattentional blindness results when an object or event in plain sight is perceptually missed due to a lack of attention (Mack & Rock, 1998). How ever, w hen an object or event has a meaningful connection to the participant, it is more likely to be perceived. Mack an d Rock (1998) completed a study to examine the influence of meaningfulness on inattention. The study tested the effects of the presentation of stimulus. To complete this objective, subjects were asked to view a cross on a computer monitor and report its longer axis. Critical stimuli were then presented around this fixation point. and a common noun such as time or house. Only seven subjects (12.7%) failed to notice their own name while 35% failed to notice another name. An astounding 50% failed to notice the c ommon noun. These findings are consistent with the fundamental components that define symbolic interactionism, which states that the subjective meaning an individual ascribes to an object, event or idea is derived from presentations through social interac tions and adapted through individual interpretation (Blumer, 1962). Further, behavior is

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33 constructed on the se ascribed meanings (Blumer, 1962). This notion may prove to be or education on plant s and plant based concepts. An individual who grew Spathiphyllum plants (Peace Lilies) with their favorite relative as a child may be more likely to notice one in the atrium of a hotel because the plant now holds a special meaning Similarly, if the same individual was educated on the Spathiphyllum organic compounds from the air, he or she may develop a greater appreciation for plants in general and be more capable of recognizing the importance of plants. Sociocultural C onsiderations Learning and cultural theories exp lain human attraction to plants and nature overall as a product of nurturance. Responses to plants are a result of learned experiences According to le arning theory, positive association s with nature and plants are learned during vacations and other recreational experiences. N egative association s, on the other hand, are learned through bad experiences such a s crime, n oise, traffic congestion, and pollution that are common in urban environme nts (Lyons, 1983 ) Cultur al theory explains that perceptions and responses are conditioned within and by society. I ndivi duals from different societies favor different environmental elements ( Moore, 1979 ). Society and social groups are in an influential pos ition to condition individuals to ascribe meaning to elements of the natural environment. Ascribed meanings are generally consistent with the view of the prominent societal influences (Blumer, 1962) Evidence of cultural theory as it relates to plants can be seen in the differences between preferential landscaping techniques in Europe as opposed to the United States (Jackson, 1970 ). Wandersee and Schussler (2001) hypothesize that the more val ue a culture ascribes to plants and the greater the number of peop le within a

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34 society who work directly with plants or plant based products, the less pervasive plant blindness will be within that culture Educational methods are strongly rooted in cultural traditions and are often a product of societal norms and expecta tions (Bruner, 1996) Frick, Birkenholz & Machtmes (1995) found that urban and rural adults from the mid western United States were most knowledgeable about animals and least knowledgeable about plants in agricultural concepts. Frick, Birkenholz & Machtmes (1995) constructed a series of knowledge concept scales to examine differences in rural and with and awareness of various aspects of agriculture, specifically knowledge regarding the significance of ag riculture, agricultural po licy, natural resources, plants, animals, the processing of agricultural products, and agricultural marketing practices. With in both subgroups, knowledge of plants ranked very low, demonstrating the lack of ba sed concepts in relation to other agricultural components In the rural sample (N=456), knowledge of plants ranked second to last. In the urban sample (N=428), knowledge of plants ranked last. It is plausible that a lack formal education on plants, and pla nt based concepts, contributes to the presence of plant blindness. Chapter Summary This chapter examined process information related to plant. The occurrence of plant blindness is likely linked to physical properties of the eyes and brain that conv olute or minimize visual processing capabilities. Psychological and sociocultural factors that impact how the brain processes information are also important when considering plant blindness as a measurabl e phenomenon.

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35 Figure 2 1. Model of social cognitive theory by Bandura (1986). Reprinted from Social foundations of thought and action: A social cognitive theory by Bandura, A. Prentice Hall Publishers. Copyright 1986.

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36 CHAPTER 3 METHODS This study emp loyed a Delphi technique to acquire information that would be used to construct and validate an instrument to measure predispositions toward plant blindness in adults Five objectives were developed to facilitate the completion of this task: 1. Identify the facto rs that influence the extent to which individuals notice plants; 2. Identify the factors that influence the extent to which individuals appreciate plants; 3. Identify the factors that influence the ability of individuals to recognize the importanc e of plants; 4. Identify the factors that influence how individuals rank plants versus animals; and 5 Develop an instrument that in corporates the various factors to determin e predisposition toward plant blindness Research D esign The Delphi surv ey technique was employed as the research methodology for this study. The Delphi provides structure for a group of experts to communicate about a complex question or problem (Linstone & Turoff 1975) Ludwig (1997) described the Delphi technique as an under used tactic that employs the combination of quantitative and qualitative methods to enga ge in an exploratory process. Delphi studies recognize the legitimacy and usefulness of human judgment while also acknowledging the issues that are inherent in conventi onal meetings (Ludwig, 1997) According to Fowles (1978) and G atewood and Gatewood (1983), solitary experts occasionally suffer biases while group meetings can be inclined toward follow the leader tendencies as well as reluctance to abandon previously st ated concepts Th e Delphi method has overcome

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37 these disadvantages by enabling a group of experts to form a consensus through ongoing discussion. Although the Delphi has typically been utilized as a quantitative technique (Rowe & Wright, 1999), researchers have rigorously incorporate d qualitative elements with in the Delphi method (Skulmoski, Hartman, & Khran, 2007). objective is consistent with the epistemological considerations of interpretivism which have been common in qualitati ve research (Skulmoski et al., 2007). Intrepretivism is concerned with how elements of the socia l world are interpre ted, understood and experienced : Knowledge consists of those constructions about which there is a relative consensus (or at least some movem ent toward consensus) among those competent (and in the case of more arcane material, trusted) to interpret the equally competent (or trusted) interpreters disagree (Guba and Lincoln, 19 94, p. 113). As with qualitative research, the researcher must be sensitive to the context in which the data were collected and be committed to producing holistic understandings of detailed contextual data (Mason, 1996). Qualitative research attempts to i nt erpret phenomena in terms of the meaning(s) subjects place on them (Creswell, 1998). Skulmoski et al. (2007) contend ed that the flexibility of the Delphi provides the method with 1) the ability to answer a variety of different types of research questions and 2) t he opportunity to match the abilities and a ptitudes of the researcher to his or her research topic In addition to benefits accompanying the general flexibility of Delphi approach, the qualities of the Delphi have made it better equipped than tra ditional survey methodologies to answer the research questions presented in this study. Table 3. 1

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38 provides a comparison of the strengths and weaknesses of the traditional survey approach versus a Delphi study. In ligh t of this comparison, use of the Delphi method was selected for this study for the following reasons: 1) The lack of excess research and investigations into the plant blindness phenomenon required an inductive approach to inf ormation gathering that provided broader exploratory elements. 2) The complexity of the concepts under investigation in this study requi red knowledge from people who under stoo d p lant blindness and factors that contribute d to its occurrence. 3) A communicating panel of experts is more capable of exploring complex researc h questions than an in dividual expert (Okoli & Pawloski, 2004) 4) A limited number of experts were knowledgeable about plant blindness The Delphi study design was capable of being adapted for small numbers. 5) The Delphi study design wa s flexible and am enable to follow up questions. These features facilitate d the collection of richer data which le d to a deeper understan ding of the concepts in question The Role of the R esearcher Reynolds and Carson (2005) noted the danger of inserting pre conceived no tions about the topic into the design and execution of the study. Dfouni (2002) contended that the researcher should also be cognizant of the tendency to ignore disagreements among panel members Instead, disagreements should be explored in greater detail Deeper exploration may lead to a richer understanding of the topic and avoid premature closure of the study (Dfouni, 2002). Hsu and Sandford (2007), Hasson, Keeney, and McKenna (2000 ), and McKenna (1994) found that the researcher also has an important in fluence on the selection and retention of panelists. The approach and personality of the researcher affect the willingness of panelists to participate in the study and the data gleaned from the participants

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39 Delphi P rocedures Participant Selection Accord ing to Adler and Ziglio (1996), Delphi participants are assessed through four criteria 1) knowledge and experience with the subject under investigation; 2) willingness to participate; 3) suffic ient time to participate; and, 4 ) effective communication skill s (Adler & Ziglio, 1996). Welty (1972) argued that experienced participants provide better responses and improve the credibility of the study. Although experts in a field have great insight, they are often busy and may not be available to fully participate (Skulmoski et al., 2007). Engaging, concise, and well written questions can often entice their participation (Skulmoski et al., 2007). Manizade and Mason (2009) suggest ed that the number of participants, their expertise, and differences in their perspecti ves should be taken into consideration when choosing a panel. Sources from the literature recommended the use of twelve to twenty participants (Dalkey, Rourke, Lewis, & Snyder, 1972; Debecq, Van de Ven, & Gustafson, 1975; Ludwig,1997). However, Skulmoski e t al., (2007) documented Delphi studies that have been successfully completed with as few as 4 and as many as 171 panelists. An initial brainstorming session between the researcher and members of the supervising committee revealed that both academicians and practitioners could provide valuable insights on the research topic. Thus, for the Delphi panel, the core academic researchers building the theory of plant blindness as well as leaders in botanical and horticultural societies were approached and invite d to participate on the expert panel. The procurement of the academic experts for this study employed a basic two step process :

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40 Step 1 a Iden tify the names of the prominent academicians exploring the concept of plant blindness. This list included a census of all authors who had contributed to the development of the concept of plant blindness, examined factors influencing plant blindness, and/or researched methods of overcoming plant blindness. The initial list of potential panelists was generated from the Meyer (1992) and Miller (2001) support ed qualifications through a review of publications. Jones (1975) and Anderson and Schneider (1993) took this notion a step further by r ecognizing the importance of researchers who have first hand knowledge of the topic under investigation. Step 1b. Identify the names of individuals with expertise in the connection between people and plants. This list included board members from nationally recognized, botanically oriented organizations. The individuals who sit on such boards are highly motivated to see the factors that affect how people connect with and interact with plants. The first step in collecting this list of potential invitees occur red through a combination of internet and publication searches that aimed to identify national organizations that are rooted in plant based components Information was collected on the people who sit on the Board of Directors or Advisory Board for each of the identified organizations. Step 2. Contact the experts Initial contacts were made via e mail The initial contact letter can be found in Appendix B During this step, potential participants were informed about the purpose of the study and invited to participate. Okoli and Pawloski (2004) suggest ed that incentives leading experts to p articipate in a Delphi study include :

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41 (1) Being chosen in a diverse but selective group; (2) the opportunity to learn from the consensus building; and (3) increasing t heir own visibility in their organization and outside (p. 23). Such incentives can offer the inducements needed to entice busy experts to participate in time consuming research studies. Questionnaire Design Delphi studies consist of multiple steps that i nvolve deep exploratory processes, which are considerably more ti me intensive than required by the traditional survey method. Thus, each round was purposefully structur ed in such a way that less than 4 5 minutes were required for completion These measures were taken to ensure that panelists were minimally affected by survey fatigue. The importance of survey fatigue in panel groups review of literature on projects using a Delphi design Since panel sur veys involve several iterations, Kalton Kasprzyk, and McMillen (1989) believe d that the burden on the respondents increasingly lead s to nonresponse. Time reducing methods for administration of the Delphi were carefully considered. These methods under cons ideration included e mail, fax, and web based options. Paper based surveys sent through the postal service were excluded from consideration due to the inefficiency of the added turn around time, opportunity to get lost in the mail, an d potential inconveni ence to the respondents. Ultimately, the web based option was chosen for its ease of access for both the researcher and the panelists as well as the access to Qualtrics online survey software provided through the academic department On line survey tools have previously been used as a time saving tool in the completion of Delphi studies (Pawlowski, Cu, & Van Scotter, 2010) The pre set layouts

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42 and customizability of online survey tools streamlines the survey design process and the integr at ed data analysis tools decreases the time needed for data entry and analyses. The diminished turnaround time needed from data collection to the reintroduction of material to the panel members ensured that the topic stayed fresh in t processes. Additionally, i ncreased legibility of digital responses and reduced time interpreting handwriting was presented by Snyder Halpern, Thompson, and Schaffer (2000) as a time saving element of utilizing a web based Delphi. Data C ollection and A naly ses The Delphi process was conducted over the course of three rounds. All interactions with the panelists were initiated via an e mail that contained instructions and a link to the segment on Qualtrics. During the first round feedback was collected from e a ch member regarding the content of the questionnaire The researc her amalgamated the responses from the first round to generate a comprehensive list of potential factors influencing plant blindness as identified by the panel members. In the second round, experts were asked to assess the contribution of each factor in terms of its ability to measure plant blindness. During this round, the opportunity to include additional items was presented at the end of the survey, with the intent of creating a modified Delphi design with an extra round of evaluations. However, no new items were generated at the end of the second round. The third round served as a final evaluation marker leading to the ultimate decision on the integration of each factor into the Predispos ition toward Plant Blindness Instrument At the end of each set of questions, a text box was provided to acquire information on comments and concerns of the panelists. These responses were examined in depth and addressed as necessary.

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43 Round one The object ive of the first round was for the panel of experts to generate a list of factors that influence plant blindness This round was the first introduction of the panelists to the use of the Qua l trics mechanism fo r data collection in this study Appendix C sho ws t he e mail sent to panelists to initiate the data collection process. Panelists were instruc ted to complete the first round within two week s of the receipt of the e mail. The first round collected qualitative information on factors that influence plant blindness. The specific questions asked were: 1. What factors influence the extent to which individuals notice plants? 2. What factors influence the extent to which individuals appreciate plants? 3. What factors influence the ability of individuals to rec ognize the importance of plants? 4. What factors influence how individuals compare plants to animals? Once the responses from the first set of questions were received, the researcher compiled an inclusive list of all the responses through a constant compa rative content analysis using open coding procedures, as outlined by Strauss & Corbin (1990). Duplicate responses were eliminated, phrases were condensed where possible, and terminology was unified. Round two Appendix D shows the e mail sent to panelists to initiate the data collection process. Panelists were instructed to complete this round within a week and a half after the receipt of the e mail. The lessened time offered on this round resulted from the

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44 approach of holidays that could potentially deter respondents from completing the questionnaire. In round two t he combined list of factors was presented and panelists were asked to rate the applicability of each it em as measure of its construct For this, a four point Likert type scale was utilize d A four point Likert scale was chosen to force a choic e between acceptance and rejection of a factor. The four points were modeled after the work of Colton (2002) and were defined as follows : 1=Strongly Disagree, 2= Disagree, 3= Agree, 4= Strongly Agree. Ga rland (1991) also suggests that the four point model reduces social desirability bias, which may be present as a result of the collective nature of the Delphi. At the end of the of the turnaround period, the mean, standard deviation, and response percentag es for each element was calculated. Even though Delphi studies usually present valued consensus seeking techniques, no universal definition of consensus exists for the Delphi method (Fink, Kosekcoff, Chassin, & Brook, 1984; Shieh, 1990; Terry, 2009). Over the years, many methods have been used to determine consensus in Delphi studies. Researchers have utilized deviances from projected areas with i n interquartile ranges (Linstone & Turoff, 197 5; Wilhelm, 1999; Colton, 2002), cut off points determined by a de sired quantity of items (Verhagen et al., 1998), and percentage markers (Terry, 2009). For the purposes of this study, examples of consensus building set by Terry (2009) were followed. In round two, consensus was determined based on an 80% marker, in which 80% of respondents The 80% marker in an attempt to obtain the most fundamental factors that i nfluence plant blindness

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45 Round three Appendix E shows the e mail sent to panelists to initiate the data collection process in the final round Panelists were instructed to complete this round within two weeks after the receipt of the e mail. However, the research er left the questionnaire available for an additional week to enable 100% of the participants to respond. A follow up e mail was used to encourage laggards to complete the final round (see Appendix F). At the end of this round, participants were s ent a final e mail thanking them for their participation as an expert panel member (see Appendix G). In the third roun d, items retained from the second round were presented to the members of the expert panel for a final vote. Panelist s were asked to re evaluate the importance of each element Data were response indicating that the panelist did or did not wish to keep the associated element. responses were coded as one Terr 80% guide was again used to determine consensus in this round. Each element was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument All elements scoring less that 80% in agreement were discarded. Instrument Development Process Once the data was collected from the Delphi rounds, a comprehensive list of factors influence predispositions toward plant blindness was assembled A thematic analys is was completed on the final list of items in an attempt to identify a coherent organizational structure for the final instrument. Boyatzis (1998) suggests that thematic analyses are flexible and that the research intentions drive what researchers do with the

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46 themes afte r they are revealed allowing for the thematic analysis to be used in this study as a cognitive organizational strategy Once an organizational structure for the instrument was developed, questions were developed to assess th e constructs presented by the identified factors included and ordered in a reasoned fashion. The guidelines for developing questionnaires and writing questions that were prepared by Dillman (2008 ) were use d in the wording of the questions as well as their order and presentation with i n the survey. Assumptions and Limitations The researcher assumed that the Delphi group wa s diverse enough to address issues of plant blindness from multiple perspect ives. The study was limited by the comprehensiveness of the responses on the Delphi Th e fact that plant blindness is a relatively understudied construct resulted in a lack of innovative literature to pull foundational ideas from. Some responses simply reiterated concepts presented in seminal works published by Dr. Wandersee and his colleagu es. This lack of original exploration may reduce the validity of the instrument in its ability to test for plant blindness. Ch apter Summary This chapter examined the methodological considerations associated with the creation of a measure of plant blindness A three round Delphi study was utilized to acquire information on factors influencing plant blindness. The Delphi method has a combination of qualitative and quantitative elements that facilitate the arrival at a consensus of opinion held by a group of experts. The role of the researcher contributes to the overall effectiveness of the Delphi procedures and is examined accordingly. The final results of the Delphi were used to create an instrument that assess es

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47 predisposition toward plant blindness. The process of structuring this instrument was presented.

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48 Table 3 1. Comparison of traditional survey with Delphi method Evaluation criteria Traditional survey Delphi study Summary of Procedure The researchers design a questionnaire with questions rele vant to the issue of study. There are numerous issues concerning validity of the questions they must consider to develop a good survey. The questionnaire can include questions that solicit quantitative or qualitative data, or both. The researchers decide o n the population that the hypotheses apply to, and selects a random sample of this population on whom to administer the survey. The respondents (who are a fraction of the selected random sample due to non response by some) fill out the survey and return it The researchers then analyze the usable responses to investigate the research questions. All the questionnaire design issues of a survey also apply to a Delphi study. After the researchers design the questionnaire, they select an appropriate group of exp erts who are qualified to answer the questions. The researchers then administer the survey and analyze the responses. Next, they design another survey based on the responses to the first one and re administers it, asking respondents to revise their origina l responses and/or answer other questions based on group feedback from the first survey. The researchers reiterate this process until the respondents reach a satisfactory degree of consensus. The respondents are kept anonymous to each other (though not to the researcher) throughout the process. Representativeness of sample Using statistical sampling techniques, the researchers randomly select a sample that is representative of the population of interest. The questions that a Delphi study investigates are t hose of high uncertainty and speculation. Thus, a general population, or even a narrow subset of a general population, might not be sufficiently knowledgeable to answer the questions accurately. A Delphi study is a virtual panel of experts gathered to arri ve at an answer to a difficult question. Thus, a Delphi study could be considered a type of virtual meeting or as a group decision technique, though it appears to be a complicated survey. Sample size for statistical power and significant findings Because the goal is to generalize results to a larger population, the researchers need to select a sample size that is large enough to detect statistically significant effects in the population. Power analysis is required to determine an appropriate sample size. T he Delphi group size does not depend on statistical power, but rather on group dynamics for arriving at consensus among experts. Thus, the literature recommends 10 18 experts on a Delphi panel. Individual vs. group response The researchers average out ind average response for the sample, which they generalize to the relevant population. Studies have consistently shown that for questions requiring expert judgment, the average of individual responses is inferior to the ave rages produced by group decision processes; research shows that Delphi s bears this out

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49 Table 3 1. Co ntinued. Evaluation criteria Traditional survey Delphi study Reliability and response revision An important criterion for evaluating surveys is the relia bility of the measures. Researchers typically assure this by pretesting and by retesting to assure test retest reliability. Pretesting is also an important reliability assurance for the Delphi method. However, test retest reliability is not relevant, since researchers expect respondents to revise their responses. Construct validity Construct validity is assured by careful survey design and by pretesting. In addition to what is required of a survey, the Delphi method can employ further construct validation by asking interpretation and categorization of the variables. The fact that Delphi is not anonymous (to the researcher) permits this validation step, unlike many surveys. Anonymity Respondents are almost always anonym ous to each other, and often anonymous to the researcher. Respondents are always anonymous to each other, but never anonymous to the researcher. This gives the researchers more opportunity to follow up for clarifications and further qualitative data. Non response issues Researchers need to investigate the possibility of non response bias to ensure that the sample remains representative of the population. Non response is typically very low in Delphi surveys, since most researchers have personally obtained a ssurances of participation. Attrition effects For single surveys, attrition (participant drop out) is a non issue. For multi step repeated survey studies, researchers should investigate attrition to assure that it is random and non systematic. Similar to non response, attrition tends to be low in Delphi studies, and the researchers usually can easily ascertain the cause by talking with the dropouts. Richness of data The richness of data depends on the form and depth of the questions, and on the possibilit y of follow up, such as interviews. Follow up is often limited when the researchers are unable to track respondents. In addition to the richness issues of traditional surveys, Delphi studies inherently provide richer data because of their multiple iteratio ns and their response revision due to feedback. Moreover, Delphi participants tend to be open to follow up interviews. Note. method as a research tool: an example, design cons Okoli and D. Pawloski, 2004, Information Management, 26, p. 19 20. Copyright 2004.

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50 CHAPTER 4 RESULTS This study employed a Delphi technique to acquire information that would be used to construct an instrument to measu re plant blindness. This chapter presents the results from the three rounds of the Delphi study as well as the final instrument that was developed from that study The responses to each question on the initial survey are addressed and their progression th rou gh the next two rounds of the Delphi is assessed. The f inal evaluation of the results le d to the development of the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument The five objectives that were developed to facilitate the completion of this task inclu ded: 1. Identifying the factors that influence the extent to which individuals notice plants; 2. Identifying the factors that influence the extent to which individuals appreciate plants; 3. Identifying the factors that influence the ability of individual s to recognize the importance of plants; 4. Identifying the factors that influence how individuals compare plants to animals; and 5. Developing an instrument that in corporates the salient factors identified. Demographic Profile Each of the panelists was purposively s e lected based on his or her involvement in a national agricultur al or horticultural foundation 28 indivi duals were invited. Of the 28 who were invited 25 responded to the Delphi, resulting in an 89% response rate. All participating panelists completed all questions in each round of the Delphi The most represented occupa tion was that of university professors/ researcher s (n=5, 20%). Other occupations included educators (n=4, 16%), retailers (n=4, 16%), plant growers (n=3, 12%), environmental engineers (n=1, 4%), urban and regional

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51 planners (n=1, 4%), retirees (n=1, 4%) and city mayors (n=1, 4%). 40% (n=10) participants were men and 60% (n=15) were female. 12% (n=3) of respondents obtained a high school education or equivalent, 56 % (n=1 4 ) of respondents obtained a four year degree, 28 % (n=7) of respondents completed graduate level work, and 4% Objective One Objective one sought to identify the factors that influence the extent to which ind ividuals notice plants. The initial question, in the first round of the Delphi, to address this component was phrased as follows: What factors influence the extent to which individuals notice plants? Round One Panelists were asked to generate factors that plants. A content analysis using open coding revealed 38 items, generated by the panel, that id entify factors that influence Table 4 1 presents the answers provided by the panelists and thei r frequency of presentation. Round Two the panelists for evaluation. Evaluations in this round were collected based on Likert type scaling. Panelists were asked to indicate th e level with which they agreed or disagreed that each of the factors influenced the construct in question. A four point Likert scale was provided with the answer choices from Strongly Disa gree to Strongly Agree (1 = Strongly Disagree, 2 = Disagree, 3 = Agree, and 4 = Strongly Agree). The Delphi panels. The mean of the responses were examined and items obtaining less

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52 than 80% of respondents indicating that they either Agr ee or Strongly Agree were removed. The 80% consensus building. Table 4 2 presents the means and standard deviations of the items ce plants that were presented to the panel for evaluation. The following is an item by item breakdown of the percent of panelists who to notice plants. The results are presented in Table 4 3. ITEM 1 THE OVERALL APPEARAN CE OF A PLANT : 92% of respondents indicated that was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 2 A JOB WORKING WITH P LANTS : 9 was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 3 THE COLOR OF A PLANT S FLOWERS : 100% of respondents indicated that they th this statement; therefore, it was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 4 GARDENING OR EXPERIE NCES GROWING PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated was retained for the next r ound. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 5 INFORMAL EDUCATION O N PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated that they was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 )

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53 ITEM 6 FORMAL EDUCATION ON PLANTS : 84% of respondent s indicated that they was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 7 THE COLOR OF A PLANT S FOLIAGE : 96% of respondents indicated that they ; therefore, it was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 8 THE ARRANGEMENT OR P RESENTATION OF A PLA NT OR GROUP OF PLANT S : 88% of therefore, it was retained for the n ext round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 9 HAVING SOMEONE IN TH E FAMILY GARDEN OR R AISE PLANTS : 80% of therefore, it was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3) ITEM 10 A PLANT S SIZE : was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 11 THE TIME OF YEAR : ment; therefore, it was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 12 THE INDIVIDUAL S OBSERVATION SKILLS : 84% of respondents indicated that was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 )

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54 ITEM 13 PLANTS ROLE AS AESTHETIC EL EMENTS : 88% of respondents indicated that was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 14 A PLANT S FRAGRANCE : 84% of respondents indicated tha was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 15 HOW LONG THE INDIVID UAL HAS TO OBSERVE T HE PLANT : 68% of respondents ment; therefore, it was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 16 A PLANT S UNIQUENESS : was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 17 HOW QUICKLY THE INDI VIDUAL IS MOVING PAS T THE PLANT : 72% of respondents was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 18 A PLANT S LOCATION : 68% of respondents was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 19 AN INTEREST IN OUTDO OR ACTIVITIES : 72% of respondents indicated that tement; therefore, it was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 )

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55 ITEM 20 PLANTS ROLE AS A FOOD SOURC E : 80% of respondents indicated that they was retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 21 PLANTS ROLE AS PRODUCERS OF SHADE ( I E TREES ) : 64% of respondents was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 22 LIVING IN AN UNDEVEL OPED COUNTRY : 72 % of respondents indicated that was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 23 LIVING IN A DEVELOPE D COUNTRY : 68% of respondents indicated that they with this statement; therefore, it was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 24 THE LENGTH OF A FLOWERING PLANTS BLOSSOM : 64% of respondents was not retained f or the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 25 THE HEALTH OF A PLANT : was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 26 A RURAL UPBRINGING : 60% of respon was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 )

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56 ITEM 27 THE INDIVIDUAL S PREDISPOSITION : 56% of respondents indicated that they statement; therefore, it was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 28 L IVING IN A RURAL LOC ATION : 48% of respondents indicated that they was not retained for the next round. (Tabl e 4 3 ) ITEM 29 PLANTS ROLE IN THE ENVIRONM ENT : 48% of respondents indicated that they was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 30 A PLANT S TEXTURE : 48% of respondents indicated was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 31 HAVING PLANT RELATED EXPERIENCES THAT ARE NOT HANDS ON : 60% of ith this statement; therefore, it was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 32 LIVING IN AN URBAN LOCATION : 44% of respondents indicated that they was not retained for the next rou nd. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 33 A PLANT S SHAPE : was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 )

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57 ITEM 34 AN URBAN UPBRINGING : 44% of respondents indicated that was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 35 THE INDIVIDUAL S DIETARY PREFERENCES : 20% of respondents indicated that refore, it was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 36 PLANTS ROLE AS AIR PURIFIERS : 12% of respondents indicated that they was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 37 PLANTS ROLE AS BUILDING MAT ERIALS : 12% of respondents indicated that was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) ITEM 38 PLANTS ROLE AS CLOTHING MATERIAL S : 8 % of respondents in dicated that was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 3 ) Th is analysis revealed the need t o remove 23 items from further consideration: a plant's fragrance, how long the individual ha s to observe the plant, a plant's uniqueness, how quickly the individual is moving past the plant, a plant's location, an interest in outdoor activities, plants' role as producers of shade (i.e. trees), living in an undeveloped country, living in a develop ed country, the length of a flowering plants' blossom, the health of a plant, a rural upbringing, the individual's predisposition, living in a rural location, plants' role in the environment, a plant's texture, having plant related

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58 experiences that are not hands on, living in an urban location, a plant's shape, an urban upbringing, and the i ndividual's dietary preferences (Table 4 4). Round Three On any Delphi, the final round is the last step in the achievement of consensus. This study used a standard thr ee round Delphi design; therefore, the third round was the final step in the achievement of consensus on the factors that influence whether or not one notices plants Participants were asked to indicate whether or not each of the factors was influential by Table 4 5 reports the frequencies and percentages of each answer for each item. ITEM 1 THE OVERALL APPEAR ANCE OF A PLANT : 100% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 2 A JOB WORKING WITH PLANTS : 100% of respondents indicate d this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 3 THE COLOR OF A PLANT S FLOWERS : 100% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; th erefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 4 GARDENING OR EXPERIENCES GROWING PLANTS : 88% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inc lusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 )

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59 ITEM 5 INFORMAL EDUCATION ON PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant B lindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 6 FORMAL EDUCATION ON PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 7 THE COLOR OF A PLANT S FOLIAGE : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 8 THE ARRANGEMENT OR PRESENTATION OF A PLANT OR GROUP OF PLANTS : 96% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument ( Table 4 5 ) ITEM 9 HAVING SOMEONE IN THE FAMILY GARDEN OR RAISE PLANTS : 72 % of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 10 A PLANT S SIZE : 84% of respondents indicated this item is an influenti al factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 11 THE TIME OF YEAR : 80% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 )

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60 ITEM 12 THE INDIVIDUAL S OBSERVATION SKILLS : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Bl indness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 13 PLANTS ROLE AS AESTHETIC ELEMENT S : 88% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 14 A PLANT S FRAGRANCE : 96% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) ITEM 15 PLANTS ROLE AS A FOOD SOURC E : 60% of responde nts indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 5 ) Based on this analysis, two items were removed from inclusion in the final instrument: plan raise plants (Table 4 6). Objective Two Objective two sought to identify the factors that influence the extent to which individuals appreciate plants. The initial question, in the first r ound of the Delphi, to address this component was phrased as follows: What factors influence the extent to which individuals appreciate plants? Round One plants. A content analysis using open coding revealed 29 items, generated by the panel,

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61 that identify factors that i nfluence 7 presents the answers provided by the panelists and their frequency of presentation. Round Two In the the panelists for evaluation. Evaluations in this round were collected based on Likert type scaling. Panelists were asked to indicate the level with which they agreed or disagreed that each of the factors influenced the construct in question. A four point Strongly Di s a four point Delphi panels. The mean of the responses were examined and items obtaining less than 80% removed. The 80% co consensus building. Table 4 8 presents the means and standard deviations of the items the panel f or evaluation. The following is an item by item breakdown of the percent of panelists who s ability to appreciate plants. The re sults are presented in Table 4 9 ITEM 1 TH E INDIVIDUAL S KNOWLEDGE OF PLANTS : 100% of respondents indicated that was retained for the next round. (Table 4 9 )

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62 ITEM 2 THE COLOR OF A PLANT S FLOWERS ( IF ANY ) : 100% of respondents in dicated was retained for the next round. (Table 4 9 ) ITEM 3 THE VALUE PLACED ON PLANTS IN THE INDIVIDUAL S CULTURE : 92% of with this statement; therefore, it was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9 ) ITEM 4 AMOUNT OF PRIOR EXPOSURE TO PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated that was reta ined for the next rou nd. (Table 4 9) ITEM 5 KNOWLEDGE OF THE ROLE THAT PLA NTS HAVE WITHIN THE ECOSYSTEM : 92% of therefore, it was retained for the next ro und. (Table 4 9) ITEM 6 EXPERIENCE GROWI NG PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated that they was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9 ) ITEM 7 AN UNDERSTANDING OF PLANT DIVERSITY : 92% of respondents indicated that was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9 ) ITEM 8 PERSONAL INTEREST IN / ENJOYMENT OF PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated was reta i ned for the next round. (Table 4 9)

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63 ITEM 9 PERSONAL INTEREST IN / ENJOYMENT OF NATURAL ENVIRONMENTS : 88% of therefore, it was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 10 THE OVERALL APPEARANCE O F A PLANT : 88% of respondents indicated that was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 11 A PLANT S FRAGRANCE : was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 12 A PLANT S UNIQUENESS : was reta ined for th e next round. (Table 4 9) I TEM 13 T HE ARRANGEMENT OR PR ESENTATION OF A PLAN T OR GROUP OF PLANTS : 88% therefore, it was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) I TEM 14 T H E EDIBLE QUALITIES O F SOME PLANTS : 84% of respondents indicated that was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) I TEM 15 A N UNDERSTANDING OF A GRICULTURE : 80% of respondents indicated tha t was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9)

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64 ITEM 16 KNOWLEDGE OF PLANTS EFFECTS ON PROPERTY VALUES : 84% of respondents ent; therefore, it was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 17 THE SHAPE OF A PLANT S FLOWERS : 76% of respondents indicated that they was not reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9 ) ITEM 18 KNOWLEDGE OF PLANTS EFFECTS ON UTILITY B ILLS : 72% of respondents was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 19 THE COLOR OF A PLANT S FOLIAGE : 88% of r espondents indicated that they was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 20 A PLANT S HEALTH : erefore, it was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 21 A PLANT S TEXTURE : was retaine d for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 22 A PLANT S SIZE : was not reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9)

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65 ITEM 23 WHEN MINIMAL EFFORT IS NEED TO CARE FOR THE PLANT ( S ) : 68% of therefore, it was not reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 24 THE INDIVIDUAL S KNOWLEDGE OF SCIENCE : 56% of respondents indicated it was not reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 25 THE SHAPE OF A PLANT S LEAVES : 68% of respondents indicated that they was not reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 26 THE GENERAL SHAPE OF A PLANT : 64% of respondents indicated that they was not reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 27 THE PRESENCE OF PLANTS IN THE MED IA : 56% of respondents indicated tha t was not reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 28 PLANTS ROLE AS CLOTHING MAT ERIALS : 40% of respondents indicated that efore, it was not reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) ITEM 29 PLANTS ROLE AS BUILDING MAT ERIALS : 40% of respondents indicated that was not reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 9) T his analysis revealed the need to remove 10 items from further consideration: the shape of a plant's flowers, knowledge of plants' effects on utility bills, a plant's size,

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66 when minimal effort is need to care for the plant(s), the individual's knowledge of science, the shape of a plant's leaves, the general shape of a plant, the presence of plants in the media, plants' role as clothing materials, and plants' role as building materials (Table 4 10). Round Three On any Delphi, the final round is the last step in the achievement of consensus. This study used a standard three round Delphi design; therefore, the third round was the final step in the achievement of consensus on the factors that influence whether or not one appreciates plants. Participants were ask ed to indicate whether or not each of 2009). Table 4 11 reports the frequencies and p ercentages of each answer for each item. ITEM 1 THE INDIVIDUAL S KNOWLEDGE OF PLANTS : 96% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Ta ble 4 11 ) ITEM 2 THE COLOR OF A PLANT S FLOWERS ( IF ANY ) : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 3 THE VALUE PL ACED ON PLANTS IN TH E INDIVIDUAL S CULTURE : 76% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 )

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67 ITEM 4 AMOUNT OF PRIOR EXPOSURE TO PLANTS : 84% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 5 KNOWLEDGE OF THE ROLE THAT PLA NTS HAVE WITHIN THE ECOSYSTEM : 88% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 6 EXPERIENCE GROWING PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 7 AN UNDERSTANDING OF PLANT DIVERSITY : 88% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 8 PERSONAL INTEREST IN / ENJOYMENT OF PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 9 PERSONAL INTEREST IN / ENJOYMENT OF NATURAL ENVIRONMENTS : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposi tion toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 10 THE OVERALL APPEARANCE OF A PLAN T : 80% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrume nt (Table 4 11 )

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68 ITEM 11 A PLANT S FRAGRANCE : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 12 A PLANT S UNIQUENESS : 84 % of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 13 THE ARRANGEMENT OR PRESE NTATION OF A PLANT O R GROUP OF PLANTS : 88% of res pondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 14 THE EDIBLE QUALITIES OF SOME PLANTS : 84% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 15 AN UNDERSTANDING OF AGRICULTURE : 88% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 16 KNOWLEDGE OF PLANTS EFFECTS ON PROPERTY VALUES : 84% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusio n in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 17 THE COLOR OF A PLANT S FOLIAGE : 80% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Bl indness Instrument (Table 4 11 )

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69 ITEM 18 A PLANT S HEALTH : 60% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) ITEM 19 A PLANT S TEXTURE : 68% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 11 ) the value placed (Table 4 12) Objective Three Objective three sought to identify the factors that influence the extent to which individuals recognize the importance of plants. T he initial question, in the first round of the Delphi, to address this component was phrased as follows: What factors influence the ability of individuals to recognize the importance of plants? Round One Panelists were asked to generate factors that influe the importance of plants. A content analysis using open coding revealed 24 items, generated by the panel, that ide ntify factors that influence recognize the importance of plants Table 4 13 presents the answe rs provided by the panelists and their frequency of presentation. Round Two the panelists for evaluation. Evaluations in this round were collected based on Likert type scaling. Panelists were asked to indicate the level with which they agreed or disagreed that each of the factors influenced the construct in question. A four point

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70 trongly Disagree, 2 = Disagree, 3 = Agree, and 4 = Strongly Agree). The Delphi panels. The mean of the responses were examined and items obtaining less than 80% of responden removed. The 80% consensus building. Table 4 14 presents the means and standard deviations of the items relating to factors that were presented to the panel for evaluation. The following is an item by item breakdown of the percent of panelists who indicated a high level of agreement with the notion that the item to recognize the importance of plants. The results are presented in Table 4 15. ITEM 1 EDUCATION THROUGH EXTENSION PR OGRAMS : 100% of respondents indicated was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 15 ) ITEM 2 GENERAL EDUCATION ON PLANTS AND PLANT BASED CONCEPTS : 96% of therefore, it was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 15 ) ITEM 3 HANDS ON EXPERIENCE WITH P LANTS : 100% of respondents indicated that was reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 15)

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71 ITEM 4 EDUCATION BY AN INDIVIDUAL / MENTOR : 92% of respondents i ndicated that was retained for the next round. ( Table 4 15) ITEM 5 EDUCATION BY PARKS AND BOTANIC AL GARDENS : 96% of respondents indicated tatement; therefore, it was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 6 EDUCATION THROUGH THE SCHOOL S YSTEM : 92% of respondents indicated was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 7 A PLANT S FRAGRANCE : was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 8 GENERAL EXPOSURE TO PLANTS : 96% of respondents indicated that th ey was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 9 A PLANT S OVERALL APPEARANCE : 92% of respondents indicated that they was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 10 THE IMPORTANCE OF PLANTS IN THE IND IVIDUAL S CULTURE : 100% of therefore, it was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15)

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72 IT EM 11 AMOUNT OF PRIOR EXPOSURE TO PLANTS : 84% of respondents indicated that was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 12 THE ROLE OF PLANTS AS A FOOD SOURCE : 88% of respondents indicated that was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 13 THE TASTE OF AN EDIBLE P LANT : 80% of respondents indicated that they therefore, it was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 14 KNOWLEDGE OF PLANT S EFFECTS ON PROPERT Y VALUES : 84% of respondents was retained for the next round. (Ta ble 4 15) ITEM 15 WHETHER OR NOT A PARTICULAR PLANT IS PERCEIVED A S A THREAT : 84% of therefore, it was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 16 EDUCATION THROUGH ME DIA VENUES : 88% of respondents indicated that was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 17 A PLANT S UNIQUENESS : was retained for the next round. (Table 4 15)

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73 ITEM 18 EXPOSURE TO PLANTS THROUGH TH E MEDIA : 72% of respondents indicated was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 19 KNOWLEDGE OF PLANTS EFFECTS ON UTILITY B ILLS : 76% of respondents was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 20 EXPOSURE TO P LANTS THROUGH ART : 64% of respondents indicated that was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 21 EXPOSURE TO PLANTS THROUGH CH ILDHOOD STORIES : 64% of respondents indicated t was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 22 THE ROLE OF PLANTS FOR C LOTHING MATERIALS : 52% of respondents ment; therefore, it was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) ITEM 23 THE ROLE OF PLANTS FOR BUILDI NG MATERIALS : 56% of respondents was not retained for the next ro und. (Table 4 15) ITEM 24 THE INDIVIDUAL S LENGTH OF TIME AS A HOMEOWNER : 48% of respondents was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 15) This analysis revealed the ne ed to remove 7 items from further consideration: exposure to plants through the media, knowledge of plants' effects on utility bills,

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74 exposure to plants through art, exposure to plants through childhood stories, the role of plants for clothing materials, t length of time as a homeowner (Table 4 16). Round Three On any Delphi, the final round is the last step in the achievement of consensus. This study used a standard three round Delphi design; th erefore, the third round was the final step in the achievement of consensus on the factors that influence whether or not one recognizes the importance of plants. Participants were asked to indicate whether or not each of the factors was influential by answ Consensus was achieved when 80% of respondents indicated that the item was Table 4 17 reports the frequencies and percentages of each answer for each item. ITEM 1 EDUCATION THROUGH EX TENSION PROGRAMS : 100% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17 ) ITEM 2 GENERAL EDUCATION ON PLANTS AND PLANT BASED CONCEPTS : 100% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17 ) ITEM 3 HANDS ON EXPERIENCE WITH P LANTS : 100% of respondents indicated this it em is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17 )

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75 ITEM 4 EDUCATION BY AN INDIVIDUAL / MENTOR : 100% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; theref ore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) ITEM 5 EDUCATION BY PARKS AND BOTANIC AL GARDENS : 96% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclu sion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) ITEM 6 EDUCATION THROUGH THE SCHOOL S YSTEM : 100% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) ITEM 7 A PLANT S FRAGRANCE : 80% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) ITEM 8 GE NERAL EXPOSURE TO PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) ITEM 9 A PLANT S OVERALL APPEARANCE : 64% of responden ts indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) ITEM 10 THE IMPORTANCE OF PLANTS IN THE INDIVIDUAL S CULTURE : 84% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17)

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76 ITEM 11 AMOUNT OF PRIOR EXPOSURE TO PLANTS : 80% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) ITEM 12 THE ROLE OF PLANTS AS A FOOD SOURCE : 76% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained fo r inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) ITEM 13 THE TASTE OF AN EDIBLE P LANT : 76% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) ITEM 14 KNOWLEDGE OF PLANT S EFFECTS ON PROPERT Y VALUES : 68% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness In strument ( Table 4 17) ITEM 15 WHETHER OR NOT A PARTICULAR PLANT IS PERCEIVED A S A THREAT : 80% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument ( Table 4 17) ITEM 16 EDUCATION THROUGH MEDIA VENUES : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) ITEM 17 A PLANT S UNIQUENE SS : 64% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 17) as a food source, the taste of an edible plant, knowledge of plant's effects on property values, and

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77 a plant's uniqueness were not retained for incorporation in the final instrument (Table 4 18) Objective Four Objective four sought to identify the factor of plants to animals. The initial question, in the first round of the Delphi, to address this component was phrased as follows: What factors influence how individuals compare plants to animals? Round One Panelists w comparison of plants to animals A content analysis using open coding revealed 25 items, generated by the panel, that identify factors that influence on comparison of plants to animals. Table 4 19 prese nts the answers provided by the panelists and their frequency of presentation. Round Two the panelists for evaluation. Evaluations in this round were collected based on Likert t ype scaling. Panelists were asked to indicate the level with which they agreed or disagreed that each of the factors influenced the construct in question. A four point Delphi panels. The mean of the responses were examined and items obtaining less than 80% removed. The 80% consensus building. Table 4 20 presents the means and standard deviations of the

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78 items relatin presented to the panel for evaluation. The following is an item by item breakdown of the percent of panelists who indicated a high level of agreement with the notion that the item comparison of plants to animals. The results are presented in Table 4 21. ITEM 1 APPRECIATION FOR PLANTS : was reta ined for the next ro und. (Table 4 21 ) ITEM 2 EXPERIENCES WITH PLANTS : 100% of respondents indicated that they was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 3 AWARENESS OF PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicat was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 4 AN INDIVIDUAL S LEVEL OF EXPOSURE TO PLANTS : 96% of respondents ement; therefore, it was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 5 PERCEPTIONS OF PLANTS : was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 6 EX PERIENCES WITH ANIMALS : was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21)

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79 ITEM 7 PLANTS LACK OF EXTENSIVE INDEPENDENT MOBILITY : 80% of respondents indicate was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 8 EDUCATIONAL HISTORY : was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 9 PLANTS SLOW RESPONSE TIME : 80% of respondents indicated that they was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 10 PLANTS PERCEIVED GEN ERAL LACK OF ANIMATE CHARACTERISTICS : 80% of therefore, it was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 11 THE PRESENCE OF PLANTS I N THE INDIVIDUAL S HOME : 84% of respo ndents was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 12 HOW HUMANS RELATE TO PLA NTS : 76% of respondents indicated that they ment; therefore, it was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 13 EDUCATIONAL EMPHASIS ON PLANTS O VER ANIMALS : 72% of respondents was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21)

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80 ITEM 14 APPRECIATION FOR ANIMALS : 80 % of respondents indicated that they was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 15 LIVING IN A RURAL LOCATION : 80 % of respo ndents indicated that they was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 16 THE PRESENCE OF ANIMALS IN THE INDIVIDUAL S HOME : 76% of respondents was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 17 LACK OF KNOWLEDGE OF PLANT F UNCTIONS : 72% of respondents indicated was not reta ined for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 18 LACK OF KNOWLEDGE OF PLAN T STRUCTURES : 72% of respondents indicated was retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 19 PLANTS LACK OF EXHIBITIONS OF BE HAVIOR : 60% of respondents indicated was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 20 PERCEPTIONS OF ANIMALS : was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21)

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81 ITEM 21 HOW HUMANS RELATE TO ANI MALS : 64 % of respondents indicated that they was no t retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 22 PLANTS LACK OF SOUND : was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 23 PLANTS DON T PRESEN T A PREDATOR THREAT : 44% of respondents indicated was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 24 LIVING IN AN URBAN LOCATION : 52% of respondents indicated that they was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) ITEM 25 AN INDIVIDUAL S HISTORY VISITING ZOO S : 44% of respondents indicated that they was not retained for the next round. (Table 4 21) This analysis revealed the need to remove 12 items from further consideration: how humans relate to plants, educational emphasis on plants over animals, the presence of animals in the individual's home, la ck of knowledge of plant functions, lack of knowledge of plant structures, plants' lack of exhibitions of behavior, perceptions of animals, how humans relate to animals, plants' lack of sound, plants don't present a predator threat, living in an urban loca tion, and an individual's history visiting zoos (Table 4 22).

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82 Round Three On any Delphi, the final round is the last step in the achievement of consensus. This study used a standard three round Delphi design; therefore, the third round was the final step i n the achievement of consensus on the factors that influence comparison of plants to animals. Participants were asked to indicate whether or not when 80% of respon (Terry, 2009). Table 4 23 reports the frequencies and percentages of each answer for each item. ITEM 1 APPRECIATION FOR PLANTS : 100% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23 ) ITEM 2 EXPERIENCES WITH PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusi on in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23) ITEM 3 AWARENESS OF PLANTS : 100% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness In strument (Table 4 23) ITEM 4 AN INDIVIDUAL S LEVEL OF EXPOSURE TO PLANTS : 84% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23)

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83 ITEM 5 PERCEPTIONS OF PLANTS : 92% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23) ITEM 6 EXPERIENCES WITH ANIMALS : 80% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23) ITEM 7 PLANTS LACK OF EXTENSIVE INDEPENDENT MOBILITY : 72% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23) ITEM 8 EDUCATIONAL HISTORY : 80% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retain ed for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23) ITEM 9 PLANTS SLOW RESPONSE TIME : 64% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition t oward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23) ITEM 10 PLANTS PERCEIVED GENERAL LA CK OF ANIMATE CHARAC TERISTICS : 64% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Pl ant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23) ITEM 11 THE PRESENCE OF PLANTS IN THE IND IVIDUAL S HOME : 84% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrume nt (Table 4 23)

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84 ITEM 12 LIVING IN A RURAL LOCATION : 72% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was not retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23) ITEM 13 APPRECIATION FOR ANIMALS : 84% of respondents indicated this item is an influential factor; therefore, it was retained for inclusion in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument (Table 4 23) Based on this analysis three items were removed from inclusion in t he final instrument: plants' lack of extensive, independent mobility ; plants' slow response time; living in a rural location; and plants' perceived general lack of animate characteristics (Table 4 24) Objective Five Objective five aimed to incorporate the information from the first four objectives to develop a Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument Each round of the Delphi brought the respondents closer to a consensus regarding which items were most relevant to the four themes of plant blindness that were originally laid out by Wandersee and Schussler in1999. The agreed upon factors in each category were as follows: Notice The overall appearance of a plant A job working with plants Gardening or experiences growing plants Informal education on plants Formal education on plants The color of a plant's foliage The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants A plant's size The time of year The individual's observation skills Plants' role as aesthetic elemen ts

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85 A plant's fragrance Appreciate The individual's knowledge of plants The color of a plant's flowers (if any) Amount of prior exposure to plants Knowledge of the role that plants have within the ecosystem Experience growing plants An understanding of pla nt diversity Personal interest in/ enjoyment of plants Personal interest in/ enjoyment of natural environments The overall appearance of a plant A plant's fragrance A plant's uniqueness The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants The edi ble qualities of some plants An understanding of agriculture Knowledge of plants' effects on property values The color of a plant's foliage Recognize Education through extension programs General education on plants and plant based concepts Hands on experi ence with plants Education by an individual/ mentor Education by parks and botanical gardens Education through the school system A plant's fragrance General exposure to plants Amount of prior exposure to plants Whether or not a particular plant is perceived as a threat Education through media venues Compare Appreciation for plants Appreciation for animals Experiences with plants Awareness of plants An individual's level of exposure to plants Perceptions of plants

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86 Experiences with animals Educational history The presence of plants in the individual's home The final presentation of factors that influence plant blindness revealed that many items refer to specific pla nts in specific frames of time. Due to th e fact that predisposition, by definition, refers to habitual actions and occurrences, rather than context specific occurrences, the elements pertaining to context specific factors were The final fac tors to be included in the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument are presented in Table 4 25. Through a thematic analysis, the remaining elements were grouped into subjects that would provide a guiding flow for the instrument. The survey group s items into four categories : experiences, education, personal characteristics, and demographics. The question wording and order we re carefully considered with special consideration to en ded questions and designing questionnaires. Finally, demographic questions were added to the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument in an effort to deepen later investigations completed using the instrument. The initial draft of the survey instr ument was set up using an online survey tool The survey can be seen in Appendix H Summary The results from the first round of the Delphi provided an extensive list of factors notice, appreciate and recognize the importance of plants as well as factors influencing the comparison of plants to animals. The following two rounds succeeded in condensing the

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87 factors. The final result was presented in the form of an itemized series of factors to include on the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument

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88 Table 4 Abbreviated description Frequency Percent General color 6 8.70% Size 5 7.25% Presence of a fragrance 5 7.25% Texture 3 4.35% Shape 3 4.35% Formal 3 4.35% Flower color 2 2.90% Uniqueness 2 2.90% Health 2 2.90% 2 2.90% Environmental 2 2.90% Food 2 2.90% Shade producers 2 2.90% Aesthetic elements 2 2.90% Rural 2 2.90% Informal 2 2.90% Gardening/ hands on 2 2.90% Urban location 2 2.90% Rural location 2 2.90% Foliage color 1 1.45% Arrangement/ Presentation 1 1.45% Length of time in bloom 1 1.45% How quickly the individual is moving past the plant 1 1.45% How long the indiv idual has to observe the plant 1 1.45% Air purifier 1 1.45% Clothing material 1 1.45% Building material 1 1.45% Urban 1 1.45% Not hands on 1 1.45% Family member who gardens or raises plants 1 1.45% Observation skills 1 1.45% Predisposition 1 1.45% Dietary preferences 1 1.45% Interest in outdoor activities 1 1.45% Job working with plants 1 1.45% Developed country 1 1.45% Undeveloped country 1 1.45% Time of year 1 1.45%

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89 Table 4 to notice plants (N=25). Abbreviated description Mean SD The overall appearance of a plant 3.56 .651 A job working with plants 3.48 .586 3.48 .510 Gardening or experiences growing plants 3.40 .645 Informal education on plants 3.28 .614 Formal education on plants 3.24 .723 The color of a plant's foliage 3.20 .500 The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants 3.08 .572 Having someone in the family garden or raise plants 3.04 .676 A plant's size 3.04 .6 11 The time of year 3.04 .676 The individual's observation skills 3.00 .577 Plants' role as aesthetic elements 3.00 .500 A plant's fragrance 3.00 .577 How long the individual has to observe the plant 2.92 .759 A plant's uniqueness 2.92 1.038 How qui ckly the individual is moving past the plant 2.88 .781 A plant's location 2.88 .726 An interest in outdoor activities 2.84 .624 Plants' role as a food source 2.84 .473 Plants' role as producers of shade (i.e. trees) 2.80 .707 Living in an undeveloped country 2.80 .707 Living in a developed country 2.76 .723 The length of a flowering plants' blossom 2.76 .879 The health of a plant 2.76 .926 A rural upbringing 2.72 .678 The individual's predisposition 2.72 1.021 Living in a rural location 2.68 .690 Plants' role in the environment 2.56 .651 A plant's texture 2.56 .651 Having plant related experiences that are not hands on 2.52 .653 Living in an urban location 2.48 .586 A plant's shape 2.44 .651 An urban upbringing 2.44 .507 The individual's di etary preferences 2.12 .881 Plants' role as air purifiers 2.04 .455 Plants' role as building materials 1.92 .572 Plants' role as clothing materials 1.92 .493

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90 Table 4 3. Frequency and percentage of responses by item related to noticing plants (N=25). Abbreviated Description Position Frequency Percent The overall appearance of a plant a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 7 28% Strongly Agree 16 64% A job working with plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 1 4% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 13 52% a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 0 0% Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 12 48% Gardening or experiences growing plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agre e 12 48% Informal education on plants a Strongly Disagree 0 1% Disagree 2 8% Agree 14 56% Strongly Agree 9 36% Formal education on plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 4 16% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 10 40% The color of a plant's foliage a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 1 4% Agree 18 72% Strongly Agree 6 24% The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 3 12% Agree 17 68% Strongly Agree 5 20% Having someone in the family garden or raise plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 5 20% Agree 14 56% Strongly Agree 6 24% A plant's size a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 4 16% Agree 16 64% Strongly Agree 5 20% The time of year a Strongly Disa gree 0 0% Disagree 5 20% Agree 14 56%

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91 Table 4 3 Continued Abbreviated description Position Frequency Percent Strongly Agree 6 24% The individual's observation skills a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 4 16% Agree 17 68% Strongly Agr ee 4 16% Plants' role as aesthetic elements a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 3 12% Agree 19 76% Strongly Agree 3 12% A plant's fragrance a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 4 16% Agree 17 68% Strongly Agree 4 16% How long the i ndividual has to observe Strongly Disagree 0 0% the plant Disagree 8 32% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 6 24 % A plant's uniqueness Strongly Disagree 4 16% Disagree 2 8% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 8 32% How quickly the individual is mov ing past the plant Strongly Disagree 1 4% Disagree 6 24% Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 5 20% A plant's location Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 8 32% Agree 12 80% Strongly Agree 5 100% An interest in outdoor activities Strongly Disagr ee 0 0% Disagree 7 28% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 3 12% Plants' role as a food source a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 5 20% Agree 19 76% Strongly Agree 1 4% Plants' role as producers of shade (i.e. trees) Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 9 36% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 4 16% Living in an undeveloped country Strongly Disagree 1 4% Disagree 6 24%

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92 Table 4 3 Continued Abbreviated description Position Frequency Percent Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 3 12% Liv ing in a developed country Strongly Disagree 1 4% Disagree 7 28% Agree 14 56% Strongly Agree 3 12% The length of a flowering plants' blossom Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 7 28% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 5 20% The health of a pla nt Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 5 20% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 8 32% A rural upbringing Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 10 40% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 3 12% The individual's predisposition Strongly Disagree 3 12% Disagre e 8 32% Agree 7 28% Strongly Agree 7 28% Living in a rural location Strongly Disagree 1 4% Disagree 8 32% Agree 14 56% Strongly Agree 2 8% Plants' role in the environment Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 13 52% Agree 10 40% Stron gly Agree 2 8% A plant's texture Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 13 52% Agree 10 40% Strongly Agree 2 8% Having plant related experiences that are not hands on Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 8 32% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 0 0% Living in an urban location Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 14 56% Agree 10 40% Strongly Agree 1 4% A plant's shape Strongly Disagree 2 8%

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93 Table 4 3 Continued Abbreviated Description Position Frequency Percent Disagree 10 40% Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 0 0% An urban upbringing Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 14 56% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 0 0% The individual's dietary preferences Strongly Disagree 5 20% Disagree 15 60% Agree 2 8% Strongly Agree 3 12% Plants' role as air purifiers Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 20 80% Agree 3 12% Strongly Agree 0 0% Plants' role as building materials Strongly Disagree 5 20% Disagree 17 68% Agree 3 12% Strongly Agree 0 0% Plants' role as clothin g materials Strongly Disagree 4 16% Disagree 19 76% Agree 2 8% Strongly Agree 0 0% a Consensus established

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94 Table 4 Retain Remove The overall appearance of a plant H ow long the individual has to observe the plant A job working with plants A plant's uniqueness How quickly the individual is moving past the plant Gardening or experiences growing plants A plant's location Informal educat ion on plants An interest in outdoor activities Formal education on plants Plants' role as producers of shade (i.e. trees) The color of a plant's foliage Living in an undeveloped country The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants Livi ng in a developed country Having someone in the family garden or raise plants The length of a flowering plants' blossom A plant's size The health of a plant The time of year A rural upbringing The individual's observation skills The individual's predis position Plants' role as aesthetic elements Living in a rural location A plant's fragrance Plants' role in the environment Plants' role as a food source A plant's texture Having plant related experiences that are not hands on Living in an urban loca tion A plant's shape An urban upbringing The individual's dietary preferences Plants' role as air purifiers Plants' role as building materials Plants' role as clothing materials

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95 Table 4 5. Final frequency and percentage of responses by ite m related to noticing plants (N=25). Abbreviated Description Position Frequency Percent The overall appearance of a plant a Yes 25 100% No 0 0% A job working with plants a Yes 25 100% No 0 0% a Yes 25 100% No 0 0% Gardening or experiences growing plants a Yes 22 88% No 3 12% Informal education on plants a Yes 23 92% No 2 8% Formal education on plants a Yes 23 92% No 2 8% The color of a plant's foliage a Yes 23 92% No 3 12% The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants a Yes 24 96% No 1 4% Having someone in the family garden or raise plants Yes 18 72% No 7 28% A plant's size a Yes 21 84% No 4 16% The time of year a Yes 20 80% No 5 20% The individual's observation skills a Yes 23 92% No 2 8% Plants' role as aesthetic elements a Yes 22 88% No 3 12% A plant's fragrance a Yes 24 96% No 1 4% Plants' role as a food source Yes 15 60% No 10 40% a Consensus established

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96 Table 4 Retain Remove The overall appearance of a plant Plants' role as a food source A job working with plants Having someone in the family garden or raise plants Gardening or experiences growing plants Informal education on plants Formal education on plants The color of a plant's foliage The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants A plant's size The time of year The individual's observation skills Plants' role as aesthetic elements A plant's fragrance

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97 Table 4 Abbreviated description Frequency Percent Hand on experiences 5 9.62% Environmental 4 7.69% Overall appearance 3 5.78% Knowledge of plants 3 5.78% Amount of exposure 3 5.78% Effects on property values 3 5.78% Food 3 5.78% Flower color 2 3.85% Size 2 3.85% Shape of the plant 2 3.85% Effects on electricity bi lls 2 3.85% Interest in/ enjoyment of plants 2 3.85% Interest in/ enjoyment of natural environments 2 3.85% Foliage color 1 1.92% Texture 1 1.92% 1 1.92% 1 1.92% Uniqueness 1 1.92% Health 1 1.92% Arrangement/ Presentation 1 1.92% Presence of a fragrance 1 1.92% Knowledge of science 1 1.92% Knowledge of agriculture 1 1.92% Knowledge of plant diversity 1 1.92% When minimal effort is need to care for the plant(s) 1 1.92% Value placed on p lants in the individual's culture 1 1.92% Presence of plants in the media 1 1.92% Clothing material 1 1.92% Building material 1 1.92%

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98 Table 4 plants (N=25). Abbreviated de scription Mean SD The individual's knowledge of plants 3.52 .510 The color of a plant's flowers (if any) 3.44 .507 The value placed on plants in the individual's culture 3.40 .645 Amount of prior exposure to plants 3.40 .645 Knowledge of the role that plants have within the ecosystem 3.36 .638 Experience growing plants 3.36 .757 An understanding of plant diversity 3.36 .638 Personal interest in/ enjoyment of plants 3.32 .627 Personal interest in/ enjoyment of natural environments 3.28 .678 The ove rall appearance of a plant 3.28 .678 A plant's fragrance 3.16 .688 A plant's uniqueness 3.08 .862 The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants 3.04 .539 The edible qualities of some plants 3.04 .611 An understanding of agriculture 3.0 4 .676 Knowledge of plants' effects on property values 3.00 .577 The shape of a plant's flowers 2.96 .676 Knowledge of plants' effects on utility bills 2.92 .702 The color of a plant's foliage 2.92 .702 A plant's health 2.80 .707 A plant's texture 2. 80 .645 A plant's size 2.76 .879 When minimal effort is need to care for the plant(s) 2.72 .542 The individual's knowledge of science 2.68 .690 The shape of a plant's leaves 2.68 .476 The general shape of a plant 2.68 .557 The presence of plants in t he media 2.60 .645 Plants' role as clothing materials 2.32 .852 Plants' role as building materials 2.32 .748

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99 Table 4 9. Frequency and percentage of responses by item related to appreciating plants. Abbreviated Description Position Frequency Percent The individual's knowledge of plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 0 0% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 13 52% The color of a plant's flowers (if any) a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 0 0% Agree 14 56% Strongly Agree 11 44% The value placed on plants in the individual's culture a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 12 48% Amount of prior exposure to plants Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 12 48% Knowledge of the rol e that plants have within the ecosystem a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 11 44% Experience growing plants a Strongly Disagree 1 4% Disagree 1 4% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 12 48% An understanding of plant di versity a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 11 44% Personal interest in/ enjoyment of plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 10 40% Personal interest in/ enjoyment of natural e nvironments a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 3 12% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 10 40% The overall appearance of a plant a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 3 12% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 10 40% A plant's fragrance a Strongly Disagree 1 4% Disagree 1 4% Agree 16 64%

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100 Table 4 9 Continued Abbreviated description Position Frequency Percent Strongly Agree 7 28% A plant's uniqueness a Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 2 8% Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 8 32% The arrangement or presenta tion of a plant or group of plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 3 12% Agree 18 72% Strongly Agree 4 16% The edible qualities of some plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 4 16% Agree 16 64% Strongly Agree 5 20% An understanding of agr iculture a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 5 20% Agree 14 56% Strongly Agree 6 24% Knowledge of plants' effects on property Strongly Disagree 0 0% values a Disagree 4 16% Agree 17 68% Strongly Agree 4 16% The shape of a plant's flowers Strong ly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 6 24% Agree 14 56% Strongly Agree 5 20% Knowledge of plants' effects on utility bills Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 7 28% Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 5 20% The color of a plant's foliage a Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 1 4% Agree 19 76% Strongly Agree 3 12% A plant's health a Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 3 12% Agree 18 72% Strongly Agree 2 8% A plant's texture a Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 2 8% Agree 20 80% Strongly Agree 1 4% A plant's size Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 7 28%

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101 Table 4 9 Continued Abbreviated description Position Frequency Percent Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 5 20% When minimal effort is need to care for the Strongly Disagree 0 0% plant(s) Disagree 8 32% Agree 16 64% Strongly Agree 1 4% The individual's knowledge of science Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 11 44% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 3 12% The shape of a plant's leaves Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 8 32% Agree 17 68% Strongly Agree 0 0% The general shape of a plant Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 9 36% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 1 4% The presence of plants in the media Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 12 48% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 2 8% Plants' role as clothing mat erials Strongly Disagree 4 16% Disagree 11 44% Agree 8 32% Strongly Agree 2 8% Plants' role as building materials Strongly Disagree 3 12% Disagree 12 48% Agree 9 36% Strongly Agree 1 4% a Consensus established

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102 Table 4 10. First reducti Retain Remove The individual's knowledge of plants The shape of a plant's flowers The color of a plant's flowers (if any) Knowledge of plants' effects on utility bills The value placed on plants in the individual's culture A plant's size Amount of prior exposure to plants When minimal effort is need to care for the plant(s) Knowledge of the role that plants have within the ecosystem The individual's knowledge of science Experience growin g plants The shape of a plant's leaves An understanding of plant diversity The general shape of a plant Personal interest in/ enjoyment of plants The presence of plants in the media Personal interest in/ enjoyment of natural environments Plants' role as clothing materials The overall appearance of a plant Plants' role as building materials A plant's fragrance A plant's uniqueness The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants The edible qualities of some plants An understanding of agriculture Knowledge of plants' effects on property values The color of a plant's foliage A plant's health A plant's texture

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103 Table 4 11. Final frequency and percentage of responses by item related to appreciating plants. Abbreviated Descrip tion Position Frequency Percent The individual's knowledge of plants Yes 24 96% No 1 4% The color of a plant's flowers (if any) Yes 23 92% No 2 8% The value placed on plants in the individual's Yes 19 76% culture No 6 24% Amount of prior exposure to plants Yes 21 84% No 4 16% Knowledge of the role that plants have within Yes 22 88% the ecosystem No 3 12% Experience growing plants Yes 23 92% No 2 8% An understanding of plant diversity Yes 22 88% No 3 12% Personal interest in/ enjoyment of plants Yes 23 92% No 2 8% Personal interest in/ enjoyment of natural Yes 23 92% environments No 2 8% The overall appearance of a plant Yes 20 80% No 5 20% A plant's fragrance Yes 23 92% No 2 8 % A plant's uniqueness Yes 21 84% No 4 16% The arrangement or presentation of a plant or Yes 22 88% group of plants No 3 12% The edible qualities of some plants Yes 21 84% No 4 16% An understanding of agriculture Yes 22 88% No 3 12% Knowledge of plants' effects on property Yes 21 84% values No 4 16% The color of a plant's foliage Yes 20 80% No 5 20% A plant's health Yes 15 60% No 10 40% A plant's texture Yes 17 68% No 8 32% a Consensus establ ished

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104 Table 4 Retain Remove The individual's knowledge of plants A plant's health The color of a plant's flowers (if any) A plant's texture Knowledge of the role th at plants have within the e cosystem The value placed on plants in the individual's culture Experience growing plants An understanding of plant diversity Personal interest in/ enjoyment of plants Personal interest in/ enjoyment of natural environm ents The overall appearance of a plant A plant's fragrance A plant's uniqueness The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants The edible qualities of some plants An understanding of agriculture Knowledge of plants' effects on property values The color of a plant's foliage Amount of prior exposure to plants

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105 Table 4 Abbreviated Description Frequency Percent Education on plants and plant based concepts 9 22.50% Education through the school system 3 7.50% General exposure to plants 3 7.50% Hand on experiences 3 7.50% Food 3 7.50% Overall appearance 2 5.00% Exposure to plants through the media 2 5.00% Uniqueness 1 2.50% Education through media venues 1 2.50% Education by parks and botanical gardens 1 2.50% Education through extension programs 1 2.50% Education by an individual/ mentor 1 2.50% Presence of a fragrance 1 2.50% Amount of prior exposure to plants 1 2.50% Exposure to plant s through art 1 2.50% Exposure to plants through childhood stories 1 2.50% Effects on property values 1 2.50% Effects on electricity bills 1 2.50% Length of time as a homeowner 1 2.50% Value placed on plants in the individual's culture 1 2.50% Whethe r or not a particular plant is perceived as a threat 1 2.50% The taste of an edible plant 1 2.50% Clothing material 1 2.50% Building material 1 2.50%

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10 6 Table 4 the importanc e of plants (N=25). Abbreviated Description Mean SD Education through extension programs 3.60 .500 General education on plants and plant based concepts 3.56 .583 Hands on experience with plants 3.52 .510 Education by an individual/ mentor 3.52 .653 Ed ucation by parks and botanical gardens 3.52 .714 Education through the school system 3.44 .651 A plant's fragrance 3.28 .542 General exposure to plants 3.24 .523 A plant's overall appearance 3.20 .577 re 3.20 .408 Amount of prior exposure to plants 3.16 .688 The role of plants as a food source 3.12 .600 The taste of an edible plant 3.12 .726 Knowledge of plant's effects on property values 3.08 .640 Whether or not a particular plant is perceived as a threat 3.08 .640 Education through media venues 3.08 .572 A plant's uniqueness 3.00 .816 Exposure to plants through the media 2.96 .735 Knowledge of plants' effects on utility bills 2.92 .640 Exposure to plants through art 2.92 .812 Exposure to pla nts through childhood stories 2.88 .781 The role of plants for clothing materials 2.60 .866 The role of plants for building materials 2.56 .768 2.44 .712

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107 Table 4 15. Frequency and percentage of response s by item related to recognizing the importance of plants. Abbreviated Description Position Frequency Percent Education through extension programs a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 0 0% Agree 10 40% Strongly Agree 15 60% General education on plants and plant based concepts a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 1 4% Agree 9 36% Strongly Agree 15 60% Hands on experience with plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 0 0% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 13 52% Education by an indiv idual/ mentor a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 8 32% Strongly Agree 15 60% Education by parks and botanical gardens a Strongly Disagree 1 4% Disagree 0 0% Agree 9 36% Strongly Agree 15 60% Education through the school sy stem a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 10 40% Strongly Agree 13 52% A plant's fragrance a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 1 4% Agree 16 64% Strongly Agree 8 32% General exposure to plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagr ee 1 4% Agree 17 68% Strongly Agree 7 28% A plant's overall appearance a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 16 64% Strongly Agree 7 28% culture a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 0 0% Agree 20 80% Strongly Agree 5 20% Amount of prior exposure to plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 4 16% Agree 13 52%

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108 Table 4 15 Continued Abbreviated description Position Frequency Percent Strongly Agree 8 32% The role of plants as a food source a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 3 12% Agree 16 64% Strongly Agree 6 24% The taste of an edible plant a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 5 20% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 8 32% n property values a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 4 16% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 6 24% Whether or not a particular plant is perceived as a threat a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 4 16% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 6 24% Educat ion through media venues a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 3 12% Agree 17 68% Strongly Agree 5 20% A plant's uniqueness a Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 2 8% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 6 24% Exposure to plants through the media St rongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 7 28% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 6 24% Knowledge of plants' effects on utility bills Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 6 24% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 4 16% Exposure to plants through art Strongly Disa gree 0 0% Disagree 9 36% Agree 9 36% Strongly Agree 7 28% Exposure to plants through childhood Strongly Disagree 0 0% stories Disagree 9 36% Agree 10 40% Strongly Agree 6 24% The role of plants for clothing materials Strongly Disagr ee 2 8% Disagree 10 40%

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109 Table 4 15 Continued Abbreviated description Position Frequency Percent Agree 9 36% Strongly Agree 4 16% The role of plants for building materials Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 9 36% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agr ee 2 8% Strongly Disagree 2 8% homeowner Disagree 11 44% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 1 4% a Consensus established

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110 Table 4 e importance plants. Retain Remove Education through extension programs Exposure to plants through the media General education on plants and plant based concepts Knowledge of plants' effects on utility bills Hands on experience with plants Exposure to p lants through art Education by an individual/ mentor Exposure to plants through childhood stories Education by parks and botanical gardens The role of plants for clothing materials Education through the school system The role of plants for building mate rials A plant's fragrance homeowner General exposure to plants A plant's overall appearance culture Amount of prior exposure to plants The role of plants as a food source The taste of an edible plant Knowledge of plant's effects on property values Whether or not a particular plant is perceived as a threat Education through media venues A plant's uniqueness

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111 Table 4 17. Final frequency and percentage of responses by item related to recognizing the importance of plants. Abbreviated Description Position Frequency Percent Education through extension programs Yes 25 100% No 0 0% General education on plants and plant based Yes 25 100% concepts No 0 0% Hands on experience with plants Yes 25 100% No 0 0% Education by an individual/ mentor Yes 25 100% No 0 0% Education by parks and botanical gardens Yes 24 96% No 1 4% Education through the school system Yes 25 100% No 0 0% A plant's fragrance Yes 20 80% No 5 20% General exposure to plants Yes 23 92% No 2 8% A plant's overall appearance Yes 16 64% No 9 36% Yes 21 84% culture No 4 16% Amount of prior exposure to plants Yes 20 80% No 5 20% The role of plants as a food source Yes 19 76% No 6 24% The taste of an edible plant Yes 19 76% No 6 24% Yes 17 68% No 8 32% Whether or not a particular plant is perceived as Yes 20 80% a threat No 5 20% Education through media venues Yes 23 92% No 2 8% A plant's uniqueness Yes 16 64% No 9 36% a Consensus established

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112 importance of plants. Retain Remo ve Education through extension programs A plant's overall appearance General education on plants and plant based concepts The role of plants as a food source Hands on experience with plants The taste of an edible plant Education by an individual/ mento r Knowledge of plant's effects on property values Education by parks and botanical gardens A plant's uniqueness Education through the school system A plant's fragrance General exposure to plants culture Amount of prior exposure to plants Whether or not a particular plant is perceived as a threat Education through media venues

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113 Table 4 Abbreviated Description Frequency Percent Ed ucational history 8 18.60% Experiences with plants 4 9.30% 3 6.98% Appreciation for plants 3 6.98% Experiences with animals 2 4.65% Educational emphasis on plants over animals 2 4.65% Awareness of plant s 2 4.65% Perceptions of plants 2 4.65% An individual's history visiting zoos 1 2.33% Lack of knowledge of plant structures 1 2.33% Lack of knowledge of plant functions 1 2.33% An individual's level of exposure to plants 1 2.33% Living in an urban lo cation 1 2.33% Living in a rural location 1 2.33% The presence of plants in the individual's home 1 2.33% The presence of animals in the individual's home 1 2.33% Plants' lack of extensive, independent mobility 1 2.33% Plants' lack of sound 1 2.33% P lants' slow response time 1 2.33% Plants' lack of exhibitions of behavior 1 2.33% Plants don't present a predator threat 1 2.33% Appreciation for animals 1 2.33% Perceptions of animals 1 2.33% How humans relate to plants 1 2.33% How humans relate to animals 1 2.33%

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114 Table 4 20 to animals (N=25). Abbreviated Description Mean SD Appreciation for plants 3.40 .645 Experiences with plants 3.36 .490 Awareness of plants 3.33 .63 7 An individual's level of exposure to plants 3.28 .542 Perceptions of plants 3.16 .688 Experiences with animals 3.16 .554 Plants' lack of extensive, independent mobility 3.12 .726 Educational history 3.08 .640 Plants' slow response time 3.08 .812 P lants' perceived general lack of animate characteristics 3.04 .676 The presence of plants in the individual's home 3.00 .577 How humans relate to plants 3.00 .707 Educational emphasis on plants over animals 2.96 .735 Appreciation for animals 2.96 .841 Living in a rural location 2.96 .611 The presence of animals in the individual's home 2.88 .833 Lack of knowledge of plant functions 2.84 .624 Lack of knowledge of plant structures 2.84 .624 Plants' lack of exhibitions of behavior 2.84 .800 Perceptio ns of animals 2.84 .800 How humans relate to animals 2.76 .779 Plants' lack of sound 2.76 .831 Plants don't present a predator threat 2.56 .821 Living in an urban location 2.52 .510 An individual's history visiting zoos 2.52 .653

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115 Table 4 21. Frequ ency and percentage of responses by item related to the comparison of plants to animals. Abbreviated Description Position Frequency Percent Appreciation for plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 11 44% Strongly Agree 12 48% Exper iences with plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 0 0% Agree 16 64% Strongly Agree 9 36% Awareness of plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 10 40% An individual's level of exposure Strongly Di sagree 0 0% to plants a Disagree 1 4% Agree 16 64% Strongly Agree 8 32% Perceptions of plants a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 4 16% Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 8 32% Experiences with animals a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 2 8% Agree 17 68% Strongly Agree 6 24% Plants' lack of extensive, Strongly Disagree 0 0% i ndependent mobility a Disagree 5 20% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 8 32% Educational history a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 4 16% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 6 24% Plants' slow response time a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 7 28% Agree 9 36% Strongly Agree 9 36% Plants' perceived general lack Strongly Disagree 0 0% of animate characteristics a Disagree 5 20% Agree 14 56% Strongly Agree 6 24% The presence of plants in the Strongly Disagree 0 0% individual's home a Disagree 4 16% Agree 17 68%

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116 Table 4 21 Continued Abbreviated Description Position Frequency Percent Strongly Agree 4 16% How humans relate to plants Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 6 24% Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 6 24% Educational emphasis on Strongly Disagree 0 0% plants over animals Disagree 7 28% Agree 12 48% Strongly Agree 6 24% Appreciation for animals a Strong ly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 3 12% Agree 14 56% Strongly Agree 6 24% Living in a rural location a Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 5 20% Agree 16 64% Strongly Agree 4 16% The presence of animals Strongly Disagree 2 8% in the individua l's home Disagree 4 16% Agree 14 56% Strongly Agree 5 20% Lack of knowledge of plant functions Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 7 28% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 3 12% Lack of knowledge of plant structures Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disa gree 7 28% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 3 12% Plants' lack of exhibitions of behavior Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 10 40% Agree 9 36% Strongly Agree 6 24% Perceptions of animals Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 4 16% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 4 16% How humans relate to animals Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 5 20% Agree 15 60% Strongly Agree 3 12% Plants' lack of sound Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 6 24%

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117 Table 4 21 Continued Abbreviated description P osition Frequency Percent Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 4 16% Plants don't present a predator threat Strongly Disagree 2 8% Disagree 10 40% Agree 10 40% Strongly Agree 3 12% Living in an urban location Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 12 48% Agree 13 52% Strongly Agree 0 0% An individual's history visiting zoos Strongly Disagree 0 0% Disagree 14 56% Agree 9 36% Strongly Agree 2 8% a Consensus established

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118 Table 4 22. First reduction on dimensions that affect one animals. Retain Remove Appreciation for plants How humans relate to plants Experiences with plants Educational emphasis on plants over animals Awareness of plants The presence of animals in the individual's home An individua l's level of exposure to plants Lack of knowledge of plant functions Perceptions of plants Lack of knowledge of plant structures Experiences with animals Plants' lack of exhibitions of behavior Plants' lack of extensive, independent mobility Perceptions of animals Educational history How humans relate to animals Plants' slow response time Plants' lack of sound Plants' perceived general lack of animate characteristics Plants don't present a predator threat The presence of plants in the individual's ho me Living in an urban location Appreciation for animals An individual's history visiting zoos Living in a rural location

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119 Table 4 23. Final frequency and percentage of responses by item related to comparing plants to animals. Abbreviated Description Position Frequency Percent Appreciation for plants a Yes 25 100% No 0 0% Experiences with plants a Yes 23 92% No 2 8% Awareness of plants a Yes 25 100% No 0 0% An individual's level of exposure to plants a Yes 21 84% No 4 16% Perceptions of p lants a Yes 23 92% No 2 8% Experiences with animals a Yes 20 80% No 5 20% Plants' lack of extensive, independent mobility Yes 18 72% No 7 28% Educational history a Yes 20 80% No 5 20% Plants' perceived general lack of animate Yes 16 64% chara cteristics No 9 36% The presence of plants in the individual's home a Yes 21 84% No 4 16% Appreciation for animals a Yes 21 84% No 4 16% Living in a rural location Yes 18 72% No 7 28% a Consensus established

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120 Table 4 24. Final reduction of animals. Retain Remove Appreciation for plants Plants' lack of extensive, independent mobility Experiences with plants Plants' perceived general lack of animate characteristics Awareness of plants Pl ants' slow response time An individual's level of exposure to plants Living in a rural location Perceptions of plants Experiences with animals Educational history The presence of plants in the individual's home Appreciation for animals

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121 Tabl e 4 25. Elements to include or remove from the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument. Cognitive elements for inclusion Context specific elements for removal A job working with plants The overall appearance of a plant Gardening or experiences growing plants The color of a plant's foliage Informal education on plants Formal education on plants A plant's size The individual's observation skills The time of year Plants' role as aesthetic elements A plant's fragr ance The individual's knowledge of plants The color of a plant's flowers (if any) Amount of prior exposure to plants A plant's fragrance General exposure to plants A plant's uniqueness Experience growing plants The edible qualities of some plants An u nderstanding of plant diversity The color of a plant's foliage Personal interest in/ enjoyment of plants The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants Personal interest in/ enjoyment of natural environments Whether or not a particular pla nt is perceived as a threat An understanding of agriculture Knowledge of plants' effects on property values Education through extension programs General education on plants and plant based concepts Hands on experience with plants Education by an i ndividual/ mentor Education by parks and botanical gardens Education through the school system Education through media venues Amount of prior exposure to plants Knowledge of the role that plants have within the Ecosystem Appreciation for plants Appreciation for animals Experiences with plants Awareness of plants An individual's level of exposure to plants Perceptions of plants Experiences with animals Educational history The pr esence of plants in the individual's home

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122 CHAPTER 5 CONCLUSIONS This study assumes that the four definitional elements presented by Wandersee and Schussler (1999) are, in fact, the identifying components of the concept of plant blindness. This study a lso assumes that the panel of experts was representative enough to provide insight into all factors that potentially influence plant blindness. The fact that no neurologists or psychologists served as panel members may impose significant limitations, if th e afore mentioned assumption was violated. However, little evidence exists in the data to suggest that the panel did not provide an adequate review of the concepts in question. A limitation exists in the fact that the Predisposition toward Plant Blindnes s Instrument assumes that each element is weighted equally. The analysis did not provide susceptibility to plant blindness. Further research is needed to ensure that equa l weighting is appropriate Additionally, this instrument does not include any context specific variables which are assumed not to play a part in the development of predispositions. The instrument will need to be validated at a later date. In addition to being a study with the aim of developing an instrument, this study also examined the principle components that were suggested by Wandersee, Clary, and Guzman (2006) to be contributing factors to plant blindness. A thematic analysis of the components tha t were presented indicated that plant blindness occurs as a result of physiological, psychological, and sociocultural factors. The conclusions presented here evaluate the contribution of these constructs to the overall occurrence of plant blindness and the foundational premises of the plant blindness construct, as well as identify

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123 predisposition to be plant blind. The Concept of Plant Blindness has Two Distinct Dimensions Context Sp ecific and Personal Predispositions are distinct from context specific forces. In this study, t he panelists identified numerous components suggesting that plant blindness cannot be fully onment. Evidence of this notion was explained by the presentation of specific plant traits that respondents suggested as components influencing the elements in question. The context specific traits identified are as follows: The overall appearance of a pla nt The color of a plant's foliage A plant's size The time of year A plant's fragrance The color of a plant's flowers (if any) A plant's fragrance A plant's uniqueness The edible qualities of some plants The color of a plant's foliage The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants Whether or not a particular plant is perceived as a threat Specia l considerations are required in the examination of the effects of plant blindness as a function of these context speci fic elements. The presence of a fragrant but little is known about the presence or duration of that effect. More research will need to be done to assess the contribution of each of these contex level of plant blindness can be developed.

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124 However, the personal dimensions identified by the panelists suggest that susceptibility to plant blindness can be controlled to an undetermined degree by re gulating the experiences and education one has that relate to plants. Further, certain personality traits, which vary in degrees of flexibility, play a part in one s likelihood to be plant blind. The ability to measure plant blindness is mitigated by the c omplex relationship in the constellation of these factors. However, it is possible to get a sense of and postulate how those factors will contribute to The Occurrence of Plant Bl indness is Context Dependent Even though Wandersee and Schussler (1999) acknowledged the fact that when flowering plants do not have flowers they appear more homogenous and are less likely to be noticed the literature on plant blindness does not illustr ate the extent to which The numerous plant characteristics provided by the panelists indicate how important context truly is. These items included: The overall appearance of a plant A plant's size agrance The color of a plant's flowers (if any) The color of a plant's foliage The arrangement or presentation of a plant or group of plants p lant blindness is context specific. While the context specific characteristics may be s (1997 ) static proximity, they nevertheless have their own distinct dimension that should be more prevalent in the lit erature.

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125 Further, the influence of these context specific factors could make it very difficult to level of plant blindness. It would be possible to create an at a specific point in time but the usefulness of such a measure would be entirely dependent on the research question. Thus, for the purposes of developing an instrument that has a more general application, the afore mentioned factors that are of a contex t specific nature were not The Proposed Definition of Plant Blindness is Inconsistent with the Pr oposed Indicators of the Phenomenon. Wandersee and Schussler (1999) proposed that plant blindness had four environment; (2) the inability to recognize the importance of plants in the biosphere and in human affairs; (3) the inability to appreciate the aesthetic and unique biological features of the life forms that belong to the Plant Kingdom; and (4) the misguided anthropocentric ranking of plants as inferior to animals and thus as unworthy of In the same article, the authors proposed that there were nine factors attention on the plants in one's daily life; (b) thinking that plants are merely the backdrop for animal life; (c) misunderstanding what kinds of matter and energy plants require to stay alive; (d) overlooking the importance of plants to one's daily affairs (Balick & Cox, 1996); (e) failing to distinguish between the differing time scales of plant and animal activity (Attenborough, 1995); (f) lacking hands on experiences in growing, observing, and identifying plants in one's own geographic region; (g) failing to explain the basic

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126 plant science underlying nearby plant c ommunities including plant growth, nutrition, reproduction, and relevant ecological considerations; (h) lacking awareness that plants are central to a key biogeochemical cycle the carbon cycle; and (i) being insensitive to the aesthetic qualities of plants through theorization and a review of the literature. When the four definitional elements of plant blindness were proposed to the expert tors of plant blindness were suggested to be factors influencing the extent of prevalence : failing to see, take notice of, or focus attention on the plants in one's daily life; lacking hands on experiences in growing, observing, and identifying plants in o ne's own geographic region; and being insensitive to the aesthetic qualities of plants and their structures The dissociation between the definition and the indicators, as a function of the information provided by the panelists, is highly concentrated in t he biological and anthropocentric aspects of the construct. An explanation for this dissonance could be in the fact that plant blindness was developed and examined by botanists. It is possible that sources of ssional backgrounds crept into their studies at various points throughout the conceptualization and literature review. The panel also identified additional factors that were not considered by the original s effect on property values is exemplary of this notion. Wandersee and Schussler (1999) recognized the importance of plants as they relate to the carbon cycle but failed to incorporate other pertinent facets of plants and how their contributions are recognized in society.

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127 Psychologi cal and Sociocultural Elements are Perceived to have a Greater Impact on Plant Blindness than Physiological Elements. The panel did not seem overly concerned with the contributions to plant blindness that were explained by the physiological aspe cts outlin ed in Chapter Two While there were no physiologists or neurosci entists in the panel, panelist s possessed the reasoning abilities to identify some of these characteristics. In fact, in the first round, two ibutors were alluded to by members of the panel, how fast one is walking by a plant and how long one has to look at a plant. Contrary to what would be predicted by the literature review, these items were swiftly removed in the second round. As is consiste nt with the previous conclusion, it appears that the definition and application of plant blindness principles are disjointed. The psychological and sociocultural element s were identified as more explanatory of the conce pt of plant blindness. Meaning ascri ption through experiences and education, perceptions, and cultural value are just a few examples of how these components were identified by panelists. The panel emphasis on psychological and sociocultural influences on the components of plant blindness is predisposition toward plant blindness is needed. If the factors that increase or decrease environment in which he or she wa s raised, can be identified, an d an opportunity to systematically overcome plant blindness may present itself. The Definition of Plant Blindness is in Need of Revision. The previous two conclusions illuminate the disparity between the theory bases and h ypothesized indicators of plant blindness as they relate to each other and the

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128 findings of this study. It could be the case that this dissonance exists because one or more components of the definition of plant blindness is misaligned with the concept the o riginal authors intended to examine. While this research suggested that some elements considered to be factors influencing plant blindness were in fact not as essential as the original researchers posited, it provides no evidence that the four key definit ional elements do or do not compose the construct of plant blindness. Heavy implications for further research on plant blindness, as well as the validity of the Predisposition toward Plant Blindness Instrument exist if one or more of the definitional ele ments presented by Wandersee and Schussler (1999) do not apply to the exhibition of plant blindness. Examples of the t he results of the current study include: Plants' perceived general lack of ani mate characteristics Educational emphasis on plants over animals Lack of knowledge of plant functions Lack of knowledge of plant structures Plants don't present a predator threat The general shape of a plant The individual's knowledge of science Having so meone in the family garden or raise plants How long the individual has to observe the plant How quickly the individual is moving past the plant It appears that many of the disconnected elements align with the arguments that Wandersee and Schussler (1999) made for the inclusion of the fourth piece of the definition of plant blindness, the anthropocentric ranking of plants as inferior to animals. It could be the case removal of this element from the definition of plant blindness may be necessary.

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129 These disp arities may have resulted from differences in the cognitive orientation of the original researchers as it relates to their propensity for the physical sciences, as botanists, over the social sciences. The examination of a phenomenon in an environment that is influenced by many social factors has many complex parts that require a social scientific orientation to identify. Additionally, a researcher must develop an awareness of the interaction between each of the complex part s to be able to develop a comprehe nsive understanding of the occurrence of a phenomenon. Recommendations for Further Research Little research has been done to identify the factors that contribute to plant blindness or the effects of those or assess the impact that various factors have on individuals. Further research should verify the findings from this study, work toward a comprehensive assessment of the contribution that each factor affecting plant blindness ultimately lends to the prevalence of plant blindness, and assess method s and im plications for reducing plant blindness. Assess the Impact of Neurological a n d Physiological Considerations o n Plant Blindness. A limitation of this study was that no panel members were physiologist s psychologists, or neuropsychologists. The impacts of e volutionary process es that were discussed by Bernhardt (1999 ) and Iyengar and Lepper (2000) as they relate to cognitive processing of plants based on visual stimuli may not have been adequately addressed by the panel members in this study. This research c ould potentially be done in a qualitative or experimental based design. However, this study has shown that researcher speculation about factors influencing plant blindness may not match expert consensus. An e xperimental design,

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130 in which spa cia l proximity a nd choice overload are examined with specific regard to the attention and individual pays to the presence of plants, may provide more detailed information about the underlying processes involved. Assess the Contribution t hat Each Factor Affecting Pl ant Blindness Ultimately Lends to The Prevalence o f Plant Blindness. Two different types of factors influencing elements of plant blindness were identified in this study, global factors and context specific factors. The Predisposition toward Plant Blindness In strument evaluates the consortium of global factors that lead one to be more or less predisposed to plant blindness. How ever, little is known about how these factors function together to lead to plant blindness. This type of knowledge could be beneficial b ecause it may help define specific groups to target in efforts to reduce plant blindness. For example, knowledge suggesting that having a plant mentor position toward plant blindness could lead to an increase in community efforts to involve adult s and plant based concepts in an effort to intervene at an early age (Wandersee and Schussler, 1999, 20 01). Similarly, movement toward an index of one s level of plant blindness at a specific point in time could be developed if the context specific characteristics of plants were e the importance of plants were established and standardized. Replications of Mack and s (1998) s tudy could be performed in a laboratory setting analyzing the effects of single distraction tasks and incrementally incorporating more variables that inc rease required attention. The combination of knowledge of the contribution of each plant

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131 blindness inducing factor, both global and context specific, would provide an adequate ness (with the caveat that the measure would only be valid for a single point in time).

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132 APPENDIX A RESEARCH DERVIED PRINCIPLES Some research derived visual principles that help to explain plant blindness 1. Norretranders (1998) has calculated that only .0000016 of the data our eyes produce area ctually considered consciously. It seems that visual consciousness is like a spotlight, not a floodlight. By default, if plants are not an aid or a threat to survival, they are less likely to receive conscious at tention via search imaging. 2. Plants can and do modify their visual signal values in accordance with the survival values conferred. Thus, they may appear more prominent at certain times of the year. 3. Mack and Rock (1998) have found that once objects h ave acquired meaning for an observer, they are more likely to be consciously perceived via vision. Inattention can become attention, once an object or event has acquired personal meaning. 4. Vision is anthropocentric we pay more attention to human faces t han anything else. Studies also show that people, being animals themselves, pay more attention to animals than to plants, even though, paradoxically, plants form the basis of most animal habitats and all life on earth (Abbott 1998). 5. To see an object in same as seeing. We pay little attention to things that have little meaning for us. Solso (1994, p. 26) 6. The brain uses p atterns of space, time, and color to structure visual experience (Zakia 1997). Because they are immobile autotrophs, plants in nature generally offer fewer spacing based, time based, or color based visual cues for humans to observe than animals do except, for example, during periods of pollination and dispersal (cf. Wandersee & Schussler 2000). 7. Gopnik, Meltzof, and Kuhl (1999, p. 65) claim that: "Paying attention to edges is the best way of dividing a static picture into separate objects." Plants often grow close together in populations, and thus have chromatic and spatial continuity. This makes it hard to see structural edges, and individual plants do not "pop out" from their background. 8. Humans can only focus on one thing at a time. Attention is a z ero sum game. Brightness, low color contrast, and lack of shadows under daytime lighting conditions make plants less conspicuous, minimizing optic flow, except near dawn and dusk 9. Human attentional capacity is idiosyncratic, and it also decreases with i ncreases in drugs, alcohol, fatigue, and age.

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133 10. Too many kinds of plants can seem overwhelming to consider in one study, a maximum of 6 different visual choices was found to be ideal for viewer satisfaction, rather than arrays of 24 or 30, based on the research of Iyengar and Lepper (2000). Retrieved from Wandersee, Clary, and Guzman (2006)

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134 APPENDIX B INITIAL CONTACT LETT ER Good afternoon My name is Deidra Slough the U niversity of Florida. I would like to invite you to participate in a study for my thesis research. I am requesting the assistance of plant based practitioners and academicians in could generate interest in botanical activities, increase plant sales, and open new avenues for funded research topics. On Monday, November 7th, you will receive an e mail with a link to a survey. Your participation will be greatly appreciated, by participating you will be helping promote horticultural awareness. The study is voluntary and your responses will be kept confidential. It will consist of three surveys (one every other week, on Mondays). The first survey will be geared toward attention, knowledge, and judgment of plants. This survey should take no more than 35 minutes to complete. The following two surv eys will present all the ideas collected and ask for consensus on their importance. These rounds will take no more than 15 minutes each. If you have any questions or comments regarding your participation in this study, feel free to contact me. Sincere ly, Deidra Slough Agricultural Communications Graduate Assistant Department of Agricultural Education & Communication College of Agriculture and Life Sciences | University of Florida

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135 APPENDIX C LETTER TO INITIATE D ATA COLLECTION FOR R OUND ONE De ar ( Participants Name ), plants. The purpose of this survey is to obtain a foundation of information that will be used to create an instrument that will evaluate the extent to which individuals notice and appreciate plants, recognize the importance of plants, and compare plants to animals. The instrument that will be created out of the information you provide will be used to create and evaluate educational progra ms, enhance industry knowledge of the target consumer, and increase academic knowledge for further research. You were selected to participate in this survey based on your diverse knowledge of the botanical and horticultural realms. The expertise you brin g to the table will ensure a quality instrument is produced that covers a wide spread range of topics. Your responses to the survey will remain completely confidential and will be released only as a part of a group summary. If you have any questions or c omments about this survey, please feel free to contact. The survey can be found at (LINK). It should take less than 35 minutes to complete. The survey will be available for (number) days, until (DATE). Next week, on (DATE), you will be sent a follow up q uestionnaire asking you to evaluate the responses obtained on this survey. Thank you very much for your help with this important study. Sincerely, Deidra Slough Agricultural Communications Graduate Assistant Department of Agricultural Education & Co mmunication College of Agriculture and Life Sciences | University of Florida

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136 APPENDIX D LETTER TO INITIATE D ATA COLLECTION FOR R OUND TWO Dear Thank you to everyone who responded on the public plant interest survey over the pa st two weeks! My request this week is much less time consuming. I would simply like to appreciate plants, recognize the importance of plants, and compare plants to animals will lead to a more solid foundation for the instrument that will be built from this knowledge. If you did not respond to the last survey, you are still invited to part icipate in the remained of the study. Again, the final instrument will be useful for industry professionals, botanical program coordinators, educators, and academicians. Contributions to its development will be highly appreciated in the long run. The survey can be found at (LINK) It should take less than 15 minutes to complete. The survey will be available for 11 days, until December 9 th 2011 A final questionnaire will be sent to you in two week, asking for a final approval or rejection on each fac tor. If you have any questions or comments regarding your participation in this study, feel free to contact me. Thank you very much for your help with this important study. Sincerely, Deidra Slough Agricultural Communications Graduate Assistant De partment of Agricultural Education & Communication College of Agriculture and Life Sciences | University of Florida

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137 APPENDIX E LETTER TO INITIATE D ATA COLLECTION FOR R OUND THREE Dear The final week has arrived to provide feed back on elements of the survey regarding the This final survey asks for a simple yes or no/ acceptance or rejection of the highest survey. This final step should take you no more than 10 minutes. The survey can be found at (link) and will be available until (DATE). If you have any questions or comments regarding your participation in this study, feel free to contact me. Thank yo u very much for your involvement over the past three weeks. The information you have provided is invaluable. Sincerely, Deidra Slough Agricultural Communications Graduate Assistant Department of Agricultural Education & Communication College of Agric ulture and Life Sciences | University of Florida

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138 APPENDIX F FOLLOW UP LETTER Dear On (day of the week) you were invited to contribute to a survey on the factors that s. To the best of my knowledge, you have not completed the survey. I hope that you choose to fill out the questionnaire soon. Your response will assist in the creation of an instrument that will evaluate the extent to which individuals notice and appreciat e plants, recognize the importance of plants, and compare plants to animals. This instrument will be used to create and evaluate educational programs, enhance industry knowledge of the target consumer, and increase academic knowledge for further research. The survey is voluntary. If you choose to participate in the survey, your answers will be completely confidential and will only be reported as a part of group summaries. The survey can be found at (LINK) It should take less than 15 minutes to complete If you have any questions or comments regarding your participation in this study, feel free to contact me. Thank you very much for your help with this important study. Sincerely, Deidra Slough Agricultural Communications Graduate Assistant Depar tment of Agricultural Education & Communication College of Agriculture and Life Sciences | University of Florida

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139 APPENDIX G THANK YOU LETTER Dear I would like to thank you for your contributions over the past few weeks to the result of your participation. If you have any questions or comments about the survey process or data obtained, please contact m e Sincerely, Deidra Slough Agricultural Communications Graduate Assistant Department of Agricultural Education & Communication College of Agriculture and Life Sciences | University of Florida

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140 APPENDIX H PREDISPOSITION TOWARD PLANT BLINDNESS INST RUMENT

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141

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146 Linsto ne, H., & Turnoff, M. (1975). The Delphi method: Techniques and applications. Reading, MA: Addison Wesley. Ludwig, B. (1997). Predicting the Future: Have you considered using the Delphi Methodology? The Journal of Extension 35 (5). Retrieved from http://ww w.joe.org/ Lyons, N. P. (1983). Two perspectives: Self, relationships, and morality. Harvard Educational Review 53, 125 145. Mack, A. & Rock I. (1998) Inattentional Blindness. MIT Press Mason, J. (1996). Qualitative researching Thousand Oaks, USA: Sage P ublications. Mattson, R. H. (2010). Biofeedback evidence of social and psychological health benefits provided by plants and flowers in urban environments. In G. Prosdocimi Gianquinto, F. Orsini (Eds), ISHS Acta Horticulturae 881. Paper presented at the II International Conference on Landscape and Urban Horticulture, Bologna, Italy, (pp. 751 757) Leuven: ISHS. McKenna H.P. (1994) The Delphi technique: a worthwhile approach for nursing? Journal of Advanced Nursing 19, 1221 1225. Meyer, J. H. (1992). Rethinki ng the outlook of colleges whose roots have been in agriculture Davis, CA: University of California. Miller, G. (2001). The development of indicators for sustainable tourism: Results of a Delphi survey of tourism researchers. Tourism Management 22 (4), 3 51 362. Mokdad, A. H., Marks, J. S., Stroup, D. F., & Gerberding, J. L. (2004). Actual causes of death in the United States, 2000. Journal of the American Medical Association 291, 1238 1245. Moore, G. T. (1979). Knowing about environmental knowing: The cu rrent state of theory and research on environmental cognition. Environment and Behavior, 11 (1), 33 70. Moore, G. T., & Golledge, R. G. (1976). Environmental knowing: Theories, research, and methods Stroudsburg, PA: Dowden, Hutchinson & Ross Neisser, U., & Becklen, R. (1975). Selective looking: Attending to visually specified events. Cognitive Psychology 7(4), 480 494.

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148 Schussler, E., & Wandersee, J. (1999). Lost plant! Victoria, BC: Trafford Publishing. Shieh, W.V. (1990). Using the Delphi technique to determine the most important characteristics of effective teaching in Taiwan Unpublished University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio. Simons, D. J. & Chabris, C. F. (1999). Gorillas in our midst: sustained inattentional blindness for dynamic events. Perception 28, 1059 1074. Simons, D. J. & Jensen, M. S. (2009). The effects o f individual differences and task difficulty on inattentional blindness Psychonomic Bulletin & Review 2009, 16 (2), 398 403. Simpson, B. B., & Ogorzaly, M. C. (1995). Economic botany: Plants in our world New York: McGraw Hill Inc. Skulmoski, G. J., Hart man, F. T., & Krahn, J. (2007). The Delphi method for graduate research. Journal of Information Technology Education 6, 1 21. Snyder Halpern, R., Thompson, C.B., and Schaffer, J. (2000). Comparison of mailed vs. Internet applications of the Delphi techniq ue in clinical informatics research. AMIA Annual Symposium Proceedings 809 813. Solso, R. L. (1994). Cognition and the Visual Arts Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Storey,. R.D. (1989). Textbook errors and misconceptions in biology: Photosynthesis. The Americ an Biology Teacher 51, 271 274. Strauss, A. & Corbin, J. (1990). Basics of qualitative research: Grounded theory procedures and techniques London: Sage. Strauss, A. & Corbin, J. (1990). Basics of Qualitative Research: Grounded Theory Procedures and Tech niques. Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications. Terry, B. D. (2009). Fundamental dimensions and essential elements of exemplary county extension offices: a Delphi study. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. University of Florida Fact Book Enrollment (2012). Retrieved March 5, 2102, from http://www.ir.ufl.edu/oirapps/factbooktest/enrollment/fb_enrollment.aspx Uno, G. E. (1994). The s tate of precollege botanical education. American Biology Teacher, 56(5), 263 267.

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150 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Deidra Lynn Slough was born in 1988 in Aurora, Colorado. Her secondary education was completed in many schools across the United States but her post secondary education brought her to th e University of Florida in 2006. Here she had an opportunity to display her most defining feature, her dedication. In four years she graduated with her Bachelor of Arts wit h two majors and two minors in sociology, exuality.