Effects of disaster education on children's risk perception and preparedness: a quasi‐experimental longitudinal study

Ayse Yildiz*, Julie Dickinson, Jacqueline Priego-Hernandez, Richard Teeuw, Rajib Shaw

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to examine the effects of a disaster education intervention on children's risk perception and preparedness. It also sought to advance longitudinal studies, during an 18-month time period, of risk perception and preparedness by using a quasi-experimental methodology in child-centred disaster research. This study used a quasi-experimental longitudinal research design to measure the effects of disaster education on children. These effects were examined on children's risk perception and preparedness in the Van and Kocaeli provinces of Türkiye during the 18-month period, with a sample of 720 school children. Experimental and control groups were randomly allocated, controlling for age, school grade and school enrolment. The disaster education intervention was designed to improve the children's awareness of natural hazards and their knowledge of disaster risk reduction using discussion, visual materials and interactive teaching of emergency management. The results indicate that the disaster education intervention had a positive effect on children's risk perception and perceived importance of preparedness in both study locations. It also helped children to understand the risks and hazards in their living environments. More importantly, this study showed that disaster education enhanced the protective measures taken by children for disasters. This is the first study using the quasi-experimental longitudinal research design to measure the effects of disaster education on children's risk perception and the importance of preparedness. The findings are of relevance for organisations such as government departments and non-government organisations when designing or improving disaster education programmes.
Original languageEnglish
JournalGeographical Journal
Early online date1 Nov 2023
DOIs
Publication statusEarly online - 1 Nov 2023

Keywords

  • children
  • disaster education
  • intervention
  • longitudinal study
  • risk perception and preparedness
  • Türkiye (Turkey)

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