Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Physical Education

First Advisor

Barry C. McKeown


High-risk adventure courses are a new and dynamic part of physical education programs in many parts of the country. Many studies have been completed to assess the effect of physical activities on the integration of the personality. An initial course, Outward Bound, was an outgrowth of stringent programs developed by the British Navy during World War II. Because the Navy had found their men not well prepared to handle crises or stressful situations, a solution to this problem was sought by establishing the first Outward Bound School. The specific purpose was to introduce physical challenge in its training of young men as means of developing their character. By being pushed to their physical limits within the safety of a program, the men improved greatly in their physical stamina and their determination to survive. Subsequent wartime experience established a greater survival rate for graduates of the Outward Bound School. Project Adventure, the focus of this study, is an outgrowth of Outward Bound Schools. Project Adventure was originated in Massachusetts in 1970-71. The purpose of this study was to describe the effect of participation in an advanced Project Adventure Class on the self-concept of high school students. Twelve subscales of the Tennessee Self Concept Scale were compared before and after the class and the mean differences were evaluated statistically to ascertain whether there was a significant change in: Self-Criticism, Net Conflict, Total Conflict, Total Positivity, Positive Identity, Self-Satisfaction, Behavior, Physical Self, Moral-Ethical Self, Personal Self, Family Self, and Social Self. This study was conducted at a high school during the 1979-1980 school year. Data were collected from Project Adventure classes held in the spring semester. Ninety-nine students, 36 female and 63 males from the five advanced classes served as subjects for the study. Each student had participated in a beginning Project Adventure Class, which was a prerequisite for the advanced class. Each class met five days a week for 12 days and lasted approximately 45 minutes. The classes were held at the Project Adventure area at the high school. The day before students started activities for the class, May 1, the Tennessee Self Concept Scale was given. This test was also given on May 20 after the students finished the course.

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South Dakota State University