The role of joy in outdoor adventure educational programs: exploring the relationship between risk management, joy and learning outcomes within outdoor adventure educational programs
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This thesis was designed to answer two questions. The first aim was to establish the role of joy within OAEP. A definition of the term joy was required and its role within OAEP. Joy was established as a positive emotion, with a function related to self-preservation, therefore contributing to well-being. Furthermore, it is a supportive aspect in terms of learning outcomes achievement, facilitating and strengthening the relationship between participant and attributes of OAEP. The second research question found no evidence that risk-management directly affects the presence of joy within OEAP, but it is the inappropriate application of its elements. This is perhaps triggered by over-thoroughly attempts to apply protocols, caused by fear of lawsuits after potential occurrence of misadventure (Mortlock, 1984; Furedi; Barton 2007). The thesis assumed from the beginning a direct influential link between riskmanagement and limited opportunities to experience joy. The research discovered not enough evidence to assert this statement and therefore rephrased the question to seek the relationship between them. Critical paradigm and deep democracy were used to define the researchers’ view on social world. This in-depth exploration and review of OAEP, Risk, Risk Management and its formulation led to creating a tentative solution to what it is perceived as a negative factor of risk management, in relation to the possibility of opportunities to experience joy. The strict following of properly formulated risk management could diminish potential for joy to occur. At the same time, this link is not direct but influenced by other factors forming the backbone for its occurrence. A pictorial representation of the relationship between risk management and joy was used to highlight the extrinsic factors influencing this relationship. The hypothetical solution ‘The risk vs. risk’ strategy was created in order to offer a model which, in collaboration with other risk-management strategies, could help to identify situations with potential to develop the participant of OAEP via nonlimiting occurrences of joy. Finally, this thesis hopes to open the doors for further research on the topic, offering some recommendations.
Masteroppgave - Norges idrettshøgskole, 2016