Environment Preference and Environment Type Congruence: Effects on Perceived Restoration Likelihood and Restorative Outcomes

Wilkie, Stephanie and Clouston, Laura (2015) Environment Preference and Environment Type Congruence: Effects on Perceived Restoration Likelihood and Restorative Outcomes. In: British Psychological Society Annual Conference, 5 - 7 May 2015, Liverpool.

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Abstract

Objectives: The study confirmed the environmental preference/environment type congruence effect on perceived restoration likelihood and explored if it applied to actual restorative outcomes.

Design: A quasi-experimental design consisted of two independent variables: environment type (nature/urban green space/urban street) and environmental preference (nature/urban). Restorative outcomes were proofreading, mood, fatigue, and perceived restoration likelihood.

Methods: Students were randomly allocated to an environment. Measures of fatigue, mood and proofreading were obtained before/after viewing a 7-minute imagery slideshow. They rated the perceived likelihood of restoration for similar environments and provided demographics. Finally, they viewed a video of a baby laughing to counteract any negative effects.

Results: Previously, congruent nature preference/nature imagery exposure resulted in the highest restoration potential ratings and was replicated here. This congruence effect also influenced positive mood and data trends indicated nature persons experienced better outcomes in their congruent nature condition compared to the urban street condition. There was little evidence of a congruence effect for those with an urban preference, who perceived and achieved equivalent benefits in all three locations.

Conclusions: Perceptions of restoration likelihood and actual restoration outcomes were partially due to an environmental preference/environment type congruence effect, particularly for those with a nature preference. The results emphasized the importance of individual factors in nature and urban green space usage. A perceived lack of restoration likelihood may stop engagement with even well-designed resources and prevent individuals from realizing restorative benefits. However, this congruence effect should be replicated using real-world exposure to these three environment types.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects: Psychology > Psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Applied Sciences > Department of Psychology
Health Sciences and Wellbeing Beacon > Health Improvement and Wellbeing Workstream
Depositing User: Stephanie Wilkie
Date Deposited: 06 May 2015 08:30
Last Modified: 06 May 2015 08:30
URI: http://sure.sunderland.ac.uk/id/eprint/5366

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