The Impact of Postprogram Reflection on Recreation Program Outcomes
Keywords:Programming, postprogram reflection, program phases, structured recreation, and evaluation
AbstractWhen developing, implementing, and evaluating programs, recreation practitioners and researchers often focus solely on the participant phase without considering the pre- and postprogram stages of involvement. The adoption of a more holistic program perspective could facilitate the enhancement and longevity of program impacts. The purpose of this study was to investigate the postprogram phase of program involvement with a specific focus on the role of reflection and its relationship to postprogram outcome trajectories. Reflection has long been considered an essential element of recreation experiences. Although a sizeable literature related to reflection exists and a variety of reflection facilitation strategies have been developed, these efforts have focused primarily on either unstructured activities or within program reflection. In attempt to address this gap in the literature, a mixed-methods approach was employed to examine postprogram reflection within the context of an adolescent international immersion program. The program is an enrichment-based recreation experience. The qualitative findings suggested postprogram reflection was perceived to be important because there was not enough time to fully reflect upon the experience while it occurred. Additionally, adult leaders questioned whether youth participants possessed the maturity to process the experience and if it would take additional time for the full impact of the experience to become manifest. The youth reported facing constraints to postprogram reflection including difficulties communicating the experience to nonparticipants and the weakening of program impacts after returning home. Despite these constraints many youth took intentional steps to facilitate more frequent reflection on the experience through the use and display of mementos (e.g., pictures, journals, etc.) from the trip. Quantitative findings suggested a positive connection between the degree to which participants engaged in postprogram reflective activities and changes in their perceived teamwork scores between postprogram and follow-up survey assessments.The findings present practitioners with several implications. First, intentionally facilitating postprogram reflection may be a way to prolong a program’s impact. Second, research and experience suggest the more individuals positively reflect upon an experience the more likely they are to become repeat participants. Research is needed to better understand the efficacy of various postprogram reflection facilitating strategies. Although work remains in order to fully understand processes associated with the post-participation program phase, this study’s findings support the need for both practitioners and researchers to expand their conception of the program experience.
Sagamore Publishing LLC (hereinafter the “Copyright Owner”)
Journal Publishing Copyright Agreement for Authors
PLEASE REVIEW OUR POLICIES AND THE PUBLISHING AGREEMENT, AND INDICATE YOUR ACCEPTANCE OF THE TERMS BY CHECKING THE ‘AGREE TO THE TERMS OF THIS COPYRIGHT NOTICE’ CHECKBOX BELOW.
I understand that by submitting an article to Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, I am granting the copyright to the article submitted for consideration for publication in Journal of Park and Recreation Administration to the Copyright Owner. If after consideration of the Editor of the Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, the article is not accepted for publication, all copyright covered under this agreement will be automatically returned to the Author(s).
THE PUBLISHING AGREEMENT
Assignment of Copyright
I hereby assign to the Copyright Owner the copyright in the manuscript I am submitting in this online procedure and any tables, illustrations or other material submitted for publication as part of the manuscript in all forms and media (whether now known or later developed), throughout the world, in all languages, for the full term of copyright, effective when the article is accepted for publication.
Reversion of Rights
Articles may sometimes be accepted for publication but later be rejected in the publication process, even in some cases after public posting in “Articles in Press” form, in which case all rights will revert to the Author.
Retention of Rights for Scholarly Purposes
I understand that I retain or am hereby granted the Retained Rights. The Retained Rights include the right to use the Preprint, Accepted Manuscript, and the Published Journal Article for Personal Use and Internal Institutional Use.
All journal material is under a 12 month embargo. Authors who would like to have their articles available as open access should contact Sagamore-Venture for further information.
In the case of the Accepted Manuscript and the Published Journal Article, the Retained Rights exclude Commercial Use, other than use by the author in a subsequent compilation of the author’s works or to extend the Article to book length form or re-use by the author of portions or excerpts in other works.
Published Journal Article: the author may share a link to the formal publication through the relevant DOI.
- The Article I have submitted to the journal for review is original, has been written by the stated author(s) and has not been published elsewhere.
- The Article was not submitted for review to another journal while under review by this journal and will not be submitted to any other journal.
- The Article contains no libelous or other unlawful statements and does not contain any materials that violate any personal or proprietary rights of any other person or entity.
- I have obtained written permission from copyright owners for any excerpts from copyrighted works that are included and have credited the sources in the Article.
- If the Article was prepared jointly with other authors, I have informed the co-author(s) of the terms of this Journal Publishing Agreement and that I am signing on their behalf as their agent, and I am authorized to do so.