Wilderness Orientation: Exploring the Relationship between College Preorientation Programs and Social Support

Academic Article


  • This study investigated whether students differ in reported levels of social support by different types of preorientation experiences (i.e., wilderness program, community service program, preseason athletics, or no preorientation participation) measured by the Campus-Focused Social Provisions Scale (CF-SPS). Two colleges provide a sample (N = 1,601) of first-year and sophomore students. Participants in the wilderness orientation programs reported higher levels of social provisions in all six subfactors of social support. Preseason athletes reported significant differences on the subfactor social integration (p < .05). Service programs reported no significant differences. Students' reported level of shyness and how easily they make friends were important variables for explaining the variance in social support scores. Women and sophomores were more likely to report higher levels of social support, excepting the variable social integration. The study was exploratory and lacked controls for selection bias.
  • Authors


    Publication Date

  • June 2006
  • Published In


  • Behavioral and Social Science
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Start Page

  • 145
  • End Page

  • 167
  • Volume

  • 29
  • Issue

  • 2