Understanding ’Price’ and the environment: exploring upper secondary students’ conceptual development

Caroline Ignell, Peter Davies, Cecilia Lundholm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
48 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose: To explore changes in upper secondary students´ conceptions of relationships between prices charged to consumers and negative environmental effects from production, distribution and consumption of goods.
Design: The study examines evidence of change in the thinking of fifteen business and economic students. First interview was conducted in the second year of education and the second interview a year later when students were 18 years old and in the final year of schooling.
Findings: Identifies the fragmentary nature of students´ every-day thinking in relation to productivity, consumer preference and negative externalities. Results show characteristics of partial conceptions, which are considered as students´ conceptions in a process of change towards a more scientific understanding of relationships between price and environmental impacts.
Practical implications: The study clarifies conceptions, which students bring to the classroom and the directions that development in understanding may take. The study should help teachers to design effective strategies to support students’ learning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)68-80
JournalJournal of Social Science Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2017


  • price
  • externality
  • sustainability
  • longitudinal study
  • economic and environmental education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)


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