Effects of the Master Gardener program on the self-development of female inmates of a Federal Prison Camp
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Over one million people were incarcerated in U.S. prisons at the end of June, 1995. Increasing emphasis has been placed on inmate rehabilitation with society's realization that 95% of those incarcerated will be released from prison and returned to society. The responsibility of undertaking the rehabilitation process lies in part with vocational programs, one of which is horticulture. In addition to developing job skills, horticulture may provide another viable means of rehabilitation in the form of horticultural therapy. The women's Federal Prison Camp in Bryan, Texas, implemented the Master Gardener program as part of its vocational training program in March 1991. The prison's Master Gardener program is sponsored by the Texas Agricultural Extension Service and constitutes a horticultural therapy program. Over 225 inmates have completed the program. However, the effectiveness in inmate rehabilitation brought about by such programs has not been extensively documented. Thus, the objectives of this study were to determine the effects of participation in the Master Gardener program on the internal-external locus of control, self-esteem, and life satisfaction of female inmates. Approximately 60 inmates were administered a pretest prior to the Master Gardener program and an identical posttest at its conclusion. The 55-item questionnaire included a biographical section, a locus of control inventory, a self-esteem inventory, and a life satisfaction inventory. Results examine the relationship between the Master Gardener program and the psychological well-being of the female inmates at the Federal Prison Camp in Bryan, Texas. No statistically significant differences were found at the .05 alpha level in the internal-external locus of control, global self-esteem, and global life satisfaction of female inmates as a result of their participation in the Master Gardener program. Small sample size, the result of a pretest effect, and the threat to internal validity known as history may have influenced the results. However, trends toward an increased mean score from the pretest to the posttest, which indicate a more favorable increased internal locus of control, self-esteem, and life satisfaction were identified.
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Includes bibliographical references: p. 61-68.
Issued also on microfiche from Lange Micrographics.
Migura, Melanie Marie (1996). Effects of the Master Gardener program on the self-development of female inmates of a Federal Prison Camp. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from