Applying Theory of Planned Behavior to Understand Pro-Environmental Intention and Behavior of Students


  • Atif Aziz Karachi Institute of Economics and Technology, Pakistan


Theory of planned behavior, environmental awareness, pro-environmental behavior, Jordan


The study aims to use the theory of planned behavior to examine the pro-environmental intention and behavior of the students of Jordanian universities and higher education institutes. Students participated in the study were selected based on non-probability purposive sampling technique. Using five-point Likert scale questionnaire, the study has gathered 319 responses. PLS-SEM using SmartPLS version 3.2.8 has been employed in the study for data analysis. The results of the study showed that attitude, subjective norm, and perceived behavioral control have significant effect on intention towards environmental responsible behavior of students while environmental awareness, perceived behavioral control, and intention have significant effect on pro-environmental behavior of students in Jordan. Our findings are beneficial for workplace recruiting and incentive-related companies. For instance, the intention-behavior result suggests that companies with influential environmental agendas will implement in-depth evaluation of specific environmental perceptions and motivation throughout the procurement phase.


Afsar, B., Badir, Y., & Kiani, U. S. (2016). Linking spiritual leadership and employee pro-environmental behavior: The influence of workplace spirituality, intrinsic motivation, and environmental passion. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 45, 79-88.

Aleksejeva, L. (2016). Country's competitiveness and sustainability: higher education impact. Journal of Security & Sustainability Issues, 5(3), 355-363.

Blessing, L. T., & Chakrabarti, A. (2009). DRM: A design reseach methodology (pp. 13-42). London: Springer Verlag.

Cheang, C. C., So, W. M. W., Zhan, Y., & Tsoi, K. H. (2017). Education for Sustainability Using a Campus Eco-Garden as a Learning Environment. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 18(2), 242-262.

Chen, M. F. (2016). Extending the theory of planned behavior model to explain people's energy savings and carbon reduction behavioral intentions to mitigate climate change in Taiwan–moral obligation matters. Journal of Cleaner Production, 112, 1746-1753.

Cheng, V. M. (2019). Developing individual creativity for environmental sustainability: Using an everyday theme in higher education. Thinking Skills and Creativity, 33, 100567.

Chin, J., Jiang, B. C., Mufidah, I., Persada, S. F., & Noer, B. A. (2018). The investigation of consumers’ behavior intention in using green skincare products: a pro-environmental behavior model approach. Sustainability, 10(11), 3922.

Christie, B. A., Miller, K. K., Cooke, R., & White, J. G. (2013). Environmental sustainability in higher education: how do academics teach?. Environmental Education Research, 19(3), 385-414.

Christie, B. A., Miller, K. K., Cooke, R., & White, J. G. (2015). Environmental sustainability in higher education: What do academics think?. Environmental Education Research, 21(5), 655-686.

Cochran, W. G. (2007). Sampling techniques. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons.

Creswell, J. W. (2002). Educational research: Planning, conducting, and evaluating quantitative (pp. 146-166). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

De Leeuw, A., Valois, P., Ajzen, I., & Schmidt, P. (2015). Using the theory of planned behavior to identify key beliefs underlying pro-environmental behavior in high-school students: Implications for educational interventions. Journal of environmental psychology, 42, 128-138.

Effeney, G., & Davis, J. (2013). Education for Sustainability: A Case Study of Preservice Primary Teachers' Knowledge and Efficacy. Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 38(5), 32-46.

Ertz, M., Karakas, F., & Sarigöllü, E. (2016). Exploring pro-environmental behaviors of consumers: An analysis of contextual factors, attitude, and behaviors. Journal of Business Research, 69(10), 3971-3980.

Fornell, C., & Larcker, D. F. (1981). Evaluating structural equation models with unobservable variables and measurement error. Journal of marketing research, 18(1), 39-50.

Fujii, S. (2006). Environmental concern, attitude toward frugality, and ease of behavior as determinants of pro-environmental behavior intentions. Journal of environmental psychology, 26(4), 262-268.

Greaves, M., Zibarras, L. D., & Stride, C. (2013). Using the theory of planned behavior to explore environmental behavioral intentions in the workplace. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 34, 109-120.

Guerin, R. J. (2017). Using a Modified Theory of Planned Behavior to Measure and Assess Workplace Safety and Health Knowledge, Attitude, Perceived Behavioral Control, and Intention among Middle School Students and Middle and High School Teachers. PhD dissertation, University of Cincinnati.

Hair Jr, J. F., Ringle, C. M., & Sarstedt, M. (2011). PLS-SEM: Indeed a silver bullet. Journal of Marketing theory and Practice, 19(2), 139-152.

Hair Jr, J. F., Sarstedt, M., Hopkins, L., & Kuppelwieser, V. G. (2014). Partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM). European business review, 26(2), 106-121.

Hair Jr, J. F., Sarstedt, M., Ringle, C. M., & Mena, J. A. (2012). An assessment of the use of partial least squares structural equation modeling in marketing research. Journal of the academy of marketing science, 40(3), 414-433.

Husin, S., & Tegnan, H. (2017). Corruption Eradication within the Protection of the Environment in Indonesia. Asian Journal of Water, Environment and Pollution, 14(4), 99-108.

James, M., & Card, K. (2012). Factors contributing to institutions achieving environmental sustainability. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 13(2), 166-176.

Kumar, B. (2012). Theory of Planned Behaviour Approach to Understand the Purchasing Behaviour for Environmentally Sustainable Products (No. WP2012-12-08). Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, Research and Publication Department.

Liobikienė, G., Mandravickaitė, J., & Bernatonienė, J. (2016). Theory of planned behavior approach to understand the green purchasing behavior in the EU: A cross-cultural study. Ecological Economics, 125, 38-46.

Maichum, K., Parichatnon, S., & Peng, K. C. (2016). Application of the extended theory of planned behavior model to investigate purchase intention of green products among Thai consumers. Sustainability, 8(10), 1077.

Mancha, R. M., & Yoder, C. Y. (2015). Cultural antecedents of green behavioral intent: An environmental theory of planned behavior. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 43, 145-154.

Martínez, P., Herrero, Á., & Gómez‐López, R. (2019). Corporate images and customer behavioral intentions in an environmentally certified context: Promoting environmental sustainability in the hospitality industry. Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management, 26(6), 1382-1391.

Montiel, I., Antolin-Lopez, R., & Gallo, P. J. (2018). Emotions and sustainability: A literary genre-based framework for environmental sustainability management education. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 17(2), 155-183.

Morelli, J. (2011). Environmental sustainability: A definition for environmental professionals. Journal of environmental sustainability, 1(1), 2.

Naylor, R. L., Higgins, M. M., Edwards, R. B., & Falcon, W. P. (2019). Decentralization and the environment: Assessing smallholder oil palm development in Indonesia. Ambio, 48(10), 1195-1208.

Newman, I., Benz, C. R., & Ridenour, C. S. (1998). Qualitative-quantitative research methodology: Exploring the interactive continuum. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press.

Niaura, A. (2013). Using the theory of planned behavior to investigate the determinants of environmental behavior among youth. Aplinkos tyrimai, inžinerija ir vadyba, (1), 74-81.

Paul, J., Modi, A., & Patel, J. (2016). Predicting green product consumption using theory of planned behavior and reasoned action. Journal of retailing and consumer services, 29, 123-134.

Prati, G., Albanesi, C., & Pietrantoni, L. (2017). The interplay among environmental attitudes, pro-environmental behavior, social identity, and pro-environmental institutional climate. A longitudinal study. Environmental Education Research, 23(2), 176-191.

Ralph, M., & Stubbs, W. (2014). Integrating environmental sustainability into universities. Higher Education, 67(1), 71-90.

Ratner, B. (2009). The correlation coefficient: Its values range between+ 1/− 1, or do they?. Journal of targeting, measurement and analysis for marketing, 17(2), 139-142.

Sabzehei, M. T., Gholipoor, S., & Adinevand, M. (2016). A survey of the relationship between environmental awareness, attitude and pro-environmental behavior of female students at Qom University. J. Environ. Edu. Sustain. Dev., 4(4), 5-16. (In Persian)

Saunders, M., Lewis, P., & Thornhill, A. (2007). Research methods. Business students (4th ed.). Harlow: Pearson Education.

Scalco, A., Noventa, S., Sartori, R., & Ceschi, A. (2017). Predicting organic food consumption: A meta-analytic structural equation model based on the theory of planned behavior. Appetite, 112, 235-248.

Shin, Y. H., & Hancer, M. (2016). The role of attitude, subjective norm, perceived behavioral control, and moral norm in the intention to purchase local food products. Journal of foodservice business research, 19(4), 338-351.

Shin, Y. H., Im, J., Jung, S. E., & Severt, K. (2018). The theory of planned behavior and the norm activation model approach to consumer behavior regarding organic menus. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 69, 21-29.

Stevenson, R. B. (2007). Schooling and environmental/sustainability education: From discourses of policy and practice to discourses of professional learning. Environmental education research, 13(2), 265-285.

Swaim, J. A., Maloni, M. J., Napshin, S. A., & Henley, A. B. (2014). Influences on student intention and behavior toward environmental sustainability. Journal of Business Ethics, 124(3), 465-484.

Tan, C. S., Ooi, H. Y., & Goh, Y. N. (2017). A moral extension of the theory of planned behavior to predict consumers’ purchase intention for energy-efficient household appliances in Malaysia. Energy Policy, 107, 459-471.

Utami, C. W. (2017). Attitude, Subjective Norms, Perceived Behavior, Entrepreneurship Education and Self-efficacy toward Entrepreneurial Intention University Student in Indonesia. European Research Studies Journal, 20(2A), 475-495.

van Wyk, B. (2014). Research Design and Methods Part I. University of Western Cape. Available: Accessed on 25 May 2019.

Vehovar, V., Toepoel, V., & Steinmetz, S. (2016). Non-probability sampling. The Sage handbook of survey methods, 329-345.

Veronese, D. P., & Kensler, L. A. (2013). School leaders, sustainability, and green school practices: An elicitation study using the Theory of Planned Behavior. Journal of Sustainability Education, 4. 1-21

Welman, C., & Kruger, F. (2001). Research methodology for the business & administrative sciences. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Yadav, R., & Pathak, G. S. (2016). Young consumers' intention towards buying green products in a developing nation: Extending the theory of planned behavior. Journal of Cleaner Production, 135, 732-739.

Zulfikar, T. (2010). The making of Indonesian education: An overview on empowering Indonesian teachers. Journal of Indonesian Social Sciences and Humanities, 2, 13-39.