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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(11), 13794-13806; doi:10.3390/ijerph121113794

Understanding Walking Behavior among University Students Using Theory of Planned Behavior

1
Institute of Space and Earth Information Science, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, FYT Bldg., CUHK, Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong, China
2
Lab of Interdisciplinary Spatial Analysis, Department of Land Economy, University of Cambridge, 19 Silver Street, Cambridge CB3 9EP, UK
3
Department of Geography and Resource Management, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, WFY Bldg., CUHK, Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong, China
4
Shenzhen Research Institute, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, 2nd Yuexing Road, Nanshan District, Shenzhen 518057, China
5
Department of Health Sciences, Northeast University, Boston, MA 02115, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Received: 25 August 2015 / Revised: 24 September 2015 / Accepted: 22 October 2015 / Published: 28 October 2015
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Abstract

Walking has been shown to improve physical and mental well-being, yet insufficient walking among university students has been increasingly reported. This study aimed to understand walking behavior of university students using theory of planned behavior (TPB). We recruited 169 undergraduate students by university mass email of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and first administered a salient belief elicitation survey, which was used to design the TPB questionnaire, to a subset of the study sample. Secondly, all participants completed the TPB questionnaire and walking-oriented diary in a two-day period in December 2012. We mapped the walking behavior data obtained from the diary using geographic information system, and examined the extent to which TPB constructs explained walking intentions and walking behavior using Structural equation model (SEM). We found perceived behavioral control to be the key determinant of walking intention. Shaped by participants’ perceived behavioral control, attitude toward walking and subjective norms, and behavioral intention, in turn had a moderate explanatory effect on their walking behavior. In summary, our findings suggest that walking behavior among university students can be understood within the TPB framework, and could inform walking promotion interventions on the university campuses. View Full-Text
Keywords: theory of planned behavior; walking behavior; walking diary; salient belief elicitation; geographic information system; Hong Kong theory of planned behavior; walking behavior; walking diary; salient belief elicitation; geographic information system; Hong Kong
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Sun, G.; Acheampong, R.A.; Lin, H.; Pun, V.C. Understanding Walking Behavior among University Students Using Theory of Planned Behavior. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12, 13794-13806.

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