The call of the road : factors predicting students' car travelling intentions and behaviour

Kerr, Alistair, Lennon, Alexia J., & Watson, Barry C. (2010) The call of the road : factors predicting students' car travelling intentions and behaviour. Transportation, 37(1), pp. 1-13.

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The most common daily trip for employed persons and students is the commute to and from work and/or place of study. Though there are clear environmental, health and safety benefits from using public transport instead of private vehicles for these trips, a high proportion of commuters still choose private vehicles to get to work or study. This study reports an investigation of psychological factors influencing students’ travel choices from the perspective of the Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB). Students from 3 different university campuses (n= 186) completed a cross-sectional survey on their car commuting behaviour. Particular focus was given to whether car commuting habits could add to understanding of commuting behaviour over and above behavioural intentions. Results indicated that, as expected, behavioural intention to travel by car was the strongest TPB predictor of car commuting behaviour. Further, general car commuting habits explained additional variance over and above TPB constructs, though the contribution was modest. No relationship between habit and intentions was found. Overall results suggest that, although student car commuting behaviour is habitual in nature, it is predominantly guided by reasoned action. Implications of these findings are that in order to alter the use of private vehicles, the factors influencing commuters’ intentions to travel by car must be addressed. Specifically, interventions should target the perceived high levels of both the acceptability of commuting by car and the perceived control over the choice to commute by car.

Impact and interest:

14 citations in Scopus
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11 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 31081
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: commuting, travel mode choice, theory of planned behaviourr, habit
DOI: 10.1007/s11116-009-9217-9
ISSN: 0049-4488
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > OTHER PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (179900) > Psychology and Cognitive Sciences not elsewhere classified (179999)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2010 Springer
Copyright Statement: The original publication is available at SpringerLink
Deposited On: 01 Mar 2010 22:49
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 14:03

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