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Participatory learning and deliberative discussion within education for sustainable development
Växjö University, Faculty of Mathematics/Science/Technology, School of Technology and Design.
2008 (English)In: Values and Democracy in Education for Sustainable Development, Liber, Malmö , 2008, 75-92 p.Chapter in book (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
Abstract [en]

In ESD, the complexity and inter-relatedness of the world has to be taken into account, including relevant social, cultural and economic perspectives as well as the ecological (science based) aspects. Due to sustainable development’s inherent complexity it might be seen as difficult to provide education within this field.

 

Parallels can be drawn between the problems faced by democracy in education and those faced by ESD. For example, it is inevitable that ethical and moral issues must be addressed in ESD as well as in democratisation. This would mean that ESD could offer educational opportunities in democracy as well as in sustainability.

 

This contribution presents evaluation of a teaching method (educational tool), focusing on its ability to enable education for sustainable development in a democratic teaching situation with the active participation of all students involved. The method was based on the ideas of deliberative discussions and carried out in a class with students at upper secondary level, studying the core subject of Naturkunskap A [Natural Sciences A]. The topic for the discussions was “The Assignment”, a multi-faceted dilemma concerning sustainable development.

 

In the evaluation, three main goals were assessed:

a)      Sustainable development goals

b)      Deliberative democracy goals (creating/stimulating deliberative discussions).

c)      Participatory learning goals

 

When it comes to sustainable development goals, it could be seen that the idea of sustainability comes through during the discussions, becoming clearer in the students thoughts as time goes by. The discussion groups often came with reasonable ideas about sustainable development, but the knowledge “backup” behind these ideas seemed to be limited. The method, with deliberative discussion at its core, really engaged the respondents in the study. They felt free to expose their standpoints, and it seems clear that (at least) some of the key features of successful deliberative discussion were fulfilled. Yet, there were no real differences of opinion within the groups, which meant that agreement on a joint solution was (a bit too) easy to achieve.

The results of the study highlights the potential ESD provides to schools in terms of tackling three goals at once; sustainable development goals, participatory goals and democracy goals.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Liber, Malmö , 2008. 75-92 p.
Keyword [en]
Education for sustainable development, democracy, science education research, deliberations
National Category
Pedagogy
Research subject
Pedagogics and Educational Sciences, General Didactics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:vxu:diva-3299ISBN: 978-91-47-08851-5 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:vxu-3299DiVA: diva2:203255
Available from: 2010-12-13 Created: 2008-02-08 Last updated: 2011-11-10Bibliographically approved

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Total: 183 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf