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Learning and teaching sustainable development in global-local contexts
Malmö högskola, Faculty of Education and Society (LS), Department of Nature, Environment and Society (NMS).ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9613-8132
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The overall aim of this thesis is to develop knowledge of teachingand learning sustainable development in global–local contexts. Theresearch field is global learning for sustainable development (GLSD).Phenomenographic approach and contextual analysis were used asmethods of analysis, and data was collected by Semi-structuredinterviews at secondary and upper secondary schools in Sweden.In Study I, a strategic and systematic literature review was conductedof recent trends and critique to the dominating rhetoric on policy levelconcerning global education and global learning on sustainabilityissues. The complexity represented in GLSD is of global interest toface current challenges. The global–local context and the process forglobal learning were characterised by the learner’s perspective andself-efficacy. The variation of ways in which contextual features wererevealed, affected how participants experienced their own learningglobal learning space. In Study II, empirical investigations were conducted of students’,teachers’, and head teachers’ conceptions of implementation of GLSD.Results indicate that critical knowledge capabilities were needed toact towards sustainability globally. Critical knowledge capabilitiesdeveloped in the processes were to take command and collaborateas a team. Capabilities that were identified as necessary but whichhad not been sufficiently developed were to be prepared, act in atransdisciplinary manner and lead for holistic understanding in thelearning process. Critical knowledge capabilities to handle complexknowledge were characterised by volition, self-directed learning, andknowledge formation. In Study III, a re-analysis was conducted of the data from StudyII. The results shed light on pertinent transition skills in GLSD:(I) transdisciplinary action via knowledge formation in actualpractices, (II) democratic collaborative action via processes ofunderstanding, respectively (III) self-directed learning and independentinitiative. These transition skills, enabling young people to beprepared for unpredictable changes, were perceived as key featuresin developing young people’s capability in an uncertain world. Theydeveloped worldview understanding, and advanced transformationcompetencies including critical reflections upon questions of currentnormativity. In Study IV, collaborative and transdisciplinary teaching with aglobal–local perspective was investigated in a study with teacherscommitted to global learning and sustainable development at anupper secondary school. Two main transdisciplinary teachingapproaches of GLSD were distinguished: Contributing: Assist andTake Part respectively Ownership: Possess and Reconceptualise.The contributing approach was divided into the sub-categories: (I)Disheartened, (II) Supportive, and (III) Complementing teachingapproaches; while the ownership approach comprised (IV) Decisive,and (V) Multi-dimensional teaching approaches. Various dimensions of the results appeared to be relevant forsustainability teaching and learning in global–local contexts, whenconnections between the studies were analysed in relation to the contextand the overarching aims of the thesis. Through transdisciplinaryteaching deep approaches to learning can be developed and Globalteaching for sustainable development (GTSD) could be advanced.Individual and collaborative learning characterised by selfdetermination,responsibility, and social readiness leading to actionemerged as key aspects At a global–local level, there is a growing need to develop competenciesand capabilities for transitions towards sustainability. Conflicts andclimate change are drastically increasing the number of displacedpeople who need transnational education on proactive preventivestrategies, as well as develop to critical knowledge capabilities that can be useful across numerous contexts and in the face of changingcircumstances. Increasingly, also young people need to manage theirown learning processes in self-directed learning, regardless of wherethey are physically or may move in their lifetimes. As established socialstructures struggle to address global challenges, people across theplanet need to be able to organise themselves and to take initiatives.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Malmö högskola, Fakulteten för lärande och samhälle , 2016. , p. 134
Series
Malmö Studies in Educational Sciences: Doctoral Dissertation Series, ISSN 1651-4513 ; 77
Keywords [en]
Contextual Analysis, Critical Knowledge Capabilities, Deep approaches to learning, Deep approaches to teaching, Education for Sustainable Development, ESD, Environmental and Sustainabilty Education Research, ESER, Global classrooms, Global learning, Global eduction, Global - local contexts, Global Learning for Sustainable Development, GLSD, Global teaching and learning, Phenomenography, Sustainable Development, SD, sustainability, Teaching Approaches, Transdisciplinary Teaching, Transitions, Transnational education, Online learning, Transnational learning
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-7579Local ID: 20501ISBN: 9789171046253 (print)ISBN: 9789171046260 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mau-7579DiVA, id: diva2:1404513
Note

Paper IV in dissertation as mansuscript.

Available from: 2020-02-28 Created: 2020-02-28 Last updated: 2024-03-16Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Global learning for sustainable development in higher education: recent trends and critique
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Global learning for sustainable development in higher education: recent trends and critique
2009 (English)In: International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, ISSN 1467-6370, E-ISSN 1758-6739, Vol. 10, no 4, p. 368-378Article in journal (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide a synopsis of some major trends that have marked discussions on global learning for sustainable development (GLSD) in higher education. The aim is formulated against the background of the complexity represented in GLSD, as well as the fact that sustainable development (SD) is an issue of global interest for universities. Design/methodology/approach – The authors conducted an overview in recent trends in research on GLSD in higher education over the last 20 years, based on the combination of the keyword higher education for Sustainable Development with global learning (GL) and global education. Findings – The overview suggests that only relatively limited steps have been implemented to achieve GLSD, and rhetoric still dominates the discussions. It appears that little empirical research has been undertaken on learning in global settings. Several authors have identified the need for a competence-based curriculum for GLSD. Originality/value – Universities, professionals and students need to take greater responsibility. How knowledge, values and abilities are formed and developed from the global learner's perspective therefore, remains an open and fundamental question. The paper underlines the crucial role that higher education plays in GL for sustainability. Acknowledgements: This paper has been written with financial support from The Swedish Research Council and the International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics at Lund University, Sweden.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2009
Keywords
Higher education, Learning, Sustainable development, Teaching
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-14526 (URN)10.1108/14676370910990710 (DOI)14490 (Local ID)14490 (Archive number)14490 (OAI)
Available from: 2020-03-30 Created: 2020-03-30 Last updated: 2022-06-27Bibliographically approved
2. Knowledge capabilities for sustainable development in global classrooms–local challenges
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Knowledge capabilities for sustainable development in global classrooms–local challenges
2011 (English)In: Utbildning och Demokrati, ISSN 1102-6472, E-ISSN 2001-7316, Vol. 20, no 1, p. 35-58Article in journal (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The Young Masters Programme provides young people around the world with a net–based global–local learning environment for sustainable development. The present study investigates certain aspects of the implementation of this programme in the secondary schools of a Swedish municipality, in the context of the Lund Calling project. The research focuses on critical abilities to act globally, referred to as “knowledge capabilities”, and how they relate to the implementation process of initiating global learning for sustainable development (GLSD). A phenomenographic approach and semi–structured interviews were used in the investigation of the experiences of secondary school pupils, teachers and headmasters who participated in the project. Participants’ experiences of the changes carried out are described in relation to examples of knowledge capabilities needed for GLSD. Critical knowledge capabilities found to have been developed through the implementation were: to take command, and to collaborate. Critical knowledge capabilities perceived as necessary, but not developed through the programme were: to be prepared, to act in a transdisciplinary manner, and to lead for a holistic understanding.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Örebro University, 2011
Keywords
phenomenography, global classroom, global learning, sustainable development, critical knowledge capabilities
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-14463 (URN)14452 (Local ID)14452 (Archive number)14452 (OAI)
Available from: 2020-03-30 Created: 2020-03-30 Last updated: 2022-06-27Bibliographically approved
3. Learning in global settings: developing transitions for meaning-making
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Learning in global settings: developing transitions for meaning-making
2012 (English)In: Research in Comparative and International Education, E-ISSN 1745-4999, Vol. 7, no 4, p. 514-529Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Global teaching and learning for sustainable development reaches from the classroom to the world outside, and is therefore a particularly interesting setting for practicing transitions skills. The article suggests a number of features perceived as crucial in developing young people’s capability to act in a changing world and under circumstances that are difficult to predict. The suggestions are based on an empirical study of the Lund Calling project, which aimed at implementing a web-based international programme for teaching preventive environmental strategies in Swedish secondary schools. The article first touches on some of the conditions in Sweden that particularly impact young people’s transition to adulthood. Related research in sustainability education is also briefly outlined. Knowledge capability theory is used to discuss results from the empirical study of the Lund Calling project, where interviews were conducted with secondary school students, teachers and headmasters. Based on these interviews, features that appear to be particularly relevant as transition skills in global learning for sustainable development include transdisciplinary action, democratic collaborative action, as well as self-directed and independent initiative. The article concludes that young people today cannot, as in earlier periods of history, base their actions entirely on the traditions of the family or community. Instead, they also need to learn to form their own communities, capable of acting on both local and global levels. Education here plays an important role, to develop necessary transition skills that enable young people to be prepared for a rapidly changing and uncertain world.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Symposium Journals, 2012
Keywords
learn to learn, transitions, transdisciplinary, youth, networked learning, sustainable development, global learning, capabilities, transcultural
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-14438 (URN)10.2304/rcie.2012.7.4.514 (DOI)000446758900009 ()2-s2.0-84875251155 (Scopus ID)14843 (Local ID)14843 (Archive number)14843 (OAI)
Available from: 2020-03-30 Created: 2020-03-30 Last updated: 2024-03-07Bibliographically approved
4. Transdisciplinary teaching for sustainable development in a whole school project
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Transdisciplinary teaching for sustainable development in a whole school project
2018 (English)In: Environmental Education Research, ISSN 1350-4622, E-ISSN 1469-5871, Vol. 24, no 5, p. 663-677Article in journal (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The study investigates the transdisciplinary teaching of education for sustainable development (ESD) with a global dimension at an upper secondary school in Sweden. The purpose was to analyse and describe variations in how nine teachers in different subject matters experienced collaborative teaching in the context of a whole school educational development project. A total of 27 semi-structured interviews were conducted and analysed using phenomenographic method and contextual analysis. Two main approaches to transdisciplinary teaching were identified among the teachers: one where teachers contributed but struggled with transdisciplinarity, and the other where they displayed ownership and were able to reconceptualise the project as a whole. Overall, teachers worked in the project with deep-level processing for learning ESD in an integrated manner in the transdisciplinary framework. However, they also experienced tensions between their resources and capabilities, and the challenges they faced in the project.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2018
Keywords
Transdisciplinary teaching approaches, Deep approaches to learning, Education for sustainable development, ESD, Teacher collaboration, Motivation
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-3826 (URN)10.1080/13504622.2016.1266302 (DOI)000427553000003 ()2-s2.0-85001930621 (Scopus ID)21861 (Local ID)21861 (Archive number)21861 (OAI)
Available from: 2020-02-28 Created: 2020-02-28 Last updated: 2024-02-05Bibliographically approved

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Nordén, Birgitta

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