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The impact of development education and education for sustainable development interventions: a synthesis of the research


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The Sustainable Development Goals set out by the United Nations advocate that all learners will have the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development. Development education, education for sustainable development and global citizenship education are deliberate educational interventions, which all address global justice and sustainability issues. Current research continues to expand our understanding of the field, but there are no recent reviews of the literature addressing the impact of these educational interventions. The objective of this paper is, therefore, to examine the impact of intentional development education, education for sustainable development and global citizenship education. We reviewed 243 abstracts against specific inclusion criteria: 127 from Scopus, 101 from ERIC, and 15 from EBSCO. Of those abstracts, 99 met inclusion criteria and underwent double review, which excluded further studies. Of the final 44 papers included for review, 26 focused on education for sustainable development or environmental educational themes, 12 were global orientated in content, either through development education or global citizenship, and six were intercultural educational interventions. In this paper, we provide an overview of measures of assessment of learning used, review the evidence of the impact on learners, and address some methodological and pedagogical questions arising from the review.
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Environmental Education Research
ISSN: 1350-4622 (Print) 1469-5871 (Online) Journal homepage:
The impact of development education and
education for sustainable development
interventions: a synthesis of the research
J. O’Flaherty & M. Liddy
To cite this article: J. O’Flaherty & M. Liddy (2017): The impact of development education and
education for sustainable development interventions: a synthesis of the research, Environmental
Education Research, DOI: 10.1080/13504622.2017.1392484
To link to this article:
© 2017 The Author(s). Published by Informa
UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis
Published online: 23 Oct 2017.
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The impact of development education and education for
sustainable development interventions: a synthesis of the
J.O’Flaherty and M.Liddy
School of Education, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland
The Sustainable Development Goals set out by the United Nations
advocate that all learners will have the knowledge and skills needed to
promote sustainable development. Development education, education for
sustainable development and global citizenship education are deliberate
educational interventions, which all address global justice and sustainability
issues. Current research continues to expand our understanding of the eld,
but there are no recent reviews of the literature addressing the impact of
these educational interventions. The objective of this paper is, therefore, to
examine the impact of intentional development education, education for
sustainable development and global citizenship education. We reviewed
243 abstracts against specic inclusion criteria: 127 from Scopus, 101 from
ERIC, and 15 from EBSCO. Of those abstracts, 99 met inclusion criteria and
underwent double review, which excluded further studies. Of the nal
44 papers included for review, 26 focused on education for sustainable
development or environmental educational themes, 12 were global
orientated in content, either through development education or global
citizenship, and six were intercultural educational interventions. In this paper,
we provide an overview of measures of assessment of learning used, review
the evidence of the impact on learners, and address some methodological
and pedagogical questions arising from the review.
In recent years, the global context of education has brought a new focus to education policy and
practice. This global-character’ of contemporary education has become evident in educational policy
and discourse, as well as in the practice of teaching development education, and education for sus-
tainable development. The reform processes within education and public spending demand increased
transparency regarding accountability, eciency and measurement. This is reected in the prolifera-
tion of standardised testing programmes such as the OECD’s Programme for International Student
Assessment (PISA) and the adoption of international literacy and numeracy testing initiatives which
oer comparative scores. The global education reform movement is eager to install a ‘new basis for
ethical decision-making … erected by the “incentives” of performance’ (Ball 2003, 218).
Received 27 January 2017
Accepted6 October 2017
Research Synthesis; impact;
development education;
education for sustainable
development; global
citizenship education
© 2017 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (http://, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the
original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.
CONTACT J. O’Flaherty
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Alongside these policy changes, educational interventions for global citizenship take place, thus
building skills of analysis and understanding, empathy and ecacy, as well as promoting sustainability
and justice. Increased interest in global citizenship and development education has come about as a
result of a number of factors, such as, for example, the increasing multicultural nature of societies and
the work of international development organisations (Baily, O’Flaherty, and Hogan 2017; O’Flaherty et
al. 2017). Greater importance has been placed on highlighting the inequalities that exist in the world
and the role we all play in causing or preventing such inequalities (Liddy and Parker Jenkins 2013;
McMorrow 2006). The Sustainable Development Goals decided by the United Nations include a goal
centred on learners gaining the necessary knowledge and skills to promote sustainable development
(UNESCO 2015). Yet, in a policy environment, how is global citizenship and development education work
measured and assessed to justify public spending? Can measures of learning and impact adequately
account for enhanced levels of civic engagement and social ecacy? How is activism for social and
economic change included in performance measures and studies of impact? And do measures of impact
gather all learning outcomes? In this paper, we address how these deliberate educational interventions
measure and account for their impact, which is demanded in a managerial policy environment.
This paper presents a synthesis of the literature pertaining to the question of the ‘impact’ of deliberate
development education ‘interventions’, guided by the following research question: What is the impact
of intentional development education interventions? The remainder of the paper is set out as follows;
Development Education, Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship Education
(hereafter abbreviated to DE/ESD/GCED) are introduced and discussed from thes perspective of policy
and practice. Some pertinent information regarding the particular research context, the Republic of
Ireland, is also oered. Thereafter, the methodology used to frame the synthesis of the literature is
described. Findings are presented in three sections: Forms of Learning Assessment /Assessment of
Impact; Education Content; and Intervention Outcomes. Finally, some interpretations of these ndings
are explored from a local and international perspective. Cognizant of the need for high quality evidence
of learning, this research synthesis will provide an up-to-date, comprehensive compilation and review of
the research regarding the measurement of output/indicators of learning arising from forms of educa-
tion which aim to enhance learners’ understanding of the world. It is particularly of relevance in terms of
progressing our understanding of DE, ESD, and global citizenship, asking some critical methodological,
epistemological and pedagogical questions for policy and practice in these areas.
Development education, education for sustainable development and global
citizenship education
More than a century ago, Durkheim (1885, 445) declared that the ‘aim of public education is not ‘a mat-
ter of training workers for the factory or accountants for the warehouse but citizens for society’. From
a US perspective, Feinberg (2006, xi) draws attention to the ‘shared moral understandings required
to sustain and reproduce liberal, pluralist democracies’. Noddings (1997, 27) proposes that a ‘morally
defensible aim for education … should be to encourage the growth of competent, caring, loving, and
lovable people’ and Cochran-Smith (1999, 116) identies ‘social responsibility, social change, and social
justice’ as key goals of education’.
International policy developments which aim to support these goals of education include the UN
Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (UNESCO 2012) and the UN Sustainable Development
Goals, which, in goal 4.7 stipulates that by 2030 we must ensure that all learners,
… acquire knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including among others through
education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a
culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship, and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contri-
bution to sustainable development. (UN 2015, 19)
The inclusion of global development topics in education is formally termed development education.
It aims to highlight the inequalities and injustices present across our globe, and to advocate action
for global social justice. Development education is an educational process that increases awareness
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and understanding of a rapidly changing, interdependent and unequal world (Irish Aid 2006), while
education for sustainable development centres on a new vision of education which empowers learners
to assume responsibility for creating and enjoying a sustainable future (UNESCO 2002). These de-
nitions highlight key elements in this work, namely building learners’ knowledge and awareness of
global issues; critical thinking and analytical skills; and action for positive social and political change.
In recent years there has been a move towards the term global as it seems to be a more relevant and
accessible terminology (Bourn 2014a; Bourn 2014b). UNESCO describes global citizenship education
in similar terms to development education, reecting the active role of learners to ‘face and resolve
global challenges and ultimately to become proactive contributors to a more just, peaceful, tolerant,
inclusive, secure and sustainable world’ (2014, 15).
Whilst each of these educations share some common ground, there are dierences in their origins
and history, their theoretical basis and pedagogies, and their implementation and adoption into edu-
cation systems. This paper does not set out to elucidate these dierences, neither are the authors trying
to minimise them; however, for the purposes of this systematic review, these educations have been
brought together to address the question of impact on learning. The commonality, we believe, lies in
the inclusion of global themes in content and in teaching approaches. Bourn (2014a, 21, 22) describes
pedagogy for global social justice based on four main elements: a sense of global outlook; recognition
of power and inequality in the world; a belief in social justice and equity; and a commitment to reection
and dialogue. These educational interventions aim to develop critical awareness of the complexity of
global challenges such as poverty, injustice and unsustainability. They engage learners in considering
dierent perspectives, questioning views and biases, and in reecting on their own roles in perpetu-
ating an unbalanced world. Central to these educations is developing solution-oriented skills such as
critical and creative thinking, decision-making and empowerment which are viewed as essential for
the sustainable future for the planet (McCloskey 2016).
Yet the learning outcomes from development education cannot be predened which raises dicul-
ties for assessment of impact. Bourn (2014a) argues that learners engage in debate on development
and poverty to deepen their understanding of historical, cultural and social systems in order to address
these topics from social justice perspectives. Some commentators critique development education in
particular for losing its ‘original radical underpinnings’ (Bryan 2011, 2), and becoming soft rather than
critically focused (Andreotti 2006). Others question the potential for learners in a privileged position
to develop ‘the knowledge, lived experiences and perspective consciousness’ (Merryeld 2000, 241),
while Jeeress is critical of an individual-centred focus to global citizenship, that does not develop any
empathy or solidarity with global communities, but ‘reframes humanitarianism and global citizenship
education in the terms of the self-help industry’ (2012, 18).
Surely the ultimate impact of these deliberate education interventions would be a just, peaceful
and sustainable world, and as this has not been achieved, the question remains as to where do these
deliberate education interventions specify their positive impact? Is it through the acquisition of solu-
tion-oriented skills and empowerment? Is it through the actions arising from learning in the creation of
a just world? Or does it lie in content through measures of awareness and understanding global issues?
As development education is conceptualised in terms of the inclusion of global development topics in
education, reective of a particular educative focus, it is important to problematise the notion of ‘impact
of these educative experiences’. The use of the term ‘impact’, in a traditional research sense, aligns with
ideals of measurement and evidence to support the impact or eect of a particular treatment with a
particular group. Within the social sciences, when conducting research to determine positive outcomes
as a result of an intervention, randomised experiments are considered best practice. The authors are
cognisant of the need for high quality evidence of what works, particularly in light of policy changes
towards evidence-based approaches in education. However, due to the distinctive and varying epis-
temological understandings of DE/ESD/GCED educative interventions, with their focus on process as
well as product indicators, for the purposes of this paper, ‘impact’ has been conceptualised in a much
broader way: as change in knowledge, skills, attitudes, ethics, actions arising, including both hard and
soft measurement outputs, from exams and knowledge tests through to ethical/values measures.
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Some relevant Irish context
Similar to other nations, Irish education policy is critiqued as aligned with economic objectives (Hannan
1991) and increasingly inuenced by market values and neoliberal thinking (Lingard 2010; Lynch,
Grummel, and Devine 2012). The model of accountability, enshrined in the Irish Department of Education
and Skills (DES) strategy statements, is viewed as contractual rather than responsive, and predicated on
performance rather than process indicators (Gleeson and O’Donnabháin 2009). These strategy state-
ments have been heavily inuenced by the neoliberal Lisbon Agenda, which aimed to make the European
Union the most successful and competitive economy in the world by 2010, with a focus on human
rather than social capital development. In summary, educational discourse in the Republic of Ireland has
become increasingly coterminous with the theme of education and the economy’ to the exclusion of
civic competence, social and emotional learning and moral development (Corcoran and O’Flaherty 2016,
2017; Leahy, O’Flaherty, and Hearne 2017; O’Flaherty and McGarr 2014; O’Flaherty and Gleeson 2017).
Set against this context, however, there have been a number of educational initiatives in Ireland aimed
at incorporating a greater sense of social responsibility and environmental protection in the formal educa-
tion sector - each with their own history and rationale. Development Education has received prominence
due to Irish Aid’s1 commitment to funding Development Education projects since the 1980s (Irish Irish
Aid 2006; Fiedler, Bryan, and Bracken 2011). A review of development education work highlights ‘the
integration and acceptance of development education into the mainstream … as a major strength’ in
Ireland (Fiedler, Bryan, and Bracken 2011; 49). Development education supports the learner to explore
complex, interdependent and inter-related issues such as poverty, inequality, production and consump-
tion, climate change, population growth, migration, homelessness, sustainability, conict and human
rights. (Baily, O’Flaherty, and Hogan 2017; Ubuntu Network 2017). Examples of such curriculum initiatives
include, Civic, Social and Political Education (CSPE) introduced as a mandatory examination subject at
lower secondary level in Ireland in 1997; Politics and Society launched February 1st 2016 as an optional
examination subject in upper secondary level; Intercultural Education Guidelines for Schools (NCCA 2004,
2006). These policy and curriculum shifts have been inuenced by factors such as increasing religious and
ethnic diversity (O’Flaherty et al. 2017), the work of Irish NGOs, the history of Irish emigration and the
multiplicity of cultural ties and political relationships Ireland shares (NCCA 2005). The legacy of educational
policy witnessed across the last three decades continues to evolve within the present context, for example,
with the launch of the National Strategy on Education for Sustainable Development (DES (Department of
Education and Skills) 2011) and more recently the new Development Education Strategy (Irish Aid 2017).
Given the local and international contexts, a systematic review of the literature was conducted ‘given
its strength as a means of establishing a reliable evidence base’ (Davies et al. 2012, 81). The purposes
of the qualitative synthesis is to describe the nature of the evidence in the literature, and interpret the
possible eect of convergence and divergence among studies. Selecting literature employing sys-
tematic procedures using specied criteria reduces the risk of selective’, ‘biased’ or ‘partial’ accounts,
accusations, which are frequently levelled at conventional literature reviews (Andrews 2005, p. 404).
The current review followed established guidelines (Oxman 1994), employed techniques proposed by
Glass, McGaw, and Smith (1981), Lipsey and Wilson (2001). The purpose, therefore, of this qualitative
synthesis is to describe the nature of the evidence in the literature. A literature search was performed
and no systematic review that summarised and synthesised research on the impact [on learning] of
development education interventions was identied.
Emerging research question
The aim of this study was to complete a critical review of the literature pertaining to the question of the
‘impact’ of deliberate development education ‘interventions’. The following research question guided
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the review of the literature: What is the impact of intentional development education (and ESD/Global
Citizenship Education) interventions?
Literature search strategy
The authors conducted a comprehensive initial search to locate all studies that explored the impact of
intentional development education (and ESD/Global Citizenship Education) interventions. Electronic
searches were made of educational databases (namely ERIC, EBSCO, Scopus – Social Sciences and
Humanities only), web-based repositories, and recent tables of contents of key journals. The key search
terms used were development education’, ‘education for sustainable development’, ‘global education’,
‘global citizenship, ‘world studies’. After initial screening (n=243), two reviewers identied 99 for fur-
ther scrutiny in full text. These sources were retrieved, read in full and subjected to further screening
using inclusion/exclusion criteria, 44 were found to address the research questions. Published papers
in academic journals were sought, rather than conference papers, and all studies had to be written in
English (but could have taken place in any country). The authors acknowledge the limitations of their
language skills, which may have excluded studies from other contexts and may endorse a Western
conceptualisation of development, development education and sustainable development.
Selection criteria
The inclusion criteria required that studies focused on assessment of impact of DE/ESD/GCED inter-
ventions. In order to be included in this review, studies had to meet the following inclusion criteria:
literature published between 2000 and 2014; studies published in refereed journals; focus on students
or young people as learners; all disciplines and subject areas were included; studies must present clear
measures of impact on learning, rather than being general studies of attitudes; and papers had to give
an account of an educational intervention. Studies were excluded if they if they were not published
in English; cases studies of change without any form of impact [on learning] assessment; curriculum
development initiatives or curriculum audits; policy development or review; descriptive papers includ-
ing conceptual and theoretical discussions; and attitudinal studies. Technical reports, dissertations,
conference proceedings, book chapters or unpublished evaluations, were excluded as the search was
limited to academic journal databases. Following application of this inclusion criteria 44 studies qual-
ied for inclusion.
The findings of this study are presented in three sections; Forms of Learning Assessment/Assessment
of Impact; Education Content; and Intervention Outcomes. Of the 44 studies included, 26 focused
on education for sustainable development or environmental education themes,2 12 were global
citizenship or development-orientated in content; and six described intercultural education
A variety of age and education levels are presented in the nal review. Twelve studies reported the
results of interventions conducted within higher education, all of which were with undergraduate
students across various disciplines including science, health and engineering. A further 11 studies
reported ndings from interventions completed with students enrolled in pre-service teacher education
programmes. Second level students were also represented in the nal review, with ve studies reporting
across middle and high school levels. A further ten studies reported ndings pertaining to elementary/
primary level respondents whilst Bautista Garcia-Vera (2012) reported ndings from both a pre-school
(kindergarten) and primary (elementary) setting. Of the remaining studies, one reported results of
an intervention undertaken with ‘oce sta’ (Rehm 2009) and one was undertaken with volunteers
engaged in community work (Ollif 2001) with no age details given in either paper.
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Forms of learning assessment /assessment of impact
Many of the papers reviewed utilised formal assessment procedures and data collection tools to measure
‘impact on learning’. The dominant form of data collection employed a pre-post survey (12) or ques-
tionnaire (8) which allowed comparison between learners’ knowledge, attitudes and understanding
before and after the educational intervention.
Of the 20 papers employing a survey/questionnaire for assessment of/for learning, ve employed a
secondary form of assessment including interviews with learners, a focus group with learners or anal-
ysis of classroom interactions as complimentary data collection (see Table 1 for an overview of studies
included). Twelve papers reported analysis of the work of students completed during and after the
education intervention. These papers included descriptions of formal assessments of learning (analy-
sis of student exams, homework assignments and classroom talk), student assignments plus learning
reection; drawings and diaries completed by students, student coursework, and student feedback
alongside coursework.
The results presented in Table 1 attest to the wide breadth of assessment modalities used to assess
education interventions. It is heartening to note the variety of student-centred approaches employed
across intervention designs (student reections and learner diaries for example).
Six papers either made use of teacher reections on the learning activity, or used participation
observation by the teacher-researcher while one paper used focus groups with students to assess the
impact of learning as the sole data collection format. Other assessment modalities included analysis of
classroom talk by students in response to the use of audio-visual teaching materials, analysis of teacher
lesson plans developed, and student interviews. Three papers assessed the content of online learning
programmes. Two papers assessed student concept maps created before and after an education for sus-
tainable development intervention. The inclusion of so many approaches demonstrates the complexity
of DE/ESD/GCED knowledge base, and therefore highlights the challenges of measuring interventions
aimed at facilitating increased knowledge, understanding, and awareness of action outcomes.
The presence of a large number of quasi-experimental research designs is notable as their increased
usage reects the proliferation of metrics and evaluation of impact of learning (OECD 2013). When
designing assessment, educators need to remain cognizant of the complexity of a concept that crosses
cognitive and aective domains, therefore assessment modalities need to capture the intended student
outcomes across both these domains. If the study is set up as a deliberate education intervention,
then quasi-experimental approaches are a suitable method for assessing impact or eect on learners.
Table 1.Research method – assessment of/for learning.
Research approach/design Data collection tools Examples
Quasi-experimental approach Pre-post survey/questionnaire Olsson, Gericke, and Chang Rundgren (2015),
Roesch, Nerb, and Riess (2015), Burmeister and
Eilks (2012, 2013), Gresch and Bogeholz (2013),
Moore et al. (2012), Moriba et al. (2012), Johnson,
Boyer, and Brown (2011), Smeds et al. (2011),
Bo-Yuen Ngai and Koehn (2010), McCormack and
O’Flaherty (2010), Kennelly, Taylor, and Maxwell
(2008), Ioannou et al. (2009)
Quasi-experimental approach
– mixed methods
Pre-post survey/questionnaire, inter-
views with learners; focus group with
learners; student diaries; analysis of
classroom interactions
Murray, Goodhew, and Murray (2013), Gresch and
Bogeholz (2013), Pace (2010), Pipere, Grabovska,
and Jonane (2010), Hestness et al. (2011),
Qualitative approach – analy-
sis of student work
Student exams; content of digital inter-
actions; student reflections; learner
Kourti and Androussou (2013), Lencucha (2014);
Zeegers and Clark (2014), Seeberg and Minick
(2012), Habron, Goralnik, and Thorp (2012)
Qualitative approach – analy-
sis of student teachers’ work
Teacher reflections on the learning activ-
ity; Participation/observation; analysis
of teacher lesson plans
Koch et al. (2013), Paschall and Wuestenhagen
(2012), Winter and Firth (2007), McNaughton
(2006, 2010), Ollif (2001)
Qualitative approach Focus group with students; analysis of
classroom talk by students
Niens and Reilly (2012), Bautista Garcia-Vera (2012)
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However other studies make use of traditional assessment approaches, for example, analysis of stu-
dent exams, which raises the question of whether exams are a suitable form of assessment of DE/ESD/
GCED outcomes, and whether cognitive understanding and awareness are central to measurement
of outcomes.
Education content
In this section, we present a summary of the educational interventions reviewed. As stated earlier,
26 articles described education for sustainable development or environmental education themes, 12
described global development-orientated content, and six described intercultural education interven-
tions. The following section expounds on each of these categories.
Education for sustainable development
Twenty-six papers addressed education for sustainable development or environmental education
themes. Content was delivered using a variety of approaches including blended learning, drama, sim-
ulation exercises, decision-making for sustainable development and self-evaluation tools for pre-service
teachers (Pace 2010). Themes reected a broad approach to ESD and environmental education and
included genetically modied food (Dovros and Makrakis 2012), energy issues (Pipere, Grabovska, and
Jonane 2010; Sakschewski et al. 2014), natural resource management (Koch et al. 2013), and systems
thinking (Gresch and Bogeholz 2013). Murray, Douglas-Dunbar, and Murray (2014) researched learner
values base with regard to sustainability, while Zeegers and Clark (2014) utilised student evaluations
and diaries to assess sustainability awareness.
Development education and global citizenship focus
Twelve papers were categorised as having a global focus through either having development education
in the content or global citizenship as the focus of their educational intervention. Of these, 11 were
explicitly identied as development education; with three papers sharing a development education and
global citizenship content focus. One shared development education with education for sustainable
development, and another had an explicit global citizenship focus.
Three papers were categorised as sharing a focus between development education and global
citizenship. One paper examined the potential of multimedia learning and simulation exercises to
enhance student knowledge of world issues (Ioannou et al. 2009), while another study examined the
learning of students in a college of agriculture arising from modules with an international dimension,
although no detail of the international content were given (Moriba et al. 2012). Meyer, Sherman, and
MaKinster (2006) wrote of a continuing professional development opportunity for teachers through
the Japan Bridge’ project, while Johnson, Boyer, and Brown (2011) also used a problem-based online
learning tool to examine its potential for global competence.
One paper was categorised as a shared focus between development education with education for
sustainable development; Lencucha (2014) studied the impact of a global health module with students
through assessment of student work. A further paper stated an explicit global citizenship focus, as it
examined the potential for learning through education for global citizenship in a divided society context
of Northern Ireland (Niens and Reilly 2012).
Intercultural education oriented
Articles included in the review, which were intercultural education orientated, demonstrated a variety
of foci. One paper focused on analysing young people’s intercultural knowledge as enhanced through
classroom interventions in Madrid (Bautista Garcia-Vera 2012), while another addressed a US-based
study of young people’s knowledge and understanding of indigenous people (Bo-Yuen Ngai and Koehn
2010). Other studies focused on the following areas: developing pre-service teachers’ intercultural
awareness and understanding (Kourti and Androussou 2013; Seeberg and Minick 2012); and a dis-
course analysis of Swedish student teachers web-based forum posts examining their cultural beliefs
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and values (Myers and Eberfors 2010). One paper was a study of a community of learning in a business
environment, which assessed the learning impact of online learning interventions in developing global
intercultural understanding (Rehm 2009).
To summarise briey, the selected papers address a wide variety of content reective of the diverse
and global world in which we live, and the challenges facing our society and planet. Examples include
knowledge of sustainability and global development issues, attitudes and awareness, and decision-mak-
ing for sustainable development and promotion of intercultural knowledge/awareness.
Intervention outcomes
In this section of the ndings, we present a description of the intervention types and the particular
outcomes attributable to these intervention approaches. Included in the nal review were a number of
varying intervention approaches and outcomes classied in dierent ways. Of the 44 studies included
in the nal synthesis of the research, eight report ‘statistically signicant impact’ from pre- to post-as-
sessment following the intervention (see Table 2 for an overview of these studies). Six further studies
reported ‘some signicant impact’ from pre- to post-assessment following intervention, indicating that
statistically signicant dierences emerged across ‘some’ of the constructs included in assessment (see
Table 2). Just four studies reported ‘no signicant impact’ from pre- to post-assessment following inter-
vention, indicating that assessment scores did not signicantly dier from pre- to post-assessment
following intervention (see Table 2).
It is important to foreground reporting of these interventions with some discussion of ‘outcomes’.
Where quasi-experimental designs were used, outcomes were determined by pre- and post- tests,
and results obtained in an assessment were compared from before and after the experiment or inter-
vention. As with any research experiment of this nature, results of ‘impact’ must be interpreted with
some caution. Quasi-experimental approaches are used to determine casual impact of an intervention
without random assignment which can lead to some concern regarding internal validity as treatment
and control groups may not be comparable at baseline (Cohen, Manion, and Morrison 2011). It may
not be possible to credibly demonstrate a causal link between the treatment condition and observed
outcomes using a quasi-experimental approach. This is particularly true if there are confounding var-
iables that cannot be measured or controlled. Participant responses to DE/ESD/GCED interventions,
therefore, may be plausibly inuenced by factors that cannot be easily measured and controlled, for
example, the participants’ intrinsic interest in the area.
Positive impact
Of the studies included in the nal synthesis of the research, 22 reported a ‘positive impact’ by the
deliberate educational intervention. Both Niens and Reilly (2012) and Riley (2006) reported positive
impact on learners’ conceptualisations of global citizenship, including an awareness of global issues,
understandings of environmental interdependence and global responsibility. Others reported on how
learners perceptions have changed, reective of cultural beliefs and values, and demonstrated greater
media awareness (Kourti and Androussou 2013; Bautista Garcia-Vera 2012; Myers and Eberfors 2010).
A number of studies carried out with pre-service teachers demonstrated a positive attitude to inte-
grating DE into their future teaching work (Reich 2012; Lencucha 2014; McCormack and O’Flaherty
2010; Pearce 2009). Other studies showed pre-service teachers interest in teaching on climate change
(Paschall and Wuestenhagen 2012; Hestness et al. 2011); higher condence in teaching global topics,
and awareness of resources (Burmeister and Eilks 2012; Kennelly et al. 2012; McCormack and O’Flaherty
2010; Nielsen et al. 2012). Gresch and Bogeholz (2013) reported on increases in sustainability knowledge
based on reections of learners’ decision-making.
One study described ‘problems’ with reporting intervention outcomes (Habron, Goralnik, and Thorp
2012) suggesting diculties in assessment of competencies and the need for a consistent and valid
assessment measure with an agreed rubric, which would ensure stable and rigorous assessment across
multiple reviewers.
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Table 2.Education intervention outcomes.
Outcome Intervention approach Outcome(s) Examples
Inclusion of ESD (focus on
knowledge, attitudes,
behaviours across all three
dimensions of sustaina-
Significant differences in students’ values
between schools that included ESD and
schools that did not include ESD content
Berglund, Gericke, and
Chang Rundgren (2014)
Multimedia-based instruc-
tional material
Students in the multimedia group (MG) had
marginally larger gains in knowledge and
interest than their counterparts in the text
group (TG)
Ioannou et al. (2009)
Global Education Project
using a PBL simulation
Significant increases seen from pre- to post
survey data in knowledge and skills from
this educational programme
Johnson, Boyer, and Brown
Global health module Significant increase in global knowledge;
male and female differences emerged;
significant inverse relationship between
global health knowledge and responsi-
Moore et al. (2012)
Significant impact Focus on developing interna-
tional awareness
Developed student awareness of inter-
national dimensions of education and
globalisation; statistically significant
differences emerged in attitudes
Moriba et al. (2012)
Two types of online discus-
sion forum: one personal
Café Talk, one content led
module forum
Participants’ attitudes towards group collab-
oration were generally positive – achieve
better results by working collaboratively.
E-learning phase was positively evaluated
Rehm (2009)
Ecology (forest ecosystems)
using a PBL simulation –
competency orientated
Raised problem-solving abilities – compe-
tencies in generating epistemic questions,
planning experiments, identifying controls
were reported
Roesch, Nerb, and Riess
Cross-cultural competence
Enhanced affective and cognitive CCC.
Recognition of cultural stereotypes
Seeberg and Minick (2012)
Some significant
Judged potential solutions
to sustainability problems,
using a four-point scale of
effectiveness across eco-
Situational knowledge – no difference. High
for socioeconomic and ecological. Lower
for institutional knowledge. Knowledge
of scientific concepts increased but small.
Gaps in capacity for solving complex
resource management problems
Koch et al. (2013)
Values-based sustainability
workshops: intended to
help learners clarify their
personal values regarding
Warm relationships, universalism and
benevolence recorded increases after
sustainability training. No statistically
significant differences for power, achieve-
ment, excitement, or self-direction
Murray, Douglas-Dunbar,
and Murray (2014)
ESD/EE (Environment Edu-
Greater awareness of EE/ESD. Confusion
over titles. Lack of political support for EE.
Participatory methods required acclimati-
zation. School practice difficult
Pace (2010)
ESD/EE (Energy Education) Effectiveness of multi-disciplinary and
cross faculty work; need for good training
materials; not all innovative methods can
be used in class; Latvian teachers not used
to participatory methods
Pipere, Grabovska, and
Jonane (2010)
Pedagogical Approaches in
Systems thinking – achievement score and
justification score increases. Need for
lesson to support stimulation
Riess and Mischo (2010)
ESD/EE course – equal
consideration to the social,
economic and environmen-
tal aspects
Despite experiencing a pedagogical
approach which challenged views by
encouraging discussion, debate, and re-
flection, many of the students still leaned
towards an environmentally focused
perspective of sustainability
Zeegers and Clark (2014)
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Outcome Intervention approach Outcome(s) Examples
No significant
Environmental Education
No major impact in willingness to act for
the environment (possibly because a
high percentage began unit with desire
to include environmental issues in their
Kennelly, Taylor, and
Maxwell (2008)
Japan Bridge project – global
education programme
More open minded to Japanese, but not to
other cultures. No increase in empathy,
non-ethnocentrism or resistance to
Meyer, Sherman, and
MaKinster (2006)
Sustainable self-training:
personal engagement with
Limited evidence of change in values from
the value surveys; not statistically signifi-
cant for all including control group. Inter-
views demonstrated a shift in participants’
values awareness; growing awareness of
the significance of their personal values,
perspective on their relationship with sus-
tainability, new insights into the meanings
and ideas of sustainability
Murray, Goodhew, and
Murray (2013)
Positive impact Development Education Positive attitude to integrating DE into
Students report perceived gains in
knowledge, are actively involved in the
seminars, and show a desire to learn more
about global issues
McCormack and O’Flaherty
(2010), Pearce (2009),
Reich (2012), Lencucha
Global Citizenship Some theoretical conceptualisations of
global citizenship, including an awareness
of global issues, understandings of envi-
ronmental interdependence and global
Niens and Reilly (2012),
Riley (2006)
Intercultural Education Global discussion forums can help stu-
dents to interpret texts from multiple per-
spectives, problematize representations
and interpretations, and consider how to
transform identities and relationships in
their intercultural interactions
Bautista Garcia-Vera
(2012), Kourti and An-
droussou (2013), Myers
and Eberfors (2010)
Specific Pedagogical Ap-
Trans-disciplinary role play simulating
multilateral negotiations on climate
change: high levels of enthusiasm,
with several students stating that they
changed their own personal behaviours
as a result
Paschall and Wuestenha-
gen (2012), Vanhear and
Pace (2008)
Vee heuristics and concept mapping:
the use of these two tools facilitates the
achievement of ESD targets and may, in
the long-run, bring about the desired en-
vironmental responsible behaviour. This is
because these two tools present a process
of praxis, and through their use, learners
are trained in decision-making, reflective
and problem solving skills
Volunteering 40% of participant volunteers began
voluntary work after their one-month
experience in India. Personal growth was
reported, rather than personal change
Ollif (2001)
Table 2.(Continued).
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Table 2 illustrates a general perspective on the main outcomes emerging from the intervention
approaches and provides some examples. The intervention outcomes highlight the wide range of
factors which can play a role in the delivery of intentional DE/ESD/GCED units of learning.
In reviewing the results presented in Table 2, a number of interesting ndings emerge. In terms of
the delivery of DE/ESD/GCED content, the results provide support for a number of learning outcomes
including: increased awareness of global issues, more developed conceptualisations of global citizen-
ship and increased understanding of environmental interdependence and global responsibility. One
must be mindful however, that set against these positive results, the particular frame used to concep-
tualise these complex concepts is important, otherwise these activities could be seen as an endeavour
to simply reproduce ‘northern’ perspectives. This was highlighted in a number of papers with an inter-
cultural education orientation. A similar question must be asked of interventions with a development
education focus as to the consistency of approach of conceptualisation of DE and global citizenship.
A number of interventions that report signicant or positive impact utilised active learning method-
ologies including multi-media approaches, problem-based learning (PBL), discussion forums, role-play
and concept mapping. This approach is particularly in keeping with the conceptualisation of DE and
ESD as utilising active and participatory teaching methods. It is also positive to note that pre-service
teacher education studies demonstrated an increased interest and openness to teach these concepts
upon graduation.
Those studies that reported ‘no signicant impact’ should be interpreted with some caution, as
results may have emerged due to a number of compounding factors. For example, base-line gures
that may already reect the hypotheses being tested (Kennelly, Taylor, and Maxwell 2008); impact of
specic culture (Meyer, Sherman, and MaKinster 2006) or the metrics used may not capture increases in
‘awareness’ (Murray, Goodhew, and Murray 2013). These results may also suggest a mismatch between
competencies or outcomes selected for assessment and those the students acquire. It is important that
some consideration be given to how we measure DE/ESD/GCED outcomes. Darling-Hammond (2010)
surmised that the use of various dierent ways to assess ‘eective practice’ was a powerful aggregate
for shedding light on performance, thus advocating a variety of assessment modalities.
Results from the current review attest to the huge variety of global development content and themes
presented which are reective of the interdependent world in which we live. The diversity of pedagogical
approaches employed to deliver content is also reective of how DE, ESD and GCED are conceptualised
in the literature (Andreotti 2006; Hogan and Tormey 2003; Nevin 2008). As only English language studies
were selected for inclusion in this review, the authors accept that this limitation may present a mostly
northern perspective of these concepts. It is heartening to see a variety of professional disciplines being
represented as DE/ESD/GCED is relevant to all. Results also support the selection of appropriate assess-
ment modalities, where mixed methods approaches are advocated – so as to ascertain learning across a
variety of domains. Throughout the systematic review process, a number of questions and issues arose
for the researchers, pertaining to the assessment and measurement of learning arising from deliberate
educational interventions. In this section, we discuss three of these questions of relevance to the DE/
ESD/GCED community: the dominant forms of assessment employed (epistemological question); the
ways and tools employed for measurement (methodological question); and whether the measurement
tools are assessing what is distinctive to DE/ESD/GCED work (pedagogical question).
Epistemological question: are forms of assessment employed relevant and
As noted earlier, the dominant form of assessment of impact from the educational intervention utilised
quantitative measures, such as a pre/post survey or questionnaire, essentially reecting a positivist
epistemology. Twenty papers employed this quasi-experimental approach. In his review of studies
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on the impact of environmental education, Rickinson (2001) highlighted that the evidence base for
learning is predominately positivist in nature. This nding has been replicated in the present study, as
half of the studies reviewed in this paper were framed by a positivist approach. However, a number
of studies also used qualitative methods and many studies used multiple methods of data collection
to triangulate their ndings and to strengthen the rigour of their ndings. Thus, it could be argued
that some change may be seen in the forms of assessment used. Selection of our research question
possibly aligned with more positivist approaches, as we specically looked for studies of impact and
measurement of/for learning. However, some change in types of assessment of/for learning towards
the inclusion of qualitative measures is noted.
Additionally, Rickinson (2001) evidenced the use of interpretativist or constructivist epistemological
paradigms, as opposed to feminist, poststructural or other epistemologies. In the 44 papers reviewed
here, few made a clear explicit statement of the researchers epistemological stance, except for one
paper framed by a critical pedagogy approach (Myers and Eberfors 2010). DE/ESD/GCED as a deliberate
educational intervention can act to challenge existing social, economic and political systems, which
perpetuate injustice and inequalities and arguably aligns with a critical pedagogy epistemology (Liddy
2011). For example, a topic such as Fair Trade could be used to redress the imbalances of global trade
by guaranteeing a fair and liveable wage for farmers. Yet, the topic can be represented in a manner that
does nothing to challenge and change existing economic patterns; rather, Fair Trade could be presented
as a necessary and temporary reform. In critical and more politically informed DE/ESD/GCED, there is a
necessity to engender critical literacy and address learners’ assumptions about poverty and inequality
(Liddy 2014). Otherwise, educators may reproduce the systems and ways of thinking they are trying to
question (Andreotti 2006, 49). The lack of explicit statement on epistemological views and knowledge
values leads to questions on researcher/educators’ assumptions about the world.
Furthermore, the researcher/educators’ epistemological view of DE/ESD/GCED will also frame how
they design assessment and measurement of impact. More explicit statements of researcher/educa-
tors’ reexivity and epistemological views are essential in developing a fuller account of the impact of
deliberate DE/ESD/GCED educational interventions. Equally of importance is the researcher/educators’
epistemological views of learning, where we need to question how leaning is conceptualised across
these papers – from a cognitive perspective, or reective of aective and emotional domains? Bourn
(2014a) argues for a pedagogy of social justice, where learners explore global issues in their social,
cultural and historical context. Rather than prescribing a set interpretation of these contexts, leaners
engage and debate in order to develop their own perspective and understanding, thus supporting the
selection of outcomes reective of all learning domains.
Methodological question: are the tools employed for measurement adequate?
This question centres on the tension that exists between the philosophical conceptualisation of DE/
ESD/GCED versus the measurement of learning. A performance measurement approach to project
management insists on the inclusion and development of indicators of expected change, assessment
of baseline, stated targets and validation tools to provide evidence of change. This results-orientated
approach emphasises eciency and accountability in public spending, with clearly dened outputs,
and results demonstrating value for money. As budgets shrink, the emphasis is on demonstrating social
value and eciency in spending using objective and quantiable outputs and results. Beck (2013, 28)
argues that often times, policy succumbs to a compulsion ‘to act speedily, in a way that threatens to
bypass the rules of democracy.’ Solbrekke and Sugrue (2014, 11) note that this approach is evident in
education, where,
the approach nationally and internationally has been to prescribe what the ‘knowledge economy’ requires and to
‘measure’ the ‘success’ or otherwise of schooling [and] higher education, … by externally imposed accountability
measures including the necessity for rapid action due to politicians’ need to exercise power of ‘action’.
Performance indicators bring the focus on the product rather than the process of DE/ESD/GCED, a
critique that is made of the Irish education system (Gleeson and O’Donnabháin 2009). When it comes
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to education, both dening outcomes and measuring success are dicult as the process of education
is complex and multifaceted (Ball 2008; Liddy 2014). Bourn (2014a) argues strongly that the learning
outcomes from development education cannot be predened; rather, individual learners engage
in debates on development and global poverty in order to deepen their understanding of dierent
perspectives and encourage critical reection. Furthermore, the content of global development is
not readily understood, nor can easy solutions be found. Learning about global issues can raise over-
whelming and far-reaching concerns, describing a world of ecological risk and threats, without hope
or realistic plans for the future. The fundamental questions on our economies, politics and social
choices are often left without answers, leaving students feeling overwhelmed, dejected and cynical
about their ecacy to make change. Thus, selecting appropriate learning outcomes and indicators for
inclusive practices, identity in a global context, or self-condence in challenging racism or other unjust
behaviours is dicult. Additionally, the impact of deliberate DE/ESD/GCED educational interventions
may be long-term engagement with issues and questioning assumptions, rather than immediate
measurable results. Consequently the development of indicators and outcomes is more complex and
relates to the researcher/educators’ denition of development education, as addressed earlier. This
product outcome focus misses the distinctiveness of DE/ESD/GCED, where the learning outcomes
may be in the form of questioning and activism, rather than immediate or short-term goals. DE/ESD/
GCED relies on learner agency and openness to new understandings and reections on internalised
dispositions. The insights gained into participants’ interpretations of global development, inequalities
and poverty present a multifaceted picture of our world, which may require time and consideration
for impact to be realised. Dening appropriate and adequate measures for impact of DE/ESD/GCED
continues to be a challenge.
The authors are also conscious of the ever increasing discourse surrounding the use of Randomized
Control Treatments (RCTs). Using RCTs, study participants can either be assigned to the treatment or
control group. Whilst the authors acknowledge that this could prove useful in terms of assessment of
DE/ESD/GCED interventions as dierences observed between groups would be due to chance, rather
than to a systematic factor related to treatment (Cohen, Manion, and Morrison 2011). It is important to
note that randomization itself does not guarantee that groups will be comparable at baseline, however,
any change in characteristics post-intervention is likely attributable to the intervention. In light of the
results presented in this review, the authors recommend building a mixed methods research design
comprising of RCTs and other interpretivist approaches which lends itself to the existence of multiple
realities and experiences that may be viewed dierently (Moustakas 1994) and allows for thick descrip-
tions and complex nuanced ndings (Dumas and Anderson 2014).
Pedagogical question: are measurement tools assessing what is distinctive to DE/
ESD/GCED education?
The ethos of results-orientated approaches reects a mechanistic education (Liddy 2014) which ulti-
mately is at odds with education tasked with addressing sustainable and environmental challenges
(Sterling 2001). The potential for change is limited in a mechanistic education system, as prescriptive
forms of education with predetermined learning outcomes are limiting to the process of learning and
development of self. As Freire said, ‘Liberating education consists in acts of cognition, not transferrals
of information’ (1972, 53). Both Sterling and Freire’s analysis is apt here, as the complexity of education
is not easily reductive to numbers and quantiable indicators.
DE/ESD/GCED stress the importance of active and participatory learning methodologies, yet the
majority of the 44 papers included for review reported on work completed in traditional learning envi-
ronments such as lecture theatres and classrooms. (The exceptions are research based in an NGO setting
of an overseas volunteer programme, and an outdoor education setting.) The traditional, formal edu-
cational setting has been noted as being problematic for the use of active methodologies (McCormack
and O’Flaherty 2010) and the dominance of traditional learning sites is contrary to the inclusion of active
and participatory learning, which is central to developing learners’ ecacy in relation to global issues.
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One positive note is the use of use of multimedia in both the design of educational interventions,
as well as its use as a tool for measurement of learning. Seven papers used online leaning forums;
two papers employed online problem-based learning simulations, while another employed a climate
change negotiations simulation, supported by a variety of platforms (short story forum, Appropedia,
Blackboard). Many of these studies employed analysis of student interactions and conversation threads
from these formats. The use of other forms of media was also noted, including audio-visual stories, lm
and lm-making, student drawings and concepts maps. This use of multimedia demonstrates innova-
tion in both pedagogical design and as a research tool, it may also support learner engagement and
enhance participation.
It is important to highlight the absence of activism for global change as a learning outcome in
studies reviewed. DE, ESD and GCED aim to work towards actions for sustainable and just social change
(Irish Aid 2006; UNESCO 2002; UNESCO 2015). Yet, none of the papers cited here examined aspects of
action and activism as part of the educational intervention, or as part of the assessment process. This
is possibly due to the form of research question asked, yet it is a notable absence. Assessing young
people’s knowledge and understanding of global justice may be more straightforward in terms of their
cognitive acquisition, but assessing their behaviours and actions for social justice, and their underlying
values and attitudes, is far more complex. Action for sustainable and just global change can range from
generating greater awareness through letter-writing or social media to personal consumer activism,
and from lobbying local politicians to engaging in national policy consultations (Liddy 2013). Yet, none
of the 44 papers reviewed here included activism as an output.
Set against a background of austerity measures, the incursion of New Public Management into education
policy (Solbrekke and Sugrue 2014) and practice and calls for robust evidence to justify educational
change such as the inclusion of global development and sustainable development issues, this paper
aimed to review measures of impact of intentional Development Education interventions (including
ESD/Global Citizenship Education). Impact was conceptualised as: change in knowledge, skills, atti-
tudes, ethics, and actions arising, including both hard and soft measurement outputs, from exams and
knowledge tests through to ethics and values measures and was a necessary requirement for inclusion
in this review. Many studies report statistically signicant outcomes with others highlighting positive
outcomes from their educational interventions.
However, a number of questions have arisen from this review – notably questions of epistemology,
methodology and pedagogy. DE/ESD/GCED have multiple learning outcomes based on a complex
knowledge base. Epistemological questions became clear from the review process, as many papers
reviewed failed to present a clear account of the values and beliefs of the researcher/educator, and
displayed a reliance on a positivist epistemology. Methodological questions arose as to whether the
assessments modes employed were appropriate for the active and participatory teaching approaches
advocated within DE/ESD/GCED, as well as whether they measure the complexity and variability of DE/
ESD/GCED outcomes across all learning domains. Finally, pedagogical questions were addressed which
noted positive innovations with the use of multimedia, but also the continued dominance of traditional
learning sites and the lack of activism for positive social change as a learning outcome.
In conclusion, we note that much has been achieved in addressing, dening and measuring the
impact of DE/ESD/GCED. The high number of studies which report both positive and signicant learning
is welcome. However, designing and employing appropriate and adequate research methods to address
the complexity and multiplicity of learning arising from DE/ESD/GCED requires further investigation
and innovation. This is especially important as Goal 4.7 of the Sustainable Development Goals is being
implemented in the coming years.
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1. Irish Aid, a division of the Department of Foreign Aairs and Trade, is the Irish Government’s ocial aid programme,
working on behalf of Irish people to address poverty and hunger in some of the world’s poorest countries (see
2. It must be noted that our ndings are probably skewed by the UN Decade for ESD, which led to the publication
of much research work and special journal issues, as well as inspiring new journals such as International Journal of
Sustainability in Higher Education (McKeown and Hopkins 2005).
Disclosure statement
No potential conict of interest was reported by the authors.
This work was supported by the Ubuntu Network based at the School of Education, University of Limerick.
Notes on contributors
Joanne O’Flaherty is a lecturer in the School of Education, University of Limerick. She has a primary degree in Physical
Education and English. She has worked in a variety of educational settings, including the formal second-level sector and
the NGO sector, before joining the University of Limerick faculty. She is responsible for both co-ordinating and dissem-
inating dierent education modules oered by the School of Education and acts as the Academic Coordinator of the
Ubuntu Network. Her research interests include pre-service teacher education, pro-social development, and social justice
education, and she has published in these areas.
Mags Liddy completed her PhD thesis at the University of Limerick examining the impact of overseas volunteering as a
professional development experience for teachers. She is co-editor of Education that Matters: teachers’ critical pedagogy
and development at local and global levels (2013, Peter Lang). She was post-doctoral researcher for the study of charac-
teristic spirit of publicly managed schools in Ireland during 2016.
J. O’Flaherty
M. Liddy
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... According to Heberlein and Black (1976), the more specific the indicator is to the behavior being studied, the better the predictive power. Typically, most researchers study general environmental knowledge that does not relate to the behaviors being studied (O'Flaherty & Liddy, 2018). This study shows that the food web is an appropriate tool to examine the relationship between ecological knowledge and attitudes toward environmental protection. ...
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This study examines the perceptions and attitudes of 234 Greek secondary school students regarding ecological issues arising from human intervention in food webs. The results of this study indicate that the following factors are crucial for students’ attitudes toward environmental protection: scientific knowledge, perceptions of the relationship between humans and nature and personal motivations. It was found that those students who understand the interconnectedness of populations in food webs are able to evaluate arguments on an ecological issue and have positive attitudes toward environmental protection. However, students who have limited knowledge in evaluating arguments make decisions to solve environmental problems based on their perception of human-nature relationships. Thus, it has been shown that students who adopt an ecocentric or biocentric view sometimes adopt a negative or neutral attitude toward environmental protection because their incomplete knowledge leads them to misjudge the ecological impact of the proposed solutions. This study confirms that the development of values is best accompanied by the development of basic ecological knowledge. It also recognizes the usefulness of food webs as a means of revealing students’ worldviews. Finally, the food web proves to be a specific indicator of the attitudes studied.
... 1, No. 02, July, pp. 65~75 emphasizing the need to transition to more responsible and resourceefficient practices[23]-[25]. ...
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Environmental education plays a pivotal role in fostering a sustainable future by equipping individuals with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed to address complex environmental challenges. This research presents a comprehensive bibliometric review of the literature on environmental education for sustainable development, with a specific focus on curriculum design and pedagogical approaches. The analysis encompasses a wide range of scholarly articles published between 1961 and 2023, providing valuable insights into the current state of research in this field. Furthermore, the research employs VOSviewer, a bibliometric software, to analyze co-citation and bibliographic coupling networks, identifying influential authors, prominent journals, and emerging trends within the field. The most frequent and fewer occurring keywords are compared to highlight central concepts and potential areas for further research. The results of this study contribute to a comprehensive understanding of the diverse themes, effective practices, and influential contributors in environmental education for sustainable development. By identifying key areas of focus and research gaps, educators, policymakers, and researchers can design targeted interventions and initiatives that promote environmental literacy, responsible behavior, and sustainable practices among learners. Ultimately, this research seeks to advance the field of environmental education and empower individuals to become active stewards of the environment, shaping a more sustainable and resilient future for all.
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Bu çalışma erken çocukluk eğitimi alanında sürdürülebilirlik konusunda yapılmış olan çalışmaları çeşitli özelliklerine göre değerlendirmeyi amaçlayan bir meta- sentez çalışmasıdır. Araştırmada 2017-2022 yılları arasında erken çocukluk eğitimi alanında sürdürülebilirlik kavramına ilişkin ERIC, Dergipark ve WOS (Web of Science) veritabanlarında yayınlanan 51 çalışma incelenmiştir. Elde edilen bulgular meta-sentez araştırma yöntemi kullanılarak, belirli temalar altında sunulmuştur. Verilerin analizi sonucunda çalışmaların yıllara göre artmakla birlikte, tüm dünyayı etkileyen covid-19 pandemisi süresinde azaldığı ve henüz yeterli olmadığı, çalışmaların genel olarak nitel araştırma yönteminde ağırlıklı olduğu ve çalışmalarda çoğunlukla sürdürülebilirliğin çevre boyutunun ve tüm boyutlarının birlikte ele alınmayı amaçlandığı görülmektedir. Araştırmaların sonuçlarında yer alan kavramlara bakıldığında genel olarak, sürdürülebilirliğin tüm boyutlarına, sürdürülebilirliğin geliştirilmesine ve çevre ile ilgili kavramlara yer verildiği görülmektedir.
Problem and objective. Student tourism in Russia is not well developed, which may limit the potential of the tourism industry in such regions as Kaliningrad region. Research objective: to consider the ways to promote the development of student tourism in Russia, in particular in Kaliningrad region, by designing and realising the programmes that will attract students and young people to visit the region, and to train qualified professionals in the sphere of hospitality and tourism. Research methods. The survey involved 205 students aged 18-23, without division into age subgroups, of them 94 – residents of Kaliningrad and its surrounding region and 111 – residents of other regions of Russia. Two methods were used – interviewing and online survey with the help of Google Forms. The questionnaire comprised 21 combinatory tables, 10 questions each; the online questioning time was supposed not to exceed 20 minutes, while interviewing time varied from 15 to 30 minutes. Ranking methods were used for statistical data processing. Research findings. The students proved to be more mobile and open-minded, being, however, less confident in their social skills, preferring not to establish contacts while travelling. Most of them see the development of student tourism through the prism of economy, without manifesting civic position or interest in their country. The study does not take into account one feature: the growing dependence on digital devices during the travel, with a view to effectuate their digital image. The students’ and young people’s tourism should be regarded not only as an instrument for the development of regions and the hospitality sphere, but also as a tool for building the participants’ personal and professional competences. Exclave territories can serve as an interesting object of research since they have a unique history, culture and natural characteristics. Such studies can contribute to better understanding of territorial culture and history, not only to the development of tourism. Conclusion. The development of student and youth tourism in Kaliningrad region depends on co-financing of the respective programme by federal and regional authorities, on the development of specialised tourism products and loyalty programmes as well as active cooperation of universities and travel companies.
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The research is aimed to: (1) identify a factual model of learning evaluation of Islamic Religious and Moral Education (PAI-BP); (2) develop the PAI-BP learning evaluation model to suit the needs of the high school education level; and (3) knowing and analyzing the effectiveness of the PAI-BP learning evaluation development model at the high school education level in Karanganyar Regency for the 2020/2021 academic year. The type of the research is development research targetting the evaluation model for Islamic Religious and Moral Education (PAI-BP) for high school level. The data collection method was done using observation, in-depth interviews, document analysis, tests, and questionnaires techniques. Data analysis was carried out by qualitative and quantitative analysis. The research concluded that: (1) The factual model of the evaluation of Islamic Religious Education and Moral Education (PAI-BP) at the high school education level currently done separately between the process of learning and its product; (2) The evaluation model developed has two main components, namely: the learning process and output. The learning process includes four subcomponents, namely: (a) teachers’ performance in the classroom, (b) teachers’ personality, (c) students’ behavior, and (d) learning facilities. Whereas the learning output includes four sub-components, namely aspects: (a) akidah akhlaq, (b) Qur'an-Hadith, (c) Fiqh, and (d) Islamic history; and (3) The effectiveness of the PAI-BP learning evaluation model developed shows that based on the experts, user and practitioner assessments, the model developed is considered as a Good model to evaluate PAI-BP learning at high school level education.
Purpose The aim of this personal vision research is to analyse the characteristics of physical education subject to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through the development of competences in university students. The objective is to reflect on how critical and systemic thinking could be mobilised through the contents and methodologies in physical education to promote the SDGs. Design/methodology/approach A conceptual article is proposed in which an active investigation of how physical education could foster critical and systemic thinking has been carried out. For this purpose, articles were selected that have analysed the potential of physical education for sustainability. Databases such as Web of Science, Scopus or Google Scholar have been reviewed through keywords such as “physical education”, “sustainability”, “critical thinking” or “systems thinking”. Findings Strategies are presented to enable university students to understand the scope of the subject beyond the physical dimension. This study discusses that it is only through such a change of view of the subject that meaningful learning and learning situations that encourage enquiry and active participation can be introduced. Thus, this paper argues that physical education is a unique area of knowledge for mobilising critical and systemic thinking in the context of sustainable development (SD). Consequently, concrete actions are presented for application in physical education teaching that shows direct connections to specific targets of the SDGs. Practical implications This study presents practical implications for higher education leaders and educational policy designers at the national level, as it would help improve initial and ongoing training programs for physical education teachers, focusing on the development of key competencies for sustainability. Social implications Physical education has the potential to contribute to the development of vulnerable schools and communities, especially to the health and well-being of children and young people and does not require large financial budgets. Therefore, the recommendations presented in this study can have a positive impact on the well-being of these groups. Originality/value This document invites reflection on how, through different teaching strategies, we can produce significant learning that contributes to the sustainability of the planet. All this, trying to mobilise critical and systemic thinking and consequently improving awareness for SD.
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Bu çalışma ile ilkokul 4. sınıf sosyal bilgiler dersi öğretim programının özel amaçları ve kazanımları sürdürülebilir kalkınma boyutları açısından incelenmiş ve sürdürülebilir kalkınma ile ilgili olduğu belirlenen kazanımların sürdürülebilir kalkınma hedefleriyle uyumu ve Yenilenmiş Bloom Taksonomisi’ne göre dağılımı analiz edilmiştir. Bu amaçla doküman analizi yöntemi kullanılmıştır. Toplanan veriler betimsel analiz ile çözümlenmiştir. Sürdürülebilir kalkınmanın çevresel, sosyal ve ekonomik boyutları göz önüne alındığında, 18 adet amaç cümlesinin 6’sının, 33 kazanımın sadece 7’sinin sürdürülebilir kalkınma ile ilgili olduğu görülmüştür. Ayrıca sürdürülebilir kalkınma ile ilgili 7 kazanımın sürdürülebilir hedeflerden 4’üyle uyumlu olduğu görülmüştür. Taksonomik analizler sonucunda ise taksonomik basamakların ilk basamağı olan “Hatırlama” ve üst basamakları olan “Çözümleme, Değerlendirme ve Yaratma” basamaklarında yer alan herhangi bir kazanım bulunmadığı görülmektedir.
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The practical definition of sustainable development remains "balance between the social,economic and natural resources”. To builda system for sustainable development inprogress is very difficult; it should be noted that to talk about the three elements at thesame time. Finding balance, adds more difficult, because, "the preservation of theecosystem", includes in itself, human capital,making peoples an integral part of theecosystem that we are trying to save. Mostly, sustainable development requires major andradical changes, in particular to human behaviors and habits, connected to nature and theeconomy. The aim of this article is to identify the role of education in sustainabledevelopment. The development of education inthe context of sustainable development,promotes the correct answer of science, but a way of engaging with different perspectiveson the world we live in, and share together every moment of our lives.
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This discussion paper considers the identification and definition of the ‘characteristic spirit’ of publicly managed schools in the Republic of Ireland. Some international approaches to values in publicly funded schools are introduced along with relevant contextual aspects of Irish education including the cultural diversity and secularisation of modern Irish society. The Irish Education Act (1998) gives ultimate responsibility for school values and ‘characteristic spirit’ to the school ‘patron’, a role legally separate from that of school ownership and school management. The underlying values of privately managed faith-based schools are well established. However, the ‘characteristic spirit’ of publicly managed Education and Training Board schools remains largely undeveloped. Appropriate responses to this challenge are identified and discussed.
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The Irish Education Act (Government of Ireland 1998) stipulates that each young person in secondary school in Ireland is entitled to access ‘appropriate’ guidance. It has been argued that this very right has been eroded since Budget 2012, where resource re-allocations in guidance counselling are obstructing the requirement for schools to implement this section of the Act. This qualitative study explored the effects of ‘educational cutbacks’ from the perspective of guidance counsellors. Findings from interviews with guidance counsellors, suggest that the effects of such cutbacks in guidance counselling are far-reaching and ultimately students are the one’s losing out. The paper proposes that there is a need to reinstate guidance counselling hours to allow guidance counsellors provide a comprehensive service to young people – which they are entitled to.
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Moral reasoning is concerned with making decisions regarding the appropriate course of action in particular situations and has been highlighted as a critical factor that may facilitate (or impede) the effectiveness of educational programs in promoting positive outcomes. This study examined the trajectories of moral reasoning as measured by the Defining Issues Test (DIT2) for college students and to what extent there are intra-individual (within student) and inter-individual (between student) changes in moral reasoning during this developmental period. The results suggest that moral reasoning was best represented by a linear increase on the mean level and non-significant variability across students. The relationship between moral reasoning and students’ prior academic attainment was also examined.
Since the second edition of this book, the education debate has fiercened. Education policy must ensure economic productivity and competitiveness, but in recent years, debates about its contribution to the worsening of social inequality, particularly in relation to grammar schools, have become increasingly divisive. Ever-changing, stuttering policy can make this a field that’s hard to keep track of… a problem that this book solves. Along with extensive updates, this third edition includes a new introduction and updated examples and references throughout. Ball examines new areas of focus, including the emphasis on neuroscience, the increased interest of business in education and the impact of austerity and precarity. Unlike so many other books on education policy, The education debate doesn’t simply describe education policy, but captures key debates and themes in this fast-changing field.
In this article, the authors outline and discuss the findings of a research study, which explored student teacher engagement with development education (DE) interventions implemented within Professional Master of Education (PME) programmes across eight Irish Higher Education Institutions. Interpretivist methods were employed incorporating questionnaires administered to 536 student teachers pre and post the DE intervention and 6 focus group discussions conducted with 26 student teachers. Findings indicate that the capacity of PME students to engage with development issues and integrate DE into their teaching has strengthened considerably because of their participation in the intervention. However, in order to build upon this more must be done with respect to: strengthening student teachers’ knowledge of development issues; embedding DE further across PME programmes; enhancing practical engagement with DE on School Placement and prioritising DE-related research and reflection. Findings align with a conceptual understanding of DE as a complex system.
This study evaluates the effectiveness of a new undergraduate global health course by assessing students’ pre/post global knowledge and beliefs. Using factor analysis, student beliefs coalesced into two belief foci: safety/comfort and responsibility/connectedness. Knowledge significantly increased across the board, whereas belief change was more localized.
This three-year study examined executive function development during teacher preparation. The sample consisted of 231 students in spring at Time 1, 36 students at Time 2, and 109 students at Time 3. Results indicate a non-significant decrease in the longitudinal mean change of metacognition index (MI) and behavioural regulation index (BRI) over time. MI growth trajectories had a nonlinear trend, while BRI growth trajectories had a linear trend during pre-service teacher preparation. Findings from the current study suggest that no value is added to students' executive functioning during three years of tertiary education. Implications for teacher preparation programs are discussed.
This book examines the impact of neo-liberal reform on the traditional caring ethos of public services such as education, exploring how these reforms influence the appointment and experiences of senior management across the education sector. © Kathleen Lynch, Bernie Grummell and Dympna Devine 2012. All rights reserved.