ICTESD501 - Sustainability Theory, Systems Thinking and Transformational Change
Human society faces many environmental, social and economic threats as a result of unsustainable behaviour and values. The root cause of these problems is our collective lack of awareness and inability to understand that change for sustainability occurs through systemic and transformational processes. This course is meant to serve as an introduction to the concepts and examples of sustainability, systems theory and transformational change in a global, local, individual and collective context. Drawing on the literature, the course focuses on some of the identified key contextual issues that need to be addressed in changing our unsustainable behaviour and values. In this context, the course examines various models and pedagogical approaches that could enable learning for an interconnected/systemic worldview and transformational change. It then develops an interactive model in addressing sustainability issues and to promoting transformational change for sustainable development. The course aims to encourage students to think in a more systemic way and through questioning their way of thinking and acting to generate transformational change towards a sustainable future.
ICTESD502 - Approaches to Educational Research for Sustainable Development
Education research is a complex endeavour involving several different methodological approaches. This course aims to provide students with an introduction to the ontological, epistemological, methodological and axiological perspectives which underlie quantitative and qualitative methodological approaches, with special reference to ESD. It is divided into three parts. In the first part, the course focuses on the needs and priorities of ESD research, the nature and role of research, an examination of the processes and procedures involved in qualitative and quantitative research and the principles of research quality. In the second part, the course focuses on issues concerned with the analysis of quantitative and qualitative research. In this part, it also introduces the software package SPSS. The third part deals with the issues of interpretation, reporting and research dissemination. The course is structured in a way that also integrates the process of writing a research proposal. This overriding goal of this course is to help participants understand the theoretical and methodological traditions that guide contemporary quantitative and qualitative research in the field of ESD.
ICTESD503 - ESD Pedagogy and ICT
This course is intended to introduce the ideas, concepts, theories and practices that constitute the emerging field of ESD pedagogy enabled through ICT. Within this context, participants will examine the fundamentals of ESD pedagogy and the learning processes aligned with ESD. The issue of how ESD fits into the curriculum and how ICT fits into ESD and vice versa will be further explored. Particular focus will be placed on ESD pedagogical approaches enabled through ICTs that seek to promote learning experiences that are transformative, empowering, and emancipatory. Consistent with this philosophy, pedagogical theories associated with ESD to be explored are: deep learning, problem-based learning, transformational learning, experiential learning, active learning, action learning, participatory learning, inquiry-based learning, service and place-based learning. There will be an attempt to bring a balance between the political dimensions of critical ESD pedagogy (that is often highlighted) with the personal/inner self or the pedagogy of the psyche (that is often ignored). The overriding goal of this course is to help participants design and apply innovative approaches to teaching and learning for sustainability enabled through ICTs.
ICTESD504 - Appropriate Technology, Global Citizenship and ESD
Appropriate technology is technology that is designed and used with special consideration to the environmental, social, economic, cultural, political and ethical aspects for citizen empowerment, critical reflection and action. Such a kind of technologies include web logs (blogs) as reflective journals, wikis as collaborative websites, participatory video, digital storytelling & podcasting, Twitter and social networks (MySpace, Facebook and Google Groups). With these definitions in mind, this course explores both the theory and practice of active citizenship and personal/community-based development, focusing on appropriate technology tools and skills for local knowledge construction, cultivating local leadership for sustainable development, mobilizing communities for collective action, and how to amplify children’s and marginalised people’s voices for greater participation in decision-making processes. The overarching goals of this course is: a) to provide students with historical and conceptual frameworks for thinking about “appropriate technologies” and active citizenship in the context of education for sustainability; b) raise awareness of the role of appropriate technology in enabling learners to reflect critically on the rights, roles and responsibilities of an active citizen in preparing for a sustainable future for all; c) engage students in hands-on experience with specific education for sustainability projects enabled through Web 2 technologies; and d) use participatory video as a process of research-reflection-action that can generate local knowledge, raise the consciousness of those involved and provide a powerful mechanism to convey critical citizen agency.
ICTESD505 - Action Research and Participatory Action Research for ESD
In the field of ESD, empowerment, transformative and emancipatory methodologies are highly credited. Action Research (AR) and especially Participatory Action Research (PAR) are congruent with these methodologies. This course introduces students to critical research methodology, where AR and PAR, are part of. It is a hands-on course involving students in carrying out small-scale field practice on a sustainable development issue. Broadly, the course is divided into three parts. In the first part, it focuses on critical research methodology and the identification of theoretical and historical perspectives that have shaped the development and evolution of AR and PAR. In the second part, the course focuses on an examination of the steps in the process of an AR and/or PAR project along with the issues and approaches to judging its rigor, validity, research ethics and meaningfulness. In the third part, the course culminates with issues that concern the analysis and interpretation of AR/PAR data; presenting and using research results to affect change processes. The overriding goal of this course is to help participants understand basic conceptsof critical research methodology with particular reference to action research and participatory action research. More specific objectives concern: deconstructing the conventional discourse of research methodology; embracing principles of empowerment, change agency, active participation and reflection in the research process; applying action research methods to sustainability issues.
ICTESD506 - ICT, Instructional Design and ESD
This course focuses on three distinct yet interrelated areas namely, ICT, Instructional-Learning Design and Education for Sustainable Development. Learners will learn the theory and practice underpinning ICT-enabled ESD. Course content will be based on a strong foundation and understanding of instructional and learning theories. Contrasting views and perspectives of instructional design and learning theories will be considered, at both the curriculum (macro) and lesson (micro) level. Course emphasis is on the design and development of Web-based instructional lessons applicable to a variety of education settings. In particular, learners will design a WikiQuESD and/or a WebQuest applied to formal or non-formal education settings addressing ESD-related thematic areas. They will also learn to blend the use of multi-media elements (such as Video, audio, graphics) with web-based resources in a manner that challenges learners to critically reflect on sustainability issues and to develop innovative learning solutions. The delivery mechanisms employed in this course will facilitate theoretical, practical and an ethical-values approach to learning. Learners will be presented with opportunities for self-paced learning, group learning, reflective learning and participatory learning. Learners will be able to engage in discussion on core concepts and key issues within ICT-enabled ESD through the use of discussion forums and real-time chat-rooms. This is a hands-on collaborative and highly participatory course requiring students to conduct discourse, reflect, write, and complete projects and assignments to be shared with the virtual class. The purpose of this course is to introduce the learner to the concepts and contexts of ICT-enabled ESD, whilst also providing them with instructional/learning design and practical ICT skills that they can use to source, review, design and develop meaningful Wiki QuESD and WebQuest learning resources and projects within the thematic area of Education for Sustainable Development.
ICTESD507 - Educational Policy and Planning for Sustainable Schooling
ESD is at a pivotal point in many school systems and the recognition of the role of policy and planning is clear with regards to how schools can be turned into “sustainable schools”. In response to the growing demand for infusing sustainability into education policies, curriculum and other support processes, this course examines the relationship between education policy, planning and ESD, using the UNESCO ESD Lens metaphor. The ESD Lens is focused on providing tools for reviewing educational policy and practice towards sustainability. To explore further this approach, the course focuses on participatory engagement and contextualization of the ESD Lens contents. The analysis is coupled with a series of strategies on how the ESD policy and practice might be better executed for reorienting schools towards sustainability. The overriding goal of the course is to help students develop a deeper understanding of the relationship between education policy and planning in the field of ESD, the institutional structures needed to support ESD policies; and the role of various actors and entities in shaping educational policy and change for sustainability.
ICTESD508 - ICT, Climate Change & Geo-Spatial Tools
Education systems worldwide need to include a focus on the causes, consequences and solutions to climate change, if the necessary changes are to be addressed in time. Addressing the causes (mitigation) and the consequences (adaptability) of climate change requires education systems to integrate content and methodologies that will help transform human-induced unsustainable behaviours and actions (transformability).This course provides a cross/multi-disciplinary approach of climate change education through the support of open source GIS software and related spatial tools, ICTs, databases, datasets designed for educators who are interested in using such technologies to explore global climate change issues. Learners will focus on key aspects of climate change for their particular local environments and develop cross-thematic and inquiry and problem-based climate change lesson plans applicable to both formal and nonformal education settings. The overriding goal of this course is to strengthen the capacity of educators and trainers to provide quality climate change education for sustainable development at primary and secondary school settings enabled through GIS and other ICTs. In particular: how to use problem-based learning as a methodology for integrating climate change education in formal and non-formal education environments.
ICTESD509 - Biocultural Diversity for Sustainable Development
The course explores the links between cultural, linguistic and biological diversity, which are increasingly viewed as key elements in achieving sustainable development. Recognizing that diversity is an important prerequisite for ensuring sustainable development, this course explores conceptual and methodological issues and provides some examples of the linkages between biological, cultural and linguistic diversity at global, regional and local scales. The interactions between cultural and biological factors in human adaptation and variation are emphasized throughout the course. The course is organized into several sections, each with subsidiary activities that involve students in constructing knowledge on biocultural diversity issues. Several important questions form the core of this course, such as: What notions of culture and nature does the concept of biocultural diversity imply? What models of biocultural diversity exist? What political and legal measures need to be taken at the national and international levels so as to improve efforts to promote biocultural diversity? Is globalization a threat to or an opportunity for promoting cultural, linguistic and biological diversity for sustainable development? How can we make consumption and production patterns consistent with the promotion of cultural and biological diversity? Which measures should be taken to promote biocultural diversity so as to reinforce sustainable development? The overriding aim of the course is to help students understand and appreciate the interconnection of culture and biology. The specific objectives are: To explore conceptual/theoretical and methodological issues related to the links between biological, linguistic and cultural diversity. To involve students in the collection, evaluation and synthesis of relevant to biocultural diversity information that is available in the Web. To identify and document good practices that may support educational policy, management and decision/policy making processes. To explore how people culturally conceptualize, manipulate, transform, and humanize their natural environments over time.
ICTESD510 - e-Learning, Virtual Worlds and Education for Sustainable Development Course description
e-Learning and Virtual World (VW) platforms provide affordances that may facilitate teaching and learning for sustainability. This course applies instructional design principles for designing virtually-based interactive learning courses and professional development courses addressing ESD-related thematic areas. Based on the instructional models of cognitive apprenticeship, situated cognition and problem-based learning, the course discusses the steps to be taken to design, create and assess virtual learning environments using tools such as Second Life®. Second Life is a virtual world in which individuals create a persona, or avatar, which is used to operate in the highly interactive virtual environment. The course also uses SLOODLE, an open-source Moodle® module for bridging communication between objects in Second Life® and assignments in Moodle® to enable authentic problem solving and processes, referring to ESD issues.The overarching goal of this course is to provide learners with an overview of theories and strategies related to the design, development and evaluation of online learning and courses.
ICTESD511 - Teaching to Live Sustainably through the Earth Charter
Learning to live sustainably is a condition to sustain our planet for the present and future generations. The Earth Charter challenges us to examine our values and learn to live sustainably. The course will examine the links between Education for Sustainability and values and moral education and support students to think more clearly about their attitudes, values and ethical approaches towards the human and non-human world. Through an exploration of the ethics of nature, the environment, ethical frameworks as represented in political belief systems and ideologies, the course will provide students with the tools to construct and support rational and just approaches to sustainability in their professional and private lives. The course will also focus on the design, development and assessment of ICT- enabled instructional materials and programmes which can foster the formation of positive values, attitudes and ethical behaviour towards sustainable human development in the classroom/training environment. The course outcomes are reflected in the organization of the learning modules, which are presented sequentially to allow for a full study of the aims and objectives of the Earth Charter. These include a study of values and how they relate to the Earth Charter and Education for Sustainability, the promotion of dialogue on values for sustainable living, ethical development and the application of values in the construction of sound ethical choices in relation to sustainability. It will also focus on the design, development and assessment of ICT enabled instructional learning to provide opportunities for “learning to live sustainably”.The overriding goal of this course is to explore the links between Education for Sustainability and the Earth Charter and to develop the requisite knowledge, skills and attitudes to enable course participants to effectively use the Earth Charter as an educational tool.
ICTESD5012 - Intercultural Communication and Sustainable Leadership
This course explores an interesting confluence of two current topics: intercultural communication and sustainable leadership. Students in this course engage in a critical assessment of intercultural communication theories and applications with the explicit goal of addressing issues of sustainable leadership. The course examines key factors in green and distributed leadership models and strategies and draws attention to the importance of transformational sustainable leadership in connection to inter/cross-cultural communication competence. Emphasis is given on issues of culture and power, the relationship of language (both verbal and non-verbal) and culture, the relationship between culture and strategies of negotiation, as well as differing perspectives of conflict and ways of managing intercultural conflict.Through experience, action and critical reflection, students are to collaboratively explore: 1) social entrepreneurship as leadership that facilitates societal transformation; 2) the role of ICT in facilitating leadership and transformational ESD; 3) the attributes of effective sustainable leadership and 4) the choice of communication strategies needed within different cultural contexts and how intercultural communication affects transformational leadership. The overriding goal of this course is to equip participants with the skills and knowledge to function as transformative educators and ESD leaders.