Education for Sustainable Development as a Vehicle for Transformative Learning: A Case for Teacher Education in Zimbabwe
Keywords:Transformative learning, Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)
Education for Sustainable Development has been viewed as a tool for socio-economic and ecological transformation. Teacher education institutions have made an attempt to adopt ESD as a contemporary curriculum issue. The purpose of the study was to assess the extent to which Teacher Education Institutions are mainstreaming Education for Sustainable Development in Curriculum practice. A qualitative study of one teacher training college was undertaken. Staff members and residential student teachers constitute the population of the study. Stratified random sampling was conducted to staff members as well as to students. In depth interviews and document analysis were used as data gathering instruments. Content analysis was used to sort data into codes, patterns and themes. Findings reveal that lecturer respondents noted that Education for Sustainable Development content in most curricular subjects remained generic requiring a pedagogical paradigm shift and a wholesome overview of perceptions and current life practices. Further findings show that pedagogical approaches did not shift towards problem-based learning that could stimulate problem solving and critical thinking skills necessary for solving real life problems. Additional findings were that soft skills assessment that is continuous is not inherent within the current formative assessment design of the institution. The study contributed to knowledge, theory and practices in Teacher Education by proffering suggestions on how Education for Sustainable Development can be fully embraced in order to transform learning, increase ecological literacy and prompt action towards solving existing ecological crisis
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