IDEOLOGY, EPISTEMOLOGY AND PEDAGOGY: BARRIERS AND DRIVERS TO EDUCATION FOR SUSTAINABILITY IN SCIENCE EDUCATION
Authors: Michael Littledyke, Evangelos Manolas
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The Brundtland Report (Brundtland Report, cited in United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, 1999) definition of education for sustainability (EfS) allows us to conceptualise sustainability in a number of ways in education, such as ecological sustainability, sociocultural sustainability and, political sustainability. Whilst EfS issues have multi-dimensional meanings, including effects, root causes, change strategies and preferred futures each curriculum area can contribute. This paper focusses on how approaches to science education can contribute to or inhibit EfS, according to what degree it informs understanding of sustainability issues, how it may support values and beliefs underpinning sustainability and how priorities in constructing curricula can influence pedagogy. Epistemology, as conceptions of knowledge associated with science, and ideology, as political influences that shape curricula, can direct approaches to pedagogy, which may or may not support EfS. Examples of approaches to science education that may support EfS are discussed with implications for appropriate pedagogy to support EfS summarised.