Mainstreaming education for sustainability into pre-service teacher education in Australia: Stage 2
Australia is taking a whole-of-school, system-wide approach to embed sustainability in educational policies, programs, procedures and systems.
Schools play a vital role in developing the capacity of our citizens to create more sustainable communities, with teachers expected to provide students with the knowledge and skills to respond to the complex sustainability issues they will encounter in their personal and working lives. However, this will not be achieved without the preparation of teachers for the task – the training of school teachers is fundamental to their ability to educate for sustainability.
The Australian Government Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts commissioned ARIES to examine whether an approach recommended from Stage 1, the Mainstreaming Sustainability model, could effectively integrate sustainability into pre-service teacher education. The model engages a range of stakeholders and key agents of change within a system to all work simultaneously to bring about change.
The implementation of the model in this study resulted in:
- increased capacities within the teacher education community
- changes to teaching and learning approaches
- improvements in networks within the teacher education system
- engagement of relevant stakeholders, such as government agencies and non-government organisations, to understand and support the change.
The comprehensive report from this study will be valuable to all those interested in teacher training, and in developing more sustainable communities, particularly:
- other school staff
- teacher registration boards
- state and federal departments of education
- vocational education and training institutions
- students and student associations
- other staff within the education sector.
Separate case studies illustrate the efforts of the individuals or teams within each participating university. Each author describes:
- the context for change in their university
- their efforts in identifying hubs and creating networks
- the outcomes of the action for change
- their experiences with working systemically
- what is happening now as they are looking to the future.
It is hoped that these case examples will inspire others to initiate change within their institutions and support those who are in the process of trying to integrate sustainability into teacher education.
Download a copy of the report (PDF 2.2 MB)
Or order a printed copy of the report from the ARIES Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Or read about the individual case studies from each university:
Citation: Ferreira J, Ryan L, Davis J, Cavanagh M and Thomas J (2009). 'Mainstreaming Sustainability into Pre-service Teacher Education in Australia'. Prepared by the Australian Research Institute in Education for Sustainability for the Australian Government Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. Canberra, Australia.