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Contributions to the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development

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Fernando J. Gonçalves, Ruth Pereira and Walter Leal Filho

This book presents essential learning approaches. It introduces educational and training activities, as well as various innovative methods aiming at the development of practical skills, in order to strengthen the continuous process of environmental education, and in particular the education for sustainable development (ESD). In doing so, it focuses on three dimensions (social, economic and environmental) as a means of achieving an effective change of behaviour and «tries to bridge the gap between science and environmental education by describing a set of projects, initiatives and field activities». A special emphasis is put on teacher training programmes, conception, and implementation, highlighting the problems and barriers, which prevent development as far as integration of sustainability issues in higher education is concerned.

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Chapter 4: An Assessment of Requirements to Reframe Science Education towards Education for Sustainable Development

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Chapter 4 An Assessment of Requirements to Reframe Science Education towards Education for Sustainable Development Maria Arminda Pedrosa Abstract Documents published by United Nations agencies, or in cooperation with them, along with relevant research literature, namely on science education and on envi- ronmental education, are analyzed to articulate concepts involved in sustainable development and in education to help promote it. The goals of the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development are outlined and the importance of this initiative to move towards the millennium development goals is highlighted. Strategic actions for education on sustainable development, educational policies and curricular orientations are briefly reviewed in the framework of the second half of this decade, at policy level regarding member states and at practice level as defined in the Bonn Declaration. Some key ideas on educational policies and reform in the European Union are presented, focussing on the formal education and curricular orientations of the national curriculum for sciences in Portugal. Research-based recommendations on science and technology education are high- lighted, emphasizing the STS movement in science education and good practices, at different levels, especially regarding science teachers’ education, to help reori- ent education towards education for sustainable development. Concluding re- marks are presented focussing on the requirements for reshaping science educa- tion towards this end, within the United Nations Decade and beyond, on a practi- cal level in schools, classrooms and laboratories. Ways forward are suggested to promote and sustain educational innovations, based on pertinent research-based knowledge. Synergies and partnerships are advocated...

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