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World Trends in Education for Sustainable Development

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Walter Leal Filho

It is widely acknowledged that sustainable development is a long-term goal, which both individuals and institutions (and countries!) need to pursue. This important theme is characterized by an intrinsic complexity, since it encompasses ecological or environmental considerations on the one hand, and economic matters, social influences and political frameworks on the other. This makes provisions in respect of education for sustainable development a particularly challenging task, but one which is feasible and achievable, provided the right elements are put into place. This book is an attempt to foster the cause of education for sustainable development, by documenting and disseminating experiences from different parts of the world, where learning for, about and through the principles of sustainability is taking place, in various sets and contexts, in both industrialized and developing nations. A special feature of this book is that it not only presents a wide range of philosophies, approaches, methods and analyses with respect to education for sustainable development across the world, but also documents and disseminates concrete case studies, which show how education for sustainable development may be realized in practice.

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Evaluating Education for Sustainable Development Programs

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Michaela Zint Abstract Purpose: While the importance of evaluating education for sustainable develop- ment (ESD) programs has been recognized, little information is available on the topic. This chapter provides an introduction to program evaluation, reviews “les- sons learned” from environmental education program evaluation on which ESD can build, and provides suggestions for how to advance ESD program evaluation. Design/methodology/approach: Documents prepared under the auspices of the UNESCO Monitoring and Evaluation Expert Group, publications including reports of ESD program evaluations, reviews of EE program evaluation literature, and the author’s program evaluation experiences provide the basis for the observations made in this chapter. Findings: Program evaluations should not only be completed for accountability purposes but should be used to improve ESD programs and to contribute to ESD research. To maximize the potential benefits of program evaluation, providers of ESD programs are encouraged to 1) make evaluation an integral part of their pro- grams, 2) articulate their program objectives, 3) commission/conduct evaluations relying on sound research methods, and 4) draw on relevant evaluation research. Originality/value: There are only a few publications that focus on ESD program evaluation. This chapter is one of the first to offer suggestions for advancing ESD program evaluation based on insights from ESD and EE program evaluations. Introduction Program evaluation is receiving increasing attention, not only in the USA but also in Europe and other parts of the world. This also applies to environmental education (EE) and, more recently, to education for sustainable development 330 Michaela Zint (ESD). For...

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