Solutions-based learning, critical pedagogy and the challenge of climate change education

This session took place as part of the 2022 Learning and Teaching Forum Conference.

The presenters were Sally Beckenham.


Aim: Empowering future climate change activists Takeaway: A new way to think about how to teach climate change Teachers within universities and beyond have long noted the difficulties of approaching the subject of climate change, and this question of how to teach it now forms the basis of a substantial body of pedagogical literature (Hayden et al, 2011; Filho et al, 2021; Svarstad 2021). This is not surprising, since it requires us to draw from insights across social science disciplines – of human geography, development studies and international politics for example – but also engage with scientific knowledge and discourse. Beyond this, the challenge is to teach a subject of global consequence but also such specificity in lived experience, to capture a constantly shifting picture of vulnerability and disaster, and to convey efforts of adaptation and resilience in global governance alongside the dire planetary trajectory on which we are on. This requires us to think carefully about how to deliver and facilitate lessons on climate change that will empower students as engaged climate conscious citizens but also foster critical thinking skills with which students can think and make decisions for themselves about climate change. Here I argue that the transformative potential of critical pedagogy can be brought together with a solutions based learning agenda to generate new approaches to climate change problems and simultaneously empower a new generation of climate activists.

You can access the recording of this session at this link:

Solutions-based learning, critical pedagogy and the challenge of climate change education (UoY Panopto log-in required)

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