There has been a growing demand for teacher education to focus on international and global topics. The body of knowledge, skills and dispositions needed to better understand issues and challenges and to facilitate collaboration across borders is cited as needed in pre-collegiate education. In their future classrooms today’s teacher education candidates must be ready to lead their students towards actively engaging with global issues, and working with international partners (Kirkwood-Tucker, 2003; NCSS Position Statement on Global Education; Maira, 2004; Reimers, 2006; NCATE 2008 (p36); Gay, 2002, 2010; Merryfield, 2002; Adler, 2008; Gragert, 2012 – with focus on technology; Brooks, 2011 –same with technology). In several powerpoints, websites were provided addressing global / international work. Some additional ones would include TakingItGlobal; iearn, epals,Globaleducationconference.
Travel abroad has been traditionally seen as a primary way to build global understandings. However, most students do not have the time or resources to do so. Preparing our students without such an experience requires new approaches.
To meet this demand, the faculty in the secondary education program have approved and designed a series of projects and activities through which all secondary education majors are involved in international work. Working with the Center for Global Education at Seton Hall University, the faculty have arranged for a variety of international opportunities; prepared papers and workshop sessions highlighting their work; and formed long-term partnerships with international partners.
Several faculty members worked as site directors for the New Jersey Deliberating in a Democracy grant project, awarded to the Center for Global Education. The assessment data gathered by the project internationally (prepared by researchers from the University of Minnesota and available at http:deliberating.org) demonstrated significant changes in teacher and student knowledge, attitudes and behaviors. Using the Structured Academic Controversy model, the program was deemed appropriate for use at the university level with pre-service teacher education candidates.
Summary of global educational opportunities and conversations; scholarly work sharing work of the Center for Global Education / Secondary Ed program international initiatives.
The work done throughout the program continues the effort to seamlessly infuse technology into the activities and projects in which our students were involved. Additionally, modeling what are referred to as Best Practice within the field of education has permitted students to experience both planning and participation in events structured around such approaches. Assessment of the value of these methods took place in an international arena, often with high school students from multiple countries joining in what is referred to as a double debriefing – of both content and of process. The content of much of the work involved global controversial topics and the skill base that was a repeated focus included the conflict resolution components of active listening and clear communication.
Secondary education faculty and students have worked with university faculty and students, as well as high school teachers and students from Ukraine and Lithuania (also the Republic of Georgia). University faculty and students make use of the Discussion Board in the Center for Global Education website. Here the discussions address controversial topics of a global nature, and have a foundation in the conflict resolution strategies of active listening and clear communications. Students have addressed the death penalty, voting in a democratic society, environmental concerns and more. While the rest of the site has been dormant since the end of the DID funding, the Discussion Board hosts the work of university students from the Borys Grinchenko Kyiv University, the Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences and Seton Hall. The work in which our students here at Seton Hall are engaged includes not only classwork with international partners, but an opportunity to discuss that work through both skype and video conferencing. Each video conference included preparation of research on topics to be addressed (done by students), readings, a scripted agenda and pre-conference meetings to organize the event. Each session was moderated, and followed by focus group de-briefings. With international partners plans were devised for improvement on future sessions.
The schedule below identifies the video conferences conducted in recent years:
|Sept. 22, 2009
||Seton Hall University students and faculty, along with students, faculty and administrators from American History High School in Newark met with university faculty and students from the University of North Dakota to discuss the impact of diversity on teaching and learning.*
|Nov. 24, 2009
||Follow-up video conference with University of North Dakota on diversity
and education. Participants in North Dakota included those
who attended Native American schools*
||Seton Hall University faculty and students meet with faculty and students from the Borys Grinchenko Kyiv University
|Sept. 28, 2011
||Seton Hall University students and faculty met with university students
from the Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences.
|Apr. 4, 2012
||Three sites were linked together – with Seton Hall students and faculty
in the ITV room in the Walsh Library, students from the Graduate School
of Education at Rutgers University at their conference site, and
students from six universities in the Republic of Georgia meeting at the
American Embassy in Tbilisi, Georgia. Those schools included students
and faculty from Caucasus University, the Georgian Technical University,
the University of Georgia, the Georgian-American University, the
Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University and the Grigol Robakidze
University. The topic of the session was “Citizenship in a Democracy”.
|Oct 18, 2012
||Seton Hall University students and faculty met with faculty and
university students from the Borys Grinchenko Kyiv University to discuss
the work done in exploring one another’s histories. The over forty high
school students joined the session in Kyiv.
|Nov. 28, 2012
||Seton Hall University faculty and students were joined by over twenty
teachers and students from Cranford High School to meet with faculty and
students from the Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences,
Vilnius. Administrators and staff at the American Embassy were present
along with students and teachers from five high schools in and around
Vilnius who joined the session held at the American Embassy in Vilnius.
The topics explored included education for and challenges to Democracy;
as well as an exploration of cultural and social interests. A section of
the conference was devoted to exchanges between the high school
students from both countries.
|Dec 5, 2012
||Seton Hall University faculty and students joined students and faculty from the Borys Grinchenko Kyiv University .The topic was a focus on religion – its history in each country history, and its role in culture and politics.
Additional calls for infusing global issues into teacher education found at Levine, A. (2010). Teacher Education Must respond to changes in America. Phi Delta Kappan. 92 No 2, p 19-24.
Mansilla, V.B., and Jackson, A. (2011). Educating for Global Competence: Preparing our Youth to Engage the World. The Asia Society Partnership for Learning and the Council of Chief State School Officers, NY
Zhao, Y. Preparing Globally Competent Teachers: A New imperative for teacher Education. Journal of Teacher Education. 2010, 61 (S), 422-431.
For more information please contact:
James K. Daly, Ed.D.