Learning Sciences Institute Australia

Education for sustainability in BCE schools: An investigation of policy and practice

Overview

The purpose of this project is to identify and document the diversity of values and practices that currently exist within BCE schools to support Education for Sustainability (EfS). Anticipated outcomes are:

1. A map of understandings of, and attitudes towards, EfS.
2. A map of policy and practice related to EfS practices.
3. A catalogue of strategies that have been effective in promoting EfS .
4. Rich descriptions of four schools where good practice in EfS is embedded in or across the curriculum.
5. Key principles that provide the direction for the integration of EfS across the school curriculum.

A mixed methods approach will be employed to conduct research that will allow for the realisation of the above aims. Data Collection methods and means of analysis are listed below.

Data collection instruments and means of analysis

Survey: An on-line survey (Qualtrics) will be developed and administered to all school leaders and teachers within the twenty schools. Basic demographic information such as position in school, gender and teaching experience will be captured.

The quantitative data generated by the survey will subjected to an analysis of variance (ANOVA) to explore between school and within school differences in order to:

  • provide benchmark empirical data regarding EfS within participant schools;
  • identify those schools where EfS is clearly part of day to day teaching and learning practice and the greater life of a school.

School curriculum and policy documents will be audited in the four selected schools to establish the extent to which they address EfS in a manner consistent with BCE’s SRF and available syllabuses in the Australian National Curriculum. A particular focus of the audit will be the beliefs about, and attitudes towards EfS.

Interviews and student focus group discussions will be conducted as per Phase 3 above. These exchanges will be audio-recorded, transcribed and coded. Analysis of the transcriptions will be consistent with a grounded theory approach.

Funding

  • Brisbane Catholic Education, $8,650

Duration

2014-2015