22 SES 02 B, Governance & Life Long Learning
The current study examined a course developed as part of a selected European Commission’s TEMPUS project on Lifelong Learning in Applied Fields (LLAF). The LLAF consortium collaborated to create curricular reform that promotes lifelong learning in teachers' education, health care and other applied fields (Carneiro, & Draxler, 2008). A teacher' guide was designed utilizing Delors’ (2013) four theoretical ‘pillars’ of education. This guide, was created to provide teachers with models of innovative pedagogical strategies based on the constructivist approach for learning. The study presented here will be focusing on the combination of two pillars: "learning to do" and "learning to live together".
According to the "learning to do" pillar (Delors, 2013) professionals must develop an ability to continue learning throughout their lives in order to cope with the constantly changing and complex world. They should also acquire the skills of experts enabling them to look for, learn, and even design new best practices. Project Based Learning is one of the suggested active teaching-learning strategies in the “learning to do” pillar. Project Based Learning (PBL) is described as a "student-driven, teacher-facilitated approach to learning in which learners pursue knowledge by asking questions that have piqued their natural curiosity" (Bell, 2010 p.39). Several studies showed that using a PBL approach showed significant increases in all achievement areas (Boaler, 1999; Thomas, 2000). Gultekin (2005) noted that there is evidence for developing research skills, problem solving and high order thinking skills. Bell (2010) added PBL enhances responsibility, independence, and discipline. Project Based Learning prepares students for adult life mastering the skills needed to be productive in the workplace (Partnership for 21st Century Skills, 2008).
The "learning to live together" pillar is focused on the idea that students should be involved and able to participate actively in the communities that they are living in. This requires several stages and includes getting to know yourself as well as getting to know others (Scatolini, Maele and Bartholome, 2010). The purpose is building a community that can work together to improve the quality of life for all. In the scope of this selected TEMPUS project LLAF, the pillar of "learning to live together" was converted into a course that requires critical thinking and collaborative work. The course was designed so that the students (from an excellent program for students of education). engaged in topics that were relevant to their own college and that could help promote social issues that they felt warranted attention. In the specific course that was being piloted, the excellent students were asked to address issues that related to promoting inter-cultural relations on campus. This issue however can be replaced by other issues that are relevant to the campus or university where the course is being taught. This course was designed for active learning and doing and thus required the students to collaboratively plan and implement a concrete project.
The excellent student program in Israel includes volunteer work in the community as a requirement and a way to give back to society (Klavir, Cohen, Abadi & Greinfeld 2009). Learning using Project Based Learning (PBL) enables these students to develop and guide projects related to multicultural education (Banks & McGee Banks, 2012) at the college and at schools, developing their leadership skills (Klavir, Cohen, Abadi & Greinfeld 2009).
Banks, J. & McGee Banks, C.A. (2012) Multicultural Education Issues and Perspectives. (7th edition). Hoboken: N.J: John Wiley & son. Bell, S. (2010). Project based learning for the 21st century: Skills for the future. The Clearinghouse, 83, 39-43. Boaler, J. (1999). Mathematics for the moment, or the millennium? Education Week 17(29), 30–34. Carniro, R., & Draxler, A. (2008). Education for the 21st Century: Lessons and Challenges. European Journal of Education, 43 (2), 140-160. Delors, J. (2013). The Treasure Within: Learning to Know, Learning to do, Learning to live together and Learning to be. What is the Value of the Treasure 15 Years after its Publication? Internet Review Education, 59, 319-330. Doi: 10.1007/s111159-013-9350-8 Dickso, C. A. W. (2010). Evaluating The Student Experience of Inquiry-Based Learning: An Educational Initiative. Practice and Evidence of Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 5(1), 33-45. Glaser B. G., & Strauss, A. L. (2009). The discovery of grounded theory: Strategies for qualitative research. Transaction Publishers. Gultekn, M. (2005). The effect of project based learning on learning outcomes in the 5th grade social studies course in primary education. Educational Sciences: Theory and Practice 5(2), 548–56. Klavir,R., Cohen, N., Abadi,R., & Greinfeld, N. (2009). Vision, Theory, and Practice: The Program for Excellent Students in Israeli Colleges of Education. Tel Aviv: Mofet Institute (Hebrew) Partneship for 21st Century Skills (2008). Retrieved December 1, 2015 from www.21stcenturyskills.org/ Scatolni, S. A., Van Maele, J., & Bartholomé, M. (2010). Developing a curriculum for learning to live together: building peace in the minds of people. Exedra: Revista Científica, (1), 133-158. Thoma, J. W. 2000. A review of research on PBL. Retrieved December 20, 2015 from http://www.bobpearlman.org/BestPractices/PBL_Research.pdf
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