20 SES 06 A, Networking for Intercultural Learning
This paper is a development of earlier research on crafts and craft education as expressions of cultural heritage (Kokko and Dillon, 2010). It reports research with a group of Erasmus exchange students (n=20) from seven different countries who were studying on the International Study Programme for Education at the University of Eastern Finland during the autumn 2012. The main field of study for most of the students was Educational Sciences. They participated in an optional course 'Cultural Heritage and Craft Education'. The objectives of this course included looking at art and craft curricula and pedagogies: (i) from a comparative view paying attention to social, cultural, equality and gender aspects; and (ii) as part of a wider frame of cultural heritage education.
Young people’s perceptions of cultural heritage and crafts, and the values they place on them, are substantially shaped by their formative experiences, both informal (in homes) and formal (in schools). The importance of cultural heritage education has been acknowledged at the European level. For example, the Framework Convention on the value of cultural heritage for society (Council of Europe 2005) identifies the need for European countries to preserve cultural resources, promote cultural identity, respect diversity and encourage inter-cultural dialogue. Furthermore Eurydice (2009, 7), the EU strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training over the next decade, emphasises the importance of transversal key competences, including cultural awareness and creativity. Regardless of these guidelines, there is a need to find out innovative ways to sustain cultural heritage education. However, globalising trends tend to sideline ‘tradition’. Cuts in education and changing curricula in many countries may downplay cultural heritage and arts with them being considered less important and dropped (Kokko & Kyritsi 2012). The authors of this paper share a concern about the situation with regard to both culture heritage education and craft education.
Council of Europe, 2005. The Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society, Council of Europe Treaty Series No. 199, Faro, 27 October 2005. Eurydice 2009. Arts and cultural education at school in Europe. Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA P9 Eurydice). Gallagher, S. & Zahavi, D. (2008) The Phenomenological Mind. London: Routledge. Kokko, S. & Dillon, P. 2011. Crafts and craft education as expressions of cultural heritage. Individual experiences and collective values amongst an international group of women university students, International Journal of Technology and Design Education, 21 (4), 487-503. Kokko, S. & Kyritsi, A. 2012. Cultural Heritage Education for Intercultural Communication, EUROMED 2012, 4th International Conference, Progress in Cultural Heritage Preservation, Short Papers, 165-168.
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