Learning for Sustainability (LfS), Scotland’s approach to sustainability education, is fairly unique internationally in the way it brings together global citizenship, sustainable development education and outdoor learning and aligns with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The word cloud below gives a flavour of some of the themes and approaches LfS encompasses across all forms of education but it is not exhaustive.
LfS is a key national priority in Scottish education, it is central to Curriculum for Excellence (Scotland’s national curriculum), woven throughout the General Teaching Council for Scotland(GTCS) professional standards, embedded within the self-evaluation process of How Good is Our Schools 4 (HGIOS4) and it should underpin initial teacher education. LfS is not solution-focused rather it emphasises an open-ended pedagogy encouraging transformative action-oriented approaches that aim to engage communities and develop kinship with the natural world. In essence it is an approach to life and learning, across all levels, focused on nurturing the values, skills and knowledges needed to develop a more socially-just, equitable and flourishing community, country and world for all. Given current world events and catastrophes this values-driven approach to education is needed now more than ever.
You can read more about LfS through the resources listed below. these are a mixture of my own (often co-authored) writing, and resources published by others.
Websites holding other resources:
- Learning for Sustainability Scotland
- Education Scotland
- General Teaching Council Scotland
- Scottish Qualifications Authority
- Inspiring Scotland
- Christie, B. & Higgins, P. (2020) Educational outcomes of Learning for Sustainability: A brief review of literature.Scottish Government/ University of Edinburgh. Scottish Government commissioned report. [Full report]
- Christie, B. & Higgins, P. (2020) Educational outcomes of Learning for Sustainability: A brief review of literature: summary. Scottish Government/ University of Edinburgh. Scottish Government commissioned report. [Summary report]
- Education Scotland (2018).Whole School and Community Approach to Learning for Sustainability (LfS): Self -evaluation and improvement framework.
- Higgins, P., & Christie, B. (2018). Learning for Sustainability. In T. Bryce & W. Humes, D. Gillies and A. Kennedy (Eds.), Scottish Education (5th ed). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.
- Higgins, P., & Nicol, R. (2018). Outdoor Learning. In Bryce, T & Humes, W., Gillies, D. and Kennedy, A. (Eds.), Scottish Education (5th ed) Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.
- Scottish Government. (2016) Vision 2030+.
- Education Scotland (2014). Conversations about Learning for Sustainability.
- Education Scotland (2013). Outdoor Learning: Practical guidance, ideas and support for teachers and practitioners in Scotland.
- Higgins, P., Nicol, R., Beames, S., Christie, B., & Scrutton, R. (2013). Education and Culture Committee Outdoor Learning – Submission form Peter Higgins.
- Christie, B. & Higgins, P. (2012) The impact of outdoor learning experiences on attainment and behaviour: A brief review of literature. Forestry Commission Scotland/University of Edinburgh. Forestry Commission Report 11/2012 [review funded by Forestry Commission Scotland]
- Christie, B. & Higgins, P. (2012) The impact of outdoor learning experiences on attitudes to sustainability: A brief review of literature. Field Studies Council/University of Edinburgh. Field Studies Council Report 06/2012. [review funded by Field Studies Council]
- Scottish Government. (2012a) One Planet Schools. Learning for Sustainability report.
- Scottish Government. (2012b) Scottish government response to One Planet Schools Report.
- Learning and Teaching Scotland. (2010). Curriculum for Excellence through outdoor learning.
- Learning and Teaching Scotland. (2007). Taking learning outdoors.
Research into Action Briefings
- Learning for sustainability and attainment in schools
- Impact of outdoor learning on learning for sustainability in schools
- Impact of outdoor learning on behaviour and attainment in schools
- Learning for sustainability effective pedagogies
*Briefings being updated early 2020