About Global Citizenship

Global Citizenship is a way of living that recognises our world is an increasingly complex web of connections and interdependencies. A world in which our choices and actions may have repercussions for people and communities locally, nationally or internationally.

Global Citizenship nurtures personal respect and respect for others, wherever they live. It encourages individuals to think deeply and critically about what is equitable and just, and what will minimise harm to our planet. Exploring Global Citizenship themes helps learners grow more confident in standing up for their beliefs, and more skilled in evaluating the ethics and impact of their decisions.

Active global citizens

To be effective Global Citizens, young people need to be flexible, creative and proactive. They need to be able to solve problems, make decisions, think critically, communicate ideas effectively and work well within teams and groups. These skills and attributes are increasingly recognised as being essential to succeed in other areas of 21st century life too, including many workplaces. These skills and qualities cannot be developed without the use of active learning methods through which pupils learn by doing and by collaborating with others.

The active, participatory methods of Global Citizenship education help young people to learn how decisions made by people in other parts of the world affect our lives, just as our decisions affect the lives of others. It also promotes pupil participation in the learning process and in decision-making.

  • Recommended Reading:

Anti-Racist Education

Educators need to consider what it means to be actively anti-racist. Anti-racist education acknowledges that just following the status quo is not enough to counter the deep roots of racism. It is not enough to recognise and value diversity.

Learners need the opportunity to explore stereotypes and prejudice, racism and discrimination. There are clear synergies between Global Citizenship and anti-racist education. Global Citizenship asks us to interrogate our assumptions and bias, recognising that we interpret the world through our specific social context and positionality.

This process of unlearning and development of critical literacy skills helps learners recognise, understand and challenge discrimination and inequality. The active and participatory learning methodologies championed by Global Citizenship Education develop those skills, values and attitudes required to promote equality and take action on racial justice.

Human Rights

Global Citizenship is about understanding that everyone has rights no matter who they are or where they live and being committed to creating a world where everyone is able to enjoy their rights. Global Citizenship Education supports learning about, for and through rights.

The UN Sustainable Development Goals

Scotland adopted the UN Sustainable Development Goals in 2015 – a vision to end poverty, fight inequalities and tackle climate change by 2030. Education plays an important part in achieving the targets of the SDGS. Ensuring that learners are able to access their entitlement to Global Citizenship will help us to meet SDG 4 Quality Education – target 4.7.

  • Recommended Reading:

Global Citizenship in Scottish Education

Global Citizenship is not an add on but an approach to delivering the Curriculum. It is embedded across the experiences and outcomes of Curriculum for Excellence and is key to developing:  successful learners, confident individuals, responsible citizens and effective contributors.  All pupils in Scotland have an entitlement to Learning for Sustainability  (LfS) – an umbrella term which covers Global Citizenship, Learning for Sustainability and Outdoor Learning. LfS is embedded within the General Teaching Council of Scotland Professional Standards for practitioners and woven through How good is our school? 

  • Recommended Reading:

Research into Global Citizenship

There is a growing body of research in Global Citizenship and its impacts. The International Journal of Development Education and Global Learning is an internationally refereed and open-access journal that publishes the outcomes of research and current debates on development education and related concepts such as global learning, global education, and global citizenship.

  • Recommended Reading:

Measuring Impact

Global Citizenship Education encourages children and young people to develop the knowledge, skills and values they need to engage positively with the world around them. How can we measure change in these? 

RISC’s  comprehensive  How do we know it’s working? tooltkit has a range of engaging and participatory activites for all levels which support practitioners to measure change in their learners’ values and attitudes. 

  • Recommended Reading: