Thursday, 5 July 2012

Global citizens: Who are they?

an article by Lorna Bourke, Philip Bamber and Minna Lyons (Liverpool Hope University, UK) published in Education, Citizenship and Social Justice Volume 7 Number 2 (July 2012)


A growing desire to instigate global citizenship programmes in higher education has led to the development of optional structured opportunities for students to engage in prosocial activities. One of the challenges facing such programmes is to demonstrate and plan for the personal growth of those students.

This article reports the dispositional, prosocial and attitudinal characteristics; knowledge and skills; and perceptions of social justice that students who undertake these activities bring to their initial participation.

The findings indicate, that in comparison to a control group, the students differ significantly in a number of important ways (for example, conscientiousness, extraversion, openness; Machiavellianism, prosocial behaviour; self-esteem; skills relating to social action and tolerance and understanding and their concern regarding social problems).

However, consideration should be given to the ways in which those students can be developed within a framework for social justice. Further, recruitment procedures for citizenship programmes in general should encourage the participation of a more diverse group of students than currently appears to be the case.

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