Political Rationalities in Science Education : A Case Study of Teaching Materials Provided by External Actors

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Political Rationalities in Science Education : A Case Study of Teaching Materials Provided by External Actors

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Publication BookChapter
Title Political Rationalities in Science Education : A Case Study of Teaching Materials Provided by External Actors
Author Andrée, Maria ; Hansson, Lena ; Ideland, Malin
Editor Otrell-Cass, Kathrin ; Orlander, Auli Arvola ; Sillasen, Martin Krabbe
Date 2018
English abstract
Many Western societies have a tendency to talk about how schools are failing in the science subjects. School science is often discussed as outdated, not interesting enough for young people and non-effective for the students’ learning. This discourse opens up for external actors such as industrial actors and NGOs to engage in the teaching of science. One example of this is when these actors provide teaching materials. Thus, “statework”, in terms of educational governance, becomes distributed within public and private networks. One example which is analysed in this chapter can be found with the web-based calculators from the environmental organisation, WWF, and the energy company, E.ON; both are used for calculating ecological footprints. The aim is to analyse what political rationalities are invited into classrooms through these ecological footprint calculators and by what means. Our analysis targets how a specific kind of citizen is “made up” through a “centre of calculations”, and what political ideology influences the making of a sustainable citizen. This is achieved through looking into how the desirable citizen is governed through the technologies of accounting, debt and ethics. Through the accuracy of numbers and the bookkeeping of debt, the calculators produce a specific ethical approach. As a result, they suggest that becoming a responsible person is achieved through individual consumption choices rather than taking the issues to the political level. This distributed statework opens up for neoliberal economic and ideological interests to enter the classroom. We claim that it is of the utmost importance that teachers and educational policy-makers be made aware of the governing elements behind the teaching materials provided by external actors.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-61191-4_8 (link to publisher's fulltext.)
Link https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-31... (external link to publication)
Publisher Springer
Host/Issue Cultural, Social, and Political Perspectives in Science Education : A Nordic View
Series/Issue Cultural Studies of Science Education;vol 15
ISSN 1879-7229
ISBN 978-3-319-61190-7
978-3-319-61191-4
Language eng (iso)
Subject External actors
Political rationalities
Science education
Environmental and sustainability education
Education for sustainable development
Environmental education
Humanities/Social Sciences
Research Subject Categories::LAW/JURISPRUDENCE
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/23906 Permalink to this page
Buy print http://www.bokfynd.nu/...978-3-319-61190-7 (Search for reseller)
Link to publication in DiVA Find this research publication in DiVA (n/a for student publ.)
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