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Global Citizens, Global Futures Project Report, Initial Findings and Reflections

Prowse, AJ and Page, C (2013) Global Citizens, Global Futures Project Report, Initial Findings and Reflections. UNSPECIFIED. Manchester Metropolitan University.

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Abstract

The Global Citizens, Global Futures Project explored current understandings and expectations of global citizenship education of students and staff across Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) (Research Phase) and developed and pilot a university-wide global citizenship initiative for students (Implementation Phase). Using staff and student questionnaires, student focus groups and individual interviews to investigate concepts and practices around the topic of Global Citizenship we found MMU students and staff see the concept in terms of diversity, global issues, values and attitudes, belonging to a ‘global community’ and collective responsibility for participation. Students were more likely to rate Global Citizenship as important for embracing and understanding diversity, whilst staff saw the need for MMU students to develop an outward looking view and benefits for the institution but were more likely to critique the term both in terms of the imposition of a ‘Western’ worldview and possible cultural homogenisation. The research has also highlighted current opportunities for students to develop Global Citizenship and for staff to report on their practice in internationalising or incorporating elements of Global Citizenship in curricula. The implementation strand focussed on the piloting of a student award under the university’s extra-curricular award scheme, and on the development of further staff opportunities to internationalise the curriculum. The student award has seen paid student ‘Global Ambassadors’ building student engagement via a new Global Futures student society seeking to provide platforms for student involvement. The awards ceremony took place as part of the Humanities’ faculty’s Global Citizens event. Staff development as part of the implementation strand has included: Internationalising the Curriculum - a 10 credit unit (PGCAP/MAAP) engaging staff from six faculties; exploration of a potential collaborative enquiry with international staff in the area of cross-cultural pedagogies; the development of a unit specification for a 15-credit Level 5 Global Citizenship unit to be piloted in the Contemporary Arts programme at MMU Cheshire; and a presentation of the project report at institutional level workshops to inform the new MMU International strategy. Staff and students also attended the event Global Citizens event, where the Dean of Manchester cathedral spoke and presented students with their awards. As a result of the research and implementation, perceived gaps in provision were used to construct recommendations for further action

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