Developing ESD-specific professional action competence for teachers: knowledge, skills, and attitudes in implementing ESD at the school level

Publikation: Beiträge in ZeitschriftenZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungbegutachtet


Equipping future change agents with the competencies to lead the societal transformation towards sustainability requires competent and committed teachers who effectively implement Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) across the education system. In a comparative case study, this paper investigates how individual ESD courses in teacher education programs at Leuphana University (Germany) and Arizona State University (USA) support the development of ESD-specific professional action competence for teachers. Applying a mixed-method approach, the specific focus is on the links between supporting or hindering factors that affect pre-service teachers’ actual achievement of intended learning outcomes. The findings indicate that both courses increased students’ competence—yet, to varying degrees. The 4Cs (personal, professional, social, and structural connections) were revealed as the most significant factors affecting students’ learning and should be considered when designing course offerings in Teacher Education for Sustainable Development (TESD) with the goal to develop students’ knowledge, skills, and attitudes.
ZeitschriftEnvironmental Education Research
Seiten (von - bis)1691-1729
Anzahl der Seiten39
PublikationsstatusErschienen - 11.10.2022

Bibliographische Notiz

Funding Information:
The authors gratefully acknowledge funding from the Lower Saxony Ministry of Science and Culture & Volkswagen Foundation for the grant ‘Educating Future Change Agents–Higher Education as a Motor of the Sustainability Transformation’ (A115235) through the program ‘Science for Sustainable Development’. This work was supported by Niedersächsisches Ministerium für Wissenschaft und Kultur.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.