Evaluation of an Educational Model Based on the Development of Sustainable Competencies in Basic Teacher Training in Spain
1.1. Sustainable Competencies and Teacher Training
- build a new model based on the principles of sustainability;
- understand the connection between the environmental, social, economic and cultural processes;
- be aware of the local and global (glocal) social and environmental problems and their relationships;
- train students to analyze socio-environmental conflicts during the debate, to find alternatives and in individual and collective decision-making;
- promote the extension of “sustainable best practices” in different contexts and cultures.
- Systems thinking competence is the ability to collectively analyze complex systems across different domains (society, environment, economy, etc.) and across different scales (local to global), thereby considering cascading effects, inertia, feedback loops and other systemic features related to sustainability issues and sustainability problem-solving frameworks [37,38].
1.2. Experimental Teaching Model
|Stages||Main Activities in Each Stage||Competencies|
|0. Selection of socio-environmental problems||Formulation of a problem:|
|1. Formulation of the problems that are the object of the study|
|2. Identification of causes and consequences|
|3. Identification of the conditions to change||Definition of lines of action, establishing criteria for the selection and sequencing of proposed actions, which give rise to questions, such as: what can be done through technology and science; what has been done previously under similar conditions, and what was the result; who is responsible for providing solutions; to what extent can citizens participate; what can we do?|
|4. Specification of the difficulties and establishment of priorities for action|
|5. Carrying out of appropriate and sustainable actions||Application of the concepts learned to real-life situations, fostering the ability to make sustainable decisions.|
2. Research Methods
2.1. Research Participants
|Experimental group||196||21.18 (SD 0.427)||72||124||139 (71%)||57 (29%)|
|Control group||104||21.32 (SD) 0.486)||25||79||76 (73%)||28 (27%)|
- A scale of environmental attitudes, previously built and validated , whose alpha coefficient (Cronbach’s α) for all items is very close to the unit (0.82), which shows the high feasibility of the scale.
- A previously validated questionnaire on basic knowledge regarding the environment and environmental problems .
- A scale for the intention of behavior with the purpose of analyzing the intention of behaving sustainably with regard to the protection and improvement of the environment (Appendix 2), designed and validated, which has produced the following data:
- Feasibility (Cronbach’s α) = 0.82.
- Variability (factorial analysis): following the Kaiser criteria , three factors have been extracted, with eigenvalues above 1.00: F1, whose eigenvalue = 12.35 and percentage of variance = 51.7; F2, whose eigenvalue = 2.89 and percentage of variance = 11.4; F3, whose eigenvalue = 1.78 and percentage of variance = 8.36.
- Derived stimulus configuration (Euclidean distance model): the items are grouped into several subsets, which correspond to different significant behaviors with regard to the intention of acting sustainably.
2.3. The Research Process
3. Results and Analysis
3.1. Evolution of Knowledge
3.2. Evolution of Attitudes
3.3. Evolution of the Intention of Behavior
4. Conclusions and Outlook
Appendix 1. Group Distribution/Themes Developed.
|Identification of the learning center’s environmental situation (1): water consumption; waste water control|
|Identification of the learning center’s environmental situation (2): energy consumption (analysis of electricity consumption and analysis of energy use for heating)|
|Identification of the learning center’s environmental situation (3): testing of air pollution (emissions and noise)|
|Identification of the learning center’s environmental situation (4): production of waste (solid urban waste and hazardous waste)|
|Identification of the learning center’s environmental situation (5): paper (use and recycling)|
|Identification of the learning center’s environmental situation (6): environmental information and awareness of the faculty’s student body|
|Identification of the “environmental quality” of the faculties|
|Gathering of information from the different groups and drafting of a report with conclusions on the initial environmental evaluation|
|Preparation of a plan involving actions on a local level and their relationship with global socio-environmental problems|
Appendix 2. Behavioral Intention Assessment Questionnaire.
|Never 1||Sometimes 2||Always 3|
|1||At home, I always put different kinds of waste in different bags||1||2||3|
|2||I go without certain things that make life easier to protect the environment||1||2||3|
|3||I buy recycled paper, even if it’s more expensive than ordinary paper||1||2||3|
|4||I buy soft drinks in cans because they’re easier to carry||1||2||3|
|5||I use rechargeable batteries||1||2||3|
|6||Every time I buy something, I think about the waste it produces||1||2||3|
|7||I let the water run whilst I brush my teeth||1||2||3|
|8||I use public transport to move around town||1||2||3|
|9||I like to wear well-known brands of clothing, even when I dress casually||1||2||3|
|10||I buy food and other products produced as locally as possible||1||2||3|
|11||I like to have the central heating high, so I can be in short sleeves||1||2||3|
|12||I take part in campaigns and demonstrations against attacks on the environment||1||2||3|
|13||I usually buy disposable products||1||2||3|
|14||I put bottles in bottle banks, even though I have to carry them there||1||2||3|
|15||I prefer to do my shopping in megastores or malls, because I can find everything I want there||1||2||3|
|16||I go on foot or by bicycle whenever I can||1||2||3|
|17||I don’t unplug electrical equipment when I’m not using it||1||2||3|
|18||I try to keep up with fashion||1||2||3|
|19||I leave the lights on when I go out of a room||1||2||3|
|20||I prefer to buy things in shops that give part of their profits to needy countries||1||2||3|
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Vega-Marcote, P.; Varela-Losada, M.; Álvarez-Suárez, P. Evaluation of an Educational Model Based on the Development of Sustainable Competencies in Basic Teacher Training in Spain. Sustainability 2015, 7, 2603-2622. https://doi.org/10.3390/su7032603
Vega-Marcote P, Varela-Losada M, Álvarez-Suárez P. Evaluation of an Educational Model Based on the Development of Sustainable Competencies in Basic Teacher Training in Spain. Sustainability. 2015; 7(3):2603-2622. https://doi.org/10.3390/su7032603Chicago/Turabian Style
Vega-Marcote, Pedro, Mercedes Varela-Losada, and Pedro Álvarez-Suárez. 2015. "Evaluation of an Educational Model Based on the Development of Sustainable Competencies in Basic Teacher Training in Spain" Sustainability 7, no. 3: 2603-2622. https://doi.org/10.3390/su7032603