Keywords: sustainability, pedagogy for sustainability, persistence, systems thinking, cognitive development, education for sustainable development, agriculture, rural development, Australia, USA, United States, graduate courses
Pedagogies for persistence: cognitive challenges and collective competency development
Education for sustainability is a challenge that is being met in many different innovative ways under many different circumstances in many different parts of the world. In this paper, the author draws on his personal experiences with radical systemic pedagogies within a context of agriculture and rural development appropriate to an emergent Era of Persistence in Australia, to design and conduct a graduate course in the USA that linked sustainability with systems thinking. The organising framework for the short duration, single unit course exploited the integration of five characters of sustainability that the author claims were appropriate both to the context and to the particular circumstances: cognition, complexity, contestation, contingency and collectivity.