Compass Education Level 2: Applied Systems Thinking

Course Description

During this course, participants explore the challenges and means of integrating sustainability values, principles and practice into education. Specifically, existing curriculum and school culture. Special emphasis is placed on the use of systems thinking to enhance teaching and student learning. Systems thinking tools and methods are demonstrated and participants will have the opportunity to explore practical applications within their own subject disciplines and as agents of change for school transformation.

The aim of the course is for participants to leave with a deeper understanding of sustainability and its alignment with the goals of education and existing curriculum requirements.The aim of the course is for participants to leave with a deeper understanding of sustainability, a greater awareness of their own systems contexts, skill in using systems thinking tools and the ability to successfully incorporate and align sustainability with existing curriculum.

Course participants gain a greater awareness of their own systems context and construct a personal systems action plan to leverage their sphere of influence for positive change in their school.

This course certifies the participant as a Compass Education level 2: Compass Practitioner.

Enduring Understanding

Deepening understanding of systems and sustainability theory enables educators to innovate/enhance/transform their teaching practice and understand themselves in their own system context(s).

Prerequisite 

Before taking this course participants need to be provide evidence of having completed coursework and requirements for Compass Education Level 1: Sustainability & Systems Thinking.

Compass Educator Certification

To be recognized/certified as a Level 2 Compass Educator, we invite workshop participants to:

  • In addition to the Sustainability Compass, Integrate at least one of the systems thinking tools ( Ladder of Inference, Behavior Over Time Graphs, Systems Mapping/Causal Loop Diagrams, and/or the Systems Iceberg) into a unit, lesson, or school program.
  • Share your work with fellow Compass Educators. Some useful documentation should include plans, teacher-created materials, and examples of student work. This could come in the form of a teacher-produced video, presentation or other forms.
  • Personal Action Plan – Finish your personal action plans started in the workshop and submit to Laurence Myers ([email protected]) Mike Johnston ([email protected]) and Robert Steele ([email protected]) when it is complete. We both will give you some feedback on these plans so that they can quickly go into action for school and/or community sustainability improvement.

Once we have all of these pieces, you will be certified as a Level 2 Compass Educator.  What this means is that you are qualified to represent Compass Education as a trainer and workshop leader.  Essentially, we would like you to be part of our Compass Education team and to help us diffuse sustainability and systems thinking throughout education, especially in your schools and those schools you have influence with.

Any questions about the tasks can be directed to Robert Steele ([email protected]

Learning Outcomes

As a result of taking this course, participants will participate in interactive learning that will instruct on how to:

  1.  Explain and interpret the sustainability paradigm challenge humanity faces from a systems thinking perspective.
  2. Describe the challenges of teaching for global citizenship and sustainability; identify best practice examples for effectively integrating sustainability education into schools; conduct a sustainability assessment of their own school and identify opportunities and points leverage for improving on teaching for a sustainable future.
  3. Demonstrate effective use of more sophisticated application of systems thinking tools and methods to enhance learning within the curriculum.
  4. Analyze, evaluate and assess their own personal context and sphere of influence within their school and outside education-related network towards contributing to system transformation in alignment with sustainability education goals.
  5.  Construct a personal action plan using a systems thinking approach, based on their sphere of influence analysis and assessment, towards effectively supporting sustainability within their school and in their education networks.

Required Reading

Instructor Feedback and Assessment

This course is assessed on a pass/fail basis. In order gain Compass Education level 2 certification it is necessary to complete all activities to a level 3 standard as defined by the rubric in your course workbook. The course instructor will provide comments (in the form of clarifying and probing questions) and a completion score after each lesson.

Instructors

Lessons

Lesson 1 (Level 2): Trends in Sustainability (Preview)

Length: 6 minutesAuthor: Laurence Myers

In this lesson participants will focus on the sustainability paradigm challenge that humanity as a whole faces by analyzing why our societies continue on an unsustainable development path.

In this lesson participants will focus on the sustainability paradigm challenge that humanity as a whole faces by analyzing why our societies continue on an unsustainable development path.

Lesson 8: Assessing Current Systems (Preview)

Length: 4 minutesAuthor: Laurence Myers

In lesson eight, participants will first consider several arguments and proposals for reorienting education for sustainability. They will then research and document examples of “good practice” within schools.

In lesson eight, participants will first consider several arguments and proposals for reorienting education for sustainability. They will then research and document examples of “good practice” within schools.

Lesson 9: Systems Thinking Sustainability and the Curriculum (Preview)

Length: 4 minutesAuthor: Laurence Myers

This lesson has course participants practice using various systems thinking tools and methods within the context of K-12 international curriculum through a sequence of exercises.

This lesson has course participants practice using various systems thinking tools and methods within the context of K-12 international curriculum through a sequence of exercises.

Lesson 10: Leveraging Your Sphere of Influence (Preview)

Length: 4 minutesAuthor: Laurence Myers

In this lesson participants are introduced to the theories and ideas behind cultural change and innovation diffusion and will apply creative tools and methods in scoping, analyzing, and mapping their own sphere of influence within their school and outside professional networks.

In this lesson participants are introduced to the theories and ideas behind cultural change and innovation diffusion and will apply creative tools and methods in scoping, analyzing, and mapping their own sphere of influence within their school and outside professional networks.

Lesson 11: Theory of Change (Preview)

Length: 2 minutesAuthor: Laurence Myers

The aim of this lesson is for participants to apply what they have learned about sustainability dispositions, the Compass and systems thinking tools in their own educational context. The unit/lesson that is developed will be summatively assessed.

The aim of this lesson is for participants to apply what they have learned about sustainability dispositions, the Compass and systems thinking tools in their own educational context. The unit/lesson that is developed will be summatively assessed.

Level 2: Final Submission (Preview)

Length: 3 minutesAuthor: Laurence Myers

Participants are required to incorporate at least 3 of the systems thinking tools that they have learned into curricular subject lessons and submit their lesson plans along with evaluative reflection their use in achieving their lesson outcomes.

Participants are required to incorporate at least 3 of the systems thinking tools that they have learned into curricular subject lessons and submit their lesson plans along with evaluative reflection their use in achieving their lesson outcomes.