From 25th to 29th of March 2018 Annual Conference of Comparative International Education Society took place in Mexico City. This years annual conference was a great success with a week of presentations, lectures, sessions and cultural events. The 2018 conference theme was “Re-Mapping Global Education: South-North Dialogue” with an aim of reflecting on the divisions between developed and developing nations and in encouraging the shift in the traditional starting point of research toward the global South (education). Around 3000 researchers and practitioners from 114 different countries took part in this exchange of research ideas and findings, as well as practitioners’ experiences in the field of education.
Research team of EuroClio and CDRSEE ePACt project (Education Partnership for Advocacy, Capacity Building and Transformation), Dea Maric (University of Zagreb) and Rodoljub Jovanovic (Uiversity of Deusto, Bilbao) were invited to present the findings of the Needs Assessment of History Education in the Western Balkans. As part of the conference panel The Role of Teachers in Shaping Educational Experiences in (Post) Conflict Settings, they gave the presentation under the title Controversy in The Classroom. How do history teachers in Western Balkans approach sensitive and controversial topics? Presenters and guests engaged in a lively discussion on academic and policy relevance of the findings as well as their potential for further synergetic work of researchers, policy makers and practitioners on innovating History Education in Western Balkans and beyond.
Conference participation of the research team was financially supported by Open Society Foundations.
EuroClio is very happy to announce the publication of the new research report “Teachers on Teaching; How Practitioners See the Current State and Future Developments in History Education Across the Western Balkans”. The report – produced in collaboration with CDRSEE and History Teachers Associations from the Western Balkan – is being launched today in Brussels, at the House of European History.
This new research report is written in the context of the EuroClio project ePACT – Education Partnership for Advocacy, Capacity-Building and Transformation – which aims to promote a more democratic education system in the Western Balkans through reform of the formal schooling system. The project and the report deal with trying to answer questions on how to navigate teaching history in a post-conflict space. As stated in the editorial introduction to the report: “There is a visible difficulty for the established public and political cultures to refrain from using historical interpretations and concepts as divisive tools, or worse – using history as a weapon”, and the project aims to discourage the use of history in a divisive way, instead looking to promote teaching history in a way that fosters critical thinking and active and responsible citizenship. With this aim in mind, the report takes the discussion directly to educators working in the field, assessing their views and suggestions on how to appropriately promote competence-based and learner-focused learning that facilitates inclusive and democratic history education in the region. It introduces questions such as:
- how do teachers approach curricular expectations that are dictated by state bodies?
- in what ways do they use the teaching materials prescribed by the educational authorities, and how would they like to change these materials?
- how do different elements of their societal context determine the ways they deal with difficult topics in their classroom?
- Has the history teaching paradigm shifted from lecture-dominant to learner-oriented and has pedagogy shifted from one narrative transmission to narrative analysis?
Furthermore, the report looks into the fundamental question of the result of international initiatives aimed at history education. Given the fact that in the Western Balkan region there have been many international interventions in the field of history teaching, what has been the effect?
This large-scale mixed-method study seeks to outline the answers to these questions, together with history teaching experts and practitioners from the region, and aims to give an insight into needs of history teachers.
You can read the report in full here. At the moment, it is only available in English, but will be translated to Albanian, Bosnian, Croatian, Macedonian, Montenegrin and Serbian.
Around 350 history educators and policy makers participated between October and December 2016 in six national training events in Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia. Researchers Dea Marić and Rodoljub Jovanović led world café sessions and conducted focus groups as a next step in the EuroClio/CDRSEE project ‘ePACT – Education Partnership for Advocacy, Capacity-Building and Transformation’. In these sessions, the participants discussed the elements of the survey for the Needs Assessment, looking specifically from the local (national) context. The national seminars were great opportunties for history teachers associations to re-position themselves toward all the ongoing reform processes and discussion issues of internal governance and leadership.
More information about the ePACT project can be found on the project page:
[PARTNER] ePACT: Education Partnership for Advocacy, Capacity-Building and Transformation
The Education Partnership for Advocacy, Capacity-Building and Transformation (ePACT) is an initiative of two civil society organizations with a proven track record in the field of education. EuroClio – and CDRSEE – Centre for Democracy and Reconciliation in South East Europe have worked for over 20 years in the region, providing opportunities for regional cooperation and promoting innovative and responsible history education. The initiative seeks to build on these experiences by building sustainable partnerships in the region for systemic change in education. Practitioners and policy makers benefit from intensified relation and cooperation as it strengthens capacity for both reform and implementation. The project strives to achieve that education authorities and civil society jointly reform education and schools in the region to enhance critical thinking and active citizenship.
The project moves forward with a National Event in Tirana.
Read the latest report here.
Within the Education Partnership for Advocacy, Capacity-Building and Transformation (ePACT) project, 6 national Peer-Training events will be organised in close cooperation with our 6 local partners in the Western Balkans. To prepare for these meetings, the national coordinators together joined forces with additional members from the associations for a Preparatory Meeting integrated in the second Regional Summer School in Lovćen, Montenegro from 12-17 July 2016. The coordinators discussed the timeline and planning of the upcoming national events that are designed to get valuable feedback to the Regional Needs Assessment that is planned within the ePACT project, on a national level. The survey for the Needs Assessment is planned to be disseminated in early 2017 and already received feedback from regional experts during the first Standing Working Group meeting on History Education in Vienna (June, 2016). Now project researchers Dea Marić and Rodoljub Jovanović hosted another feedback session to the survey during the summer school.
Download the public report by clicking this link: Report Preparatory Meeting National Peer-training Events ePACT