A Critical Conceptualization of Place-Conscious Pedagogy

Darron Kelly, Sharon Pelech


A critical conceptualization of place-conscious pedagogy follows the tradition of place-based education in its use of the local community and environment as focal points for teaching and learning. As a critical perspective, however, place-conscious pedagogy ventures beyond connecting curriculum to place to improve student outcomes. Its critical aim, rather, is to enhance student agency for self-determination as an emancipatory and transformative pedagogy. The pedagogical premise is that students who participate in understanding and shaping the world around them learn to recognize and act upon their capacity as agents of personal and social change. Place-conscious pedagogy further advocates for a critical sense of place consciousness that trusts in classroom teachers to set the ethical direction for their initiatives. This is consistent with acknowledging both the critical and contextual awareness of teachers in the field. Finally, place-conscious pedagogy takes seriously the degree to which formal education systems structure and constrain the work of teachers. By focusing on pedagogy as the area where teachers exercise the most control, place-conscious pedagogy offers a feasible and immediate means of tapping the transformative potential of current education systems.

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Euro-JCS is indexed in CAPES/QUALIS (Category: Education |  Classification: B3)

ISSN: 2182-7168



Associação Portuguesa de Estudos Curriculares (NIPC: 506240061)

Instituto de Educação da Universidade do Minho, Campus de Gualtar, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal

The journal is associated with the European Association of Curriculum Studies.