Problems with Global Education: Conceptual Contradictions


  • J. Melanie Young Simon Fraser University and Douglas College



Global education is concerned with social justice and student empowerment. However, an understanding of the word global as merely international and/or intercultural may fail to challenge existing mechanistic and compartmentalized views of knowledge and curriculum. Such a global education limits students’ agency and reproduces the very systems it intends to challenge. A holistic understanding of the word global allows for a relational or systems view of the world, mindful of the complex, multiple, and dynamic nature of living systems. It situates the students and their studies in the world and thus offers greater possibilities for action.

Author Biography

J. Melanie Young, Simon Fraser University and Douglas College

Melanie Young is currently conducting research on the barriers that teachers face in enacting a global education in their practice. She is also an instructor.