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DE Projects

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DE Projects 2013-14

The Ubuntu Network provides financial and administrative support for Development Education (DE) projects delivered within member institutions. In 2013-14, the Ubuntu Network is funding seven projects on Professional Diploma in Education (PDE) programmes as pilot projects for integrating DE into the new 2-year Professional Masters of Education (PME), to be offered for the first time in Sept 2014.

Click the name of each institution below for more details:

  • DCU
  • NCAD
  • NUIG
  • NUIM
  • TCD
  • UCC
  • UL

School of Education Studies,
Dublin City University,
Dublin 9.

Programme: Professional Diploma in Education (PDE) - both full-time and part-time
Number of Students: 160
Project Leader: Dr Majella McSharry
Also involved in delivering the project: Dr James O’Higgins Norman

Project Components:

  • Capacity building with Subject Methods' lecturers:

    Integration of DE into the PDE commenced in DCU in 2012-13 with the introduction of Subject Methods' lecturers to the basic principles of DE. The focus of this project is further capacity building and training for Subject Methods' lecturers. DCU employs 12 Subject Methods' lecturers, 9 of whom are employed on part-time contracts and are external to DCU. In order to fully embed DE across all subject specialisms, this project will facilitate Subject Methods' lecturers in attending one DE training day during 2013-14. This training will be delivered by the project leaders along with representatives from NGOs. The training day will involve time spent in break-out groups where Subject Methods' lecturers can develop lesson templates for integrating DE within specific topics in their own subject areas. This training and capacity building during 2013-14 will prepare for the embedding of DE within student teachers' PDE experience in a meaningful and sustainable way in subsequent years.

Faculty of Education,
National College of Art and Design,
100 Thomas Street,
Dublin 8.

Programme: Professional Diploma in Education (Art and Design)
Number of Students: 25
Project Leader: Tony Murphy, Fiona King
Also involved in delivering the project: AFRI Action from Ireland

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Photos © Tony Murphy, NCAD

The core aim of the DE intervention is to facilitate student art teachers to effectively embed DE concepts and themes into their teaching practice through the lens of Art Craft and Design education. In doing so, they will facilitate their post-primary pupils in the exploration of a range of social justice, human rights and environmental themes through a creative and visual process.

Project Components:

  • DE Project: Introduction (Semester 1)

    In semester 1, through the umbrella theme of ‘Who we are is not our circumstance’, student art teachers interrogated human rights, social justice and environmental themes from both a local and global standpoint, framed within the context of DE. A project brief was disseminated to students prior to the intervention with an accompanying image bank of artists and photographers, whose work explores DE themes through the lens of their practice. The imagery acted as a starting point to demonstrate to student art teachers how artists interrogate issue based content and present art a significant social commentator to encourage collective and individual voices in a call to action.

    The initial stage of the project included an NGO input from Afri, who brought use of the arts (drama, music, visual art, literature) as well as other creative facilitation tools/methodologies and participatory activities. The input facilitated student art teachers to conceptualise DE in terms of the extensive content it covers and to make connections with development issues from both a local and global level. This worked in tandem with a methodology session for student art teachers to identify the pedagogical approach that defines the delivery of DE as an educational process and philosophy.

  • DE Project: Development (Semester 1)

    A series of practical art workshops, facilitated through active learning methodologies, enabled student art teachers to build on their technical proficiency in a range of art related disciplines. The workshops enabled them to explore creative approaches to delivering DE content in the classroom. The cohort was structured into groups to facilitate peer learning and a collective voice that is fundamental to the ethos that underpins the intervention. Methodology sessions were interwoven throughout the engagement in order to enable student art teachers to transfer the knowledge and experience gained through the workshops to devise and implement a DE led scheme for their teaching practice.

  • Assignment Outcomes:

    Student art teachers' presented their research process and critical engagement with the DE theme in notebook format (digital or hard copy). The notebook contained a portfolio of work presenting the following:

    • A visual narrative detailing the ideas and concepts that emerged, relevant resources and stimuli to underpin and interrogate the DE themes.
    • Documentation of the design process that student art teachers engaged in to create a collaborative art piece in response to their DE theme.
    • Reference to contemporary art practice and photojournalists that deals with social justice, human rights and environmental themes.
    • A sample of a DE Art Craft and Design scheme that the student art teacher can implement during their teaching practice.

    In addition to the notebook, a final resolved art piece was created by each group. These utilised processes that are directly transferable into the classroom.

  • DE on Teaching Practice (Semester 2)

    In this year's project the emphasis is on transferability, to empower student art teachers to confidently deliver a DE led scheme during their teaching practice while meeting the needs of their subject area of Art Craft and Design. In semester 2, group and individual teaching practice tutorials will be facilitated in order to work with student art teachers who elect to deliver a DE scheme during their teaching practice.

School of Education,
National University of Ireland, Galway,

Programme: Professional Diploma in Education
Number of Students: 316 (258 through English, 58 through Irish)
Project Leader: Dr Mary Fleming, Dr Brenda Gallagher, Dr Manuela Heinz, Mr Sean O’Gradaigh and Dr Elaine Keane (on Sabbatical 2013-2014)

NUI Galway has engaged purposefully to integrate DE into all Initial Teacher Education (ITE) programmes for the past two years. The purpose and aim is to enable our student teachers to develop their critical consciousness on DE, sustainable development and related issues.

Project Components:

  • Introduction to DE:
  • Two introductory lectures will focus solely on the concept, discourse, philosophy and critical issues related to DE in order to raise student teachers’ critical awareness and consciousness on DE and related issues. Lectures in Educational Sciences, Professional Studies and the methodologies will (where practicable and relevant) integrate the concepts, principles and allied strategies of DE into learning outcomes and content. This will involve creating links using DE related concepts to practice and modelling DE related teaching and learning strategies and content.

  • Development Education Day (18th February, 2014):

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    The School of Education, NUI, Galway, hosted its 3rd Development Education Day Conference on Tuesday, February 18th, 2014. The overall aim of the day was to raise awareness among student teachers on concepts such as development, development issues and development education and to foster discussion and debate on how best to integrate such issues into teaching and learning at the secondary school level.

    A number of development education experts, representing a range of development and development education organisations, facilitated interactive workshops for over 300 student teachers and members of staff of the NUIG School of Education. In addition the Galway One World Centre launched its second Irish Aid and EU funded teacher training project, the ‘Global Teacher Award’, at the event.


  • Professional Practice Portfolio:
  • The Catering for Diversity assignment, which is an element of the Professional Development Portfolio, requires students to demonstrate how they have made a lesson more inclusive. Students will have an option to focus on DE – as one of 3 options, along with Special Educational Needs (SEN) and Intercultural Education.

Education Department,
National University of Ireland, Maynooth,
Co. Kildare.

Programme: Professional Diploma in Education
Number of Students: 160
Project Leader: Angela Rickard
Also involved in delivering the project:

  • Second Level Schools:
    • St. Mary’s Academy, Carlow
    • Presentation College, Carlow
    • Coláiste Bhríde, Carnew Co. Wicklow
    • Patrician High School, Carrickmacross, Co. Monaghan
    • St Peter’s Dunboyne, Co. Meath

  • DE Organisations/NGOs (subject to availability):
    • WorldWise Global Schools
    • Trócaire
    • Concern
    • Young Scientist Tanzania/Science for Development
    • Amnesty International
    • Self-Help Africa
    • Debt and Development Coalition Ireland (with NCCA)

Project Components:

  • Introduction to DE:
  • An introductory lecture on DE was given on Thursday, 21st November, at 10am by Dr Gerry Jeffers. In his early career, Gerry spent two years teaching in Kenya, East Africa. This experience and perspective coloured much of his subsequent work as teacher, school leader, national co-ordinator of the support service for Transition Year, author, and, for more than a decade, as a lecturer in the Education Department at NUI Mayooth. This session prepared the student teachers for Dev Ed Week: the overall rationale and programme for the week was presented, as well as an introductory discussion of exemplar work from schools in which DE featured strongly. The introduction was supported by the use of the video entitled Development Education: A Chance for Change.

  • Development Education Week: (26th-28th November 2013)
  • Three days of workshops, activities, dialogue, presentations on development education related issues. The programme as a whole was aimed to enable students to make connections between the various foci of their work throughout the year. For example, active learning was emphasised and linked with on-going modules in methodology and in Teaching Learning and Assessment generally. In addition, at a theoretical or academic level, connections to the themes of social justice, human rights education, inclusion and diversity were highlighted, as were the issues of local and global citizenship as well as the roles and responsibilities teachers have in supporting critical engagement with such themes in schools.

School of Education,
Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences,
Trinity College Dublin,
College Green,
Dublin 2.

Programme: Professional Diploma in Education
Number of Students: 135
Project Leader: Dr Ann Devitt, Dr Paula Flynn
Also involved in delivering the project: Fiona King

Project Components:

The primary aim of the Trinity College Dublin (TCD) DE intervention is to facilitate a sustained focus on embedding DE into subject pedagogies across the current PDE programme. This will run in tandem with a DE Elective module. The DE intervention will encompass a tripartite approach to include the following stages:

  • Stage 1 Conceptualising DE:
  • A dedicated 2-hour CPD workshop with Subject Pedagogy lecturers, facilitated by Fiona King (NCAD) and invited NGO representatives, exploring DE both in terms of its delivery as an educational process and the extensive content it covers.

  • Stage 2 DE Elective:
  • The DE Elective will be comprised of eight 1-hour lectures during the first semester. The Elective will introduce a group of PDE student teachers to the concept of DE and facilitate them to create an innovative pedagogical framework in which to examine DE themes through a specific area of their subject's curriculum content.

  • Stage 3 Peer teaching in PDE sessions:
  • In the second semester, student teachers who have taken the DE Elective will deliver a DE lesson to their peers, which will be deconstructed and analysed amongst the pedagogy cohort. Student teachers will be mentored by their subject pedagogy lecturers and guided by the resources they have created over the duration of the DE elective.

  • Stage 4 Non-compulsory TP visit:
  • Those student teachers who wish to deliver a lesson incorporating DE themes during their school placement will be given the option of a scheduled (non-assessed) Teaching Practice (TP) visit and receive advice and feedback on the lesson from a DE perspective.

School of Education,
Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences,
University College Cork,
O'Donovan's Road,

Programme: Professional Diploma in Education
Number of Students: 220
Project Leader: Dr Paul Conway
Also involved in delivering the project:

  • UCC School of Education staff:
    • Dr Fiachra Long
    • John Mulcahy
    • Tim Regan
    • Dr Siobhan Dowling
    • Charlie Hayes

  • Others:
    • Centre for Global Development (UCC)

Project Components:
This project involves the development of an Introduction to Development Education video resource that can be shared across the Ubuntu Network via the website. The video will focus on UCC PDE students talking about their understandings and experiences of DE.

Dept of Education and Professional Studies,
Faculty of Education and Health Sciences,
University of Limerick,

Programme: Professional Diploma in Education (Maths, Languages, PE, Technology, Music, Business)
Project Leaders: Dr Joanne O'Flaherty, Dr Raymond Lynch

Project Components:

This project involves evaluating the validity and reliability of the Pre-Service Teacher Role Orientation Inventory (PSTROI) as a tool to measure the impact of DE interventions. Once validated, the PSTROI will be used to measure the impact of DE interventions with students on the new 2-year Professional Masters of Education (PME), being offered for the first time in September 2014, with measurements taken at intervals during the PME programme.

Role concept is seen as a dimension of motivation and commitment which influences professional over personal values. Bebeau et al. (1993) investigated the potential of developing an objective measure of a professional's role concept. Four dimensions informed by underlying themes emerged, namely: (1) authority; (2) responsibility; (3) agency; and (4) autonomy.

The aim of this study is to validate the PSTROI, adapted from the work of Bebeau et al. (1993). The PSTROI uses a Likert scale which will have nine items/assumptions with six possible responses, moving from 1, indicating total disagreement to 6, total agreement and will form the first section of a three-part questionnaire. Each adapted item included in the PSTROI has been 'tagged' in order to align with Bebeau et al.'s original components of professional role concept.

Bebeau, M.J., Born, D.O. & Ozar, D.T. (1993) 'The Development of a Professional Role Orientation Inventory', Journal of the American College of Dentists, 60(2), pp. 27-33.