An International Study of Chinese Language Teachers’ Motivation in Education for Sustainable Development

Conference: The Asian Conference on Education (ACE2021)
Title: An International Study of Chinese Language Teachers’ Motivation in Education for Sustainable Development
Stream: Education, Sustainability & Society: Social Justice, Development & Political Movements
Presentation Type: Live-Stream Presentation
Ching Ting Tany Kwee, University of New South Wales, Australia
Luis Miguel Dos Santos, Woosong University, South Korea


The recent COVID-19 pandemic has drastically impacted the teaching and learning among school pupils, as well as the process of attaining the targets of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2030. Education for Sustainable development (ESD) has been perceived as a way to equip pupils with knowledge and skills to pertain a more sustainable and equitable future by enlightening students with attitudinal and behavioural changes. Unfortunately, previous studies indicated that language teachers generally were passive and not motivated in ESD. Noticing that interdisciplinary effort and teachers’ enthusiasm are the pillars to the successful implementation of ESD, a further discussion on ways to motivate them is necessary. This qualitative study aimed at identifying personal and contextual factors of influencing Chinese language teachers’ motivations in ESD with the guidance of the Social Cognitive Career Theory (SCCT). Adopting the Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA), the researchers interviewed 10 Chinese language teachers from five countries to examine their teaching experiences, motivation and the mental representation of their decision-making process of implementing ESD. The findings showed that Chinese language teachers’ self-efficacy and motivation develops due to their personal beliefs on sustainable development and Chinese cultures, coupled with job satisfaction due to teaching goal attainment and fulfilment of teachers’ responsibilities. Such findings are insightful for the education policymakers, universities and other institutions to provide better supports to boost Chinese language teachers’ self-efficacy so as to motivate them to incorporate ESD in future.

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