Certificate in Global Citizenship Education

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'Global Citizenship Education - Critical Learning for a Better World'

This specialized level-9 programme in GCE (global citizenship education) is designed for educators working with learners at all levels (from early childhood to youth, in adult and community education and in schools). Addressing the major global challenges facing our world, it offers participants a unique learning experience, and training in GCE, shaped by peer reflection and applied learning.


Through the programme, participants will develop their knowledge, understanding and analysis of the global challenges facing our world, making connections between the economic, social, cultural, political and environmental aspects of these challenges. They will also gain the confidence and pedagogical skills to have difficult conversations with learners about issues such as global poverty and inequality, climate change and sustainable development, trade, migration and refugee rights, conflict, populism and racism. Addressing the causes of these complex global challenges, participants will explore responses to them in communities, with young people, in schools and in other adult education settings.

In the programme, participants are supported to reflect critically on their own practice in light of theory on different learning approaches related to GCE. These include development and global education; intercultural, anti-racism and decolonial approaches; community and adult education and global youth work. They will develop the skills to harness their own interest and commitment to global justice and equality and to support learners to deal with complexity while working towards justice and fairness.

The programme is a one-year part time, 20 credit postgraduate one. It runs from October to May and is offered on a hybrid basis, with some evening and Saturday classes on campus at Maynooth University and some online elements. Some scholarships are available for successful applicants – please see further information on our FAQs page. We welcome applications from educators and practitioners in all education sectors.

This 20 credit (ECTS) part-time programme is offered by the Maynooth University Department of International Development with the Departments of Education, Adult and Community Education, Froebel Department of Primary and Early Childhood Education, Applied Social Studies at Maynooth.

The Certificate in Global Citizenship Education

The certificate supports participants to develop their knowledge, understanding, skills and practice in GCE, especially related to critical pedagogy, education leadership, policy and action.
In total, participants take 20 credits involving one compulsory 10 credit module on ‘Contemporary Global Development Challenges, Issues and Responses’ and two 5 credit elective modules delivered by the different departments involved, each of which is designed to address different theory and practical dimensions of practicing GCE with learners. More details on the content of the modules are available here. Assessment is by continuous assessment only.

Modules are timetabled to suit those who are working full-time during regular working hours, i.e., on campus on Saturdays, in the evenings or during holidays, with some online dimensions. Modules involve 24 contact hours with continuous assessment designed to reflect the learning outcomes, credit weighting and reflective nature of the modules. Due to the process and experiential nature of the pedagogies applied in this programme, there is a minimum attendance requirement of 80%.

The programme is designed to support the realisation of, and critical engagement with the Sustainable Development Goals, especially Goal 4.7 -  “by 2030 ensure all learners acquire knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including among others through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship, and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development”.

 Find out about Elaine and Cliodhna's experience of the programme at the 'student experience' tab below.