The conference theme of epistemology and methodology suggests an interest in epistemological issues in environmental education research. I have argued previously that for too long there seemed to be a blindness in environmental education research: that there was an unwarranted assumption that all research in environmental education was and should be conducted within an applied science conceptual framework that did not recognise nor problematise the epistemological assumptions of research. In this paper I intend to address the issue of epistemological coherence between the substantive subject matters of environmental education on the one hand and research, methodology on the other. The paper will draw upon two recent international environmental education projects to explore issues concerning the nature, status and role of research in environmental education. A number of features of community-based environment development projects in two different settings will be described, illustrating the complexity and contextuality of environmental issues as subject matters for environmental education. The implications for research that seeks to acknowledge and respect relationships within community contexts will be considered in relation to the following questions: Whose research agenda? The importance of project partnerships Participants' preconceptions about the nature of research. What is 'rigor' in participatory research in environmental education'?
Field of Research
130212 Science, Technology and Engineering Curriculum and Pedagogy
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