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PhDEnhancing critical thinking and empathy for allowing a thoughtful change in practices towards sustainable and responsible future

Tuition fee FREE
Application fee €100 one-time
More information

tlu.ee/../information-society-technologies 

tlu.ee/..g-phd-school-digital-technologies 

Overview

There is a need to change existing practices for any transformation to occur. Practices do not refer only to bodily habits but also to patterns or habits of thinking. Changing or transforming habits and practices in simple terms is learning per se. Especially with digital transformation seen as a life-long learning endeavour, many value-laden habits need to be re-thought and transformed for considering first the environment and humans as the second. The aim is, in general, called sustainable and responsible design for the future. This focus means that there is a paradigm change in design from user-centric to ecosystem centric. (Heger et al. 2019). In the educational field, transformative learning aims at a change in assumptions and reconsideration on beliefs using critical and reflective thinking drives for a similar responsible future including ideas of inclusion, openness, and empathy (Mezirow, 2009). The need to question the future has emphasized finding new methods such as artistic and activist activities, gamification, learning outside of the institutes for promoting awareness of one’s practices and potential for learning (Corin 2019). One of the aims has been to support such skills as empathy and critical thinking. These have been named as skills or competencies of the future in all levels and places. (Council recommendations 2018). For instance, in the knowledge economy, skills, such as problem-solving, critical thinking, ability to cooperate, creativity, empathy, self-regulation are essential for creating change – a thoughtful change. The same document from commission lists competencies such as an attitude of critical appreciation and curiosity, a concern for ethical issues and support for environmental sustainability, regarding scientific and technological progress concerning global issues. (Council recommendations 2018).

The new methods do not end in learning critical thinking and empathy but require innovative ways of supporting non-formal and informal learning in a person’s everyday life be it inside or outside institutes, be it hobbies, or voluntary work. The skills, competencies, non-formal and informal learning are intertwined aspects. They can be studied from the perspective of how to scaffold change or how-to co-construct new learning potentials for non-formal and informal learning. However, empathy (Zaki and Ochsner 2012), critical thinking (Hitchcock 2018), non-formal and informal learning (Rogers 2014) are difficult concepts, and the understanding of what these could mean for changing and transforming practices is ongoing.

Apply now! Fall semester 2020/21
Application deadline
Jul 1, 2020 23:59:59
Europe/Tallinn time
Studies commence
Aug 24, 2020

Application deadlines apply to citizens of: United States

Apply now! Fall semester 2020/21
Application deadline
Jul 1, 2020 23:59:59
Europe/Tallinn time
Studies commence
Aug 24, 2020

Application deadlines apply to citizens of: United States