The Anthropocene Learning Lab (ALL) is an interdisciplinary research group that promotes research-based learning on the Anthropocene and the global transformation towards a sustainable planet. We are specifically working on connecting sustainability and science education as education can play a major role in better understanding the challenges that societies face when seeking to act within the planetary boundaries. Our work focuses on the interdependencies of science learning and sustainability science with a special content focus on issues and challenges of the age of mankind.
The Anthropocene Learning Lab’s goals and approaches are:
- Learning in the Anthropocene goes far beyond academic curricula. We cooperate with academic and non-academic stakeholders equally.
- A sustainable society not only thinks sustainably but also acts sustainably. We acknowledge that people’s actions are only partly influenced by explicit knowledge but even stronger by conceptions and cognitive frames. We work on ways of integrating implicit aspects of understanding and decision making like embodied cognition to improve science and sustainability education.
- Our work is application-oriented research. Not only analysing but also conceptualising and actively using our roles as researchers and responsible citizens helps improving educational interventions. We analyse educational processes in detail and aim to achieve the implementation of our interventions in educational practice and to formatively assess them.
Our group is assembled of educational experts from various professional backgrounds. We work with different theoretical and methodological approaches like analysing laypeople’s and experts’ conceptions of science and sustainability, cognitive metaphor and frame theory, educational reconstruction (MER), embodied cognition and qualitative case studies.
These approaches help to conduct research on various topics to develop educational interventions for a sustainable future. The topics are e.g. climate change, the German energy transition, “Degrowth Education”, Nature of Science (NoS), unconscious judging and decision making processes about Socio-Scientific Issues (SSI) – just to name a few.
By acknowledging the challenges of the Anthropocene as one of the major tasks of our time, we dedicate our work to achieving a high quality in teaching and learning sustainability and science. With the Anthropocene Learning Lab we want to institutionalize the search for the answers on the questions raised above in the field of both academic and non-academic education. We are looking forward to collaborative exchange with practitioners and researchers.