Five Reasons Why Global Competence Matters
Global competence is the toolkit a productive, involved citizenry uses to meet the problems and opportunities of the world.
In the curriculum, global competence challenges students to investigate the world, consider a variety of perspectives, communicate ideas, and take meaningful action. A globally focused curriculum engages students in their own learning and motivates them to strive for knowledge and understanding. And a curious, inspired student strives to learn more in school and beyond.
A new generation of students requires different skills from the generations that came before.
The world is changing fast. Boundaries—literal as well as figurative— are shifting and even disappearing altogether. The culture that once lived halfway around the world now lives just down the block. The ability to thrive in this new and rapidly changing environment is grounded in a globally focused curriculum.
More than ever before, individual actions reach around the globe.
Environmental concerns, economic shifts, global poverty, population growth, human rights, and political conflict can seem intractable and overwhelming, yet they absolutely require thoughtful action. In a globally focused curriculum, students learn that the world needs them to act, and that they can make a difference.
Global competence integrates knowledge of the world and the skill of application with the disposition to think and behave productively.
Global competence is not restricted to knowing about other cultures and other perspectives. In addition to knowledge of the world, a globally competent citizen exhibits habits like critical thinking, rational optimism, innovation, empathy, and awareness of the influences of culture on individual behavior and world events.
Success in career and life will depend on global competence, because career and life will play out on the global stage.
Already, government, business, and cultural institutions are called to solve the world’s problems cooperatively. Engaging in these challenges requires high-order knowledge and thinking skill, as well as shared language and cultural understanding. In a globally focused curriculum, students prepare to approach problems from multiple perspectives and to thrive in a global future.
Ready to Put More Global Competence In Your Curriculum? Start here!
- Download and read a free copy of the book Educating for Global Competence: Preparing Our Youth to Engage the World, by Veronica Boix Mansilla (Harvard School of Education) and Anthony Jackson (Asia Society's Vice President for Education).
- Get the free Global Leadership GPS Performance Outcomes, Rubrics, and I Can Statements for grades 3, 5, 8, 10, and 12 (linked)
- GPS Performance Outcomes, Rubrics, and I Can Statements are available in leadership, world languages, mathematics, the sciences, the arts, history and social studies, and English language arts for grades 3, 5, 8, 10, and 12 through ISSN membership.
- Contact Kate Farmer ([email protected]) and ask about our range of school support services for global competence initiatives, including affordable, on-site one-day professional development workshops and membership in the International Studies Schools Network.