Social ecology and creative pedagogy: using creative arts and critical thinking in co-creating and sustaining ecological learning webs in university pedagogies


  • Catherine Camden Pratt University of Western Sydney, NSW Australia



inclusive education, pedagogy, tertiary education, environmental education


In this article I write to know and begin a conversation about how to co-create and sustain ecological learning webs in tertiary pedagogies. It is positioned in applied social ecology using creative arts, critical thinking - including critical autobiography - as pedagogical approaches in a 100 Level undergraduate unit Learning and Creativity at the University of Western Sydney. The article gives examples of and explores specific experiential based pedagogical approaches with an exploration of the relevant theory along with student feedback on the pedagogies discussed. Praxis using creative arts and critical thinking provides a model for critical sustainable engaged tertiary pedagogies. Being positioned within a social ecology mapping of the inter-relationship between the personal, the social/political/cultural; the environment and the spiritual enables students to learn in a holistic and response-able manner and places them at the centre of their learning. Writing to know illuminated how working in the ways I do simultaneously allows me as teacher to participate as a learner and in doing so, sustain my teaching. Be-ing teacher/learner inside do-ing teaching/learning is a way of approaching the tertiary pedagogical site that facilitates and models sustainability through building an ecological web of relationships that opens opportunities for student and teacher transformation.

Author Biography

Catherine Camden Pratt, University of Western Sydney, NSW Australia

Lecturer in Social Ecology, Scool of Education, University of Western Sydney