Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


College of Education and Human Services


Educational Foundations

Thesis Sponsor/Dissertation Chair/Project Chair

Kathryn Herr

Committee Member

David Keiser

Committee Member

Jeremy Price


This study explored the pedagogical lessons I learned as a global citizenship teacher-facilitator while attempting to cultivate global citizenship identity and practice among middle school youth within the context of a “global citizenship community” and its “action-learning initiative” to educate their local community and raise funds to sponsor construction of a high school in Ethiopia. As necessary background to this study, I introduce my conception of global citizenship and its practice, provide an extensive elaboration of those “global citizenship dispositions” that constitute my global ethic, and critique traditional service-learning methodology and terminology as a means of introducing my reconception of service-learning as “global citizenship action-learning.” This study employed practitioner action research through the use of critical incidents methodology to explore the evolution of this process. Specifically, I applied two “probing questions” to analyze six self-selected “critical incidents” that served as markers of conflict and growth in the evolution of my teacher-students relationship toward an increasing emphasis on nurturing my students’ awareness of global citizenship dispositions, as well as youth voice and empowerment regarding all aspects of our shared initiative. This research methodology spurred me to recognize and address teacherstudents power inequity within our global citizenship culture and to transform my pedagogical priorities to place consummate importance on developing relations of reciprocity, transparency, and partnership. Further, this evolving emphasis on the nurturance of an equitable teacher-students relationship spurred me to recognize the ethical, social, and political necessity of cultivating comparable relations of mutuality and empowerment between our teacher-students global citizenship community and our community-based action-learning partners in Ethiopia. Ultimately, this study strongly supports the notion that it is through acknowledgement of and relations of solidarity with the “face” and “call” of the “suffering/struggling/resisting” other—a global citizenship disposition I call “intersubjective ethical relations”—that one acquires the ethical/social/political sensibilities to become a true “global citizenship practitioner.”

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