Teachers planintg Teacher candidates planting a learning garden.

About ESE-TE

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This website is the digital home of the ESE-TE Standing Committee of the Canadian Network for Environmental Education and Communication, (EECOM). The ESE-TE Committee is dedicated to advancing and supporting the development of high quality Environmental & Sustainability Education (ESE) in Teacher Education (TE) in Canada through research, policy, and professional development.

The ESE-TE Standing Committee is working in four strategic directions: raising awareness of ESE-TE; deepening knowledge and understanding about ESE-TE; developing supports and resources for ESE-TE; and recommending policy in ESE-TE. These directions aim to engage those involved in teacher education to better support a cultural shift of Canadians towards more sustainable forms of living. This is a work in progress, and viewers are invited to send in resources, research, and other information to make it stronger repository of work in this field.

About Environmental & Sustainability Education

This project has purposefully chosen the term ‘Environmental and Sustainability Education' (ESE) as a way to reference the multiple traditions of environmental learning that happen at all levels of education: environmental education; education for sustainable development; nature-based learning; outdoor & experiential education; place-based education, eco-justice education; éducation relative à l'environnement et au développement durable; Indigenous education; education for sustainability; humane education; and sustainability for wellbeing. This signals a desire to honour the contributions of the multiple theoretical positions and voices that inform ESE in teacher education in this critical work.

The ESE-TE Standing Committee of EECOM

Hilary Inwood, Co-Chair
Lecturer, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto
Hilary leads OISE’s ESE Initiative, and teaches courses in art education, environmental education, teaching methods, and qualitative research methods. Her research focuses on the professional development of teachers in relation to ESE, and on arts-based approaches to developing environmental literacy in school and community settings.

Doug Karrow, Co-Chair
Assoc. Professor, Faculty of Education, Brock University
Douglas specializes in science and environmental education; in addition to teaching pre-service and graduate education courses, his research interests centre on school-based environmental education, place-based education, ontological education, and ecophenomenology.

Patrick Howard, Secretary
Assoc. Professor of Education, School of Professional Studies, Cape Breton University

Patrick's dissertation explored the intersections between language arts theory and practice and ecological literacy. He spent over twenty years in middle and high school English Language Arts classrooms in rural Newfoundland and Labrador. His wide-ranging research interests include phenomenological inquiry, English education, education for sustainable development, literacy theory and practice in the K-12 school, eco-criticism, and place-based learning.

Paul Elliott, Liaison & Board Member, EECOM
Professor, School of Education & Professional Learning,Trent University
Paul teaches pre-service and M.Ed. courses in science education and environmental education. He coordinates an Eco-Mentor Program for teacher candidates in collaboration with colleagues from Camp Kawartha in Peterborough. Paul’s research interests have been wide-ranging with topics as diverse as insect ecology, bat conservation, biodiversity education, and scientific literacy.

Nicole Bell
Asst. Professor, School of Education & Professional Learning, Trent University
Nicole's research areas include Indigenous culture-based education, infusion of Indigenous knowledge into public schooling and teacher education, decolonization and healing, and Indigenous research theory and methodology. She is Anishnaabe (Bear Clan) from Kitigan Zibi First Nation in Quebec, the mother of five boys, and is passionate about Indigenous education, motivated by her educational experiences personally and as a mother.

Maurice DiGuiseppe
Interim Dean, Faculty of Education, University of Ontario Institute of Technology Maurice's research focuses on teacher professional development, environmental education, school gardens, scientific inquiry, and the development of digital learning resources in secondary and post-secondary education. Maurice has authored and/or collaborated in the development of a number of science and environmental science textbooks and learning resources.

Yovita Gwekwerere
Asst. Professor, School of Education, Laurentian University

Yovita teaches pre-service Science and Technology courses. She is passionate about teaching science and is dedicated to preparing future teachers who have an understanding of science and its application to technology and the environment. Yovita holds a cross-appointment in the School of the Environment, where she teaches Environmental Education and Introduction to Environmental Studies courses.

Debra Harwood
Assoc. Professor, Faculty of Education, Brock University
Debra teaches inquiry science and outdoor courses in the Early Childhood Education undergraduate and Master’s program at Brock University. Her research interests include nature pedagogies and outdoor programs, specifically examining the intra-actions of children, educators, and matter.

Rick Kool
Assoc. Professor, Environment and Sustainability, University of Royal Roads

Rick is founder of the MA in Environmental Education & Communication at RRU. He has published on the walking speed of dinosaurs, Northwest coast native whaling, museum exhibit design, ciliated protozoan development, and the sex life of marine invertebrates. His current work relates to environmental education and how it confronts hope and despair, the potential role and place of religion in environmental education, and conceptions of change in environmental education and communication.

Janet McVittie
Asst. Professor, College of Education, University of Saskatchewan

In addition to being a member of the Department of Educational Foundations, Janet is also an associate member of the Sustainability Education Research Institute at the university, located in Saskatoon.  She teaches undergraduate courses in anti-oppressive education and pedagogies of place. Her research and graduate teaching focus on sustainability, and place-based education.

Garth Pickard
Professor Emeritus, Faculty of Education, University of Regina

In addition to being a Professor Emeritus, Garth is currently a Research Associate with its Institute of Energy, Environment, and Sustainable Communities.  He is affiliated with the UNESCO International Network for Re-orienting Teacher Education towards Sustainability and the United Nations University Regional Centre of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development. His research interests include Education for Sustainability and its implications for the preparation of pre-service teachers; the integral nature of sustaining well-being; and ESD and its implications for sustainable communities.

Patrick Robertson
Patrick is a teacher educator and consultant working collaboratively with a wide range of partners and clients in BC and across Canada. He teaches in the Faculty of Education at the University of British Columbia and is a Fellow in the University Sustainability Initiative at UBC conducting research on sustainability learning pathways in teacher education.

Lucie Sauvé
Professor, Département de didactique, Université du Québec à Montréal

Lucie's teaching and research interests include education on environmental and eco-citizenship, environmental health education, and education for sustainable development.

Pam Schwartzberg
President and CEO, Learning for a Sustainable Future
Pamela has over 30 years of progressive experience in strategic planning, policy development, project management, research, and writing. She served as Ontario Program Director for LSF, coordinating research, policy development, teacher training, and curriculum materials development. As of 2002, Pamela has served as National Executive Director of LSF. Pamela has a MA in Environmental Studies from York University.

Laura Sims
Assoc. Professor, Faculty of Education, Université de Saint-Boniface

Laura specializes in education for sustainability and community-based assessment processes. Laura taught high school for 10 years in Winnipeg and in the Dominican Republic. She has also managed a Canadian International Development Agency environmental project in Central America.

Rob VanWynsberghe
Associate Professor, Dept. of Educational Studies, UBC

Rob has a PhD in Sociology, and his research expertise is in sustainability and the related areas of social movements and capacity building.

Erin Sperling
Program Coordinator

Erin is an instructor for science and environmental education courses at the Faculties of Education at Brock University, as well as the Early Childhood Education program at Ryerson University. She is finishing her doctoral work at OISE, University of Toronto in food justice education.


We are deeply appreciative of the funders who have supported this work.

TD Friends of the Environment Foundation 

Dearness Environmental Society

School of Education and Professional Learning, Trent University

OISE, University of Toronto

School of Education, Trent University

Faculty of Education, Brock University