Korea Polytechnic University
Renouncing “Global Citizenship”: Seeking More Personal Ways of Motivating Students In Korea, the concept of “global citizenship” is being used to motivate students who are studying within a broad spectrum of educational institutions: from kindergarten to university, at schools both private and public. However, research has shown that global-citizenship education in Korea, as well as other countries, may not actually achieve the goal of motivating students to study. In global-citizenship curricula, students are encouraged to become “productive, self-employable, and competitive beings addressing the demands of national economic growth and competition in a global marketplace” (Choi & Kim, 2018). Yet, young Koreans increasingly say that they hope to escape what they refer to as the “unending competition” of life in modern Korea (Yon, 2016). Therefore, as long as global-citizenship education focuses on economic competition, it will not serve the purpose of motivating all students. Even for those students who might be amenable to using education to prepare themselves for economic competition, the concept of global citizenship provides extrinsic, instrumental motivation. That combination of motivations is hard to sustain; learners may easily become frustrated or feel that they are not in control. In this dialogue session, we will continue to consider the potential problems of using global citizenship as an engine of motivation for our students. We will also explore different ways to motivate our students. Ultimately, we will look for ways to help our students to cultivate their own unique, English-language identities within a global context without prioritizing economic competition over personal development. Works Cited Choi, Yoonjung, & Kim, Yeji. (2018). Deconstructing neoliberalism in global citizenship discourses: an analysis of Korean social studies textbooks. Critical Studies in Education, DOI: 10.1080/17508487.2018.1501718 Hwangbo, Yon. (2016). Young people increasingly looking to escape Korea for a life abroad. Hankyoreh, http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_national/724607.html
Blake Brunner has taught English and international relations at Korea Polytechnic University since 2016. From 2010 to 2015, he taught in high schools in Daegu. He has also taught in Vietnam and Syria. He has Cambridge CELTA and Delta certifications, as well as a master’s degree in international relations. His research interests include motivation in monolingual classes, ELT policy in Korea and the role of the mass media in international relations.