The implementation of 'Education for Citizenship' in schools in Scotland: a research report

Elaine Cowan, David C McMurtry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Changes in society and government have increased concerns of low participation and involvement by people, especially the young, in the political process and decision-making. As a result, citizenship has become a focus of recent curriculum developments in many countries. In Scotland, ‘Values and Citizenship’ has been made one of the Scottish Executive's national priorities for education and is linked to the major national initiative, ‘Education for Citizenship’. This is seen as encouraging pupils to make informed choices and decisions and to take action, individually and as part of the community. More recently, A curriculum for excellence 3–18 (SEED 2004) placed promoting responsible citizenship at the heart of the curriculum. This article reports on the extent to which a sample of Scottish schools was making progress towards developing education for citizenship, the strategies they developed and the barriers encountered in this implementation. It compares progress and developments in Scotland to the model devised in a longitudinal study for citizenship in England (Ireland et al. 2004, 2006).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-72
Number of pages12
JournalCurriculum Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2009


  • barriers
  • citizenship
  • curriculum
  • implentation
  • Scottish Schools
  • wider experiences


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