Prof. Fionnuala Waldron is Cregan Professor of Education in the DCU Institute of Education, Dublin City University (DCU), and Chair of the Centre for Human Rights and Citizenship Education (CHRCE). Fionnuala began her career in education as a primary teacher (where she taught children from the age for 4 years to 15 years) before joining the staff of St Patrick’s College in 1999 as a teacher educator with a specialism in history and citizenship education. Her teaching and research interests include history education, local studies, human rights education, global citizenship education and climate change education. She has a particular interest in developing democratic research processes with children and in creating research-based participative curricula/programmes and learning resources for primary and lower second level classrooms and for teacher education. Fionnuala is also a historian and has published on nineteenth century Irish history.
In 2005, Fionnuala established the Centre for Human Rights and Citizenship Education in St Patrick’s College, in collaboration with Brian Ruane who was then Director of Education in Amnesty (Ireland). The Centre specialises in research into human rights education, local and global citizenship education and climate change education. It produces educational resources which are research-based and develops and teaches teacher education modules and programmes in its areas of interest, including a Masters of Education in Global Citizenship Education and Human Rights Education.
Fionnuala has a deep interest in the theory, policy and practice of teacher education. In 2000, she co-founded the Irish Association for Social Scientific and Environmental Education (IASSEE), an all-Ireland association of teacher educators in the related fields of history education, geography and science education and environmental education more broadly and led its all-Ireland longitudinal study Becoming a Teacher: Primary Student Teachers as Learners and Teachers of History, Geography and Science: an all-Ireland Study, published in 2009. In 2012, she initiated CREATE in St Patrick’s College, a research programme in teacher education (Collaborative Research Across Teacher Education), which brings together over twenty research projects across a range of themes. Since 2016, the programme has become part of the CREATE21 Research Centre.
In 2009, Fionnuala was appointed Head of Education in St Patrick’s College, Drumcondra, and Dean of Education the following year. She held both posts until August 2016. From 2014, Fionnuala led the education workstream in the incorporation of St Patrick’s College, Mater Dei College and the Church of Ireland College of Education into Dublin City University. For the 2015/2016 academic year, she led the establishment of the DCU Institute of Education as Interim Executive Dean, which brought together the incorporated entities and the DCU School of Education Studies to create a new faculty for Dublin City University.
Fionnuala has extensive experience in curriculum development in primary/lower-second level and in teacher education. During her term as Dean, she led the design, development and implementation of new programmes in initial teacher education at undergraduate and post-graduate levels which were premised on a social justice perspective and incorporated human rights education, ethical education and global citizenship education as core elements. In 2013, Fionnuala established a doctoral strand in teacher education, as part of the Doctorate in Education, in partnership with John Smith. Fionnuala has collaborated on several curriculum development projects for primary/lower-second level in the areas of history education; climate change education and global citizenship education and has acted as curriculum advisor to a range of agencies. She is an expert in the development of interactive, participative learning activities and resources that target children’s emergent capacities to think critically about the world.
Fionnuala’s most recent publications include: Waldron, F., Ruane, B., Oberman, R. and Morris, S. (2016) Geographical process or global injustice? Contrasting educational perspectives on climate change, Environmental Education Research; Waldron, Fionnuala & Oberman, Rowan (2016): Responsible citizens? How children are conceptualised as rights holders in Irish primary schools, The International Journal of Human Rights; Waldron, F. and McCully, A. (2016). Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland: eroded certainties and new possibilities. In: R. Guyver (eds) Teaching History and the Changing Nation State: Transnational and Intranational Perspectives. London: Bloomsbury; and Waldron, F. (2014) Moving beyond boundaries: Development education in initial teacher education. In S. McCloskey (Ed.), Development Education in Theory and Practice. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan. Fionnuala has edited a number of books: Re-imagining Teacher Education: Perspectives on Transformation (2012) Dublin: Liffey [with John Smith and others]; Human Rights Education: Reflections on theory and practice (2010) Dublin: Liffey [with Brian Ruane] and Perspectives on Equality: The Second Seamus Heaney Series (2005) Dublin: Liffey [with Mary Anne Lyons]. She is currently working on a book on human rights education in formal educational settings, with Brian Ruane and Rowan Oberman.