Prospects of a technical and vocational education program in preparing pre-service teachers for sustainability: a case study of a TVE program in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

  • Caleb Chidozie ChineduEmail author
  • Wan Azlinda Wan Mohamed
  • Abdurrahman Ogbonnia Ajah
  • Yalwa A. Tukur
Research article


The goal of attaining a sustainable future has become a global crusade of leading world organizations/institutions due to the persistent threats to the sustenance of our planet Earth. The concept of a sustainable future is often depicted as maintaining a balance in intergenerational equity, using resources prudently, maintaining the health of living systems, applying economic activities that ensure a balance between productivity and consumption, implementing environmental protection and preserving and accepting cultural diversity. Education for a sustainable future becomes the backbone by which to transform and develop the knowledge, skills and values of all working people for sustainable living and work practices. Hence, three aspects of educational change are needed for this transformation towards a sustainable future: curriculum reorientation, pedagogy and teacher education. The focus of this paper is on curriculum reorientation in a teacher education program setting by reporting the prospects of technical and vocational education (TVE) programs in preparing pre-service teachers for sustainability. In this study we utilized a triangulation design by integrating findings from a qualitative documentary analysis with those of a survey, which allowed us to draw conclusions regarding the prospects of the TVE programs studied to prepare pre-service teachers for sustainability. Our findings reveal that the TVE programs in our case study do not substantially reflect sustainability and as such limit the programs’ prospects to prepare teachers for efficiently undertaking teaching tasks for sustainability. The educators and students of the TVE programs also perceive that the TVE programs do not sufficiently prepare pre-service teachers for sustainability. The lack of sustainability integration across technical and vocational education and training (TVET) programs is worrisome, primarily because of the potential of such programs to provide education and training to skilled and semi-skilled professionals. Hence, we recommend that adequate and conscious efforts be taken to review existing TVE programs in order to increase the presence of sustainability education in these programs. We also recommend a number of useful strategies for implementing the needed changes within TVET programs for sustainability.


Curriculum review Education for sustainable development Sustainability integration Teacher education 



This study was funded by the Fundamental Research Grant Scheme (FRGS), at Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia under Vot number 1639.


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© Australian Curriculum Studies Association 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Technical and Vocational EducationUniversiti Tun Hussein Onn MalaysiaParit RajaMalaysia
  2. 2.School of Science and Technology EducationFederal University of Technology MinnaMinnaNigeria
  3. 3.School of Engineering TechnologyNiger State PolytechnicZungeruNigeria

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