A Position Statement of National Council for the Social Studies (Revised)
National Council for the Social Studies believes that an effective social studies program must include global and international education. Global and international education are important because the day-to-day lives of average citizens around the world are influenced by burgeoning international connections. The human experience is an increasingly globalized phenomenon in which people are constantly being influenced by transnational, cross-cultural, multi-cultural and multi-ethnic interactions. The goods we buy, the work we do, the cross-cultural links we have in our own communities and outside them, and increased worldwide communication capabilities all contribute to an imperative that responsible citizens understand global and international issues. The increasing globalization in the human condition has created additional opportunities and responsibilities for individuals and groups to take personal, social, and political action in the international arena.
Global education and international education are complementary approaches with different emphases. The integration of both perspectives is imperative for students to develop the skills, knowledge and attitudes needed for responsible participation in a democratic society and in a global community in the twenty-first century. International studies focuses on the in-depth study of a specific area or region of the world to develop knowledge and understanding of another culture. A global perspective is attentive to the interconnectedness of the human and natural environment and the interrelated nature of events, problems or ideas. An important characteristic of global studies is the analysis or problems, issues, or ideas from a perspective that deals with the nature of change and interdependence.
Approved by the NCSS board of directors, May 2001