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Globalization and Sustainable Prosperity

Is globalization likely to do more to contribute to, or limit, sustainable prosperity for everyone?

Outcomes References Related Resources

Suggested Activities

As a possible culminating activity, students might draw together what they have learned about the implications of globalization by formulating and defending a position on the degree to which students should embrace or resist globalization.

Some students will conclude that globalization is the key to sustained prosperity and will embrace the phenomena. Others will see dangers inherent in the process of globalization and will urge resistance. Many students will see both merits and concerns and will conclude that there are aspects of globalization that should be embraced and other aspects that should be approached with caution, if not rejected. The point of the activity is to encourage thoughtful discussion and understanding of varying perspectives on this controversial topic.

Summarize key aspects of globalization
Begin by inviting students to reflect on what they have learned about globalization. Ask students to record on separate cue cards four or more of the most significant implications of globalization related to sustainable prosperity for everyone. On each card, ask students to list two pieces of information to support the implication suggested. Depending on the nature of the implication, instruct students to place a "+" or "-"sign in the top right corner of each cue card; i.e., "+" indicates that globalization contributes to sustainable prosperity and "-" indicates that globalization is an impediment.

Take part in a U-shaped discussion
Ask students to reflect on the evidence recorded on their cue cards and their beliefs on the impact of globalization. Next, ask students to align themselves along a continuum in a U-shape. If a student's cards consistently report evidence that globalization is the key to sustainable prosperity, this individual would likely stand at one end of the U, while those whose cue cards consistently suggest that globalization is a barrier to sustained and equal prosperity would stand on the other end. Students with cue cards suggesting both positive and negative effects would position themselves somewhere between the two extremes.

Begin the discussion with opening statements from students at both ends of the U and alternate from side to side, working toward the centre of the U. Encourage students to shift along the continuum at any time if they hear arguments that they find convincing. The U-shaped discussion promotes a sharing of views on the implications of globalization–both potentially positive and negative–and invites students to revise their thinking.

You may want to consult U-shaped Discussion (Support Material) for additional ideas on the use of this strategy.

Last updated: May 30, 2008 | (Revision History)
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