Peace Science Made Accessible, Understandable, and Useful.

Core Competencies for Critical Peace Educators and Learners

Core Competency

Possible Educational Activities and Approaches

Critical thinking and analysis


  • Critical Media Literacy
  • Analyzing the roots and current impact of forces of domination
  • Interrogating identity and unequal forms citizenship
Empathy and solidarity


  • Cultivating an understanding of the psychological and emotional impacts of violence
  • Viewing injustices facing others as limits on the freedom of all
  • Identifying actions and approaches that can bring awareness to local and global inequalities
Individual and coalitional agency


  • Facilitating situational analyses and decision making that can lead to informed action
  • Emphasizing creating ‘power with’ (not ‘power over’) others in collective action processes
  • Resisting forces of silencing and apathy in order to act for the larger social good
Participatory and democratic engagement


  • Engagement in local issues of justice and ability to link them to global trends and realities
  • Attention to global processes that privilege some and marginalize many
  • Understanding examples of ‘little d’ democracy that involve people power, movement building, and community engagement
Education and communication strategies


  • Developing fluency in various forms of conveying key ideas to diverse audiences (e.g. formal, non-formal, and community education)
  • Knowledge of diverse pedagogical approaches including film, popular education, narrative/testimonial, multimedia, oral history, etc.
  • Utilizing storytelling, multiple perspectives, and primary sources in the creation of pedagogical tools
Conflict transformation skills
  • Exploring the roots of violence to understand ways to mitigate individual and group conflict
  • Understanding how diverse individuals and communities approach conflict, dialogue, and peacemaking
  • Examining and attending to the historical roots, material conditions, and power relations of entrenched conflicts in educational intervention

Ongoing reflective practice


  • Journal writing, autobiography, examining the roots of one’s own identity (racial, gender, sexual orientation, religion, class, etc.), self in relation to others
  • Creating communities of practice that offer collective forms of feedback and thinking
  • Ability to link self to collective, family to community, and analyze sources of rupture and tension holistically

*Table adapted from ‘Pedagogies of resistance’ and critical peace education praxis by Monisha Bajaj (2015).


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