New CEFIR Report on Teaching About Sensitive Topics

Justine Castonguay-Payant and Martin Geoffroy of the Centre d’expertise et de formation sur les intégrismes religieux, les idéologies politiques et la radicalisation [Center of Expertise and Training on Religious Fundamentalism, Political Ideologies and Radicalization] (CEFIR) Cégep Édouard-Montpetit, recently published a research report entitled “Radicalization, sensitive subjects and co-construction of knowledge: A review of the writings.”

According to the report, “College teachers often face many challenges such as recent high immigration (Montreal, Longueuil, etc.), the fragile identity of their students, but also the teaching of so-called sensitive or controversial subjects (political ideologies, far-right movements, realities of LGBTQ + communities and people with disabilities, etc.). Faced with these challenges, many students and teachers adopt a posture of self-censorship and avoidance (Wilkins-Laflamme et al., 2018), detracting from the argued and critical debates that can help some young people to face the call of radicalization, in addition to limiting the circulation and co-construction of knowledge in this area. Therefore, this report aims to shed light on what is said or done concerning college research, the circulation of knowledge between actors in education, and the teaching of sensitive issues such as radicalization that can lead to violence. While specifying basic notions relating to radicalization, this report makes it possible to better identify research contributions (action, participative, partnership, collaborative, etc.), methods, proposals, recommendations, teaching methods, and devices, which could be mobilized for this purpose. It also encourages cooperative approaches between professionals to concentrate efforts in awareness-raising, research, training, or, more broadly, prevention of radicalization.”

This report was produced with the financial support of Public Safety Canada’s Community Resilience Fund.

For more information (available in French only), please click here.