New teaching resource puts a Spotlight on Stereotyping

A new teaching resource Spotlight on Stereotyping is being launched today by the Equality Authority in partnership with the Professional Development Support for Teachers (PDST). Spotlight on Stereotypingwas developed for the Civic, Social and Political Education (CSPE) curriculum. It supports young people to explore and understand the impact that stereotyping can have on themselves and others in society.

Angela Kerins, Chairperson of the Equality Authority, in launching the resource said:

“This resource can play an extremely important role in working with young people to understand the impact of stereotyping on themselves and others and to look at ways that they can address stereotyping. Stereotyping can have a heavy toll, contributing to how people from particular groups are viewed and treated by society. In some instances stereotyping can lead to discrimination. Stereotyping can have an impact on people’s lives in very real ways. It can limit people’s choices in life. For example, gender stereotypes can impact on subject choices for boys and girls in school. It can also inform the policies and practices of organisations. For example, stereotypes about certain groups such as young people, Travellers, migrants or people with disabilities can make it difficult for people from these groups to access public venues, services or employment.”

Conor Harrison, National Co-ordinator responsible for Cultural and Environmental Education, PDST said:

Spotlight on Stereotyping” is a really useful resource for CSPE teachers. It links to key concepts included in the CSPE curriculum such as identity, human rights and human dignity, equality, community and the law. The resource also includes a curriculum framework illustrating how it can link with other Junior Certificate subjects. A key strength of the resource is that it was piloted in 5 schools. In this way teachers and students were directly involved in the development of the resource, providing ideas and feedback on how it can work in the classroom.”

Norma Lenihan, teacher in Laurel Hill Colaiste, Limerick said:

“It was a great opportunity to be one of the schools involved in piloting this resource. One of the key learnings for our students, who undertook this as part of the CSPE curriculum, was how important it is to be aware of how stereotyping affects people. They also learned that as teenagers they can sometimes be responsible for how they are stereotyped. They realised that to ensure that people get the right impression of them it is important that they do not allow stereotypes about young people to shape their own behaviour or expectations of themselves. From a teaching perspective the resource includes clearly laid out lesson plans, worksheets and ideas for action projects. It is very flexible in that it can be used as a complete resource or sections of it can be used throughout 1st year, 2nd year or 3rd year CSPE. Importantly, being involved in the pilot also meant that we were able to support the translation of the worksheets into Irish so that they could be included in the final publication.”

Spotlight on Stereotyping was developed by the Equality Authority and the Professional Development Support for Teachers (PDST) in collaboration with NGOs working with groups across the nine equality grounds and education experts. The direct input and support of CSPE teachers was critical in ensuring that the material is directly relevant and applicable to key concepts within the CSPE curriculum.

Note to editors


Spotlight on Stereotyping, a resource for teachers of Civic, Social and Political Education (CSPE). The resource can be downloaded from the following link:

Spotlight on Stereotypingsupports teachers to work with students on understanding and challenging the impact of stereotyping. It links to key concepts included in the CSPE curriculum such as identity, human rights and human dignity, equality, community and the law. It includes lesson plans as well as ideas for action projects. Each lesson plan sets out the focus of the lesson, the anticipated learning outcomes and the necessary materials and method to teach the lesson. The resource also includes worksheets, ideas for homework and additional information and links for teachers.

It is a very flexible resource. The lessons can be used consecutively or they can be grouped into sections and used at different times during the three years of the CSPE curriculum. Through the lesson themes students explore their own unique identity and the different social groups to which they belong. They explore the assumptions that can underlie a range of different stereotypes and develop an understanding that stereotypes are over-simplified generalisations which are often based on incorrect information, and that people can become defined by a stereotype while other important parts of their identity are ignored. The final lessons explore the impact that stereotyping can have on life choices and opportunities and how stereotyping of young people by young people and others can contribute to inequalities and discrimination. The ideas for action projects focus on what can be done to challenge stereotyping.

The resource can also link with other Junior Certificate subjects such as Art, Craft and Design; English; Home Economics, Social and Health studies; Other Languages; Religious Education; and Social, Personal and Health Education.

Equality Authority

The Equality Authority is an independent body set up under the Employment Equality Act 1998. It works to promote equality and prohibit discrimination in employment, vocational training, advertising, collective agreements, the provision of goods and services on nine grounds – gender, civil status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, race, Traveller community and disability.

Professional Development Service for Teachers

The Professional Development Service for Teachers provides a range of support services for teachers across a variety of areas such as school leadership and development planning, curriculum change, education programmes and other areas of teaching and learning.


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