Dr. Michael O’Sullivan

Associate Professor

Available for Graduate Advisement

St. Catharines, ON
905 688 5550 x5345
Fax: 905 641 5229

Dr. O’Sullivan, an Associate Professor, specializes in comparative, international and global citizenship education.

In addition to teaching in elementary and secondary schools, community colleges and universities, Dr. O’Sullivan has worked professionally and held volunteer positions in community development projects and education in numerous Latin American countries.

His Master’s thesis in Political Science was an analysis of the democratically elected socialist government of Salvador Allende in Chile in the early 1970s. O’Sullivan lived in Chile during much of the Allende period.  His doctoral dissertation was on the efforts in post-conflict Guatemala of the Mayan people to transform the national curriculum in that country to reflect the historical and contemporary contributions of the Indigenous population to their homeland where they constitute 50% of the population.

His current research interests involve investigating the impact of International Service Learning (ISL) trips to marginal rural communities in countries of the Global South on both the Global Northern visitors and the host communities. This particular research reflects his ongoing research interest related to the values, practice and teaching of global education and global citizenship.  Recently, Dr. O’Sullivan conducted an experiential education course which involved an 11-day trip by undergraduate and graduate students to Mayan indigenous communities in Guatemala.

Recently concluded research initiatives included examining the impact of classroom teaching from a critical and global perspective; the experience of Chinese students studying in Canada; Cuban youth and inter-generational response to change in Cuba.

In addition to his work at Brock University, Dr. O’Sullivan serves as a member of the Board of Directors of Casa Canadiense – Pueblito Canada, a Canadian-based NGO which supports small community based projects in Nicaragua and facilitates intensive study abroad experiences in that country by Ontario and Quebec based high school, college, and university students.

Books Edited

O’Sullivan, M. & Pashby, K. (Eds.). (2008). Citizenship education in the era of globalization: Canadian perspectives. Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense Publishers.

Chapters in Books

Smaller, H., O’Sullivan, M., Rerrie, A.; Hernandez, X. (2018).  International Service Learning and Global Citizenship: For Whom?  In L. Shultz & T. Pillay (Eds.).  Global Citizenship Education: Common Wealth and Uncommon Citizenships. (pp. 93 – 110).  Rotterdam: Brill Publishers.

O’Sullivan, M.  & Smaller, H. (2016).  Solidarity or Neocolonialism?  The challenges of understanding the impact of ISL on Nicaraguan host communities.  In M. Larsen, (Ed.). International Service Learning: Engaging Host Communities (pp. 48 – 63).  New York: Routledge.

O’Sullivan, M. (2013). Teaching China to the Chinese: Rich opportunity for critical reflection or neo-colonial conceit?  In Y. Hebert & A. Abdi, (Eds.). Critical Perspectives on International Education (pp. 209-222).  Rotterdam: Sense Publishing

 O’Sullivan, M. (2012).  Challenging neoliberal anti-intellectualism, consumerism & utilitarianism: Achieving the Deweyian and Freirean vision of critically aware, engaged citizens.  In A. Ali & P. Carr (Eds.). Educating for democratic consciousness: Counter-hegemonic possibilities. (pp 167 – 187).  New York: Peter Lang Publishing.

 O’Sullivan, M. (2012).  Getting beyond flat-out bored:  Creating a democratic space for social justice education.  In P. Carr & D. Zyngier (Eds.). Can educators make a difference?  Experimenting with, and experiencing, democracy in education. (pp 109 – 134).  Charlotte, N.C.: Information Age Publishing.

O’Sullivan, M. (2010). Supporting Youth in the Pursuit of a Post Neoliberal

Vision:  Transitioning from Soft to Critical Pedagogy in a Time of Possibility.  In B. J. Porfilio & P. Carr (Eds.). Youth Culture, Education and Resistance: Subverting the Commercial Ordering of Life. (pp 219 – 231).  Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense Publishers.

Papers in Refereed Journals

O’Sullivan, M. & Smaller, H. (In press).  ISL Programs and Neo-Colonialism: The Response of One Nicaraguan Village. Canadian Journal of International and Comparative Education.

Smaller, H. & O’Sullivan, M. (In press).  International Service Learning:  Decolonizing Possibilities?  Journal of Global Citizenship and Equity Education. 

Mogadime, D. & O’Sullivan, M. (2017).  Inserting Latino-Hispanic Student Voices and Self-Representations through Digital Storytelling.  The Canadian Journal of Action Research 18(1), 20 – 33.

O’Sullivan, M. & Niemzcyk, E. (2015). Mentoring Teachers for Global Consciousness: Infusing Solidarity in International Service Learning. Comparative and International Education/Education Comparée et International 44(1), 48-60.  Article 6.

Chaput, C. & O’Sullivan, M. (2014). Liberal Practices in a Neoliberal World: Stumbling Blocks for Democratic Citizenship Education. Canadian Journal of Education 36(3), 354 – 359.

O’Sullivan, M. & Smaller, H. (2013). Challenging Problematic Dichotomies: Bridging the Gap Between Critical Pedagogy and Liberal Academic Approaches to Global Education. Canadian & International Education 42(1), 1-16.  Article 4.

Guo, L. & O’Sullivan, M. (2012). From Laoshi to Partners in Learning: Pedagogic Conversations Across Cultures in a Global Classroom. Canadian Journal of Education 35(3), 164 – 179.

O’Sullivan, M. (2012). The Economic Reforms in Cuba:  Strengthening the Country’s Essential Socialist Character or a Transition to Capitalism?  The Impact on Educated Youth.  International Journal of Cuban Studies, 4(3&4), 321 – 346.

O’Sullivan, M. (2011). Cuban Youth and the 2010 Economic Reforms: Reinventing the imagined revolution. International Journal of Cuban Studies, 3(4), 282 – 310.

O’Sullivan, M. & Guo, L. (2010).  Critical thinking and Chinese international students: An east-west dialogue.  Journal of Contemporary Issues in Education, 5(2), 53 – 73.

Chaput, C. & O’Sullivan, M. (2010). Seeing Cuba through Canadian student eyes: Liberal discourse in a neoliberal world.  Education and Society, 28(2), 73 – 95.

O’Sullivan, M. (2010).  Teacher education and educational reform forged in times of conflict:  Guatemala and the case of the Mayan communities in exile in the 1980s and 1990s.  Education and Society, 28(1), 93 – 107.

Chaput, C., O’Sullivan, M. & Arnold, C.  (2010). Disrupting liberal discourse in a neoliberal world: The potential of transformative education during a short-term study abroad course in Cuba.  The International Journal for Development Education and Global Learning, 2(3) 25 – 43.

Book Reviews

O’Sullivan, M. (2013). International Education in Global Times: Engaging the Pedagogic. Canadian & International Education 42(2).

O’Sullivan, M. (2009). Educating for human rights and global citizenship. International Journal of Citizenship, Teaching and Learning, 5(2), 93 – 94.

O’Sullivan, M. (2008). Cuba’s economic advantage: Why students in Cuba do better in school. Brock Education, 17(1), 113 – 117.

O’Sullivan, M. (2006). Educating for a sustainable future: indispensable resources.  Brock Education, 16 (1), 93 – 99.

  • International education
  • Comparative education
  • International service learning
  • Global education