Systemic Cognition and Education

Systemic Cognition and Education (SCE) is a generic pedagogical framework for student and teacher education at all levels and in all fields. It emerges from reliable research and scientific theory about how the world is and works, how our mind and brain are and operate, and how we come to know about the physical world and all that is and goes in it.

An important faculty of the human mind is to constantly generate conceptual representations of the physical world, including our own selves, that would help us make sense of this world and devise conceptual and physical means for improving the quality of our lives and, hopefully, the world we live in. According to SCE, meaningful understanding of whatever we try to learn about can be efficiently achieved, and productive interaction amongst us and with our surroundings can creatively take place, when we conceive the world within and around us as a world of patterns brought about by dynamic, interacting systems. A system is a set of elements with particular properties of interest that interact in well-defined ways under specific conditions to serve specific functions or purposes in specific domains.

SCE provides tenets, principles, and rules about how systemic learners can best develop the 4P profile of a progressive, productive, profound, and principled citizen empowered for lifelong learning and success, even excellence, in all aspects of modern life.

The 4P Profile:


Progressive mind, i.e., an overall systemic and dynamic mindset with clear vision and determination to empower self and others for continuous growth and enhancement of various aspects of life.

Productive habits, i.e., practical and efficient cognitive and behavioral habits that are prone to systematic improvement and creative and advantageous deployment in various aspects of life.

Profound knowledge, i.e., a sound, lean, and coherent corpus of knowledge that readily lends itself to continuous development and efficacious and efficient deployment in various aspects of life.

Principled affects, i.e., productive and constructive conduct in all aspects of life, intuitively driven for excellence and guided by a widely and duly acclaimed value system.

Trilingual 4P Profiles synopsis


Cognition and Education: A Bungean Systemic Perspective. (In press).

A systemic worldview helps us make sense of the world around us and flexibly systematize how we go about constructing, retaining, and deploying all sorts of knowledge. Formal education is then supposed to provide for systemic cross-disciplinary curricula designed and deployed under systemic pedagogical frameworks, like the Systemic Cognition and Education framework, to empower students with systemic profiles for lifelong learning and success in life.

SCE Taxonomy of Learning Outcomes. (August 2017 / Revised September 2018). Working paper.

Students are empowered for excellence in life under systemic curricula that mandate systems and systemic competencies in the form of learning outcomes spelled out in accordance with a well-defined taxonomy. This paper introduces the SCE taxonomy and discusses how it resolves certain critical issues in Bloom’s taxonomy. Full Text

Systemic Convergence in Education: A synopsis. (September 2018). Working paper.

Convergence in education is primarily about bringing together many academic fields to come out with certain pedagogical products that may extend from the solution to a particular type of abstract or real world problems to a full-fledge curriculum. It can be brought about through a variety of modalities with a diversity of conceptual lenses the most meaningful and efficient of which are cross-disciplinary modalities that rely on systemic lenses. Full Text

Scientific Models and Modeling in the Framework of Systemic Cognition and Education. (August 2018). Working paper.

Models and modeling may serve pedagogical purposes as much as scientific purposes. This paper presents an overview of models and modeling in the framework of Systemic Cognition and Education (SCE) and provides modeling tools like the system schema for model construction, a systemic scheme for model deployment, and a rubric for tracking the evolution of student profiles in meaningful ways. Full Text

Mind, Brain, and Education: A Systemic Perspective. (January 2017). Working paper.

An interpretation of research findings in neuroscience, cognitive psychology, and education, through specific conceptual lenses drawn primarily from the philosophy of science and cognitive science, brings about a systemic perspective on mind, brain, and education (MBE), and lays down the foundations of Systemic Cognition and Education, an MBE-based generic pedagogical framework. Full Text

Systemic Cognition and Education. Book in preparation.

Our mind and brain are dynamic complex systems that favor the formation of conceptual patterns in long-term memory for sustainable, meaningful and productive learning. Systemic Cognition and Education (SCE) is a generic pedagogical framework that promotes the development of conceptual systems that reveal major patterns in knowledge structure and deployment in any field and at any level.  [Synopsis coming soon]

Systemic Education for Sustainable Development. (May 2016. Plenary paper). UNESCO regional meeting on GAP-ESD. Cairo, Egypt.  PowerPoint Presentation

Mental Capacities between Course Content and Achievement. (April 2014. Plenary paper). NCAHE (Qiyas) Symposium on Distinguished Achievement. Riyadh, KSA.   PowerPoint Presentation

Toward a Comprehensive Learning Ecology. (October 2012. Plenary paper). Jordanian Ministry of Education Conference on IAB. Amman, Jordan.   PowerPoint Presentation


The following are early drafts of SCE then called Profile Shaping Education (PSE):

Profile Shaping Education: An Overview. (March 2012. Plenary paper). Proceedings of ACES conference on Education Dubai, UAE: ACES.

This paper is superseded by the SCE papers above published in 2017-2019.

Profile Shaping Education (PSE), the precursor of SCE, is a research-based pedagogical framework that promotes a particular 4-P profile (Paradigmatic, Productive, Proactive, Principled) meant to empower students for meaningful learning rather than rote learning of course materials, and for success in modern life rather than for merely passing school or high-stake exams. The profile is reified in cross-disciplinary curricula in the form of learning outcomes that are defined according to a novel taxonomy of learning expectations.

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Taxonomy and Learning Outcomes. (March 2012. Plenary paper). Proceedings of ACES conference on Education Sustainability. Dubai, UAE: ACES.

This paper is superseded by the paper entitled: SCE Taxonomy of Learning Outcomes (2017/2018).

Under PSE, the 4P profile is reified in various educational fields following well-defined cognitive tenets and pedagogical principles and rules. The profile can be translated in any given curriculum in the form of epistemic, cognitive, behavioral and metacognitive learning outcomes in accordance with a novel taxonomy developed by this author. The taxonomy is currently being revised under SCE.

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Profile Shaping Education: A Paradigm Shift in Education to empower Students for Success in Modern Life. Paper presented at the 11th International History, Philosophy and Science Teaching Group biennial conference. Aristotle University, Thessaloniki, July 2011.

This is an early draft of Profile Shaping Education (PSE) which, like SCE, sets to empower students of all levels, especially secondary school and college graduates, with a profile needed for success in modern life. The profile embodies major traits of accomplished people in the workplace and daily life, while it respects the local vision for education and local culture and heritage.   Full Text

From Modeling Schemata to the Profiling Schema: Modeling across the Curricula for Profile Shaping Education. (2011)In: Khine & Saleh (Eds), Models and Modeling in Science Education. Boston: Springer.

This chapter outlines the cross over to Profile Shaping Education from Modeling Theory, a research-based pedagogical theory developed by this author that promotes mediated experiential learning of model-laden theory and inquiry in science education. Modeling schemata are generic tools that students use for systematic construction and deployment of scientific concepts and models. Under PSE (and subsequently under SCE), these schemata have been extrapolated beyond the boundaries of science, and a single profiling schema (system schema under SCE) has emerged as a major tool to set and deploy benchmarks or outcomes that need to be accomplished in any educational field, and at any grade level.   Full Text