An Assessment of Sustainability across the Campus

Jack T. Tessier, Nana-Yaw Andoh, Kristen DeForest, Matthew W. Juba, Akira Odani, John J. Padovani, Elizabeth F. Sova, Lisa M. Tessier


Across the curriculum approaches have been used successfully with a variety of topics to demonstrate the importance of skills and ideas across topical areas. Sustainability is a logical candidate for an across the curriculum approach because the concept itself spans disciplines.  We sought to implement sustainability across the campus to extend the idea of topical breadth. Sustainability was integrated across four disciplines and three non-curricular areas with control groups to assess the impact of the approach on students’ understanding of the concept and their view of its importance. Based in responses to a voluntary survey, students experiencing the treatment courses scored significantly better in their understanding of sustainability than control students. These approaches were less successful in helping students to see the relevance of sustainability to their courses and careers. These results demonstrate that sustainability can be effectively integrated across the campus, but more work needs to be done to promote application of and student caring about sustainability.

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