Curriculum

Introduction

One of the primary functions of colleges and universities is to educate students. By training and educating future leaders, scholars, workers, and professionals; higher education institutions are uniquely positioned to understand and address sustainability challenges. Institutions that offer courses covering sustainability issues help equip their students to lead society to a sustainable future.

6351 resources

A Holistic Approach to Integrate and Evaluate Sustainable Development in Higher Education. The Case Study of the University of the Basque Country

  • University of the Basque Country

Since the United Nations (UN) approved the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development in 2015, higher education institutions have increasingly demonstrated their commitment by supporting several initiatives. Although a great deal ...

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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Infusing the UN Sustainable Development Goals into a global learning initiative

  • Pennsylvania State University (PA)
  • University of North Texas (TX)
  • University of South Florida (FL)

The Global Citizens Project (GCP) is a university-wide global learning initiative at the University of South Florida, aimed at enhancing undergraduate students’ global competencies through curricular and co-curricular experiences. The ...

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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The incoherence of sustainability literacy assessed with the Sulitest

  • Elon University (NC)
  • Northern Illinois University (IL)
  • University of California, Santa Barbara (CA)

Improving sustainability knowledge has long been central to international efforts to achieve sustainable development. In response to these efforts, which are formalized in Target 4.7 of the Sustainable Development ...

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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Guilty by Association: Addressing Sustainability in Architecture Education

  • Universidad ORT Uruguay

Despite the growing interest in sustainability, negative associations of this term with naïve discourses, green-washing, or low-quality design are still common within some areas in the discipline of architecture. Through ...

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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‘Challenge to the South’ Revisited: A Case Study Worldwide of Regional Centres of Expertise (RCEs) on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)

  • Yorkville University (NB)

Three decades ago Julius Nyerere (1990) wrote Challenge to the South. In response to the legacy of colonialism, Nyerere challenged the nations of the Global South to advance their development ...

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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A matter of connection: The 4 Cs of learning in pre-service teacher education for sustainability

  • Arizona State University (AZ)
  • Leuphana University of Lüneburg

Teacher education for sustainability (TEfS) aims to prepare future educators for their role as societal change agents by developing in them specific sustainability competencies. Whereas previous literature has dealt extensively ...

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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Addressing the Relationship between Economics and Climate Change: A Discussion of Principles

  • Northeastern University (MA)

The majority of US colleges and universities have a degree requirement related to the principles of economics. As a result, nearly all college students have some exposure to economics during ...

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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Teaching Sustainability Practice through Service Learning: A Case Study of Reducing Food Waste

  • University of Southern Maine (ME)
  • University of Wyoming (WY)

This case report details the collaboration and integration of three distinct courses using a service-learning approach for a grant-based environmental project at the University of Southern Maine (USM). The focus ...

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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Enhancing sustainability education through experiential learning of sustainability reporting

  • University of Arkansas (AR)
  • Babson College (MA)
  • EQS International
  • Szkoła Główna Gospodarstwa Wiejskiego (Warsaw)

While progress has been made in the realm of teaching about sustainability to business students, integrating sustainability into experiential learning with a systemic mindset has been identified by leading scholars ...

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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Transformative education: towards a relational, justice-oriented approach to sustainability

  • Leuphana University of Lüneburg
  • Lund University
  • One Project (CA)
  • Courage of Care Coalition (CA)

This paper aims to increase related knowledge across personal, social and ecological dimensions of sustainability and how it can be applied to support transformative learning.

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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Evaluation and Lessons Learned from a Campus as a Living Lab Program to Promote Sustainable Practices

  • University of British Columbia (BC)
  • University of Victoria (BC)
  • Yaşar University

Any group that creates challenging goals also requires a strategy to achieve them and a process to review and improve this strategy over time. The University of British Columbia (UBC ...

  • Posted April 8, 2021
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Secrets for a Strong Course Affiliation Program

  • Georgia Institute of Technology (GA)
  • AASHE (PA)

This event is part of the AASHE Award Winner Webinar Series, featuring a presentation of the Campus Sustainability Achievement Award winning project.

What are the secrets to a strong course ...

  • Posted March 31, 2021
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Environmental Studies Undergraduate Major

  • New York University (NY)

The Department of Environmental Studies aims to provide students with the breadth of understanding and skills necessary for resolving environmental questions and creating a sustainable future on scales ranging from ...

  • Posted March 18, 2021
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Environmental Studies Undergraduate Minor

  • New York University (NY)

The Department of Environmental Studies aims to provide students with the breadth of understanding and skills necessary for resolving environmental questions and creating a sustainable future on scales ranging from ...

  • Posted March 18, 2021
  • Academic Programs
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Campuses as living labs for integrated sustainability research, education, and practice

  • University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (IL)

Campuses as living labs for integrated sustainability research, education, and practice

Ximing Cai, Morgan White#, Evan Delucia, Madhu Khanna Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and ...

  • Posted March 15, 2021
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Vertically Integrated Projects for Sustainable Development (VIP4SD)

  • AASHE (PA)
  • University of Strathclyde

As we enter the Decade of Action on these global goals, the VIP4SD program provides a platform for HEIs to leverage the unique access they have to the enthusiasm, idealism ...

  • Posted March 3, 2021
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Impact of higher education imparted by Indian universities on the pro-sustainability orientation of students

  • Symbiosis International University (Maharashtra)

The purpose of this study is to test a model on pro-sustainability orientation (PSO) among the students and comparison of the levels of PSO among the first-year and the second-year ...

  • Posted Feb. 19, 2021
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Future Directions—Engaged Scholarship and the Climate Crisis

  • University of California, Davis (CA)

Climate change has the potential to disrupt ecosystem services and further exacerbate the effects of human activities on natural resources. This has significant implications for educational institutions and the populations ...

  • Posted Feb. 19, 2021
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An exploratory study of students’ perceptions of environmental issues as social work practice and their understanding of environmental justice

  • Boise State University (ID)
  • Indiana University

As environmental crises continue to rise, the profession of social work in the US is being called to incorporate environmental justice content in the training and education of social workers ...

  • Posted Feb. 19, 2021
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Learning processes for interpersonal competence development in project-based sustainability courses – insights from a comparative international study

  • Arizona State University (AZ)
  • Leuphana University of Lüneburg

For professional sustainability work, graduates need to be able to work in teams and collaborate with stakeholders; in other words, they need to have developed interpersonal competence. There is growing ...

  • Posted Feb. 19, 2021
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A futuring approach to teaching wicked problems

  • Utrecht University

This paper investigates how the teaching and learning about “wicked” environmental problems may be fostered through an educational approach premised on futuring – the active imagination of the future. The growing ...

  • Posted Feb. 19, 2021
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Decoupling responsible management education: Do business schools walk their talk?

  • Seattle University (WA)
  • Western Michigan University (MI)
  • Georgia Institute of Technology (GA)
  • University of Mississippi (MS)
  • Berry College (GA)
  • Kennesaw State University (GA)

Corporate scandals in recent decades have prompted business schools to advance programs to better develop the next generation of responsible business leaders. Despite these efforts, some scholars have raised concerns ...

  • Posted Feb. 19, 2021
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Higher education for times of climate crisis – critical awareness, purpose and community

  • The University of Newcastle (NSW)

Climate change impacts cascade across scales and sectors, and present specific threats to education institutions and systems, including reduced educational access, participation and attainment by students. In this paper, we ...

  • Posted Feb. 19, 2021
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Education for Sustainable Development Goals (ESDG): What Is Wrong with ESDGs, and What Can We Do Better?

  • The Hague University of Applied Science

This article will discuss social, environmental, and ecological justice in education for sustainable development (ESD) and Education for Sustainable Development Goals (ESDG). The concept of sustainable development and, by extension ...

  • Posted Feb. 17, 2021
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Integrating Multiple Perspectives in an Urban Ecology Course

  • Rochester Institute of Technology (NY)

New approaches are needed to educate university students about urban sustainability challenges. In particular, students need opportunities to learn the importance of integrating not just biophysical issues (e.g. climate ...

  • Posted Feb. 17, 2021
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Translating green economy concepts into practice: ideas pitches as learning tools for sustainability education

  • Universität Trier

The urgency of the current climate crisis emphasizes the need for university graduates equipped with relevant knowledge and skills to tackle environmental and social problems such as material consumption, environmental ...

  • Posted Feb. 17, 2021
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A Resource-Efficient Modular Course Design for Co-Teaching Integrated Sustainability in Higher Education: Developing the Next Generation of Entrepreneurial Leaders

  • Babson College (MA)

Society faces mounting pressures related to economic growth, social injustice, and environmental degradation. Building upon scholarly consensus regarding the necessity of multidisciplinary approaches to address such complex problems, the entrepreneurship ...

  • Posted Feb. 10, 2021
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Towards climate justice education: views from activists and educators in Scotland

  • University of Edinburgh

In the context of a resurgence of civic activism to address climate change, we present findings from an exploratory research project on climate justice education (CJE). We conducted deliberative focus ...

  • Posted Feb. 10, 2021
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The Power Game: Developing Influence and Negotiation Skills for Sustainable Development

  • Virginia Tech (VA)

This paper describes the outcomes of a game designed to teach advanced leadership skills, specifically influence and negotiation strategies, to current and aspiring sustainability professionals at Virginia Tech’s Center ...

  • Posted Feb. 10, 2021
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Enhancing the effects of university education for sustainable development on social sustainability: the role of social capital and real-world learning

  • University of A Coruña (a Coruña)

The purpose of this paper is to understand the roles that social capital and real-world learning may play in enhancing the effects of university education for sustainable development (ESD) on ...

  • Posted Feb. 10, 2021
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Teaching (super) wicked problems: authentic learning about climate change

  • St Mary's University College

Climate change is a ‘super-wicked’ problem associated with challenges including food security, mass migration and biodiversity loss. Young people are increasingly expecting their university education to prepare them to address ...

  • Posted Feb. 10, 2021
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How students engage in biomimicry

  • King's College London

Biomimicry is a useful method to develop students’ skills, such as design and systems thinking, particularly when complemented with inquiry-based learning. The research seeks to uncover how students engage in ...


Perceptions of interconnected sustainability: Students’ narratives bridging transition and education

  • University of Helsinki

As sustainability becomes a focal point and important aspect of educational development in several disciplines and universities globally, it is important to critically reflect on the different utilisations of sustainability ...


Design precepts for online experiential learning programs to address wicked sustainability problems

  • University of Tasmania

There are increasing pressures within the higher education sector to incorporate digital pedagogies into teaching and learning, a trend amplified by recent extensive recourse to online delivery within the sector ...


Unaligned connections or enlarging engagements? Tertiary education in developing countries and the implementation of the SDGs

  • University College London (London)

Given that tertiary education (TE) is a sector often associated with exclusion, particularly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), where only a small proportion of the population gain access, how ...


Active Learning Methodologies in Teacher Training for Cultural Sustainability

  • Universidad de Córdoba

Within the framework of sustainable development, the concept of cultural heritage is linked to the heritage awareness of a specific spatial context, and to the conservation of collective memory. Despite ...


The Use of Reflective Pedagogies in Sustainability Leadership Education—A Case Study

  • Blekinge Institute of Technology

This study aims to examine the use of reflective pedagogies in sustainability leadership education by investigating two specific pedagogical tools—the Portfolio and Pod—employed by the Master’s in ...


Competence Literate but Context Lacking? Investigating the Potential of Study Abroad Programs to Promote Sustainability Competence Acquisition in Students

  • Blekinge Institute of Technology

The examination of pedagogies that promote effective sustainability learning has led to vigorous academic discussion, as has research regarding the role of competence-based learning for sustainability. This paper investigates the ...


Smart and learning campus as living lab to foster education for sustainable development: an experience with air quality monitoring

  • University of Passo Fundo
  • Universidade federal de Santa Maria

Higher education institutions are widely known both for their promotion to education for sustainable development (ESD) and for their contribution as living labs to urban management strategies. As for strategies ...


Lincoln University curriculum and the Sustainable Development Goals : A dissertation submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Degree of Masters in Environmental Policy and Management at Lincoln University

  • Lincoln University, New Zealand

In 2015, the United Nations agreed on a set of “Sustainable Development Goals” (SDG) to be achieved by 2030. They represent a strategy requiring actions to address the growing economic ...


Assessing the Development of Key Competencies in Sustainability

  • Arizona State University (AZ)

Making significant progress on the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) needs change agents equipped with key competencies in sustainability. While thousands of sustainability programs have emerged at various educational ...


Building bridges: overview of an international sustainable tourism education model

  • Colorado State University, Pueblo (CO)

The purpose of this paper is to present and explore a sustainable tourism education model that employed Fair-Trade learning principles and experiential learning philosophies. In collaboration with universities in Mexico ...


Teaching environmental sustainability and responsibility in the Anthropocene: Overview of Tourism Studies in Spain

  • Universitat Politècnica de València (Valencia)

Tourism studies are showing an increasing interest in the analysis of environmental sustainability and responsibility in the Anthropocene epoch. In the Higher Education (HE) Tourism studies, new concepts and skills ...


Implementation of SDGs in University Teaching: A Course for Professional Development of Teachers in Education for Sustainability for a Transformative Action

  • Universitat de Girona (Girona)

The University Jaume I of Castellon (Spain) launched the “ImpSDGup” course in 2017. The aim of this training course on professional education for sustainable development (ESD) skills and competences for ...


Interrogating Equity in Education for Sustainable Development

  • University of Cambridge

The discourse of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) promises a brighter, more just, and equitable future by ‘leaving no one behind’ and identifies Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) as ...


Critical food systems education, neoliberalism, and the alternative campus tour

  • Trent University (ON)

While still quite modest, the body of scholarship on pedagogy related to teaching for more socio-ecologically just food systems is growing. However, this body of work is largely silent on ...


Reflections on integrating the political into environmental education through problem-based learning and political ecology

  • University of Exeter (Devon)

This paper reflects on an undergraduate module at the University of Exeter (2018–2019) trialing a problem-based learning approach to the political ecologies of land. It found that this approach ...


Effectiveness of digital games in producing environmentally friendly attitudes and behaviors: A mixed methods study

  • Purdue University (IN)

Awareness of environmental sustainability issues alone is not enough. Environmental Sustainability Education (ESE) should produce changes in attitude and encourage lifelong behaviors. However, behavioral changes are curtailed by constraints and ...


University teaching staff and sustainable development: an assessment of competences

  • University of Beira Interior
  • University of Passo Fundo
  • Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro
  • University of Southern Maine (ME)
  • University of Applied Sciences Zittau/Görlitz
  • University of Aveiro
  • Universidade federal de Santa Maria
  • University of Belgrade
  • University of Malta (Northern Harbor District)
  • Hamburg University of Applied Sciences

Teaching about matters related to sustainable development requires not only a personal motivation from educators, but also a variety of competences. This paper reports on a multi-country study, which aimed ...


Competencies or capabilities in the Australian higher education landscape and its implications for the development and delivery of sustainability education

  • RMIT University

The question of how to embed transformative change through the implementation of sustainability principles in our education systems has become increasingly important as complex situations, like pandemics and climate change ...

This tab provides access to data collected through AASHE’s Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS). STARS is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. STARS enables meaningful comparisons over time and across institutions using a common set of measurements developed with broad participation from the campus sustainability community. Additional content and advanced benchmarking tools will be added to this tab over time.

Programs and Initiatives

The following links connect to specific Content Displays on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Scores

The following link connects to the Score Display on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Curriculum Partners