Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 48.76
Liaison James Speer
Submission Date Feb. 26, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Indiana State University
AC-6: Sustainability Literacy Assessment

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 4.00 James Speer
Earth and Environmental Sciences
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution conduct an assessment of the sustainability literacy of its students (i.e. an assessment focused on student knowledge of sustainability topics and challenges)?:

Which of the following best describes the literacy assessment? The assessment is administered to::
A subset of students or a sample that may not be representative of the predominant student body

Which of the following best describes the structure of the assessment? The assessment is administered as a::
Standalone evaluation without a follow-up assessment of the same cohort or representative samples

A copy of the questions included in the sustainability literacy assessment(s):
A sample of the questions included in the sustainability literacy assessment or the website URL where the assessment tool may be found:

Q49 What does sustainability mean to you?
Q1 How concerned are you that human behavior might be permanently harming the environment?
Q3 How concerned are you that global warming is occurring?
Q33 Do you think that humans are a major cause of global warming?
All FOUR of these questions have an objectively correct answer and therefore assess the sustainability literacy of our students and we are able to administer this survey to about 9% of our student body.

We do not have a public link to the survey, but all questions can be found in the above attachment.

A brief description of how the literacy assessment was developed and/or when it was adopted:

We developed the ISU Environmental Survey in 2010 and have administered it to about 10% of the ISU population once a year since that time. We developed a comprehensive sustainability question in about 2014 to measure what students consider as part of sustainability. we found that most students do not include economic or social justice issues as part of their definition of sustainability.

A brief description of how a representative sample was reached (if applicable) and how the assessment(s) were administered :

We administer the survey through our ENVI 110 students. Each student is tasked with recruiting to take the survey. We also directly email the survey link to faculty in foundational studies classes and encourage them to have their student take the survey. Through these means, approximately 10% of ISU students take the survey each year.

A brief summary of results from the literacy assessment(s), including a description of any measurable changes over time:

We found that most students do not include economic or social justice issues as part of their definition of sustainability. The majority of our students (approximately 75%) are concerned that humans are harming the environment and that global warming is a concern. Currently, Dr. Tina Kruger is leading a group that is writing a paper using the results from Q49 that examines how students on campus view sustainability. The results are showing that students do not associate economic or social issues with sustainability as closely as environmental issues. Additionally the research shows that ISU students do not correlate food systems with sustainability. Using these results, the Office of Sustainability began to conduct food waste studies in the residence hall to illustrate these results and has made its focus around social justice for all sustainability issues on campus. We have seen an education effect throughout the students’ years at ISU where they become more concerned about the environment and more aware of global warming. Interestingly, our incoming freshmen in 2018 had the same awareness of global warming as our seniors, making this analysis non-significant for the first time over our ten years of testing these variables.

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

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