Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 63.76
Liaison Mark Youndt
Submission Date March 10, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Skidmore College
AC-1: Academic Courses

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 10.57 / 14.00 Karen Kellogg
Director of Sustainability
Dean of Faculty's Office
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures required to calculate the percentage of courses offered by the institution that are sustainability course offerings:
Undergraduate Graduate
Total number of courses offered by the institution 813 0
Number of sustainability courses offered 38 0
Number of courses offered that include sustainability 88 0

Percentage of courses that are sustainability course offerings:

Total number of academic departments (or the equivalent) that offer courses (at any level):

Number of academic departments (or the equivalent) that offer at least one sustainability course and/or course that includes sustainability (at any level):

Percentage of academic departments with sustainability course offerings:

A copy of the institution’s inventory of its sustainability course offerings and descriptions:
Do the figures reported above cover one, two, or three academic years?:

A brief description of the methodology used to determine the total number of courses offered and to identify sustainability course offerings, including the definitions used and the process for reviewing and/or validating the course inventory :

In order to gain the most accurate assessment of the opportunities our students have to engage in the concepts and practices of sustainability in the classroom, we took a snapshot of a typical academic year (2015-16). While we have many additional sustainability courses and courses that include sustainability in our full course catalog, a subset of those courses may not be offered in a given year because of sabbatical leaves, changes within departments, enrollment pressures in other areas, etc. By taking a snapshot of a typical year, we believe we are getting a more precise calculation of the sustainability-related course opportunities for our students. We wanted to note that we did include special topics courses in our snapshot because we have a rich array of sustainability-related special topics offered each and every year, and the special topics course rubric at Skidmore is often used for a first-time course offering by our permanent faculty. In other words, the special topics rubric is often an indication of the development of a long-term course offering.

We maintain a fairly comprehensive, ongoing inventory of sustainability-related courses through our Environmental Studies and Sciences program. An interdisciplinary steering committee for the program reviews new and revised courses that faculty from across the College are developing. As a validation of this inventory for STARS, we asked departments to review their 2015-16 course offerings for sustainability and sustainability-related courses. It is worth noting that in addition to undertaking a formal course designation project for Civic Engagement courses at Skidmore, we are beginning to work on a formal course designation for sustainability-related courses.

In terms of definitions, we adhered to those described in AC1.G in the STARS 2.1 Technical Manual.

As noted in our responses above, we do not have any graduate programs at Skidmore, but we do offer an innovative sustainability-related program for executives called the New York Executive Clean Energy Leadership Program (NY EXCEL). NY EXCEL educates entrepreneurs and executives about the markets, financing models, permitting requirements, technology solutions and other unique aspects of New York’s cleantech industry. NY EXCEL also helps participants build vital networks and provides mentoring to help participants create successful cleantech initiatives.

How were courses with multiple offerings or sections counted for the figures reported above?:
Each course was counted as a single course regardless of the number of offerings or sections

A brief description of how courses with multiple offerings or sections were counted (if different from the options outlined above):

Are the following course types included in the inventory? :
Yes (included) or No (not included)
Internships No
Practicums No
Independent study No
Special topics Yes
Thesis / dissertation No
Clinical No
Physical education No
Performance arts No

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.