Overall Rating Platinum
Overall Score 85.48
Liaison Emmanuelle Jodoin
Submission Date Dec. 6, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Université de Sherbrooke
AC-1: Academic Courses

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 12.58 / 14.00 Véronique Bisaillon
Sustainable Development Education Advisor
Office of the Vice-President, Administration and Sustainable Development
"---" 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 2,407 2,377
Number of sustainability courses offered 83 66
Number of courses offered that include sustainability 342 312

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 :

The Office of the Vice-President, Administration and Sustainable Development is responsible for collecting and evaluating data for the AC1 credit. Below are the steps that led to the completion of the undergraduate and graduate levels inventory of academic offerings related to sustainability at the Université de Sherbrooke:

The staff from the Office of the Vice-President, Administration and Sustainable Development met at several occasions to develop a rigorous methodology and agree on the criteria to evaluate courses and identify those with content directly or indirectly related to sustainability. The criteria used for this evaluation were based on the guidance provided by AASHE (2017), section G. Standards and Terms of the Technical Manual.

The 2017-2018 academic year courses data file from the Registrar's Office - Statistics and Student Data Section - first made it possible to isolate from the latter the courses identified as "with enrollment", thus making it possible to select and retain only those that had been taught during the reporting period (N = 4,784).

From this selection were excluded courses affiliated with the University of the Third Age, the Co-op Work Term and Professional Development Services, the Registrar's Office as well as clinical courses (Doctor’s degree-professional practice students).

To establish the course inventory and determine courses likely to have a content related to sustainability, the themes highlighted in the report Portrait de la recherche en développement durable au Québec (2000-2010) made it possible, as such, to make a first selection. It should be noted that this report lists sixty sustainability research themes.

In addition to sorting by themes, keywords have also been identified. The Université de Sherbrooke's Sustainable Development Policy (2005), the sustainable development vocabulary used by the Québec Ministry of Sustainable Development, Environment and Climate Change (MDDELCC, 2016) and the themes addressed in the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (2015) were used as a basis for creating the list of keywords to be considered.

The title, the targeted skills and the course content were then analyzed according to a process detecting the presence of “sustainability” themes and/or selected keywords as defined. In the absence of themes or keywords sought in the title or the course description, it was assumed that they were unrelated to sustainability.

The courses thus selected for the inventory (N = 799) were then classified according to two types: “sustainability course” (or directly related to sustainability) and " course includes sustainability" (or indirectly related to sustainability). To differentiate between the two, here are the parameters that were established:

• Courses affiliated with the Environment and Sustainable Development University Training Center (Centre universitaire de formation en environnement et développement durable), which had a course code prefix “ENV” and “GDD”, were by definition selected as being of the "sustainability course" (or directly related to sustainability) type, given the explicit link to the issue;

• The other selected courses were analyzed to detect the presence of "sustainability" themes and / or keywords, as well as evaluated according to the criteria and indications presented by AASHE (2017) in section G. Standards and Terms, Sustainability course offerings. Each activity was reviewed by the staff to determine whether the content was related to one of the two types: " sustainability course " or " course includes sustainability ".

Finally, in some cases, faculty members were consulted to confirm the attribute associated with their courses (identified as " sustainability course " or " course includes sustainability ").

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 Yes
Practicums Yes
Independent study No
Special topics Yes
Thesis / dissertation Yes
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:

Le Fonds de recherche du Québec – Société et culture (FRQSC), 2013. Portrait de la recherche en développement durable au Québec (2000-2010) http://www.scientifique-en-chef.gouv.qc.ca/wp-content/uploads/Portrait_DD.pdf

Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et des changements climatiques (MDDELCC), 2016. Le vocabulaire du développement durable https://www.oqlf.gouv.qc.ca/ressources/bibliotheque/dictionnaires/documents/20110721_dev_durable.pdf

Université de Sherbrooke, 2005. Politique de développement durable https://www.usherbrooke.ca/a-propos/fileadmin/sites/a-propos/documents/direction/politiques/2500-017.pdf

United Nations, 2015. Transforming Our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

The total number of academic departments that offer courses (50) excludes departments providing for clinical instruction (“Clinical courses offered exclusively to doctor’s degree-professional practice students”), just as clinical courses are excluded from the institution’s inventory of sustainability course offerings. This explains the difference between the total number of academic departments as seen under this credit as opposed to the total number of academic departments (58) reported under IC3 (Academics and Demographics).

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 and complete the Data Inquiry Form.