Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 58.21
Liaison Jeannie Matheison
Submission Date Feb. 27, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Idaho
EN-6: Assessing Sustainability Culture

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.50 / 1.00 Jeannie L. Matheison
Director
Sustainability Center
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution conduct an assessment of sustainability culture (i.e. the assessment focuses on sustainability values, behaviors and beliefs, and may also address awareness of campus sustainability initiatives)?:
Yes

Which of the following best describes the cultural assessment? The assessment is administered to::
The entire campus community (students, staff and faculty), directly or by representative sample

Which of the following best describes the structure of the cultural assessment? The assessment is administered::
Without a follow-up assessment of the same cohort or representative samples of the same population

A brief description of how and when the cultural assessment(s) were developed and/or adopted:

The UI Campus Sustainability Survey (2018) is modeled on the Sustainability Cultural Indicators Project (SCIP) developed by the University of Michigan. The cultural assessment portion of the survey gathers data on beliefs, values, and behaviors. These questions gauged: levels of satisfaction for campus recycling, levels of support for a student fee increase dedicated to energy conservation infrastructure improvements such as solar arrays, parking pass fee increase for energy conservation improvements, beliefs about climate change, the value of carbon neutrality, and levels of importance for sustainable dining options. In years prior, we conducted a separate transportation survey to calculate the commute modal split of students and employees, but this year we incorporated transportation questions into this cultural and environmental literacy assessment to reduce survey fatigue. We ended up with two surveys: one for students and one for employees. The employee survey is twenty questions in length. The student survey has ten additional environmental literacy questions for a total of thirty questions. We conducted cognitive interviews of the complete survey to identify and correct wording, question order, visual design, and navigation problems.

We worked with the Institutional Review Board (IRB) office, who determined that this project did not meet the definition of human subject research because the data is not being used for research purposes. The results of the survey will be used for institutional and program improvement purposes.

We distributed the survey to a representative sample of the Moscow campus by email (Appendix A); it was sent out by University Communications and Marketing in November 2017. As a matter of university policy, we were not permitted to send email reminders; as an alternative, we sent one reminder to each cohort by way of the Daily Register and the MyUidaho news feed. The response rate is 12% for students and 19% for employees. The resulting data is de-identified, which means the survey is anonymous.


A copy or sample of the questions related to sustainability culture:
A sample of the questions related to sustainability culture or the website URL where the assessment tool is available:

The University of Idaho Campus Sustainability Survey 2018 is available on the Sustainability Center website at https://www.uidaho.edu/current-students/sustainability-center/resources/surveys


A brief description of how representative samples were reached (if applicable) and how the cultural assessment is administered:

We distributed the survey to a representative sample of the Moscow campus by email (Appendix A); it was sent out by University Communications and Marketing in November 2017. As a matter of university policy, we were not permitted to send email reminders; as an alternative, we sent one reminder to each cohort by way of the Daily Register and the MyUidaho news feed. The response rate is 12% for students and 19% for employees. The resulting data is de-identified, which means the survey is anonymous.


A brief summary of results from the cultural assessment, including a description of any measurable changes over time:

Key findings

1. One-hundred percent (100%) of administrators, 95% faculty, 93% of staff, 92% of students, and 93% of all respondents said they think climate change is happening.

2. The University’s goal to achieve carbon neutrality is “very important” to 68% of faculty, 54% of students, 49% of staff, and 40% of administrators.

3. When asked if they support a student fee increase of $5 or less to fund energy conservation infrastructure, such as solar arrays, 73% of students said yes.

4. When asked if they support a parking pass fee of $5 or less to help fund energy conservation infrastructure, such as solar arrays, 68% of faculty, 60% of staff, 55% of students, and 40% of administrators said yes.

5. Recycling is “very important” to 90% of administrators, 87% of faculty, 80% of staff, and 72% of students; however, only 10% of all respondents said they are “very satisfied” with campus recycling. In addition, 40% of all respondents said they are “somewhat satisfied” with campus recycling.

6. The largest percentages of respondents identified “no bins are available” (46%), “unsure if products can be recycled/lack of instructions” (41%), “don’t know where to recycle” (30%), and “bins are full” (21%) as the factors that prevent them from recycling on campus.

7. In the environmental literacy portion of the survey, student respondents answered ten questions to evaluate their knowledge of sustainability topics and challenges such as climate change, conservation, and environmental justice. Students scored an average of 70%.

8. Forty-five percent (45%) of all respondents said it is “very important” for locally grown/produced food (grown within 100 miles) to be available to eat on campus.

9. Sixty-four percent (64%) of students and 22% of employees have a one-way commute of one mile or less to campus. Forty-four percent (44%) of employees and 24% of students have a one-way commute of 1.1 to 4 miles to campus.


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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Jeannie Matheison, UI Sustainability Center Director, prepared this report. Soren Newman, Senior Researcher, Office of Grant and Project Development, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, contributed extensive social science survey methodology expertise. Joan Jones, Assessment Analyst, Institutional Effectiveness and Accreditation, generously provided Qualtrics support. Bert Baumgaertner, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences provided advising and guidance. Sustainability Center staff Stevie Steely, Sustainability and Student Engagement Coordinator, and Ethan Morris, Program Manager, participated in cognitive interviews. Maraya Hanson, Projects Coordinator, categorized respondent comments.
For more information, contact Jeannie Matheison at jeanniem@uidaho.edu. This report is available on the Sustainability Center’s website at https://www.uidaho.edu/current-students/sustainability-center/resources/surveys

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.