Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 69.24
Liaison Rob Andrejewski
Submission Date March 4, 2022

STARS v2.2

University of Richmond
AC-2: Learning Outcomes

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.26 / 8.00 Rob Andrejewski
Director of Sustainability
Office for Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Has the institution adopted one or more sustainability learning outcomes that apply to the entire student body or, at minimum, to the institution's predominant student body?:

Which of the following best describes the sustainability learning outcomes?:

A list of the institution level sustainability learning outcomes:

Beginning with their general education courses and continuing through the courses in their major, their elective courses, and their various co-curricular and extra-curricular learning experiences, University of Richmond students are expected to develop their ability to think critically and independently, to learn to tolerate ambiguity where true ambiguity exists, and to grow in their respect for-and their ability to deal with-the kinds of multiplicity that characterize our complex world. The common goal of the University's faculty is the education of independent, responsible, and contributing members of society. (from General Education Curriculum requirements: https://registrar.richmond.edu/registration/undergraduate/gen-ed.html)

Total number of graduates from degree programs:

Number of graduates from degree programs that require an understanding of the concept of sustainability:

A brief description of how the figure above was determined:

We reviewed programs with student learning outcomes that explicitly focus on the concept of sustainability or the interdependence of ecological systems and social/economic systems. Many programs do not list learning outcomes at all, so we limited ourselves to programs with published outcomes that also and require sustainability-focused courses.

We did not include programs that did not have explicit sustainability learning outcomes, such as Biology, despite course requirements that lend themselves to understanding of sustainability.

A list of degree programs that require an understanding of the concept of sustainability:

Environmental Studies Description: Environmental studies integrates the study of interactions among physical, chemical and biological components of the environment. Students take many courses in the natural sciences, but not at the expense of courses in the social sciences and humanities. The field has grown substantially since the 1960s, as public awareness of environmental problems grew. The public began to rely on informed scientists to recommend practical public policies and environmental standards. Today, environmental scientists study issues like climate change, conservation, biodiversity, pollution, natural resource usage, waste management and sustainable development. Environmental studies is an applications-oriented field, and courses in the program prepare you to approach environmental problems from a wide variety of perspectives and disciplines. The courses all tend to be intensely interdisciplinary; students are being prepared to use the methods and theories from many branches in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities to interpret and solve environmental problems. Since there are rarely any easy answers to environmental problems, students in environmental studies courses also learn to think critically and analyze environmental issues from the perspective of a variety of competing stakeholders. Professors emphasize clear and jargon-free communication so that the results of student research can be presented in a manner accessible across the disciplines.

Learning outcomes: Human relationship to natural world; Inter-relationships; Awareness of environmental issues; Environmental problem solving; Critical thinking; Analytical thinking; Communication skills; Active citizenry; Active learning

Geography & the Environment Description: The discipline of geography seeks to understand the transformation of the earth in relationship to both human and environmental processes and serves as a bridge between the natural and social sciences. Spatial theories (scale, location, place, and connectivity) allow geographers to critically analyze change in the cultural, physical and economic landscape. Students find geography’s interdisciplinary nature combines well with other programs and fields of study such as international studies, environmental studies, biology and economics. Geography professors offer exciting courses on a range of important issues like global climate change, industrialization, globalization, resource management, agricultural change, urbanization, land use, deforestation and hydrology. Geographers emphasize the study of space, place, pattern and scale within these interconnected topics. Geographers encourage students to explore the Earth’s human and natural processes through critical thinking, spatial theory and geospatial technology. Our classes stress active learning. Natural science courses feature laboratory components that clarify the complexities of the Earth. Participatory social science classes focus on how humans interact with their surroundings and each other. Theories of space, place, pattern and scale deconstruct processes at the macro, meso and micro levels, helping students understand global connections.

Learning Outcomes: Understand global connections; Integrative problem solving; Understanding of the earth’s cultural and biological diversity

Documentation supporting the figure reported above (upload):

Do the figures reported above cover one, two, or three academic years?:

Percentage of students who graduate from programs that require an understanding of the concept of sustainability:

Website URL where information about the sustainability learning outcomes is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Geography and the Environment: http://geography.richmond.edu/
Environmental Studies: http://environmental.richmond.edu/

Graduates 2020-2021:
12 majors
6 minors

5 majors
3 minor

790 Arts & Sciences, Business, Leadership graduates in 2020

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.