Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 80.17
Liaison Mike Wilson
Submission Date May 5, 2020

STARS v2.2

University of Victoria
AC-1: Academic Courses

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 12.93 / 14.00
"---" 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 1,944 766
Number of sustainability-focused courses offered 318 53
Number of sustainability-inclusive courses offered 230 97

Percentage of courses that are sustainability course offerings:

Total number of academic departments that offer courses:

Number of academic departments with sustainability course offerings:

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 complete the course inventory :
During the completion of STARS 2.0 (in 2014), the University of Victoria Office of Campus Planning and Sustainability initiated a committee that included three faculty members of differing departments, and one staff member who represented the Faculty of Business. The committee (through the consultation of the AVP Academic and Provost) created a definition for sustainability in curriculum and research based as a supplement to the definition of sustainability found in UVic's Sustainability Policy. For 2016 (v.2.1), UVic still adheres to the criteria of the definition, which is as follows:

- Sustainability research examines forces affecting local and global ecological, economic, social, health and cultural challenges. It helps societies flourish without compromising the future. Sustainability research is typically but not exclusively focused on solutions.

- Sustainability courses focus on ecological, social and economic dimensions of sustainability and may integrate several perspectives including social justice, ecological balance, public health and well-being, prosperity and the construction of sustainable livelihoods, to foster an understanding of an interconnected world.

- Courses that include Sustainability contain a section, chapter, module, case study, or other component that focuses on sustainability, as defined above.

Using the 2016 List as a reference, courses no longer being offered between the years 2017-2020 year were removed. After this, the Office of Campus Planning and Sustainability identified possible sustainability courses from the UVic Course Catalogue using a keyword search of the course titles. Additionally, newly offered courses were examined individually based on the title and course description to determine whether or not they were sustainability-related or focused.

Once this list was established, the course administrator from every department identified on the list was contacted via email to inquire about further courses that might be included in the list.

Please note that the UVic course inventory was started under STARS Version 2.1. UVic made the decision to switch to Version 2.2 as soon as it was released, which was during the course inventory process. As Version 2.2 provides specific definitions of “sustainability-focused” courses and “sustainability-inclusive” courses, an assessment was made to compare UVic’s previously working definition of “sustainability courses” (sustainability focused) and “courses that include sustainability” (sustainability-inclusive). It was found that the working definitions being used at the time fell in line with the newly provided definitions in Version 2.2, and so the inventory process continued bearing in mind these very slight changes in definitions.

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:
Multiple offerings or sections were reported as a single course, however, “special topics” were counted as multiple courses as each special topic was a unique offering that differed from previous topics in the same course.

Website URL where information about the sustainability course offerings is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:
UVic commits a significant amount of resources to it sustainability curriculum and several programs that focus on sustainability. Programs include an undergraduate major and minor, MA, MSc, and PhD programs in Environmental Studies, all of which are sustainability focused programs. The Business faculty, which uses its Centre for Social and Sustainable Innovation (http://www.uvic.ca/gustavson/cssi/) to offer an array of resources that help students, faculty and staff incorporate all kinds of sustainability into their studies, careers and lives. Other areas of the university with a sustainability focus include a breadth of indigenous studies, the Department of Geography, whose courses cover human geography, and environment and sustainability, and the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, which provides education in Earth System Science. There is also a wide representation of sustainability focused and related courses across many other departments at UVic.

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.