Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 54.61
Liaison Daniela Beall
Submission Date March 3, 2022

STARS v2.2

University of Wisconsin-Green Bay
AC-6: Sustainability Literacy Assessment

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 4.00 David Voelker
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution conduct an assessment of the sustainability literacy of its students?:

Which of the following best describes the literacy assessment? The assessment is administered to::
The entire (or predominate) student body, directly or by representative sample

Which of the following best describes the structure of the assessment? The assessment is administered as a::
Standalone evaluation without a follow-up assessment of the same cohort or representative samples

A copy of the questions included in the sustainability literacy assessment(s):
A list or sample of the questions included in the sustainability literacy assessment or the website URL where the assessment tool may be found:

UWGB assesses for sustainability literacy in two ways: 1) General Education assessment; 2) graduating senior and recent alumni surveys.

1). Our most recent General Education assessment data is available here: https://www.uwgb.edu/UWGBCMS/media/Assessment/files/Benchmark-Assessment-Results-Sustainability-(2014-16).pdf

This 2014-2016 assessment focused on several areas of student learning:
--Demonstrates a basic knowledge of sustainability.
--Recognizes the complexity and multi-faceted nature of sustainability.
--Makes informed judgments.
--Integrates sustainability and social responsibility.

A new round of assessment is underway during the Spring 2021 semester. About two years ago, we streamlined the Sustainability Perspective learning outcomes as follows:
--Think critically regarding the array and implications of alternative sustainability definitions and describe why actions to achieve sustainability are complex and controversial.
--Discuss sustainability within the context of ethical decision-making and engage in informed judgments about environmental problems as socially responsible citizens.

So, for the 2021 assessment, instructors will assess students on the basis of these two learning outcomes. (See other responses below for additional information about General Education assessment.)

2). In addition to assessing students in specific courses, UWGB also surveys graduating seniors and recent alumni to ascertain their own perception of how well their UWGB education prepared them to use “Sustainability perspectives to make informed and ethical judgments about the environment as responsible citizens.” The survey data from 2018-19 (attached above) shows a very positive response on the part of UWGB graduates in response to this question.

A brief description of how the literacy assessment was developed and/or when it was adopted:

UWGB implemented a revised General Education program in the Fall of 2014, which included a new "Sustainability Perspective" requirement. As per the link above, Sustainability Perspective courses were assessed in 2014, 2015, and 2016. The university recently postponed another round of assessment of this learning outcome because of both the pandemic circumstances and the need to hire a new assessment director, which happened in late November, 2020. All General Education learning outcomes, including for the Sustainability Perspective, are being assessed during the Spring 2021 semester, so we will have new data soon.

The question about sustainability appeared on the graduating senior survey for the first time in 2018, reflecting the fact that students who started in 2014 and graduated in 2018 completed the Sustainability Perspective General Education requirement.

A brief description of how a representative sample was reached (if applicable) and how the assessment(s) were administered :

Using the previous 10-year assessment plan, which was in effect through 2019, the Director of Institutional Research selected courses in each of the areas being assessed in a given year. (As noted above, Sustainability was assessed in 2014-16.) The selected courses included different delivery types and different sized courses from several different departments (e.g., Human Biology, First Nations Studies, and Public and Environmental Affairs). All told, 388 students were assessed across 11 courses from 8 different academic departments.

In our new assessment plan, which launches during the Spring 2021 semester, all General Education courses will be assessed each semester on a three-year cycle, with the course instructor choosing the outcome (out of the two approved) to assess for that three-year period. In other words, instructors teaching Sustainability Perspective courses will choose one (of the two) learning outcomes listed above, and they will assess that outcome each time they teach the course over a three-year period. This approach will yield longitudinal data that should be very helpful. Moreover, we will have assessment data every semester going forward (rather than having data for a few years, followed by gap, which happened under the previous plan).

A brief summary of results from the literacy assessment(s):

Between 2014 and 2016, we saw improvement in the categories of "Recognizes the complexity and multi-­‐faceted nature of sustainability" and "Integrates sustainability and social responsibility."

2014-15: http://www.uwgb.edu/UWGBCMS/media/Assessment/files/BenchmarkResultsSustainabilityPrespec201415.pdf


Moreover, as noted on the attachment above about the graduating senior and recent alumni surveys, the vast majority (over 90%) of UWGB graduating seniors and recent alumni who completed these surveys reported at least average academic preparation or understanding of “Sustainability perspectives” and their importance for making “informed and ethical judgments about the environment as responsible citizens.” In all three survey groups included below, a majority chose from the highest two values on the Likert scale (i.e., “Excellent” or Good,” or “Extremely” or “Very”).

Website URL where information about the sustainability literacy assessment is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about 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.