Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 57.27
Liaison Jane Stewart
Submission Date March 4, 2022

STARS v2.2

Washington and Lee University
AC-6: Sustainability Literacy Assessment

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.00 / 4.00 Kimberly Hodge
Director of Sustainability Initiatives and Education
Student Affairs
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution conduct an assessment of the sustainability literacy of its students?:
No

Which of the following best describes the literacy assessment? The assessment is administered to::
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Which of the following best describes the structure of the assessment? The assessment is administered as a::
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A copy of the questions included in the sustainability literacy assessment(s):
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A list or sample of the questions included in the sustainability literacy assessment or the website URL where the assessment tool may be found:

The Science of Climate Change Survey Pre-course survey
Geol 141: Pre-Course Response
Please complete this anonymous survey.
*For multiple choice answers, please circle or check only one response.
1) On a scale where zero means no attention, and ten means close and constant attention, how much attention have you paid to the issue of global climate change?
0  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10 

2) On a scale where zero means no attention, and ten means close and constant attention, how much attention has the media paid to the issue of global climate change?
0  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10 

3) Using a scale from zero to ten, where zero means not at all informed and ten means completely informed, how well informed do you think most Americans are about the issue of global climate change?
0  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10 

4) Again using a scale where zero means not at all informed and 10 means completely informed, how well informed do you consider yourself to be about the issue of global climate change?
0  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10 

5) Again using a scale where zero means not at all certain and ten means completely certain, how certain are climate scientists that greenhouse gasses from burning coal, oil and other materials cause global temperatures to rise?
0  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10 

6) Are you: Female Male

7) What is your age? 19

8) What is your major? Environmental Studies – Climate Change Track

9) Would you identify yourself as:

Republican Democrat (Progressive) Independent Other (explain)
10) What role should government play in U.S. society?

Very Active Active Intermediate Laissez-faire None

11) Does the U.S. need a system of universal health care?

Yes No Not sure

12) Does the U.S. have the right to stop countries it doesn’t trust from getting weapons?

Yes No Not sure

13) Is there solid evidence that the Earth is warming?

Yes No Not sure

14) If you responded yes or not sure to question 13, how confident are you that there is solid evidence the Earth is warming?

Very confident Fairly confident Not too confident Not confident at all

15) If you responded no or not sure to question 13, how confident are you that there is not solid evidence the Earth is warming?

Very confident Fairly confident Not too confident Not confident at all

16) If you responded yes or not sure to question 13, do you believe the Earth is getting warmer because of human activity such as burning fossil fuels or mostly because of natural patterns in the Earth’s environment?

Human activity Natural patterns A combination Not sure

17) If you responded yes to question 13, what are the factors that most strongly affect your belief that temperatures on Earth are increasing?

18) If you responded no to question 13, what are the factors that most strongly affect your belief that temperatures on Earth are not increasing?

19) If you believe that humans play a role in climate change what are the factors that most strongly affect your belief?

20) For each of the following statements please indicate if you agree or disagree. Please add any notes of explanation in the margin if you like.

There is not enough scientific evidence to support claims that the Earth is getting warmer.

Agree Disagree Not sure

Scientists are overstating evidence about global warming for their own interests.

Agree Disagree Not sure

The Earth’s atmosphere is too large for human’s activity to change the climate.

Agree Disagree Not sure

Any recent warming on Earth is the result of natural trends and not the activities of humans.

Agree Disagree Not sure
The media is overstating the evidence about global warming.

Agree Disagree Not sure

The media is understating the evidence about global warming.

Agree Disagree Not sure

21) How many greenhouse gases can you name (please list)?

22) Which US President signed the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, committing the U.S. to make an effort to reduce our carbon footprint?

23) From what sources do you learn most about climate change? (Circle all that apply)

Print Media TV Internet

Scholarly Journals Books Family/Friends

A Class at WLU? If so, please list all appropriate classes:

Other:

I know nothing about climate change

24) What news channel, station, print, or website sources do you rely on most often for news on current events?

25) In your view, to what degree is global climate change a problem?

Very Serious Problem A Problem, but Not Too Serious Not a problem

26) Do you think global climate change requires immediate government action?

Yes No Not sure

27) Do you think global climate change requires personal action?

Yes No Not sure

28) If you said yes or not sure to question 26 or 27, what do you think should be done?


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

The Global Climate Change course was created in 2005 and has been taught in the winter terms of the following years: 2006, 2007, 2008, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2017, 2019 and 2021. The survey has been administered in most, if not all, of these sections.


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

The survey is administered to all of the students in the class, and each student is asked to gather five survey responses from other W&L community members.


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

Belief in the existence of climate change and its causes has increased in our community over time, as has scientific literacy associated with the mechanisms of climate change.


Website URL where information about the sustainability literacy assessment is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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A pre- and post-assessment survey is sent every year through one of our courses, Global Climate Change. The survey is given to all of the students in the class, and each student is asked to gather survey responses from other community members.

Follow-up from AASHE after review: "Intent of this credit is to recognize institutions that conduct a sustainability literacy assessment that focuses on knowledge of sustainability topics and challenges (e.g., questions with right/wrong answers). To count, a substantial portion of the assessment (e.g., 10 questions) must focus on knowledge of sustainability topics and challenges. The assessment does not appear to meet credit criteria because it only includes one literacy question (Which US President signed the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change), rather than a comprehensive sustainability literacy assessment. Please clarify if a comprehensive sustainability literacy assessment is in place, or revise Yes responses to No." These changes have been made. - KH

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.