Dickinson faculty can nominate their courses for designation as either of two categories of sustainability courses, Sustainability Connections (SCON) or Sustainability Investigations (SINV). To receive either designation, a course should help students to attain one or more of the sustainability competencies and dispositions:

  • Think critically about problems of improving the human condition equitably in this and future generations, while conserving environmental systems necessary to support healthy and vibrant societies;
  • Solve problems by applying sustainability concepts and principles;
  • Communicate effectively to raise awareness, increase understanding and motivate action for sustainability;
  • Collaborate with others, working with and leading groups to advance shared sustainability goals.
The sustainability learning goals do not need to be included explicitly in the course syllabus. But it is expected that the learning goals of the course will support attainment of sustainability learning goals.

Courses must be re-nominated for these designations every semester due do variations between course sections and changing course content. If course content and recommended designation is the same, faculty can simply complete the top section of the Course Nomination Form and mark “Existing Course/Same Designation”. Benefits of having courses designated include student recruitment for courses, data collection for college curriculum assessment, and support of the College's strategic plan.

DOWNLOAD SUSTAINABILITY COURSE NOMINATION FORM


Sustainability Connections (SCON)
courses build competencies in knowledge and methods of a field that is relevant to understanding sustainability and demonstrate connections between the subject matter of the course and sustainability. Students are introduced to sustainability, sustainable development or related concepts.


The criteria for designation of Sustainability Connections (SCON) courses are:

  • Course learning goals support attainment of at least one of the sustainability competencies and dispositions.
  • Students are introduced to sustainability, sustainable development or related concepts, but normally sustainability is not a major emphasis, theme or topic of the course.
  • The course builds student competencies in knowledge and methods of a field that is relevant to understanding environmental, social, economic or other dimension of sustainability.
  • Students learn how knowledge and methods that are the subject of the course can be applied or made relevant to inquiries about sustainability.
  • Connections to sustainability could be done through one or more lectures, labs, classroom discussions, reading assignments, writing assignments, oral presentations, field experiences, research assignments, creative work or other assignments.
  • The connection to sustainability may emphasize just one dimension of sustainability (e.g. environmental, social, economic or cultural), but students should be made aware of other dimensions as well.
  • Explicit reference to sustainability is included in the course syllabus.

Sustainability Investigations (SINV) courses engage students in deep and focused exploration of sustainability as a major theme of the course, through which students gain a rich understanding of multiple dimensions of sustainability.

The criteria for designation of Sustainability Investigations (SINV) courses are:

  • Course learning goals support attainment of at least one of the sustainability competencies and dispositions.
  • Sustainability is a major theme, though not necessarily the sole theme, of the course.
  • Students are engaged in deep and focused exploration of sustainability and its multiple dimensions (e.g. environmental, social, economic and/or cultural).
  • Engagement with exploration of sustainability is accomplished through assignments, lectures, discussions and readings that collectively represent a significant portion of students’ work in the course.
  • Grading of student performance gives significant weight to sustainability related assignments.
  • Explicit reference to sustainability is included in the course syllabus.