Piloting the CLIMASP-Tempus Interdisciplinary Minor in Climate Change and Sustainability Policy: Outcomes Achieved

Abstract

Higher education plays a unique and critical role, one often underestimated and/or neglected in making a more sustainable society. The paper will deal with the piloting of an interdisciplinary minor programme on climate change and sustainability policy across 10 universities in Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon. It is a European Commission funded programme led by the University of Crete, Greece. In the piloting phase, more than 80 courses from various disciplines across the 10 partner universities are being implemented in the spring semester of the 2014-15 academic year with the participation of more than 2000 students. A pre-test questionnaire was given to assess: 1) previous teaching and learning practices; 2) sustainability education competences and 3) interdisciplinarity consisted of three scales- interdisciplinary skills, reflective behaviour, and recognising disciplinary perspectives. The Interdisciplinary Skills scale assesses students’ perceptions of their abilities to think about and use different disciplinary perspectives in solving interdisciplinary problems or to make connections across academic fields. The Reflective Behaviour scale includes items that operationalize the “reflexivity” dimension of interdisciplinarity and students’ perceived ability to recognize the need to reconsider the direction of their thinking and problem-solving approaches. The final scale, Recognizing Disciplinary Perspectives, taps students’ perceived understandings of disciplinary knowledge, methods, expectations, and boundaries and how disciplinary knowledge might be applied in different situations. The same test will be given at the end of the semester. The pre-test and post-test analysis is expected to identify possible changes as a result of the impact of the CLIMASP minor courses.



Author Information
Vassilios Makrakis, University of Crete, Greece
Nelly Kostoulas, University of Crete, Greece

Paper Information
Conference: ECSEE2015
Stream: Social Sustainability and Sustainable Living

This paper is part of the ECSEE2015 Conference Proceedings (View)
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