Mapping Course Sustainability by Embedding the SDGs Inventory into the University Curriculum: A Case Study from National University of Kaohsiung in Taiwan

Ya-Ching Chang, Hsing-Lung Lien
2020 Sustainability  
A course inventory module, based on the Curriculum Framework for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) published by the Commonwealth Secretariat, has been embedded into the online curriculum system at the National University of Kaohsiung (NUK) since 2018. The primary aim of this study is to explore the sustainability status of the course offerings and to understand the interdisciplinary capacity in pursuing the SDGs at NUK. At the university level, a total of 1200–1300 courses (approximately
more » ... 57% of courses) were reported to be related to SDGs, where the curriculum of NUK mainly emphasized SDGs 3, 4, 8, 9 and 16. However, our study indicates that many SDGs are still not focused in the curriculum of all colleges. Two patterns of the SDGs-related course framework were observed at the college level: One is the college course offerings linked to a wide variety of SDG content; while the second pattern is the college course offerings linked only to specific SDG content, mainly dependent on the subject areas of colleges. Our study suggests that the number of SDGs covered by a course reflects the diversity of the sustainability topics covered in the course. The metric gives an indication of the areas covered and, thus, also points to blind spots (i.e., insufficiencies). Moreover, it can also give an indication of the diversity within colleges, which could suggest future paths for transdisciplinary development. An understanding of the baseline status of sustainability in the university curriculum provides opportunities for universities to plan their strategies for sustainability and prioritize the allocation of resources accordingly.
doi:10.3390/su12104274 fatcat:de2v733zubd2dopurntzwkpr4i