Our aim is to embed citizenship and sustainability in curricula across the University, encouraging students to develop a lifelong sense of social responsibility, citizenship and sustainable activity which they can draw upon throughout their time in Bath and beyond.

Sustainability in your curriculum – identify, improve, inspire!

Sustainability in your curriculum

This workshop challenges students to reconsider their understanding of sustainability and contribute to curriculum design discussions.

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Big Picture Challenge

Big Picture Challenge

An innovative extra-curricular enterprise and design-thinking challenge to generate and test ideas to tackle food waste.

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Vertically Integrated Design banner.

Vertically Integrated Projects

The Vertically Integrated Project (VIP) concept is an innovative student education programme which is currently being explored at Bath.

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Linking citizenship and sustainability to the curriculum

The Sustainable Development Goals provide a globally recognised framework through which to identify common challenges and provide direction for active citizens to enact positive change in a sustainable way.

In partnership with students at Bath we have created a workshop resource that staff and/or students can use to explore their understandings of citizenship and sustainability. The workshop provides a simple way to identify where key themes may already be present within a course, as well as opportunities to develop these further. Find out more about the 'Sustainability in your curriculum: identify, improve, inspire!' resource.

The University has also adopted eleven Climate Action Framework principles, which include the commitment in learning and teaching to:

Developing educational initiatives to build a world class reputation for high quality education on climate-related issues with global reach and scale, for example by: providing opportunities for every student to study and work on climate related issues; delivering programmes with a sustainability agenda; delivering pedagogically innovative teaching practices to reduce carbon emissions.

Examples from Bath

Below are some selected examples of how citizenship and sustainability have been embedded within units:

  • School of Management: MSc Sustainability and Management
    Download this guide to a PGT programme which covers a large number of sustainability issues relating to corporate social responsibility whilst exploring the challenges of ensuring sustainability in managing firms. The programme offers a wide range of compulsory units relating to the three pillars of sustainability.
  • School of Management sustainability summary
    Download a summary of the range of teaching activities in the School of Management that embed sustainability in the curriculum, relating to one or more of the three pillars of sustainability: economic, social and environmental.

Recommended reading and resources

From our EduFest 2018 archive, Stephen Sterling's presentation on embedding sustainability in the curriculum.

 Environmental sustainability of learning and teaching, report from the European University Association (published March 2021)

 Advance HE Future Fit Framework.

University of Brighton: read how they have used student engagement activities and embedded credited volunteering activities into their curriculum to incorporate citizenship and sustainability into their courses.

Adapted from the NUS, a key set of sustainability skills that employers are looking for in their graduate employees. How many do you already have in your course?

From Art to Zoo Management: embedding sustainability in UK higher and further education, an ABC of good practice developed by the NUS to showcase the incorporation of sustainability in a wide variety of courses.

NUS sustainability skills survey reports: carried out since 2010, these reports provide insight into changing student attitudes to citizenship and sustainability issues and skills development.

citizenship and sustainability icon

 What do we mean?

Through this curriculum principle we aim to recognise the challenges presented by the changes to our broader physical and social environment and consider how our curriculum might empower students in the roles they will play during their lives as global citizens. We will develop mechanisms in the curricula and/or co-curricular realms to prepare them for these challenges.

Contact us

Email the Curriculum Development Team to discuss which are most suitable for your discipline and to give you guidance on putting them into practice within your session, unit, year, and course.

 Further information

Curriculum Principles

The Centre for Development Studies at the University of Bath

Centre for Development Studies publication 'The Sustainable Development Goals and the University of Bath: An opportunity' Bath Papers in International Development and Wellbeing, January 2021

Updated on: 24 March 2021