GGAA 2014 - Learning & Teaching - Deakin University - Finalist

Tags: awards | International | learning | teaching | Australasia | 2014 | Deakin

Using creative approaches to free up thinking in an interdisciplinary undergraduate sustainability unit

Creating Sustainable Futures, Deakin University’s first whole of university sustainability unit for undergraduates, develops interdisciplinary collaboration through creative group work processes and working with sustainability practitioners to help solve real world problems. The action research model has evidenced positive change in students’ self-perception of their and others’ potential to contribute to solving sustainability problems. The unit has won five awards for excellence in teaching.

Top 3 learnings:

  • Success depends on staff from different faculties first learning to talk and work together, acknowledging their disciplinary differences and their approaches to sustainability.
  • Overcoming the administrative and structural barriers is time consuming, assisted by involving senior staff in the development process.
  • Scaffolding student learning by creating an interactive and supportive environment so they go through a challenging and often transformative process of questioning their worldviews, assumptions and values.