Green Gown Awards 2015 Learning and Skills - University of the West of England - Finalist

Tags: sustainability | green gown awards | university | ESD | curriculum | learning and skills

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Raising the Baseline

The ‘Raising the Baseline’ project has taken a systematic, consultative and target-led approach to deliver a coherent and comprehensive offer of ESD across the formal, informal and extra curriculum of a UK HEI, namely UWE Bristol. This offer integrates staff development, the student experience and the student voice to ensure consistency across the institution and has enabled the University to raise the baseline standard of delivery across academic departments.

The University has:

• Engaged every academic department in identifying and benchmarking current ESD practice and areas for development

• Developed staff capabilities and confidence in relation to ESD

• Grown the number of staff responsible for delivering and reporting on ESD, across academic departments and professional services

• Created new ways for students to contribute to enhancing our ESD provision

• Facilitated the development of more opportunities for students to gain experience of taking positive action for sustainability

• Developed new mechanisms for monitoring and reporting on our ESD provision.

Top 3 learnings

1 We have learnt that much more can be achieved through collaboration than by individuals alone and that positive personal and social relationships are vital in the process of culture change

2 Focusing on the basic principles of sustainability (rather than on definitions) is useful as a strategy for engaging all disciplines. Further, terminology matters

3 This project has enabled us to enhance understanding of our institution, both internally and externally. We are developing a better sense of who ‘we’ are.

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