Sustainability Across the


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Grace Campbell, Lecturer, Humanities Program, UNC Asheville, presentation for UNC Focus Forward April 7, 2010

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Sustainability Across the

  1. 1.  <br />Integrating Environmental Literacy into Core Programsat UNC-Asheville<br />UNC Asheville<br />Grace G. Campbell<br />Humanities Program<br />UNC-Asheville<br />April 7, 2010<br />
  2. 2. E- Literacy: Rationale<br />Keep pace with contemporary environmental discourse<br />Prepare students for eco-focused future<br />Implement Goals of UNC Tomorrow<br />Respond to student interest/demand<br />UNCA’smission - interdisciplinarity/engagement<br />UNCA Strategic Plan<br />
  3. 3. E-Literacy:Definition<br />NO single definition<br />UNCA FOCUS ON INTERDISCIPLINARITY<br />Sciences: empirical /material<br />Social Sciences: choice architecture/ policy<br />Humanities: values /culture<br />
  4. 4. E-Literacy:Why Core Curriculum?<br />Every student across curriculum<br />UNCA Interdisciplinary Humanities Program (team-designed/ team taught)<br />UNCA Integrative Liberal Studies (ILS) Model (supports new course design)<br />
  5. 5. E-Literacy at UNCA:Structural Advantages<br />custom-published “Asheville Readers” (Copley)<br />regional emphasis on outdoor recreation<br />Small campus (@ 3600 students)<br />Culture of Team-designed courses<br />“Common Lecture” format<br />Integrative liberal Studies Program (ILS)<br />Undergraduate Research<br />
  6. 6. E-Literacy in Core Programs:New Curricula (2002):<br /> 1. Senior Capstone Colloquia<br />HUM 414: The Individual in the Contemporary World<br />LS 479: Cultivating Global Citizenship<br /> 2. Undergraduate Research<br />
  7. 7. E-Literacy in Core Programs: key features<br />Shared lexicon of terminology<br />Shared concepts<br />Emphasis on interdisciplinary significance <br /> (natural sciences / social sciences / humanities)<br />
  8. 8. “Sustainability” as a Core Value(How we talk about it)<br />past->present-> future<br />flourishing- of humans / life/ systems<br />capacity - to endure and flourish <br />
  9. 9. E-Literacy: (example)basic concepts in environmental ethics <br />Anthropocentrism – human-centered<br />Biocentrism – life-centered<br />Ecocentrism– system-centered<br />Theocentrism– God -centered<br />
  10. 10. E-Literacy in Core Programs:(examples)Shared Concepts<br />“cradle-to-cradle”<br />biodiversity<br />anthropogenic change<br />collective action problems<br />“tragedy of the commons”<br />non-renewability<br />“maldevelopment”<br />
  11. 11. E-Literacy: Auxiliary Learning Outcomes<br />Understanding Intersections (race / class / ethnicity)<br />Understanding human agency / choice architecture<br />Awareness of technology - “nature / culture split”<br />Greater significance of global studies/ multi-cultural studies<br />Cross-disciplinary cooperation<br />
  12. 12. E-Literacy in Core Program: Kinds of texts<br /> easy to excerpt<br />intersectionality / diversity<br /> can be secondary (Sen, Nussbaum, McKibben)<br />
  13. 13. E-Literacy:Examples of texts <br />Singer, Peter, “Animal Liberation”<br />Tom Regan, The Case for Animal Rights<br />AmartyaSen, Development as Freedom<br />Arne Naess, “The Deep Ecological Movement: Some Philosophical Aspects”<br />Berry, Wendell, “Manifesto: Mad Farmer Liberation Front.” <br />Bryan Norton, “Environmental Ethics and Weak Anthropocentrism”<br />Deen, Islamic Environmental Ethics<br />Dillard, Annie. From: “Pilgrim at Tinker Creek.”<br />Dobel, Patrick, “The Judeo-Christian Stewardship Attitude to Nature.” <br />Dykeman, Wilma, “Who Killed the South French Broad?” <br />Gordis, Robert, Judaism and the Environment<br />Hardin, Garret, “The Tragedy of the Commons.” <br />Keown, Buddhist Environmental Ethics <br />Kuhn, Thomas, “Scientists and their Worldviews.” <br />Leopold, Aldo, “Thinking Like a Mountain.” <br />Leopold, The Land Ethic<br />Lester Brown, “The Economy and the Earth”<br />Lovins, Amory, “Technology is the Answer (But What Was the Question?)” <br />McDonough and Braungart, Cradle to Cradle<br />Paul Taylor, “The Ethics of Respect for Nature”<br />Peter Singer, One World<br />Sallie McFague, “The World as God’s Body”<br />Vandana Shiva, “Development, Ecology, and Women”<br />Wilson, Edward O, “Storm Over the Amazon” <br />Wilson, Edward O, The Diversity of Life<br /> <br />
  14. 14. E-Literacy:Challenges to curricular change<br />Perception of lack of faculty expertise<br />Inquiryor advocacy?<br />Defining a common lexicon (nature / culture-problematic category)<br />Disconnect between campus values and campus practices<br />Standard challenges (overwork!)<br />Gen Ed: tradeoffs<br />
  15. 15. E-Literacy in Core Program: Ongoing Intellectual issues:<br />“historicism” vs. “greening” of core texts<br /> primary texts: ancient vs. contemporary?<br />(Aristotle, Tao teChing, Bible, Baghavad-Gita, Dhammapada)<br />
  16. 16. Integrating E-Literacy:Lessons Learned<br />“environmental champions”<br />unlikely disciplines (Music)<br />align with campus practices (Student Environmental Center)<br />unlikely texts (Aristotle)<br />broad definition of sustainability(economic /social/environmental)<br />
  17. 17. Integrating E-Literacy:Lessons Learned<br />faculty/students to conferences (SENCER and Emory, AASHE)<br />regional significance (Southern Appalachia, Smoky Mtn. Natl. Park, Cherokee)<br />Link undergraduate research to campus activities<br />Connect with faith-based communities (students want this)<br />
  18. 18. E-Literacy:Mistakes<br />problematizing(“Depression 101”)<br /> “value-free” ideals <br />(sustainability is value-laden)<br />Neglect of “urban environment”<br />Starting with Seniors<br />Book prices<br />
  19. 19. E-Literacy: Impacts? <br />Increased numbers of undergraduate research projects related to sustainability<br />Increase in the number and scope of courses incorporating e-literacy<br />Further integration of environment content inhumanities disciplines<br />
  20. 20. E-Literacy:Today at UNCA<br />Upcoming Assessment of (SLOs)<br />New teaching habit (anecdotal) <br />“look for interdisciplinarity of sustainability content”<br /> (Amory Lovin, Bill McDonough, Wendell Berry, Caroline Merchant, Michael Pollan, WangariMaathai, Annie Dillard, Peter Singer, E. O. Wilson, Vandana Shiva, Majora Carter, Lester Brown, Paul Hawken)<br /> “living labs”: campus facilities as classrooms (Sam Miller complex)<br />
  21. 21. E-Literacy:Supporting faculty efforts<br />Need Signals of Institutional Commitment (Chancellor’s Task Force on Sustainability)<br />Faculty Evaluation<br />EmbeddedAssessment:highlighting existingefforts<br />Faculty development/ travel $<br />
  22. 22. E-Literacy Vision:“Unity in Pluralism” <br />Academics - Ecological Metaphor<br />Emphasis on Systems<br />Environmental Knowledge -> (Neurath’s Boat)<br />