The Conversation – Plug the university finance gap by turning teaching greener

As students take to the streets calling for free higher education, a spotlight is being shone again on the sustainability of England’s higher education system. While much of the debate centres around financial sustainability if universities did more to become environmentally sustainable they could also reduce costs.

Building on the findings from the SusTEACH project and analysis of the student loans system Sally Caird has published an article in ‘The Conversation’ that contributes to the debate about the financial sustainability of England’s Higher Education System, following the recent well-publicised report by the Higher Education Committee.

‘Plug the university finance gap by turning teaching greener’

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Further updates on publications

We are working on a number of publications that have been recently published or are in press, based on the SusTEACH project thinking, research findings, toolkit development and applications.
Caird, S. Lane, A. and Swithenby, E. (2013). ICTs and the design of sustainable higher education teaching models: an environmental assessment of UK courses. Chapter 21 In: Caeiro, S.; Leal F.W.; Jabbour, C. J. C. and Azeiteiro, U. M. eds. Sustainability Assessment Tools in Higher Education – Mapping Trends and Good Practices at Universities Around the World. Springer International Publishing Switzerland, (DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-02375-5_21) pp375-385. linkhttp://www.springer.com/energy/energy+efficiency/book/978-3-319-02374-8.

Caird, S. and Lane, A. (in press). Conceptualising the role of Information and Communication Technologies in the design of higher education teaching models used in the UK. British Journal of Educational Technology (In press). DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjet.12123

Caird, S. Lane, A. and Swithenby, E. (2014). Greening Higher Education qualification programmes with online learning. In: Leal Filho, W.; Azeiteiro, U. and Caeiro, S. eds. E-learning and sustainability. Umweltbildung, Umweltkommunikation und Nachhaltigkeit – Environmental Education, Communication and Sustainability. New York: Peter Lang Scientific Publishers, (In press). http://oro.open.ac.uk/39498/

Lane, A. Caird, S. and Weller, M. (2014). The potential social, economic and environmental benefits of MOOCs: operational and historical comparisons with a massive ‘closed online’ course. Open Praxis, 6(2) pp. 115–123.

Caird, S. Lane, A. Swithenby, E. Roy, R. and Potter, S. (2015) Design of higher education teaching models and carbon impacts. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education. Volume 16, Issue 2 (in press). http://oro.open.ac.uk/id/eprint/38870

Several papers have been presented to conferences in April 2014

Lane, A. Caird. S. and Weller, M. (2014) Comparing the social, economic and environmental benefits of MOOCs with a massive closed online course to Open Educational Resources OER14: building communities of open practice (http://www.oer14.org/). Newcastle, 28-29 April 2014

Lane, A. Caird. S. and Weller, M. (2014) The potential social, economic and environmental benefits of MOOCs: historical comparisons with a massive ‘closed’ online course Open Education for a Multicultural World (OCW) Consortium Global Conference, Ljubljana, Slovenia 23 – 25 April 2014.

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Update on publications

We are working on a number of publications that have been recently published or are in press, based on the SusTEACH project thinking, research findings, toolkit development and applications.
Caird, S. Lane, A. and Swithenby, E. (2013). ICTs and the design of sustainable higher education teaching models: an environmental assessment of UK courses. Chapter 21 In: Caeiro, S.; Leal F.W.; Jabbour, C. J. C. and Azeiteiro, U. M. eds. Sustainability Assessment Tools in Higher Education – Mapping Trends and Good Practices at Universities Around the World. Springer International Publishing Switzerland, (DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-02375-5_21) pp375-385. linkhttp://www.springer.com/energy/energy+efficiency/book/978-3-319-02374-8.

Caird, S. and Lane, A. (in press). Conceptualising the role of Information and Communication Technologies in the design of higher education teaching models used in the UK. British Journal of Educational Technology (In press). DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjet.12123

Caird, S. Lane, A. and Swithenby, E. (2014). Greening Higher Education qualification programmes with online learning. In: Leal Filho, W.; Azeiteiro, U. and Caeiro, S. eds. E-learning and sustainability. Umweltbildung, Umweltkommunikation und Nachhaltigkeit – Environmental Education, Communication and Sustainability. New York: Peter Lang Scientific Publishers, (In press). http://oro.open.ac.uk/39498/

Caird, S. Lane, A. Swithenby, E. Roy, R. and Potter, S. (2015) Design of higher education teaching models and carbon impacts. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education. Volume 16, Issue 2 (in press). http://oro.open.ac.uk/id/eprint/38870

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Further news on research publications

We are delighted to announce several forthcoming research publications based on the SusTEACH project.

We are publishing a book chapter in the edited book ‘Sustainability Assessment Tools in Higher Education’ this November 2013.
Caird, S.; Lane, A. and Swithenby, E. (2013). ICTs and the design of sustainable higher education teaching models: an environmental assessment of UK courses. In: Caeiro, S.; Leal Filho, W.; Jabbour, C. J. C. and Azeiteiro, U. M. eds. Sustainability Assessment Tools in Higher Education – Mapping Trends and Good Practices at Universities round the World. Springer International Publishing Switzerland, pp375-386. linkhttp://www.springer.com/energy/energy+efficiency/book/978-3-319-02374-8 http://oro.open.ac.uk/37919/

We have a further paper accepted by the British Journal of Educational Technology in press, based on our work on developing a conceptual framework for understanding the role of ICTs in higher education teaching models that was used to inform the SusTEACH project.
Caird, S. and Lane, A. (2014) Conceptualising the role of Information and Communication Technologies in the design of higher education teaching models used in the UK British Journal of Educational Technology. In press.

We have a further paper based on the detailed analysis of the SusTEACH research findings that has been accepted for publication in the International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education.
Caird, S. Lane, A. Swithenby, E. Roy, R. and Potter, S. (2015) Design of higher education teaching models and carbon impacts. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education. Volume 16, Issue 2 (in press). http://oro.open.ac.uk/id/eprint/38870

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New online teaching unit based on SusTEACH is now launched on OpenLearn

A new online teaching unit based on the SusTEACH project was launched July 2013 on the OpenLearn platform entitled The environmental impact of teaching and learning by Sally Caird and Andy Lane with Ed Swithenby.

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Forthcoming SusTEACH publication

Caird, S; Lane, A. and Swithenby, E. (2013). ICTs and the design of sustainable higher education teaching models: an environmental assessment of UK courses. In: Caeiro, S.; Leal Filho, W.; Jabbour, C. J. C. and Azeiteiro, U. M. eds. Sustainability Assessment Tools in Higher Education – Mapping Trends and Good Practices at Universities round the World. Springer, (In press).

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New study unit for OpenLearn- ‘The environmental impact of teaching and learning’

A new free study unit based on SusTEACH will be shortly be available on the LearningSpace website with OpenLearn.

This OpenLearn unit entitled ‘the environmental impacts of teaching and learning’ should be launched July 2013.

This aims to support the education of HE students and staff about the carbon emissions associated with teaching and learning, and support thinking about carbon reduction and sustainable learning. It also teaches academic and HE senior managers how to use the SusTEACH toolkit for planning and monitoring lower carbon HE courses and qualification programmes.

To find out more

The SusTEACH project video for the Green Gown Awards 2012 is available
http://youtu.be/FyqhQ1W5rA8
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gj2KC2_9Ong

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SusTEACH video now available !

The SusTEACH project was a finalist in the Green Gown Awards 2012. To support this we have produced a video about the SusTEACH project at the OU is now available on youtube http://youtu.be/FyqhQ1W5rA8

This will be promoted throughout the extensive Green Gown Awards network including websites such as www.eauc.org.uk, www.sustainabilityexchange.ac.uk and www.sorted.org.uk as well as the partners of the Awards such as HEFCE, Universities UK and the Learning and Skills Improvement Service (LSIS).

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Green Gown Awards

Green Gowns Awards logo

The SusTEACH project was a finalist in the Green Gown Awards 2012 following recognition of the contribution of this research and development project to ‘greening’ teaching and learning in higher education systems.

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SusTEACH news

The SusTEACH project was shortlisted for the Green Gown Award. We attended the ceremony held in the Great Hall of University of Birmingham which was a glittering black tie event. There are ongoing discussions and developments with senior staff in the OU to discuss the implementation and embedding of SusTEACH Toolkit resources in various ways.

  • There are plans to include the toolkit in the curriculum for education for sustainability. This includes plans to develop a new study unit for the LearningSpace website with OpenLearn.
  • There are plans to pilot the use of the carbon calculators for lecturers and students to collect data on constituent modules of the BSc Environmental Management and Technology qualification website and provide feedback to support pro-environmental behaviours. Efforts will also be made to roll this out to the websites of other OU qualification programmes.
  • SusTEACH outcomes and outputs are providing support for module planning. The Curriculum and Qualifications, Office of the PVC Academic is likely to feature SusTEACH tools in the Planet database system and provide links to new module proposal forms. In addition, the SusTEACH Planning and Modelling Tool data and feedback on environmental impacts is likely to be integrated with the Curriculum Business Models Initiative. There will be an OU specific tool to integrate data on the environmental, pedagogical impacts and business appraisal to support module planning.
  • The Learning and Technology Office are interested in incorporating SusTEACH findings and tools in the updated online Curriculum Management Guide.
  • There is discussion about linking the SusTEACH tools with the new Student Charter at The Open University.
  • We are also in consultation with the Director of Strategy about whether Faculties should be required to include teaching sustainability in their regular planning reports.
  • This is the progress to date with developing the SusTEACH toolkit to support institutional transformation at the OU.

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