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New research shows students want more sustainability from their institution

Wednesday 26 November 2014 NUS News

This week, new research has revealed students are demanding more sustainable development from their intstitution.

The evidence that students care about sustainability is clear with the growth of sustainable projects across the country, but NUS' new research, produced in partnership with the Higher Education Academy shows us just how much students want it to be a crucial part of their time in education.

The research shows us:

  • Over 80 per cent of students want their institution to incorporate and actively promote sustainability.
  • 60 per cent want to learn more about sustainable development (this rises to 75 per cent across international students)
  • Over two thirds believe that sustainability should be incorporated into their university course.

It’s a clear mandate for action on education for sustainable development, and it’s why we work so hard to green curriculums across the UK, making sure all students leave their time in education with the skills, experience and attributes they need to thrive in our emerging low-carbon economy.

This is the fourth consecutive year we’ve conducted this survey, and it’s striking how unchanging the results are despite huge changes across higher education and wider society. Despite the rise in tuition fees and a crash in youth employment, these figures have stayed the same.

The message is clear: education for sustainable development is important to students – whatever the political or economic climate.

We’re taking action on these results by developing our own accreditation mark for education for sustainable development. Responsible Futures works with partnerships of students’ unions and institutions to create institutional change, allowing education for sustainable development to thrive across all courses.

Over the years ahead, we want to ensure that all students leave their time in education as part of the solution to our social, economic and environmental challenges, not part of the problem. These figures show us that it’s exactly what students want too.

Read the full research here.