Sustainable education

The project Sustainable Education aims to involve the entire academic community in the process of becoming a truly sustainable university by 2030.

UM offers:

  • courses and full-time programmes on sustainable development (see below)
  • various project activities to further raise the profile of sustainability in education

Project activities

In the ambition to be a sustainable university by 2030, UM wants to involve the entire academic community. Therefore there are ongoing activities to explore and realise this goal. Next to existing sustainable educational bachelor's and master's programmes and PhD level, a selection of strengthening education for sustainable development are the following:

UM wide minor on sustainable development
Sustainable development is a complex and very multifaceted theme. If we want to know more about it and come up with good solutions to environmental, social and economic problems, we can draw on numerous disciplines. For bachelor students who are about to enter the labour market and want to contribute to a sustainable world, an interdisciplinary minor is an excellent opportunity to gain more insight into what sustainability means for different disciplines, regardless of their own background.

There are already several courses offering interdisciplinary and broadly oriented courses in the field of sustainable development, but not all students have the opportunity to take them. With the introduction of a UM-wide minor (24-30 ECTS), sustainability subjects can be made accessible to everyone. This project investigates the possibilities for a UM-wide minor in the field of sustainable development in order to anchor this subject as an essential study theme in the UM education programme. We have asked students for their opinion by means of a survey. Currently, a working group with academic staff from different faculties of the UM is working on the design of the minor. We will continue to involve students in this process in 2020

Strengthening competencies for sustainable development
Within the international discourse on education for sustainable development, there is large agreement on key competencies. Thanks to UM's problem-based teaching method, a number of these skills are already amply covered, such as (integrated) problem solving, cooperation and critical thinking. It encourages students to work together in a critical and interdisciplinary way to solve problems. These competences are also recognised in UNESCO's skills in education for sustainability (see for example chapter 2 of Issues and Trends in Education for Sustainable Development).

Some competencies can be complemented or strengthened to enable students to think and act in a sustainable way. During this project we investigate how students can strengthen their competences in the field of sustainable development. For example, we are working with the Global Citizenship project to incorporate global citizenship skills into education. In the spring of 2020, we will work with staff and students during Green Impact to jointly draw up a plan for training on sustainability competences for UM employees as well.

Seminar series on professionals in sustainable development
Together with Green Office we organise monthly seminars in which professionals in the sustainability field share their successes and struggles.
Seminar #1: Energy transition
Seminar #2: Water use
Seminar #3: Plant-based diet