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  • AASHE-STARS

The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 74.63
Liaison Moira Hafer
Submission Date July 30, 2014
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Stanford University
AC-6: Sustainability Literacy Assessment

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.55 / 4.00 Moira Hafer
Sustainability Specialist
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

The percentage of students assessed for sustainability literacy (directly or by representative sample) and for whom a follow-up assessment is conducted:
0

The percentage of students assessed for sustainability literacy (directly or by representative sample) without a follow-up assessment:
70

A copy of the questions included in the sustainability literacy assessment(s):
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The questions included in the sustainability literacy assessment(s) :

R&DE Student Housing included the following question that draws upon students’ knowledge of sustainability topics in its annual student housing survey in 2013:
“R&DE Student Housing is looking to enhance sustainability and conservation efforts. What opportunities do you think exist for Housing as a whole and/or within your specific community, and what programs would you like to see offered?”

Additionally, R&DE Stanford Dining included the following sustainability questions in its annual survey. To better serve the purposes of Stanford Dining, these questions focus more heavily on students’ values regarding sustainable food. While these questions do not capture data on students’ sustainability knowledge, they do compliment the question included in the Student Housing survey to provide R&DE with valuable information on both students’ sustainability knowledge and their core values and behaviors.

From R&DE Stanford Dining:

(A) Using a scale of 1 - 4, where 4 is most important, please rate the importance to you of the following:
(1) eating food that is locally grown or raised
(2) composting your food scraps
(3) eating grass-fed or pasture-raised meat
(4) eating a more plant-based diet
(5) eating food that is grown or raised on small family farms
(6) eating humanely raised meat, eggs, and dairy products
(7) "fairly traded" products

(B) The following six questions will ask you to rate the importance of various characteristics of the food you eat. Using a scale of 1 - 4, where 4 is most important, please rate the importance to you of the following:
(1) taste and aroma
(2) speed and convenience
(3) appearance
(4) environmental impact
(5) social impact
(6) familiarity

(C) The following five questions will ask you to rate how important various issues are to you, compared to other things in your life. Using a scale of 1 - 4, where 4 is most important, compared to other things in your life, how important is:
(1) eating a healthful diet
(2) staying physically fit
(3) environmental sustainability
(4) animal rights
(5) social justice

+ Date Revised: Oct. 23, 2014

A brief description of how the assessment(s) were developed:

A growing emphasis on sustainability as a campus priority has led to the inclusion of knowledge-based sustainability questions in the annual student housing survey. The annual student dining survey also includes sustainability questions that are more value-based. For both surveys, the questions were presented and discussed during monthly sustainability staff meetings, a series of coordination and planning meetings organized by the Office of Sustainability to connect staff working on sustainability throughout campus, including staff from Residential & Dining Enterprises. The question in the student housing survey was developed with the intention of utilizing students’ knowledge of sustainability topics to enhance Stanford’s Student Housing programs. On the other hand, the questions in the student dining surveys were primarily developed to gain a better understanding of the value students place on sustainable food in order to inform the actions of the Stanford Dining program.

+ Date Revised: Oct. 23, 2014

A brief description of how the assessment(s) were administered:

An annual student housing survey is sent to all students who reside on-campus (graduate and undergraduate -- 70% of the enrolled student body). Both the housing and dining questions were administered electronically via online surveys.


A brief summary of results from the assessment(s):

The surveys were analyzed by R&DE staff to identify opportunities for program improvement and other trends in student sustainability preferences. Major themes that emerged can be characterized as follows:
-- 24% of responses mentioned that convenience enhances/facilitates adoption of sustainable behaviors
-- 28% of responses mentioned a strong desire for more outreach/education from R&DE
-- 23% of students consider themselves self-motivated with respect to sustainability
-- composting was frequently mentioned as a priority and personally important, and the new composting program in graduate housing was mentioned explicitly


The website URL where information about the literacy assessment(s) is available:
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The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.