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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 66.35
Liaison Ben Champion
Submission Date May 2, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Arizona
AC-1: Academic Courses

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 11.61 / 14.00 Benjamin Champion
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures required to calculate the percentage of courses offered by the institution that are sustainability course offerings:
Undergraduate Graduate
Total number of courses offered by the institution 7,042 1,543
Number of sustainability courses offered 131 248
Number of courses offered that include sustainability 574 657

Percentage of courses that are sustainability course offerings:

Total number of academic departments (or the equivalent) that offer courses (at any level):

Number of academic departments (or the equivalent) that offer at least one sustainability course and/or course that includes sustainability (at any level):

Percentage of academic departments with sustainability course offerings:

A copy of the institution’s inventory of its sustainability course offerings and descriptions:
Do the figures reported above cover one, two, or three academic years?:

A brief description of the methodology used to determine the total number of courses offered and to identify sustainability course offerings, including the definitions used and the process for reviewing and/or validating the course inventory :

The Office of Sustainability in cooperation with the Office of the Registrar and faculty members compiled a list of sustainability courses for the two year period of Fall 2013 through Summer 2015. Students helped format the data set and remove individual and independent study-type courses from the list. The director of the Office of Sustainability then utilized the AASHE STARS definitions for "sustainability courses" and "courses that include sustainability" to identify these courses based on titles and course descriptions included in the course catalog.

The Institute of the Environment has continued to update its Green Course Guide each semester, and this list is available at the following website: http://www.environment.arizona.edu/green-guides/green-course-guide

The Green Course Guide is more selective than the full list provided from the 2013-2015 analysis, but is a good representation of the wide range of environmentally-focused course opportunities for students at UA. And it is fully accessible to students as part of the overall set of "Green Guides" provided on the Institute of the Environment website.

How were courses with multiple offerings or sections counted for the figures reported above?:
Each course was counted as a single course regardless of the number of offerings or sections

A brief description of how courses with multiple offerings or sections were counted (if different from the options outlined above):

The data set provided by the Registrar did not include every section taught of each course over the two year period. It merely listed the courses that were taught at any point in that two year period. However, the list did include cross-listings, where a course was offered in more than one department, and these cross-listings are included in our analysis. Cross-listings were treated the same for sustainability-related courses as they were for non-sustainability courses.

Are the following course types included in the inventory? :
Yes (included) or No (not included)
Internships No
Practicums No
Independent study No
Special topics No
Thesis / dissertation No
Clinical No
Physical education Yes
Performance arts No

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

The numbers have been updated to reflect FY14-15 academic year course data. The course list is based on analyzing course offerings from Summer 2013 to Summer 2015, inclusive. Course titles and descriptions were analyzed for inclusion of environmental, social equity/justice, and economic principles and learning outcomes. Those that had indications of substantial course content exploring the intersectionality of two or more of the three dimensions were included. There are a number of courses that may have content, but the course descriptions were not clear. These were excluded, but further contact with departments could be sought to verify course content and expand the course listing.

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.