To read this content please select one of the options below:

A comprehensive review of environmental, sustainability and climate change curriculum in Taiwan’s higher education institutions

John Chung-En Liu (Department of Sociology, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan and International Degree Program in Climate Change and Sustainable Development (IPCS), National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan)
Ting-Yu Kan (Department of Sociology, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan)

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education

ISSN: 1467-6370

Article publication date: 20 September 2023

Issue publication date: 23 January 2024

200

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to evaluate the current situation of education for sustainable development, climate change education and environmental education in a nationwide context. Methodologically, this study calls for more research to go beyond case studies and take a similar approach to examine university curricula and facilitate cross-country comparisons.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper examines the status of climate and sustainability curricula in Taiwan’s higher education system. Using the course catalog for the 2020–2021 academic year, the authors constructed a unique data set that includes 1,827 courses at 29 major universities in Taiwan. In each institution, the authors search for course titles that include “climate,” “sustainable/sustainability” and “environment/environmental” as keywords and code the courses according to their disciplines.

Findings

The finding highlights the variations across institutional types and subject matters. Public universities have an average of 4.94 related courses per 1,000 students, whereas private universities have only 3.13. In general, the relevant courses are more concentrated in the STEM and bioscience fields. The curricula, however, are seriously constrained by the disciplinary structure and foster few transdisciplinary perspectives.

Originality/value

The authors seek to go beyond case studies and offer one of the most comprehensive curricula samples at the national level. Taiwan adds an important data point, as the current literature focuses heavily on the USA and Europe.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors thank Department of Sociology at National Taiwan University for the funding support. We are grateful to Shun-Nan Chiang, Yi-Chen Huang and the participants in the 2021 Taiwanese Sociological Association’s Annual Conference for their valuable comments.

Citation

Liu, J.C.-E. and Kan, T.-Y. (2024), "A comprehensive review of environmental, sustainability and climate change curriculum in Taiwan’s higher education institutions", International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 25 No. 2, pp. 375-389. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJSHE-01-2023-0019

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles