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Higher education curriculum design for sustainable development: towards a transformative approach

Philip Cardiff (English Language Institute, Kanda University of International Studies, Chiba, Japan)
Malgorzata Polczynska (English Language Institute, Kanda University of International Studies, Chiba, Japan)
Tina Brown (English Language Institute, Kanda University of International Studies, Chiba, Japan)

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education

ISSN: 1467-6370

Article publication date: 1 January 2024

Issue publication date: 3 June 2024

251

Abstract

Purpose

Education is widely recognized as a key domain for the promotion of the sustainable development goals (SDGs), prompting an increased focus on sustainable development in foreign language education. Despite increased attention, guidelines about SDGs are often primarily policy-based without concrete guidance, and the integration of education for sustainable development (ESD) within higher education curricula has been slow. This paper aims to mitigate this gap by providing an outline for the curriculum development for three elective English courses integrating SDG themes.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper begins by introducing the SDGs, ESD and its application to language education. From there, this paper outlines three content and language integrated learning courses that integrate global issues into their curriculum. Finally, there is a discussion and consideration of various factors to consider when implementing global issues into an English language classroom.

Findings

Following practical examples of how to integrate global issues into an English language classroom, considerations such as socio-cultural context, teaching context and the expertise of the instructor are discussed.

Originality/value

This paper covers a variety of social topics related to sustainable development in addition to the often addressed environmental topics. Many guidelines about integrating SDGs into education are policy-based without concrete guidance, so this paper aims to provide practical examples and considerations.

Keywords

Citation

Cardiff, P., Polczynska, M. and Brown, T. (2024), "Higher education curriculum design for sustainable development: towards a transformative approach", International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 25 No. 5, pp. 1009-1023. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJSHE-06-2023-0255

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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