"I feel the UN SDGs should be used as a teaching tool in higher education to encourage critical thinking and provide opportunities for students to build meaningful connections between local issues in their own communities and global-scale goals. When you know better, you do better, and incorporating SDGs into coursework allows students to engage with culturally relevant pedagogy that champions our identities and teaches us how to solve problems that resonate with our communities and the world around us."
- Margaret (Meg) Sanders, MSEEM graduate student, School of Public Policy
As this student illustrates, connecting your course content to the UN SDGs provides a powerful framework for students to see how what they are learning can help set them up for a career that makes a positive impact on their communities.
Georgia Tech’s Serve-Learn-Sustain (SLS) and Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) have been collaborating with other colleges and universities in Georgia to expand professional development opportunities for instructors interested in incorporating community-engaged sustainability and the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into their courses.
In collaboration with Kennesaw State University’s Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL), during spring semester 2022 SLS and CTL led a Faculty Sustainability/SDG Education Teaching Fellows program. We are excited to share that the teaching materials developed by the Fellows are now available through the SLS Teaching Toolkit, on this page: Instructor-Created Resources for SDG Teaching. These resources include sample syllabi, project and assessment ideas, and other resources that can help instructors generate ideas for bringing the SDGs into their own courses.
"UN SDGs enable students to view the world beyond themselves and dream to become a part of the solution to the issues we face today. The goals help students explore ways to apply knowledge and skill sets acquired from various disciplines to bring positive changes throughout the world."
- MinSol Lee, undergraduate student majoring in Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISyE) with a minor in Industrial Design
Want to help students explore ways to bring about positive change in the world, as MinSol describes? We are excited to share a new opportunity for instructors to connect with colleagues interested in teaching with the UN SDGs: a Community of Practice on College Teaching with the UN SDGs! This group is open to any instructors, instructional designers, or faculty development professionals engaged in college teaching in Georgia who are interested in sharing resources and ideas about integrating the UN SDGs.
In the spirit of collaboration that is the hallmark of both communities of practice and education for sustainable development, many parties have come together to envision and plan this new Community of Practice. The SDG Education Fellows helped design this new, multi-institutional Community of Practice, in collaboration with the RCE Greater Atlanta, a regional Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) network officially acknowledged by United Nations University. Tyra Byers, the University of Georgia’s Sustainability Certificate Director, has joined the Georgia Tech and KSU Fellows leadership to co-lead this new Community of Practice. On May 12, the leadership team and a group of 20 faculty members representing four University System of Georgia institutions met to plan the launch of the new College Teaching with the SDGs Community of Practice. All are welcome to join this exciting community!
Interested in learning more about the College Teaching with the SDGs Community of Practice? Register here to join and learn how to inspire students like Julia, who shares her appreciation for learning about the SDGs, below:
"I was introduced to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in GT 2803 through the Global Leadership LLC and that class gave me a strong understanding of what the SDGs are and how they can be incorporated into various career paths. When I took CP 2233 (Sustainable Urban Development) with Dr. Jairo Garcia, he focused on several SDGs of particular interest to me, and that helped me better understand how I can contribute as a professional. As someone who wants to focus on promoting sustainable development in my career and my personal life, exploring the SDGs in class has been very beneficial for me as I start to plan what I want to do in the future."
- Julia Haley, undergraduate Public Policy major
Do you have questions or want to share ideas about teaching with the UN SDGs? Please contact Rebecca Watts Hull: firstname.lastname@example.org.