About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 960-967
Publication year: 2010
ISBN: 978-84-614-2439-9
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 3rd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 15-17 November, 2010
Location: Madrid, Spain

LEGAL AND JURISPRUDENTIAL ASPECTS OF MANDATORY ‘ENVIRONMENTAL LITERACY’ PROGRAMMES IN TERTIARY EDUCATION

C. Warnock

University of Otago (NEW ZEALAND)
There is a significant and growing body of literature that considers how Universities might act as a catalyst in fostering sustainability from the perspectives of management and administration, promoting research into sustainability issues and developing curricula that enables students to acquire ‘environmental literacy’ and to explore sustainability values. However, an emergent theme in the international research is that, “Universities, expected to be at the cutting edge of thought and practice, are behind the curve on this trend – far behind” .

Focusing upon curriculum development, many Universities around the world have considered how programmes of study might adequately equip students to develop ‘environmental literacy’ enabling them to explore the present and future concepts of sustainability in its many guises. In certain forms this has included mandatory requirements; students must take particular papers or must include a set numbers of select papers within their degree structure regardless of the subject of their major.

The present paper analyses this approach from within a legal and jurisprudential framework. The first question to be addressed is whether Universities should promote ‘environmental literacy’ to all students. Much of the existing literature automatically assumes that this is invariably ‘a good thing’ but certain factions in society would counter-argue that particular philosophies should not be imposed upon all. In addressing this initial hurdle the paper considers whether ‘environmental literacy’ addressing concepts of sustainability should be afforded privileged treatment in tertiary education. Thereafter, using New Zealand as a case study, consideration is given to the interplay between Universities role as ‘critic and conscience of the nation’ and academic freedom (prescribed by Education Acts) and how various curriculum initiatives fit within these concepts. The concept of academic freedom for students is an important consideration and laws guaranteeing human rights might be pertinent in assessing the validity of mandatory courses or components of programmes. The paper considers whether compulsory courses or programmes transgress academic freedom, whether the design of the programme could avoid any such difficulties, and how Universities could ensure that initiatives to foster ‘environmental or sustainability literacy’ do not flout legal rights.
@InProceedings{WARNOCK2010LEG,
author = {Warnock, C.},
title = {LEGAL AND JURISPRUDENTIAL ASPECTS OF MANDATORY ‘ENVIRONMENTAL LITERACY’ PROGRAMMES IN TERTIARY EDUCATION},
series = {3rd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2010 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-614-2439-9},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Madrid, Spain},
month = {15-17 November, 2010},
year = {2010},
pages = {960-967}}
TY - CONF
AU - C. Warnock
TI - LEGAL AND JURISPRUDENTIAL ASPECTS OF MANDATORY ‘ENVIRONMENTAL LITERACY’ PROGRAMMES IN TERTIARY EDUCATION
SN - 978-84-614-2439-9/2340-1095
PY - 2010
Y1 - 15-17 November, 2010
CI - Madrid, Spain
JO - 3rd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2010 Proceedings
SP - 960
EP - 967
ER -
C. Warnock (2010) LEGAL AND JURISPRUDENTIAL ASPECTS OF MANDATORY ‘ENVIRONMENTAL LITERACY’ PROGRAMMES IN TERTIARY EDUCATION, ICERI2010 Proceedings, pp. 960-967.
User:
Pass: