Title: Mainstreaming sustainability considerations into courses in a Kenyan university

Authors: David Ongare; Ayub Macharia; George Ndegwa; Maushe Kidundo

Addresses: National Environment Management Authority, P.O. Box 67839-00200, Nairobi, Kenya ' National Environment Management Authority, P.O. Box 67839-00200, Nairobi, Kenya ' Jommo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, P.O. Box 62000-00200, Nairobi, Kenya ' Nagira Environment Ltd, P.O. Box 8-80302, Kenya

Abstract: Sustainable development is an evolving concept which requires local interpretation. Curriculum frameworks offer a unique opportunity for learning institutions to contribute to sustainability practices in their countries. This study set out to explore how sustainability principles could be incorporated in courses in a typical public university in Kenya. It took into account the potential that the higher education institutions could play in shaping the development of the country bearing in mind Kenya was an active participant in the UN Decade on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in line with Agenda 21 recommendations. The country has also developed a green economy strategy that it expects all sectors to contribute to. A constructivism approach was used in the study with purposive sampling used to select 100 study subjects for this exercise. A workshop model was employed. It was important to deal with the apprehensions regarding the benefits of greening university courses. Getting management support and using a whole-school approach were beneficial in facilitating the study. It is important to upscale capacity building on sustainability and course review at all levels in the university. It is also critical to link the curriculum review efforts to the university's education for sustainable development policy.

Keywords: education for sustainable development; ESD; green economy; Agenda 21; mainstreaming; curriculum; higher education institutions; HEIs; Kenya; universities; sustainability; constructivism; greening university courses.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHES.2016.080777

International Journal of Higher Education and Sustainability, 2016 Vol.1 No.2, pp.119 - 132

Received: 25 Jun 2015
Accepted: 07 Oct 2015

Published online: 07 Dec 2016 *

Full-text access for editors Full-text access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article