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This study aims to address how a higher education pedagogical course in sustainable development (SD) for university educators affects their teaching efforts in providing sustainability matters for students.

With the aim of improving that course, a case study approach was used to understand how the educators made use of the course in their teaching practice. Data were collected as written and oral feedback reflections and as semi-structured interviews at course completion.

Educators clearly express that they understand the concept “about” SD, but there are only vague expressions of a developed teaching repertoire to address education “for” SD in their teaching practice.

Research limitations/implications
When it comes to the purposes of developing sustainability literacy among students, implications from the study furthermore address the needs for further clarifications on both structure and intent on the course presented in this contribution.

Practical implications
The educators as well as their students will be exposed to, and trained in concepts, to prepare them to act in alignment with SD. This, in turn, meets requirements from higher education authorities concerning SD at higher education institutions.

Social implications
A core aim of the covered approach is to support student readiness in SD, and for those to become future agents of positive change.

This study has a focus on presenting how educators change the structures of courses and learning elements to approach SD in their teachings.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-212
Number of pages16
JournalInternational Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2023-Apr-26

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Educational Sciences (503)


  • sustainable development
  • Sustainable development goals
  • higher education
  • pedagogical courses
  • educate the educators
  • sustainability literacy
  • Higher education
  • Sustainability literacy
  • Sustainable development
  • Educate the educators
  • Pedagogical courses


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