Initial Publication Date: October 18, 2017

An Introduction to InTeGrate

InTeGrate supports faculty in bringing sustainability education -- helping students learn about Earth through the lens of grand societal challenges -- to their classrooms and campuses.

This website provides:

  • Concrete materials you can download and use in your classroom
  • Hundreds of detailed examples of how educators across the country are bringing sustainability education to their classrooms, departments and institutions. Learn from their experiences and find inspiration.
  • Opportunities to get engaged through webinars and community discussions.
InTeGrate believes students should work hands-on with the complex, interdisciplinary challenges that sit at the intersection of society and Earth's system. The intertwined issues surrounding environmental degradation, food, water, energy, mineral resources, climate change will be key challenges in the world today's students inherit. We need to prepare the next generation to face these challenges as they engage with them both professionally and as citizens. InTeGrate's role is to provide concrete resources to those working to increase the focus on sustainability in individual classrooms and in departmental or cross-campus initiatives. These resources are designed to ensure students' experiences in the classroom develop their geoscientific and systems thinking skills as they work with real data and interdisciplinary approaches to Earth related societal grand challenges.

Classroom-Ready, Peer Reviewed Teaching Activities You Can Adapt to Use in Your Existing Courses

Chris Cross at University of New Arcadia was looking for a way to bring more climate change specific information into her Intro to Environmental Science course. After browsing through the collection of InTeGrate materials she decided to try out the systems@play unit in the Climate of Change module. Realizing her students would be challenged by the systems thinking concepts in this lesson she dug a bit deeper into the more general system thinking information on the site. This led her to adopting a few small elements from the System Thinking module earlier in her course to set the students up for success. -- this story is hypothetical but the materials are real and available today

Explore the Teaching Material » Faculty from across the country have teamed up to develop hundreds of immersive, data rich classroom activities. They have been organized into coherent modules, but are designed to allow you to easily cherry-pick the pieces that will mesh well with your course.

Guidance on Catalyzing Sustainability Education on Your Campus

In addition to curricular materials that can be used in transforming a classroom, InTeGrate also has examples of how people have used InTeGrate materials and approaches to make programmatic changes at scales bigger than individual courses . This includes approaches such as:

  • weaving sustainability through a general education pathway,
  • adapting courses across the curriculum, and
  • building partnerships between institutions with common goals.
These examples and advice come from instructors who have attempted change at their own institutions, and then shared their experience and detailed the key elements of their successes so others can learn from their efforts. Leaders of these programs synthesized their experiences around five common programmatic goals:
  • recruiting and supporting diverse learners, Explore models for program-scale change »
  • teaching about the Earth across the curriculum,
  • connecting geoscience to societal issues,
  • preparing teachers to teach Earth Science, and
  • supporting transfer between 2 year and 4 year programs and to the workforce.

A Community Engaged in Sustainability Education

The website serves as a hub for the multi-disciplinary community of educators bringing sustainability education to their classrooms and campuses. Many of their stories have been documented on the website to serve as inspiration and a rich source of ideas for how InTeGrate materials and approaches can be adapted to fit almost any environment. Explore how Educators are Using InTeGrate Materials »

The project also has a ongoing series of workshops and other professional development opportunities to get you jump started or take your existing course or program to the next level. You can explore the presentations and recordings of past events and register for upcoming ones.