ERIC Number: EJ1086019
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 18
Teaching Sustainable and Integrated Resource Management Using an Interactive Nexus Model
Bajzelj, Bojana; Fenner, Richard A.; Curmi, Elizabeth; Richards, Keith S.
International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, v17 n1 p2-15 2016
Purpose: The purpose of this paper was to enhance and complement teaching about resource system feedbacks and environmental modelling. Students were given an interactive exercise based on a research model (ForeseerTM), developed by an inter-disciplinary research team, that explores the interconnectivity of water, energy and land resources. Two groups of students were involved, one of undergraduates and the other of graduates. Design/methodology/approach: The Foreseer model represents physical flows of the three resources (water, energy and land) using an interactive visual interface. The exercise was set up by giving students short instructions about how to use the tool to create four scenarios, and an online questionnaire was used to capture their understanding and their ability to extract information from the model. Findings: The exercise proved to be a helpful way to connect research and teaching in higher education, to the benefit of both. For students, it was an interactive and engaging way to learn about these complex sustainability issues. At the same time, it provided tangible feedback to researchers working on the model about the clarity of its user interface and its pedagogic value. Originality/value: This exercise represents a novel use of a resource model as a teaching tool in the study of the water, energy and land nexus, and is relevant to sustainability educators as an example of a model-centred learning approach on this topic.
Descriptors: Natural Resources, Environmental Education, Interdisciplinary Approach, Vignettes, Teaching Methods, Water, Energy, Land Use, Undergraduate Students, Graduate Students, Questionnaires, Student Attitudes, Models, Feedback (Response), Sustainable Development, Foreign Countries, Computer Software, Computer Assisted Instruction, Student Evaluation, Outcomes of Education, Engineering Education, Geography Instruction, Theory Practice Relationship, Visual Aids
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California; United Kingdom