Lecturers' perspectives on integrating sustainable development into social science courses

Zubaidah Mohd Nasir, Mashitoh Yaacob, Halimaton Saadiah Hashim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the perspectives of Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) lecturers on the integration of sustainable development (SD) concept into social science courses. Environment, economy and society are the dimensions of SD that may require knowledge, positive attitudes and willingness of lecturers to realize Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in social science courses in UKM. A set of questionnaires was distributed to 478 lecturers of social science courses in UKM, and 145 of them responded. Lecturers' understanding of SD, their attitude towards SD and their belief in the ability to integrate the concept into their courses were investigated in the questionnaire. Frequency analysis was used to measure the level of understanding, attitude and belief of the lecturers towards SD concept, and Pearson correlation was utilized to obtain: (a) the significant levels of the relationship between understanding, attitude and belief of lecturers towards SD concept; and (b) the relationship between understanding, attitude and belief of lecturers towards SD concept and demographic characteristics. The majority of the lecturers misunderstand the concept of SD in that they thought the SD is only about economic development and environmental needs and that they are more important than human needs. Conversely, they demonstrated positive attitudes towards SD as well as towards the relationship between economy and the environment. Most of the lecturers were willing to integrate SD elements in their courses. Pearson correlation of lecturers' understanding, attitude and belief towards SD is significant at p < .01. In addition, there were significance between lecturers' attitude and gender, and their understanding and age which p < .05. Thus, lecturers of social science courses have positive attitudes towards SD and a willingness to integrate the concept into their courses, but they misunderstood the real meaning of SD which has three dimensions (i.e., environment, economy and social).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)383-398
Number of pages16
JournalInternational Journal of Learning
Volume18
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Fingerprint

sustainable development
university teacher
social science
Malaysia
economy
willingness to integrate
frequency analysis
questionnaire

Keywords

  • Education for sustainable development (ESD)
  • Sustainable development (SD)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

Cite this

Lecturers' perspectives on integrating sustainable development into social science courses. / Nasir, Zubaidah Mohd; Yaacob, Mashitoh; Hashim, Halimaton Saadiah.

In: International Journal of Learning, Vol. 18, No. 6, 2012, p. 383-398.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Nasir, Zubaidah Mohd ; Yaacob, Mashitoh ; Hashim, Halimaton Saadiah. / Lecturers' perspectives on integrating sustainable development into social science courses. In: International Journal of Learning. 2012 ; Vol. 18, No. 6. pp. 383-398.
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