Impact of teacher training on enhancing sustainability integration into engineering education

Paula Schönach*, Noora Jaakkola, Meeri Karvinen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
6 Downloads (Pure)


Engineering education institutions face a growing demand to provide graduates with adequate skills to respond to the sustainability crisis at hand. One approach to address this is to integrate sustainability as a cross-cutting theme into programmes and courses. At the same time competence development of academic staff is seen as an essential, yet underdeveloped prerequisite for a sustainability paradigm shift. Aiming at enhancing sustainability integration into engineering education, this study investigates the impact of pedagogical training on the skills and motivations of teachers to embed sustainability into their teaching. A new pedagogical course (3 ECTS) on sustainability in teaching was developed and executed at Aalto University four times during 2021-2022. The research data consists of course feedback, written reflection assignments, questionnaires to course participants, and a set of semi-structured interviews with teachers who had completed the training. In the analysis, we utilized an application of the four-level Kirkpatrick model of evaluating training impact. Preliminary results indicate that training is effective, especially when providing hands-on and customized support for teachers with different starting points for sustainability integration, and that both interdisciplinary and field-specific peer-support and learning are important elements of an impactful training. Apart from providing new knowledge on the impact of training on teacher capabilities, the study contributes to the development and improvement of pedagogical support for engineering educators to integrate sustainability into their teaching.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSEFI 2023 - 51st Annual Conference of the European Society for Engineering Education
Subtitle of host publicationEngineering Education for Sustainability, Proceedings
EditorsGer Reilly, Mike Murphy, Balazs Vince Nagy, Hannu-Matti Jarvinen
PublisherSociété européenne pour la formation des ingénieurs
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)978-2-87352-026-7
Publication statusPublished - 2023
MoE publication typeA4 Conference publication
EventAnnual Conference of the European Society for Engineering Education - TU Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
Duration: 10 Sept 202314 Sept 2023
Conference number: 51


ConferenceAnnual Conference of the European Society for Engineering Education
Abbreviated titleSEFI
Internet address


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