To prepare students for leadership in the 21st century, Ball State offers an undergraduate minor in sustainability.

Participating students will be provided a breadth of exposure to issues including systems theory, values and ethics, atmosphere and climate, population, energy, water, land, food (land-based and freshwater/marine-based), health (disease and nutrition), materials (including resource harvesting, resource limitations, resource recycling), natural biological systems (including ecosystem services), economies and poverty.

Upon completion of the minor, students will be able to: 

    Explain the meaning of sustainability. 

  1. Describe social, environmental, and economic elements of sustainable human communities.
  2. Understand the systemic nature of the interrelationships among those social, environmental, and economic elements of civilization.
  3. Articulate their personal values as related to this complexity. 

    Apply concepts of sustainability in decision making. 

  1. Articulate within a systems context the role of disciplinary knowledge and skills in achieving long-term human prosperity.
  2. Analyze problems within current social, environmental, and economic practices.
  3. Identify the strategic interventions needed to achieve a thriving civilization.

Although most of the courses listed are currently taught in face-to-face instructional format, there are some that are web-based only and the anticipation is that future additional web-based courses could be offered.

The courses from which students will select, do not have onerous prerequisite requirements. The opening course for the minor is SUST250 Introduction to Sustainability. This course will expose students to the complexities of social, economic and environmental systems and their interactions; from this foundation the role of students as world citizens, in shepherding resources and valuing cultures and understanding economies will be developed.

SUST 310 Our Warming World:  Adaption and Mitigation Strategies is next required and addresses the human activities that contribute to a warming world.  Emphasizes ways of thinking, tools, and strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, adapt to climate change, and become more resilient.

The completion of the sustainability minor is to be achieved by taking SUST400 Creating a Sustainable Future. This is a hands-on, project-based, immersive learning course in which students analyze a real-world problem and propose strategies to mitigate, manage or transform the situation.

View a printable brochure describing the minor.

View a listing of course choices for the minor.

Dr. Mary Annette Rose, Associate Professor of Educational Studies, is the academic advisor for this minor.

Listen to an Indiana Public Radio Interview of John Vann discussing BSU's Minor in Sustainability.