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 Course Criteria for GSELS Designation - Global Sustainability and Earth Literacy Studies (GSELS) -


Criteria for Inclusion in a GSELS course 

In order to determine if a section of a course qualifies for designation as GSELS-focused or
GSELS-related, faculty will assess whether the course section helps students build skills
and act on at least three of the 20 objectives below.

Students will be able to:

1.       Explain the principles and ethical implications of the Earth Charter. 

2.       Describe the roles of personal and social responsibility in protecting Earth’s abundance and beauty for future   generations. 

3.       Justify the significance of upholding the right of all living beings to a natural and social environment supportive of dignity, health and well-being in bringing about global sustainability.

4.       Describe the relationship between respect for Earth, including life in all its diversity, and human and/or ecological health.

5.       Explain how cultural diversity, tolerance, compassion, nonviolence and peace contribute to global sustainability.

6.       Outline the history of Earth and the evolution of life.

7.       Examine situations and issues from a systemic perspective.

8.       Explain how feedback loops affect systems.

9.       Explain how humans can learn from nature to create resilient and efficient solutions.

10.    Discuss how access to education, health care and economic prosperity affect global sustainability.

11.    Illustrate how uncontaminated air, water, and soil are fundamental to healthy living systems.

12.    Analyze the interdependence of society, economics, and nature at local, regional, and global levels.

13.    Discuss the relationship between poverty, ethics, health, society, and the environment.

14.    Compare and contrast human actions and attitudes toward the community of life and their impact on global well-being.

15.    Evaluate economic activity and institutions by their contribution to society in the larger ecological context.

16.    Diagnose/research the impact of human activities on living systems, with consideration for these systems’ limits, complexity, and diversity.

17.    Explain the precautionary principle and identify how it can be employed to prevent unintended impacts on human and/or ecological systems.

18.    Document democratic principles that enhance global sustainability and peace.

19.    Apply knowledge to engage in behavior that fosters ecological sustainability.

20.    Display personal and social responsibility toward achieving global sustainability through service learning/civic engagement.



Learn more about the guiding philosophy behind GSELS

The Earth Charter



Thomas Berry's -Nature of Universe
 and  12 Principles
of Understanding the Universe,


Life Long Learning,
Environmental, Global and
Sustainable Education

Additional Resources:





Earth Ethics Institute • An Earth Literacy Resource Center Serving MDC Administrators, Faculty, Staff,  and Students, as well as the South Florida Community
Miami Dade College • 300 N.E. 2nd Avenue, Room 3506-11, Miami, FL 33132-2204 • t: 305-237-3796 • f: 305-237-7724