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Application of the Modified College Impact Model to Understand Chinese Engineering Undergraduates’ Sustainability Consciousness

1
Institute of Higher Education, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, China
2
Institute of Higher Education, Capital Research and Development Center for Engineering Education, Beijing University of Technology, Beijing 100124, China
3
Institute of Education Economics and Management, University of Science and Technology Beijing, Beijing 100083, China
4
School of Marxism, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
The authors contributed equally to the study.
Sustainability 2020, 12(7), 2614; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12072614
Received: 29 February 2020 / Revised: 20 March 2020 / Accepted: 23 March 2020 / Published: 25 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Promoting Sustainability in Higher Education)
The college impact model provides a valuable framework for explaining various college student learning outcomes. However, few quantitative studies have examined the effectiveness of college impact model in explaining engineering undergraduates’ sustainability consciousness, a critical learning outcome in engineering education. This study proposes a modified college impact model to test the structural links among curriculum experiences, sustainable agency beliefs, and engineering undergraduates’ sustainability consciousness, and to explore the moderating effect of gender on the structural model. Data are collected from 1804 senior engineering students enrolled in five traditional engineering disciplines at 14 first-class engineering universities in China. Structural equation modeling was used for testing the research model. The results demonstrate that (1) curricular emphasis has a significant direct impact on all three dimensions of students’ sustainability consciousness, while instructional practice has a significant direct influence on the sustainability knowingness dimension; (2) both curricular emphasis and instructional practice have a significant indirect influence on sustainability consciousness through the full or partial mediation of sustainable agency beliefs; and (3) gender moderates several paths in the structural model. Theoretical and practical implications are provided, and suggestions for future research are offered. View Full-Text
Keywords: college impact model; sustainability consciousness; curricular emphasis; instructional practice; sustainable agency beliefs; Chinese engineering undergraduates college impact model; sustainability consciousness; curricular emphasis; instructional practice; sustainable agency beliefs; Chinese engineering undergraduates
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Zhao, Q.; Liu, X.; Ma, Y.; Zheng, X.; Yu, M.; Wu, D. Application of the Modified College Impact Model to Understand Chinese Engineering Undergraduates’ Sustainability Consciousness. Sustainability 2020, 12, 2614.

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