BCIT is committed to transforming its campuses into living laboratories of sustainability to further the evolution of environmental stewardship and sustainable development practices.
For example, to inspire changes to minimize paper use, we’ve calculated each instructor could save 10 trees a year! How?
BCIT uses 30% post consumer content copier paper, which saves 7.2 trees for each ton we use instead of virgin paper.
- 1 ton (40 cartons/one pallet) of 30% postconsumer content copier paper uses 16.8 trees
- 1 carton (10 reams) of 30% postconsumer content copier paper uses 0.42 trees
- 1 tree makes 23.8 reams of 30% postconsumer content copy paper or 11900 sheets
- 1 ream of 30% postconsumer content paper (500 sheets) uses 4.2% of a tree
If you hand out a 20-page handout to a 25-student class each week, that’s one ream of paper a week. For a 12-week course, that’s 12 reams of paper a term, and 24 a year (12,000 sheets). For one class, that’s just over one tree. If you have 5 classes a term, that’s over 10 trees sacrificed for your classes in two terms, or one academic year. Putting a weekly 20-page handout online could save one tree per course, and up to 10 trees a year for each instructor!
Tips for reducing paper use: easy to involved
Even techno-phobes have options! For faculty and staff, there are BCIT technological tools to share documents: shared department drives, digital projectors, the Library eReserves, the my.bcit.ca website for every course, the ShareIn/ShareOut drive, and Desire2Learn online software.
- Use department shared computer drives to share with colleagues and store documents if possible. Use Word’s Track Changes function to make comments on documents if needed.
- Use an overhead, data projector or document camera from AV Services to review documents such as course outlines together in meetings or classrooms. Post a copy online if future reference is needed.
- Use the Library eReserves service to offer readings, past exams, and even the instructor’s materials as electronic reserves (eReserves).
- Use the my.bcit.ca course website, created automatically for each course, to provide lecture notes/slides, assignments, handouts, etc. for students. If documents must be reviewed in class, use a projector. Most students use my.bcit.ca for BCIT email, so it’s easy for them, and for instructors.
- Use ShareIn/ShareOut to share course documents. Instructors can use ShareOut for providing assignments, lecture notes, etc. for students (like my.bcit.ca), but ShareIn allows students to submit assignments electronically as well. It can be used in computer labs to easily submit exams, too. Some instructors use the Track Changes or Comments tools in Word to mark, then return the assignments to each student privately by email.
- The most function-rich tool for instructors is Desire2Learn, which takes some time to set up, but allows instructors to put some or all of their course online. Desire2Learn offers assignment delivery/submission, tests, discussions, course notes, and all sorts of other tools. Instructors interested should contact the Learning & Teaching Centre to learn more.
Use BCIT Library resources to research sustainability in your field:
- Research guides on Environmental and Civil Engineering, Fish and Wildlife, Construction, and other sustainability-related fields
- Read about sustainability-related educational initiatives at BCIT.
Adopting a sustainability framework
The School of Construction has developed a school-level sustainability framework, and programs such as Joinery are pursuing program-level sustainability. The Joinery department is phasing out high volatile organic compound glues and resins and increasing its use of Forest Stewardship Council certified wood, which comes from sustainably managed forests.
Making global connections with technology-enabled learning
In 2007, Danny Catt used online learning technology to allow thousands of people to follow his global travels about humanity’s relationship with nature, and inspire actions to save our planet. Many students followed Danny’s voyage. Danny’s Fish, Wildlife and Recreation students also undertook research projects that dealt with British Columbia’s connections with South America and Antarctica, which were displayed on his interactive website. Learn more
Leading river conservation
Mark Angelo, former head of the BCIT Fish, Wildlife, and Recreation program, has used technology to make eco-minded educational initiatives available to all.
- The Explore the Fraser website helps learners understand the history, ecology, and importance of the Fraser River.
- Riverworld focuses on the conservation of the world’s waterways, and records journeys along famous rivers. This information is the basis for two of Mark’s world-renowned presentations — Riverworld, and Wild Water, Wild Earth.