AbstractThe construction industry plays a critical role in economic growth, social progress, and environmental protection of communities worldwide to foster sustainable development. Although the construction industry has made significant improvements in environmental and economic sustainability in terms of promoting the adoption of renewable resources, low-carbon communities, and pro-environmental behavior, among others, there is a growing concern for lack of social sustainability in the industry. Social sustainability is a critical component of a community’s wellbeing and longevity, yet it is one of the least prioritized concepts in sustainability debates. One of the main causes of social sustainability issues in the construction industry is the lack of education and awareness among the workforce. To address the gap, this research introduces a three-step pedagogical approach in construction education to prepare students in the field by developing cultural proficiency, critical thinking skills, and non-biased verbal communication skills. The study conducted the following three interventions: (1) social media-based learning activity; (2) cocurricular learning (i.e., in-class expert training); and (3) combination of problem-based learning (PBL) and conceptual model development activity (i.e., active learning activity). Overall, 111 students from two consecutive semesters (i.e., summer 2021 and fall 2021) participated in the interventions in three construction management (CM) courses (i.e., Sustainable Construction, Principles of Construction, and Sustainable Approach to Construction) at a minority-serving institution. The research integrated a mixed-method approach through the systematic collection of quantitative and qualitative data using questionnaire surveys and concept maps. A Wilcoxon signed-rank analysis evaluated the quantitative data obtained from the workshop’s pre- and post-surveys, whereas the qualitative data were analyzed using sentiment analysis. The obtained results demonstrated the efficacy of the following three interventions: (1) improved collaboration among students through increasing their social network and sharing their perspectives, opinions, and graphical media content more efficiently; (2) increased students’ awareness about unconscious biases as well as intercultural, persuasive, and verbal communication skills; and (3) improved their ability to conceptualize ideas and determine the implications of their decisions through concept maps. The findings of this study contribute to two bodies of knowledge. First, they contribute to sustainable construction by encouraging the integration of more robust initiatives on social sustainability education. Additionally, this study also contributes to engineering and construction ethics education by increasing students’ awareness about the social dimension of sustainability such as equity, unconscious biases, microaggressions, stereotypes, prejudices, and cultural humility.

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