About the content
Nowadays there is a lot of talk about sustainability, yet it has come to mean many different things in different contexts. Although defining sustainability is complicated, understanding it is crucial in helping us solve urgent global issues. With this free online course, you will not only develop a better understanding of the complexities of sustainability, you will be able to start making sustainable change in your own life, in your own environment, right now.
The newly emerging field of ‘sustainability science’ has identified skills that are critical in analysing and solving sustainability problems. This MOOC introduces you to these essential skills in an applied and interactive way. Through assignments, real-world inspirational cases of sustainable changemakers, self-reflection, and discussions with fellow learners you will sharpen and personalise your skills.
You will directly be able to start making sustainable change by applying your newly acquired skill set to a real-world problem in your own environment. You will work on a personal project of your choice, which can be any sustainability issue in your life - big or small – that you wish to effect and change! For example, starting a weekly community to clean up/reducing food waste in your neighbourhood through raising awareness among your fellow residents.
So, do you want to become a change-agent and a leader in sustainability, and contribute to solving the complex issues our world faces today? Great! Start making a change today, enrol now.
- Tools to understand the concept of sustainability
- To reflect on the use of sustainability by different actors in society
- To develop essential skills to achieve sustainable change
- To directly apply these skills to a sustainability issue in your own environment
There a nog prerequisites, everyone is welcome to join!
Module 1: Dissecting sustainability
Here you will be introduced to the concept of sustainability and its uses within society. We will also explain the sustainability competencies which are your tools for this MOOC.
Module 2: Understanding Complexity
You will now define problems related to sustainability, identifying the direct and indirect causes and effects. This will be done at different scales, from the political arena, to your community, in order to illustrate how complicated these issues can be. Systems thinking tools shall then be explained as a way of tackling this complexity.
Module 3: Thinking about the Future
You will now look to the future; how do you envision it? Using forecasting, back casting and scenario development, you will learn about the tools that will help make that future a reality.
Module 4: Challenging Norms and Values
There are many different cultural understandings of sustainability, and our personal values influence our views and behaviours. You will learn to recognize these differences and biases and how these can influence your understanding.
Module 5: Collaboration for Sustainable Change
In this module, you will see how communication can bring different worldviews together to solve problems related to sustainability.
Module 6: Making your plan work
Now it’s time to create an action plan for your personal project. You will identify the limitations of action taking and the feasibility of tackling your problem.
Module 7: Wrapping up: Being an Agent of Sustainable Change
This module is about reflecting upon the competencies and understanding how they can help achieve sustainable change. You will also look at how you have integrated them into their personal project.
MSc in Environmental Sciences student
Wageningen University & Research
Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of California, Berkeley, are just some of the schools that you have at your fingertips with EdX. Through massive open online courses (MOOCs) from the world's best universities, you can develop your knowledge in literature, math, history, food and nutrition, and more. These online classes are taught by highly-regarded experts in the field. If you take a class on computer science through Harvard, you may be taught by David J. Malan, a senior lecturer on computer science at Harvard University for the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. But there's not just one professor - you have access to the entire teaching staff, allowing you to receive feedback on assignments straight from the experts. Pursue a Verified Certificate to document your achievements and use your coursework for job and school applications, promotions, and more. EdX also works with top universities to conduct research, allowing them to learn more about learning. Using their findings, edX is able to provide students with the best and most effective courses, constantly enhancing the student experience.