Teaching Climate Change On-line

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Monday, 3 February 2014
Hall C3 (The Georgia World Congress Center )
Margaret Mooney, CIMSS/Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI; and S. Ackerman

This presentation will highlight results and insights from a new 100-level undergraduate course on Climate and Climate Change taught completely on-line during the 2013 spring semester at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Course content was developed by the UW Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies (CIMSS) with support from NASA Innovations in Climate Education (NICE). The course was offered through the UW Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (AOS) Department and included pre- and post-class surveys. Along with a lighter carbon footprint and the added convenience of web-based access, students interacted via Drupal forums and Google hangout. Videos, webinars, stories and activities assembled for the course came from NASA, NOAA, the National Research Council and CIMSS. Climate research highlighted was regionally focused, featuring work by AOS professors and findings from the Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts (WICCI) as well as the IPCC. Activities included the occasional web-based field trip and a future snow removal project delivered through a new UW Case Scenario tool. Along with providing an overview of the course architecture and select activities, we will share survey results that offer a 2013 snapshot of the climate literacy of UW-Madison college students and insights for successful teaching and learning in on-line communities.