You may have seen advertised in the OU Students Newsletter or on your Student Home page that the OU offers free Carbon Literacy training to its staff and students.
This online course with both asynchronous learning and an online session with other participants is a great way to gain better awareness of climate change, learn how to map your own carbon footprint as well as consider ways you can make a difference on both individual and organisational levels.
Staff can find out more information here.
I asked students and staff at the OU Students Association for their reviews on completing the course and here is what they had to say:
'The Carbon Literacy training was excellent and above all empowering. The climate crisis is overwhelming, and even those of us who care and engage can feel overwhelmed and crushed to the point where at times disengaging can feel like the only rational thing to do for our mental health. Courses like this are the revitalising antidote to this. The training of course deals with the results of the crisis, but we were also given crucial information, data and actions we can take to empower ourselves and those around us to contribute to the answers and solutions. We can do it!'
'I did the carbon literacy course back in July last year and found it really interesting. It covers a lot of ground, but in a way that is accessible and easy to digest. It also gets you to invest in your own carbon output and come up with ways to reduce it, with a carbon literacy action pledge.'
'As someone who already had a good understanding of climate science (from my OU study!) I still learned a lot from the course, particularly about the societal impacts of climate change and climate justice, and found interesting videos and websites I hadn't come across before through the self-study activities. The online training session was engaging and well-structured, with opportunities to discuss the varied topics covered and ask questions.'
'I loved the Carbon Literacy training. I was worried it would be judgemental and heavily pushing the weight of climate action onto the individual. Actually I found a lot of it was centred around how we can take our learning and make a bigger difference beyond our home. My carbon footprint was already low and like many others on my course, there was no easy way to make further change e.g., if you live in a rented property you have little choice over how you power your home and if you live remotely good luck finding a bus or a car share to get to work but the training was very accepting of this and the participants were great for sharing ways people could get more involved at a community or organisational level. They also acknowedged how this often carries far more weight than individual action.'