Implementation of moocs as a tool for improving climate change competence in pre-service and in-service elementary and secondary school teachers

  1. Enzo Rainiero Ferrari Lagos
Supervised by:
  1. Fernando Martínez Abad Director
  2. Camilo Ruiz Méndez Director

Defence university: Universidad de Salamanca

Year of defence: 2021

  1. José Gutiérrez Pérez Chair
  2. Santiago Andrés Sánchez Secretary
  3. José Reyes Ruiz Gallardo Committee member

Type: Thesis


Today's society is facing the challenge of Climate Change (CC). In this area, the promotion of Sustainable Development has achieved wide international recognition as the way forward to mitigate its consequences. Through the Sustainable Development Goals, the UN aims to increase awareness, provide education, and develop action strategies to tackle this global problem. To achieve these objectives implies the need to establish action frameworks that allow education for participation, awareness, and critical and responsible training of citizens. Thus arises Climate Change Education, a strategic and meaningful way to promote the principles and practices of Sustainable Development. Although education is being recognized as a fundamental tool to address CC, there is still no clear strategy to implement it effectively. Therefore, the usefulness of this research lies in the introduction of the concept of Climate Change Competence (C3), which aims to develop citizens with a solid awareness of this problem through the acquisition, application, and diffusion of knowledge, behaviours, and values. The elements that are part of C3 are: Learning to know: includes knowledge and content such as the physics and chemistry of CC and how scientists explain causes and consequences. Learning to do: develops adaptation and mitigation skills. Learning to be: willingness to execute actions that help find environmental solutions through attitudes and decisions, with judgment and responsibility. To develop C3, it is necessary to bring the science of CC closer to the educational community. An excellent alternative is to do it through new training tools such as massive open online courses (MOOC). The present work was carried out through a pre-experimental pretest-posttest design of a single group, where the improvement of C3 in elementary and secondary education teachers was evaluated. It was also evaluated in different populations using two of the three MOOCs designed and created. These courses were "CC Awareness and Training for Primary and Secondary Teachers" and "Climate Change Science." C3 behaviour was analyzed through multivariate data analysis techniques. The results showed that students who participated in this course training improved in the elements of C3. In addition, teachers stated that they feel more confident and committed to teaching CC after completing the training activity. Therefore, it reinforces the idea that there is a need to create and design more training activities for teachers and the general public. This research is the beginning of the development of C3 in educational personnel, as future research is expected to develop this competence in students and society in general.