The Office of Faculty Development

Teaching Climate Change

Climate change is one of the most pressing issues facing the world today. Because of this, being able to address climate in the classroom is increasingly necessary, regardless of what area or discipline we work in. Due to the broad and systemic nature of climate issues, from highly technical scientific research and deep existential questions to everyday experiences of the food we consume and the clothes we wear, faculty (and students) often find it challenging deciding where to begin. 

For the purposes of this teaching guide we have focused on the social and cultural elements of teaching about climate change, rather than the technical aspects. This allows for multiple entry points into climate change engagement and makes it easier to design and develop activities and readings that a wide range of students will be able to engage with across the university, including those in the natural sciences who might have a deeper knowledge or interest in climate science issues. 

This guide also includes links to a variety of online activities for students to do, such as ecological footprint/carbon footprints calculators and climate change surveys, which can be paired together to create even richer classroom engagements.

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Check out the Climate Action Tracker(opens in new window) for more resources on climate change policy and science

Explore NOAA's Teaching Climate website(opens in new window) for more handy classroom resources, guides, and teaching tools

Explore Nxterra Resources(opens in new window) compiled to support teaching and learning

Check out the Climate Cast podcast(opens in new window) for the latest climate news

Listen to the Living Planet podcast(opens in new window) for global green news

Don't miss the Hot Take podcast(opens in new window) for climate reporting with a feminist, race-forward lens

Yale Program on Climate Change Director on American Climate Change Views(opens in new window)

Watch the climate documentary "Awake, a Dream from Standing Rock(opens in new window)

Check out A Field Guide to Climate Anxiety(opens in new window) by Sarah Jaquette Ray

Read the collection Climate Ethics: Essential Readings(opens in new window) from Stephen Gardiner

Check out the Chico Climate Action and Resilience Plan (PDF)