Climate Adaptation Fundamentals Micro-credential

The data is clear: climate change is here, and the time for climate action is now. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports that human activity has been an “unequivocal” catalyst in warming trends compared to pre-industrial levels. Over the last century, temperatures have increased in Canada, sea levels have risen, Arctic ice and permafrost have melted, and atmospheric rivers are intensifying. Climate change will continue to escalate the severity of natural disasters and hazardous events.

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Climate Adaptation Fundamentals Micro-credential

The data is clear: climate change is here, and the time for climate action is now. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports that human activity has been an “unequivocal” catalyst in warming trends compared to pre-industrial levels. Over the last century, temperatures have increased in Canada, sea levels have risen, Arctic ice and permafrost have melted, and atmospheric rivers are intensifying. Climate change will continue to escalate the severity of natural disasters and hazardous events.

Canada needs a skilled workforce to take on the challenges of the coming century.

The transition towards sustainability has important implications for the workforce. We are seeing an increased need for skilled climate professionals and an expanding labour market aligned to “green” jobs to adapt to and mitigate the climate crisis.

Royal Roads University's Climate Adaptation Fundamentals Micro-Credential is an ideal entry point into this expanding and essential labour market.

Is this program

for you?

The Royal Roads University Climate Adaptation Fundamentals Micro-Credential focuses on providing individuals with skills that integrate climate strategies into their work.

This micro-credential is for workers in corporate, government, small business, consulting services and non-governmental organizations. Learners will gain a new understanding of climate impacts across sectors and how they can integrate a climate lens into the work they already do. 

No single micro-credential will provide individuals with a complete suite of skills and competencies necessary for planning, initiating, and evaluating climate change mitigation and adaptation. This micro-credential offers an entry point to start doing that work. 

Micro-credential Program Structure

The Climate Adaptation Fundamentals Micro-Credential consists of a collection of 4 short courses. These courses can be taken individually or bundled together to earn an industry-accepted micro-credential. 

To receive a Climate Adaptation Fundamentals Micro-credential, a learner must complete 2 required courses and 2 elective courses from the following list:

Climate Change Adaptation Fundamentals Course Summary

Professionals working in British Columbia are increasingly aware of the need for adaptation strategies but may be unsure where to start. This 4-module, instructor-led online course will provide learners from a range of disciplinary and professional backgrounds with an overview of the current state of knowledge on climate science and a grounding in the core concepts supporting climate change adaptation. Learners will gain an understanding of regional climate trends, risks, and their implications for human and natural systems, the role of adaptation in risk reduction, and an understanding of how science-based information and tools can be used in strategic adaptation planning.

Learning Outcomes

After completing the course learners will be able to:

  1. Explain the core concepts of climate science
  2. Distinguish between weather, climate variability and climate change
  3. Describe current climate trends, regional impacts and the role of adaptation
  4. Analyze different regional climate change scenarios, impacts, and opportunities for adaptation and mitigation
  5. Develop a high-level plan for integrating climate change adaptation into practice.

Course Structure

  • Level: Introductory
  • Time commitment:  5 hours per module (4 modules in total) + 5 hour assessment – 25 hours total
  • Delivery: Online course (asynchronous delivery with scheduled synchronous sessions) 
  • Sector: multi-sector, infrastructure, agriculture, forestry, tourism, natural resource management

Indigenous Knowledges and Perspectives on Climate Adaptation Course Summary

Equitable and just climate action demands the integration of Indigenous perspectives in climate adaptation and mitigation. 

This four-week, online course has been designed by Indigenous knowledge holders, Indigenous and non-Indigenous subject matter experts, and instructional designers. Learners will develop a broad, foundational understanding of Indigenous worldviews and perspectives on climate change, the environment, and environmental management. Learners will consider how and where Indigenous leadership can restore better practices across social and political landscapes, providing a starting point through which further learning and exploration of Indigenous perspectives, knowledge, voices, and cultural practices can emerge. Recognition of the role that colonialism has played in the climate crisis is critical. Learners (specifically, non-Indigenous learners), will leave the course with an increased capacity to understand and support Indigenous-led climate projects and practice decolonization.

Learning Outcomes

Learners will acquire an introductory understanding on Indigenous perspectives in climate adaptation and mitigation. The course encourages learners to practice a shift in perspectives and values related to our shared relations with the planet. Learners will develop the skills and competencies to respectfully and productively support Indigenous-led climate action projects.

Course Structure

  • Level: Introductory
  • Time commitment:  5 hours per module (4 modules in total) + 5 hour assessment – 25 hours total
  • Delivery: Online course (asynchronous delivery with scheduled synchronous sessions) 
  • Sector: multi-sector, human resources & administration, government & policy, public health,  infrastructure, agriculture, forestry, tourism, natural resource management

Intro to Transition Leadership

The climate crisis is often described as a crisis of leadership. As dominant models of leading are increasingly failing to adequately address the complexity and uncertainty of climate and sustainability challenges, we find ourselves asking ‘What are the leadership mindsets and practices needed to effectively lead sustainability transitions?’

Transition leadership is one path forward. It is an approach that draws from a range of leadership schools of thought, such as adaptive leadership and collaborative, values-based leadership, in the context of steering sustainability transitions. At its core is a shift from individualism to collective models.

Throughout this introductory course, participants will develop an understanding of the context, substance, and process of transition leadership. We will experiment with a ‘transition pathways’ approach which can help make sense of complex situations, create shared meaning, envision future possibilities, and enable action. Learners will have opportunities to advance their reflective leadership practice, sense of agency, and resilience.

Learning Outcomes

After completing the course learners will be able to:

  1. Conceptualize modes of leadership for sustainability transitions and climate action;
  2. Understand the importance of learning as an act of leadership;
  3. Reflect on the role of power and the conditions conducive to an inclusive leadership approach;
  4. Explore transition pathways approaches to dialogue about possible futures; and
  5. Consider their role as a reflective practitioner and the value of cultivating personal resilience.

Course Structure

  • Level: Introductory
  • Time commitment:  5 hours per module (4 modules in total) + 5 hour assessment – 25 hours total
  • Delivery: Online course (asynchronous delivery with scheduled synchronous sessions) 
  • Sector: multi-sector, human resources & administration, government & policy, public health,  infrastructure, agriculture, forestry, tourism, natural resource management

Intro to Natural Asset Management

Canadian communities face challenges of declining infrastructure quality and diminishing health and resilience of many ecosystems, a challenge made far more pressing by climate change. To address this, leading local governments are starting to identify, value and account for natural assets in their financial planning and asset management programs as a means to develop and deliver core services sustainably through a climate resilient green infrastructure. This four-week online course covers core concepts, the most recent case examples and latest approaches to municipal natural asset management. The course will provide both essential information to anyone working for, or with local governments or who is interested in innovative approaches to community sustainability; and, an opportunity to discuss with peers and the instructor, potential approaches to challenges and opportunities in learners’ own communities.

Learning Outcomes

After completing the course learners will be able to:

  • Understand and appreciate that natural assets can or do provide services to local governments
  • Understand how modern structured asset management in Canada is a useful platform for natural asset management
  • Understand core terminology, including how natural assets fit within the concept of green infrastructure
  • Analyse and synthesise key Canadian case examples of natural asset management
  • Understand key barriers and opportunities to scaling up natural asset management
  • Have a better understanding of how they can advance natural asset management in their own contexts and where they can get additional resources

Course Structure

  • Level: Introductory
  • Time commitment:  5 hours per module (4 modules in total) + 5 hour assessment – 25 hours total
  • Delivery: Online course (asynchronous delivery with scheduled synchronous sessions) 
  • Sector: multi-sector, infrastructure, city planning, agriculture, forestry, tourism, natural resource management 
  • Sector: multi-sector, human resources & administration, government & policy, public health,  infrastructure, agriculture, forestry, tourism, natural resource management

Intro to Climate Policy for Climate Adaptation Professionals Course Summary

This 4-week, online course will inform learners about climate adaptation policy in Canada at both a provincial and federal scale. It will allow them to consider how climate policy informs their professional functions and day to day activities on the job. The course will cover the basics of environmental policy, differences between climate mitigation and climate adaptation policy, overviews of key policy actors and tools, and policy gaps.

The course will also consider examples of current policy-driven climate adaptation measures in specific areas such as engineering, agriculture and hydrology. Course content will include short video lectures, interviews with experts, discussions and activities, resources and readings, and a final capstone activity.

Learning Outcomes

After completing the course learners will be able to:

  1. Diagnose the need for different climate change adaptation policies;
  2. Interpret climate change policy relative to mitigation or adaptation;
  3. Use climate change scenarios to inform novel climate change adaptation policy tools;
  4. Recommend appropriate climate change adaptation policy tools for a variety of professional and planning needs;
  5. Critically evaluate the merits of existing climate change adaptation policy; and
  6. Apply climate change policy knowledge to real-life examples in professional and planning contexts.

Course Structure

  • Level: Introductory
  • Time commitment:  5 hours per module (4 modules in total) + 5 hour assessment – 25 hours total
  • Delivery: Online course (asynchronous delivery with scheduled synchronous sessions) 
  • Sector: multi-sector, human resources & administration, government & policy, vulnerability & impacts analysis, planning & strategy, finance/accounting

The Financial Impact of Climate Change Course Summary

This 4-week course introduces learners to the financial risks and impacts associated with climate change. Learners will explore a range of risk pathways that link climate and economic systems. The course will explore the financial impacts associated with physical risks related to direct and indirect exposure to climate hazards in the value chain, transition risks arising from abrupt transitions to a low-carbon economy, civil liability and litigation risks and systemic risks transmitted throughout the economy.

As an introductory course, it is suited to those with little or no previous experience in climate-related finance or economics. However, a basic understanding of climate science is presumed.

Learning Outcomes

After completing the course learners will be able to:

  1. Understand the foundational relationship between climate change and the economy;
  2. Identify exposure and vulnerability to climate-related financial risks within their own organizations; and
  3. Apply their knowledge to effective planning and decision-making to adapt to climate change. 

Course Structure

  • Level: Introductory
  • Time commitment:  5 hours per module (4 modules in total) + 5 hour assessment – 25 hours total
  • Delivery: Online course (asynchronous delivery with scheduled synchronous sessions) 
  • Sector: multi-sector, finance/accounting, human resources & administration, government & policy, vulnerability & impacts analysis, planning & strategy

Program Outcomes

Micro-credentials are designed to develop and demonstrate an individual’s skills and competencies in a short timeframe. By providing focused and short-term credentialing opportunities, micro-credentials offer a viable pathway to rapidly develop skills and competencies in niche areas, such as climate adaptation. 

Individuals can take the skills and competencies they acquire in the Climate Adaptation Fundamentals Micro-credential to pursue concrete climate action in their work. They can also utilize their new credentials to compete for positions that require a climate action skill set. 

Over the past few years, we have seen the number of climate action jobs exploding. The skills and competencies gained in the Climate Adaptation Fundamentals Micro-credential will give individuals the edge in a job market that increasingly asks workers to be ‘climate literate.’ 

Background

The Climate Adaptation Fundamentals Micro-credential focuses on developing core competencies identified by people already working in this field. This is articulated within the Climate Adaptation Competency Framework (CACF), developed by Royal Roads University’s Resilience by Design Lab. The broad domain areas defined in the CACF include:

  • Climate adaptation science & practice literacy
  • Climate adaptation leadership
  • Working together in climate adaptation
  • Understanding the climate adaptation challenge
  • Climate adaptation planning & implementation

Each domain area includes a collection of competencies (24 in total). 

We are adding more course options to this micro-credential all the time. Follow Royal Roads Professional and Continuing Studies on LinkedIn and Twitter to find out about upcoming course offerings.

Learn more about the Climate Adaptation Competency Framework here: