Learning at Work Week 2019: Global Warming

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In this weeks blog Nicole Schoute shares her experiences of completing the Open University short course on Global Warming as part of Learning at Work Week 2019:

In the Learning at Work Week of 13 – 19 May 2019 I participated in the course Global Warming, one of the many free courses of The Open University. I chose this course, because global warming has been such a ‘hot’ item for over the last few years and I am really interested in which different factors influence this and what we can do to prevent the Earth from further warming up.

During my studies archaeology we already covered the basics of global warming to help us understand why the landscape looks the way it looks, why people chose to live in certain places, how the climate influenced certain events and much more. All this was also covered in the Open University Course, among a few other things. Part of what I really liked about this course was that it had a main focus on Britain. My first global warming course during my archaeology studies was in Deventer, the Netherlands, so mainly focused on the Dutch landscape. Therefore it was good to see it from the perspective of the country I am currently living and working in. The nice thing was that some of the articles I had to read talked a bit about the National Park Snowdonia, in North-Wales, and I happen to spend my 3-day bank holiday weekend (25-27 May) there, so I could see it all for myself! These things are always the best way to learn, reading the information and then applying it. You could really see that Snowdonia is shaped by glaciers that slowly moved forward, by all the characteristic U-shaped valleys.

The course covered, among other things, the 4.6 billion history of climate change, how fast flowing rivers and slowly moving glaciers shaped the landscape, what we can learn from interpreting pollen diagrams and how much humans actually affect the global warming process. Even though humans are part of the global warming, we are not the only source that is responsible for this.

If you would like to know more about the global warming, I would really recommend this course. It’s a good, understandable course that only takes up a few hours of your time, and you’ll really learn a lot and can even apply most of the information into your daily life! You can download all the documents they advise you to read so you can always read everything again. What I also really liked is that you can do this course at your own pace. It doesn’t matter if you spend an hour on it one day, then 2 the next, and then skip a day. It just picks up where you left off, so you don’t have to worry about any of that. I am very positive about this course, and will definitely follow another one!

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