5 Best Renewable Energy Courses You Can Take Online

Energy Principles and Renewable Energy

Energy Principles and Renewable Energy is a free online environmental science course offered by the University of Queensland. The class can be taken on its own or as a part of a series of five courses that culminates in a Sustainable Energy Micro Masters credential. Alternatively, this course can be used for credit toward the Master of Sustainable Energy at the university. This intensive course lasts for 12 weeks and includes the following course modules: Energy Literacy, The Challenge, Energy Systems, Bioenergy, Geothermal, Solar, Wind Power, Hydropower, Ocean Power, Energy Storage, and Electricity Management. Students will need to devote 10 to 12 hours of study time to the course each week.

Renewable Energy and Green Building Entrepreneurship

Renewable Energy and Green Building Entrepreneurship is a free urban planning online course offered by Duke University in the United States. This course is intended for individuals who are interested in learning more about the green building movement or who wish to work in city planning. Lasting for three weeks, the class covers the following topics: Get Inspired — The Power of 3: Entrepreneurship + Green Building + Renewable Energy; Dive into Business — Real Opportunity. Real Challenges; and Blast Off — Moving from Ideas to Business Implementation. One topic is covered each week through a series of videos, readings and assignments.

Elements of Renewable Energy

Elements of Renewable Energy is a free online environmental science course offered by The Open University in the United Kingdom. The class is ideal for anyone who has interest in sustainable energy technology, climate change or renewable energy but has no educational or work background in any of these fields. Each week, students watch a series of videos and then complete readings and supplemental assignments. The class lasts for four weeks and will require roughly 3 hours of study time per week. At the end of the class, those who have successfully completed all of the requirements can receive a verified certificate of completion for a $49 fee.

Solar Energy

Solar Energy is a free online physics course offered by Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands. To succeed in this course, students must have some previous knowledge of physics. The class is self-paced, so students are free to begin it at any time and move through the video modules and accompanying exercises at their own rate. Generally, the instructor recommends spreading the work over eight weeks and devoting 6 to 8 hours of study time to the coursework weekly. Topics covered include: Introduction to Solar Energy, Working Principle of a Semiconductor Based Solar Cell, Solar Cell Operation, Performance and Design Rules, PV Technology Based on Crystalline Silicon Wafers, Thin-Film PV technologies, Third Generation PV and Other Ways to Utilize Solar Energy, PV Systems-Components and Concepts, and PV Systems-Application and Design.

Our Energy Future

Our Energy Future is a free online environmental science course offered by the University of California, San Diego. This course is intended for anyone who is interested in sustainable energy and food production in the United States and around the world but has no previous educational experience in the field. Lasting for nine weeks, the class is broken into eight video modules: Introduction to Energy; Physical Energy Sources; Introduction to Biological Energy Sources; Plant Biofuel; Algae Biofuel; Biofuel Production and Downstream Processing; Social Issues, Economics, and Politics; and Climate Change. Students should expect to spend 4 to 5 hours on the course each week.

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