This course was produced by the Algae Technology Educational Consortium and UC San Diego with funding from the Algae Foundation, the National Renewable Energy Lab, and the U.S. Department of Energy. Algae are an extremely diverse group of organisms that can be found in almost every ecosystem on the planet, and they play an essential role for life on earth. They are little bio-factories that use the process of photosynthesis to create chemical compounds that we can utilize for food, feed, medicine, and even energy. We’ve brought together some of foremost algae experts from industry and academia to teach you the fundamentals of algae. This course will cover what algae are, why they are important, and why we are interested in them for both their environmental benefit, as well as their use for products. You will also explore the vast diversity of algae including the characteristics and applications of some of the main types of algae that are in commercial use today. Later you will learn about algal ecology and how interactions with environment, including pests and predators, affect algal productivity. And finally you will examine the processes of algae bio-manufacturing including production processes, as well as some of the products, benefits, and challenges that impact our ability to make commercially viable products from algae.