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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Introduction to Sustainability by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

2,129 ratings
692 reviews

About the Course

This course introduces the academic approach of Sustainability and explores how today’s human societies can endure in the face of global change, ecosystem degradation and resource limitations. The course focuses on key knowledge areas of sustainability theory and practice, including population, ecosystems, global change, energy, agriculture, water, environmental economics and policy, ethics, and cultural history. This subject is of vital importance, seeking as it does to uncover the principles of the long-term welfare of all the peoples of the planet. As sustainability is a cross-disciplinary field of study, this foundation requires intellectual breadth: as I describe it in the class text, understanding our motivations requires the humanities, measuring the challenges of sustainability requires knowledge of the sciences (both natural and social), and building solutions requires technical insight into systems (such as provided by engineering, planning, and management)....

Top reviews

Dec 18, 2016

It is a well prepared course. Contents are carefully organized and plenty of concepts and examples are included and analyzed. Overall, it is a excellent course to get an overview of sustainability.

Nov 28, 2015

This was my first Coursera course, and I wasn't sure what to expect; but was very pleased with the organization, timescale things were run on, and overall neutrality of the course. Very well done!

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576 - 600 of 686 Reviews for Introduction to Sustainability

By Daniel G

Mar 27, 2017

Really great introduction to the principles of sustainability. A lot of reading was required, more than I expected out of an online course being taken for pleasure, but that being said I enjoyed the content and learning about this topic. Videos combined with the reading made everything very straightforward and easy to understand. My only critique was that some of the test questions were worded in a confusing way and/or didn't provide an explanation as to why one answer was correct vs another, however I understand the challenges of not simply providing the answers to questions given the course format.

By Simon

May 17, 2020

I found this a very interesting course and it covered a lot more than I expected. On the other hand week 4 about alternative energy is showing its age. Renewables have improved a lot more than the predictions in this course, and have in some cases proven to be viable at this point. I would recommend updating the course, or at least writing clearly that this is dated information. As in these difficult time we need thorough and up to date information to make the right decisions.

If it was updated it would get 5 out of 5 now i would give it 3.5 if i could.

By Amitava D

Sep 26, 2020

The course is made in such a manner by observing the videos everything got clear to me.

The graphics are also very nice.

I completed the course but I found some questions are very confusing like 1. Whether Malthusian catastrophe never happened or related questions though I understood the chapter but questions were so confusing? 2. What is the Tragedy in Tragedy of Commons? 3. Peak that

Thanks for organizing this course . Please let me know any next level course on this subject like advance Sustainability etc.

By Sophie D

Aug 27, 2020

This course was excellent at opening my eyes to sustainability. I learned a lot and I am inspired to continue my passion for sustainability in college because of this course. My main drawback is that the material is largely from 2012, which is pretty outdated. Many of the key concepts hold true but some aspects like oil extraction rates are not consistent with what the course would indicate. Overall I am very happy I enrolled and I highly recommend the course!

By Ruy Q

May 26, 2020

The course presents a holistic overview of the pressing environmental conditions the entire planet experiences and utilizes a multi-disciplinary approach in addressing these concerns. This is ideal for learners of all nationalities as examples are not grounded in one particular country or culture. My only suggestion is to present more relevant data and to improve the engaging qualities of the video lectures.

By Parshva J

Jun 5, 2020

Overall a brilliant learning opportunity for people passionate to udnerstand where the world is currently and where it will be when it comes to sustainability. Not your average easy course, the course is really hard to pass. Moreover, it is 8 weeks long and involves the use of complicated terms and languages. Make sure you are ready to invest atleast 15 hours a week into the course to see fruitful results.

By Rachel F

Jun 3, 2020

An interesting course with engaging lectures and quiz questions. A broad overview of many aspects of sustainability which have given me a good basis from which to discuss issues and learn from. Peer review assignments can be hit or miss depending on who reviews your work - some put in much more effort than others. Overall, a manageable workload, low-pressure and interesting course.

By Danielle R

Jun 20, 2020

Comprehensive background on population growth, resource usage, energy consumption, climate, environmental policy. This was a much more comprehensive overview than I had expected so I learned a lot. Definitely a good place to start if you're interested in sustainability. Though the population growth chapter wasn't as interesting to me, it is an important aspect of sustainability.

By Maneksha D

Jul 13, 2020

This course was interesting and useful. I wish we could have seen more examples of sustainability programs and policies that are working in various parts of the world. I love the notion of completing the assessments until you have mastery. The rubric for written work was very basic and allowed for some students with subpar assignments to get full 4 out of 4 points.

By Yohara R

Nov 25, 2020

Wonderful course. The one thing I wished was different is the course name. The quizzes are pretty hard and the assignments are pretty focused on the application of knowledge as well. So I personally think the word "Introduction" in the course name undermines its contents and therefore knowledge gained by the person doing it. Otherwise, it is a great course.

By luisa v

Jul 3, 2020

This course is really good. You can learn a lot with the informations and etc. However, the activities are kinda hard for me... I have to do the same one a lot of times to finally be approved. But my first language is not english and I am "young", so it can be just for me. As I said before, I think its a great course and you´ll probably like it!

By Inna Y

Feb 7, 2021

The course is interesting and I've got to know a lot of new things.

The course is already old for 2020-21, as it was made in 2011. There are new statistics and development in environmental science while the last 9 years. A lot of questions in the tests are a bit vague, in my opinion, questions should be formulated clearly.

By Zdenka P

Nov 25, 2015

A very comprehensive introduction, well structured and narrated. Video lectures were interesting and easy-to-follow. I liked the fact that TED talks and other video sources were used in the syllabus. Also, the course book is well written. My only addition to it would be to include more solution-based topics.

By Mayuri K

Jun 28, 2020

This course is an excellent introduction to sustainability. The videos lectures and quizzes are interesting, readings are relevant, and assignments encourages learner's to apply concepts covered to real life situations. Only area for improvement is the need for updating the content with current data.

By Vitor C

Mar 8, 2019

The course is very complete on it's subjects and points, but should have more slides and some times be more grafic about some examples, this makes the lessons boring and harder to follow because there is a massive amount of informations. Also have too much questions on the quizzes.

By Pooja L

Oct 15, 2017

Excellent understanding of relevant sustainability issues that are affecting the world. Though I feel some of the data is a little dated now. Ease of instruction and enough reference material to go back and brush up on topics that you find relevant or want to explore further.

By Emelyn L

Oct 13, 2020

Really got my mind grinding with the peer review assignments and think beyond the course material. Some questions were tricky or subtly worded so we had to read them very carefully.

However, some videos were fuzzy and if all are mandatory to watch, DON'T mark it as optional!

By Mariam I

Dec 29, 2020

I enjoyed this course a lot. However, there are some lectures where there need to be more clarifications made about the topics discussed. Additionally, the course could be a little bit outdated and need some updates with regard to some topics.

By Nonica G

Aug 23, 2019

It was a great course that's well structured. it covered all the aspects and gave us a picture how interdependent each sphere is. It's time that we all understand and accordingly lead our daily lives with the maximum possible sustainable use.

By Supot S

Aug 31, 2020

The course has provided really useful information which started from the basic and slowly guide the learners into more specific content. A really awesome course for students who want the basic so they can develop further more on the future.

By Emiy L

Nov 24, 2020

Great course, learned heaps about the industry. The only downside is I wasn't sure how up to date the stats were, as course content indicated circa 2005-2010. Other than that, it was really insightful!

By Jennifer A

Aug 22, 2016

I thought this course did a fine job of breaking down foundational concepts from the field sustainability in an understandable manner. The right combination of coursework, readings, and lecture for me.

By Peter B

May 29, 2020

The course is very enlightening on the thoughts living on this planet in a sustainable way. While some facts are outdated (and need receive) they are nonetheless relevant for training

By Suchana D

May 13, 2020

A very good course to have basic understanding of sustainable development. A learner from different background like me would find it much helpful in exploring a new field of interest.

By Emma S

Aug 26, 2020

I learned a lot of great information but the lectures and videos are kind of outdated. It would be great to have some more information on sustainability from the most recent decade.