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Promoting interdisciplinarity through climate change education


Climate change is a complex scientific and social problem. Effectively dealing with it presents an immense challenge, yet educating students about it offers educators in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fruitful opportunities for promoting interdisciplinarity, retaining talented young people in STEM fields and enhancing multiple literacies of all students. We offer three illustrative examples of interdisciplinary climate change-related STEM education projects. Each of these models is designed deliberately for implementation in the first two years of collegiate-level STEM courses; thus, they may be employed in both four- and two-year institutions. The scientific community can use climate change education opportunities to help further transform STEM education in the US and increase production of high-quality STEM graduates.

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The authors extend special thanks to Tom Dietz for encouraging work on this piece.

Author information




A.M.M. wrote the first draft of the manuscript. A.M.M., B.W.O., R.D.S., G.R.U. and A.Z. wrote and revised parts of the manuscript.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Aaron M. McCright.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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McCright, A., O'Shea, B., Sweeder, R. et al. Promoting interdisciplinarity through climate change education. Nature Clim Change 3, 713–716 (2013).

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