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MOOC Landscape Ecology

The proposed MOOC builds upon the existing ETH E-learning "Landscape Ecology" which is currently taught in a flipped classroom setting. The MOOC highlights the leading role of WSL/ETHZ in the emerging field of Landscape Ecology and is the first comprehensive, interactive course in this field. The core principles of Landscape Ecology are taught through video lectures, interviews with leading experts, quizzes and interactive simulations. In Applied Case Studies leading Landscape Ecology experts from different continents give the students a global learning experience.


General concept of the MOOC

"Landscape Ecology" is a field-based discipline dealing with spatio-temporal changes of the biological, physical and societal components of cultural and natural landscapes. Thus, it brings together numerous disciplines to solve real-world problems. The aim of this MOOC is to demonstrate the interdisciplinarity of the field and to show students how sound expertise in spatial planning, nature conservation planning and community development can be put into practice. For the Landscape Ecology course, the developers envisioned an average Bachelor student. After completion of the course, the students should be able to work independently and with a variety of technical skills on practical problems from landscape evaluation and planning. 


Effective and engaging teaching methods

The course offers a sound mix of theory and practice; roughly 50% of the learning content is devoted to establish essential skills and a solid understanding of the theoretical frameworks in Landscape Ecology; the other 50% consists of case studies from around the world illustrating how landscape ecology is applied in the regional context. The authors of the MOOC have encouraged an international consortium of renowned Professors in Landscape Ecology to present one case study each from their area. This is intended to foster the commitment and the passion of the instructors - a key success factor of MOOCs. Each unit offers a unique mix of valuable didactic activities such as videos, quizzes, text clouds, reading and interactive parts.


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