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Find your path to climate solutions

Are you searching for a way to take action in the face of climate change? The Transformative Climate Action (TCA) Certificate is your pathfinder to help shape a sustainable future. Providing you with valuable comprehensive tools and strategies, this program will help you to navigate through the confusion of the climate crisis with a clearer path to building climate mitigation and adaptation strategies. You will understand the perspectives and priorities of a diverse range of people, including Indigenous communities, policy advocates, grassroots organizations and climate scientists and engineers. Join us on this pathfinder journey to make a lasting impact in your community.

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Program description

The Transformative Climate Action Certificate is a flexible, interdisciplinary credit program that allows you to tailor your electives to your specific climate action goals. You will learn to engage with the social and political challenges of mitigating and adapting to the disrupting effects of climate change. Develop new ways to build collaborative solutions that support decolonization, integrate diverse communities, enhance social resilience and overcome polarization.

The TCA Certificate is jointly offered by the School of Environmental Studies and the Division of Continuing Studies, resulting in expertly designed courses taught by leaders in their fields. Courses are current, comprehensive and designed for the needs of both online and on campus learners. You can take the program full or part-time. If you are looking for a shorter credential, we also offer the Climate Action Planning micro-certificate.

This program is certified by CIFAL Victoria. CIFAL provides certification for training courses that build the capabilities of individuals and communities towards the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Participants who successfully complete this course are eligible to receive a Certificate of Completion co-signed by UNITAR (United Nations Institute for Training and Research) and CIFAL Victoria.

Program features

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Designed with an interdisciplinary approach to climate action, you will discover connections and strategies in creative and innovative ways.

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Online Flexibility
Offered fully online, this program gives you flexibility to access your course at any time of the day.

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This program is a recognized university credential from the University of Victoria.

Program information session

Are you wondering if this program is a good fit for you? Join us for one of our free information sessions where we will introduce you to the Transformative Climate Action program.

View information session details

UNITAR-CIFAL certification

CIFAL Victoria


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View current UNITAR-CIFAL courses and programs.

Program partners

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Faculty of Social Sciences, School of Environmental Studies

Program outcomes

By the end of the program, students will be able to:

  • develop strategies and implementation plans for climate action through the integration of scientific and technical aspects with legal, economic, cultural and political contexts.
  • collaborate effectively and respectfully with diverse communities and forms of knowledge in shaping climate action, including (but not limited to) climate scientists, engineers, Indigenous communities, stakeholder groups, elected officials, policy advocates, activists and grassroots organizations.
  • recognize and respect Indigenous climate leadership by creating climate action plans responsive to Indigenous priorities.
  • identify and critically assess existing strategies as well as emergent options for and potential impacts of climate action across institutions and scales of governance.
  • critically evaluate sources for quality, relevance and perspective to select information most appropriate for the intended audience and purpose.
  • communicate effectively with diverse audiences in a variety of formats, using active listening and leadership skills to develop relationships, work across differences, and build consensus for resilient and transformative climate action.

Who is this program for?

The Transformative Climate Action Certificate is designed for those passionate about sustainability, social justice and environmental protection. If you are a current UVic student wishing to add a specialization to your undergraduate program or a recent graduate, this certificate will provide you with skills to lead, develop and support climate actions across various sectors related to local, provincial and federal governments. This certificate will demonstrate your ability to collaboratively lead, develop and support effective climate action across diverse sectors and scales.

Does some or all of the following apply to you? This program will appeal to you if you:

  • believe that addressing climate change requires collective action and may be motivated by a sense of responsibility to future generations.
  • enjoy collaboration and are open to working with individuals from diverse backgrounds
  • are interested in learning about new technologies, renewable energy and innovative approaches to climate change mitigation and adaptation
  • have an interest in exploring various perspectives on climate change and engaging in critical thinking with others
  • consider yourself to be action-oriented and solution-focused

Career options

Some of our learners pursue careers in the following roles:
  • Climate Educator
  • Policy Analyst
  • Environmental Planner
  • Sustainability Program Manager
  • Community Organizer for Climate Action
  • Climate Change Advocate
  • Sustainability Coordinator


News and resources

Courses and fees

Three (3) required courses
Four (4) electives

TCA 210: Introduction to the Human Dimensions of Climate Change
Examines a range of understandings of and approaches to addressing climate change, exploring: what kind of problem(s) it poses; what toolkits we need to develop to engage it effectively; how to collaborate across diverse understandings of and priorities in relation to it and what scales and kinds of actions should be prioritized.

Next offered: September, 2024 and January, 2025 (in person)

TCA 310: Transformation in Complex Systems
Introduces skills needed to support planning and decision-making about climate action under conditions of uncertainty, with particular attention to assessing sites for and implications of specific interventions. Emphasis placed on skills of risk analysis and anticipatory management, collaborative planning for diverse goals, and decision-making with sometimes contradictory and diverse forms of knowledge.

Next offered: September, 2024

TCA 320: Politics, Policies and Planning for Climate Action
Uses British Columbia as a case study to introduce the policy and political contexts that shape climate action across scales from local to global, including relevant institutional and governance innovations. Emphasis placed on skills and strategies for engaging and overcoming stagnation and polarization; developing strategies that are responsive to climate science as well as social and ecological impacts, and effective communication.

Next offered: January, 2025

TCA 410: Indigenous-led Climate Action
Explores Indigenous understandings of and responses to climate change, with a particular emphasis on developing skills for respectful and effective collaboration in support of Indigenous priorities.

TCA 415: Adaptation Planning and the Built Environment
Focuses on skills and strategies for urban and regional planning in the context of a rapidly-changing climate, including appropriate use of downscaled climate models to guide adaptation planning.

TCA 420: Water Futures: Drought, Fire, Floods, and Collaborative Governance
Explores how governance is evolving to address the impacts of climate change on freshwater regimes, including cycles of drought, fire, and floods, with a particular emphasis on collaborative governance.

Next offered: January, 2025

TCA 425: Organizing for Transformative Change
Focuses on concepts, skills and practices for organizing transformational change, including strategic landscape analysis, effective communications and alliance-building strategies, and navigating cultural and institutional impediments to change.

Next offered: September, 2024

TCA 430: Future Ecosystems and Communities
Focuses on the interface between communities and the ecosystems that support them, developing skills and approaches for designing mitigation and adaptation strategies that support mutual flourishing, including adaptive management, ecological restoration, and nature-based solutions.

Next offered: September, 2024

TCA 480: Special Topics in Transformative Climate Action
Presents selected topics in an emerging field related to transformative climate action or one not covered in regular offerings.

TCA 490: Practicum in Transformative Climate Action
An opportunity to apply evolving of transformative climate action skills to field-based practice through placement with an organization, community group, or service. Involves a minimum of 100 hours of professional practice activity.

Students may also choose from the following UVic elective courses:

  • ADMN 330: Indigenous Governance in Canada
  • ADMN 331: Governance for Planetary Health (online and in person)
  • ADMN 462: Intergovernmental Relations in Canada (online)
  • ECON 383: Climate Economics
  • EOS/GEOG 130: Climate Change
  • ENSH 306: Communicating for the Environment
  • ES 378: Leadership Skills for Change
  • ES 405: Climate, Energy and Politics
  • ES 411: Environmental Solutions
  • ES/EOS 365: Climate and Society
  • ES 314/PHIL 333: Philosophy and the Environment
  • GNDR 337: Climate Migration
  • PHIL 390: Philosophy and Climate Change
  • POLI 357: Canadian Environmental Politics
  • PSYC 326: The Environmental Psychology of Places and the World
  • SOCI 437: Issues in Environmental Sociology and Climate Change

Contact the program coordinator for more information on applying.

Estimated fees

Description Fee
Program application fee $125.00
Seven required courses ($628.89 per course) $4,402.23
Estimated Total $4,527.23*
Fees listed in this section are an estimate. Total program fees may vary depending on delivery format, course selections, student fees, textbooks and taxes.

Application information

Admission requirements

This credit program is offered at the third and fourth year undergraduate level. Applicants must be admissible to the University of Victoria. 

How to apply

  1. Contact us ( if you want to discuss your education and experience prior to submitting your application.
  2. Click the APPLY ONLINE button. You will be asked to create an account if you are new to Continuing Studies. Please fill out the application form carefully: incomplete applications will result in increased processing times. Note that you will be asked to provide a credit card number to pay the $125 application fee.
  3. Upon acceptance into the program you will receive an acceptance letter, information about how to register for courses, an updated course schedule and information about how to apply to UVic.

Application dates

Starting in
January 2025
Accepting Applications
Apply by
Nov. 1, 2024
Apply online Contact us for more info
Starting in
May 2025
Accepting Applications
Apply by
March 1, 2025
Apply online Contact us for more info