Sustainable Living

Learn practical ways to improve sustainability in your home and the community.

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Undergraduate Certificate in Sustainable Living

100% HECS fee waiver available

Start studying in 2024 without tuition fees

Flexible delivery

Offered fully online, so you can follow your passion for sustainable living in your own community.

Learn practical skills

Learn practical ways to improve sustainability in your home and the community.

Follow your passion in sustainable living

In the Undergraduate Certificate in Sustainable Living, you can choose to study just one unit, up to a total of four units for full time study.

Each unit offers insights to understand the world around us, and how to make impacts at a local level that contribute to global change. Whatever you choose, you'll benefit from our strengths as an institution committed to climate action, as well as our amazing location here in Tasmania.

You should plan for around 10 hours of focused study a week per unit you are enrolled in. This includes time spent in lectures, tutorials, private study, and assessment tasks.

Study without tuition fees

Domestic students commencing in 2024 may be eligible to receive a 100% HECS fee waiver. HECS fee waivers will be automatically applied on enrolment. Visit the course page for details.

Popular units

Backyard Biodiversity

Science of Gardening

Introduction to Sustainable Design for Houses

Study options

Explore the history and literature of sustainability, including the formation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. You’ll develop the skills to think critically about sustainability in your own life and community. Plus, you’ll develop the research and communication skills to implement sustainability solutions in your community. This is a compulsory core unit.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 8 hours

Science of Gardening is for everyone, from avid green thumbs with a lifetime of experience to those planting their first seedling. In this unit, you’ll learn the science behind traditional and modern gardening techniques, and this will change the way you see your plants, and change the way you garden.

Sustainable living starts at home, so in this unit you’ll learn the science behind traditional and modern gardening techniques, and this will change the way you see your plants, and change the way you garden.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 5-7 hours

You will explore the roles of climate and soils in shaping the types of plants that grow in different regions; the origins of domesticated plants; and the roles of predators, pathogens, mutualists and symbionts in extending or limiting plant growth.

Science of Gardening 2 will equip you with the knowledge to make more informed decisions about your garden design and will heighten your appreciation of your natural environment.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 7-10 hours

Whether you’re looking at building, buying, renovating, or simply learning, smart housing design can have huge benefits for you and our planet. Learn about the environmental and human health impacts of using creative decision making in the design and renovation of houses.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 10 hours

Build on your practical knowledge of sustainable design for houses, expanding your thinking to houses within landscapes - both natural and constructed - and interacting with climate, biodiversity, human health and urban and regional food systems.

Backyard Biodiversity is for everyone; from people keen to deepen their understanding of the wildlife in their local area, to those ready to convert their backyard into a biodiverse haven, and people just interested in coexisting more sustainably with life on earth.

Some of the important and interesting questions we cover in this unit include: what is biodiversity, and how does it impact our lives? How are animals classified into different groups, and how can that knowledge help us identify backyard animals? What are the best observation techniques for different types of animals, and which ones can you use in your own backyard? How can you attract the animals you want, while keeping your backyard, your family, your pets and the wildlife, safe? How can you help meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals simply by increasing the biodiversity in your garden?

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 5-7 hours

As the world warms, wildfires are behaving in new, less predictable ways, which present fundamental challenges to our established methods of preventing, fighting and living with fire. And with increasing populations on the wildland-urban interface, we urgently need to find new solutions to these challenges.

Learn what causes fire and why wildfires behave the way they do, as well as how to evaluate your own level of fire risk. This unit was developed in consultation with members of the indigenous community and Tasmanian practitioners and UTAS Fire Centre (led by Professor David Bowman). It provides a holistic perspective on the scientific, social, economic and ethical issues inherent in moving towards a sustainable co-existence with wildfire.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 7-9 hours

Science of Fishing is for everyone; from people wanting to develop their skills and knowledge in fishing, those looking to enhance their recreational fishing experience, to those looking to contribute to a sustainable fishery.

Learning from experts from the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies, you will explore habits of different species based on their environment, learn about the variety of fishing gear and methods, and understand the science of fishing sustainably.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 8-10 hours

Become better prepared to deal with a variety of culturally challenging situations. Develop an appreciation of the personal and professional benefits that come from being more culturally aware and competent in increasingly diverse settings.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 5-10 hours

Dive into the complex world of global food security in the 21st century, a crucial and multifaceted challenge that entails sustainable food production and equitable food access. This interdisciplinary unit equips you with the skills and knowledge pertinent to all citizens and professions. Engage with peers and lecturers from various disciplines in this online unit to critically examine the many aspects of global food security, encompassing environmental, technical, economic, cultural, political, and moral dimensions. Enhance your ability to integrate and evaluate diverse information, formulate arguments, and advocate positive responses. Discuss pressing issues such as hunger, obesity, resources, poverty, population, justice, and sustainability, and engage in meaningful debates on contentious topics like diets, biofuels, biotechnology, and capitalism.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 8-9 hours

Do you want to participate in transformations for a better world and learn how you can make a difference? In this unit you will assess environmental, social, and economic implications, evaluate approaches to sustainability and analyse and communicate information to aid decision-making.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 8-10 hours

Life on Earth has nearly been extinguished five times since the explosion of complex life some 550 million years ago. The causes of the five major events are debated. This unit will explore the science, governance and values relevant to the issue of mass extinction and human Earth shaping.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 6-9 hours

Have you noticed the climate changing around you and want to learn more? Or do you want to better understand the science that predicts Earth’s future climate? Science of Climate Change provides an engaging entry into the subject.

*Estimated weekly study for this unit is 10 hours

Explore pathways to reduce the most extreme effects of climate change, including international agreements on reduction of greenhouse gases and other mitigation measures such as carbon sequestration and drawdown and alternative energy sources.

Further study options

After completing the Undergraduate Certificate in Sustainable Living, you can continue your studies into the Diploma of Sustainable Living, where you can receive credit for units already studied. This means you only need to study an additional four units to graduate with the Diploma.

Looking for your next step? Study a Bachelor of Science with a major in sustainability. For more information please visit Bachelor of Science.

Now more than ever, business leaders need to consider a multitude of issues linked to 'sustainable development' when managing their organisation. Our new Graduate Certificate in Sustainable Business will give you the skills you need to help understand and improve your organisation's bottom line.

To see a full list of units available in the Undergraduate Certificate in Sustainable Living, please view the course page.

Find out more about what you'll study, entry requirements, fees and scholarships - and to apply.

Visit the course page

Career opportunities

Upon completing a sustainability course, you will possess new skills, outlooks on living, and a deeper understanding of sustainability in an ever changing world which will complement your existing career direction.

For those interested in ongoing study, you could receive advanced standing credit into a Bachelor degree, such as the Sustainability major, in the  Bachelor of Science.

Careers relating to sustainability are growing across many industries. Here are some of the top careers projected to grow in the next five years:^


Environmental Scientists

Predicted job growth to 2025


Agricultural, Medical and Science Technicians

Predicted job growth to 2025


Environmental Manager:
Future Demand

National Skills Commission - 2021 Skills Priority List (June 2021)

^ National Skills Commission five year projections from November 2020 to November 2025.

Learn to live sustainably

Study Sustainable Living

Learn practical knowledge about sustainability, and how to apply it to your home, community, business, or social enterprise.

Sustainability at the University of Tasmania

Sustainability at the University of Tasmania

In 2022, the University of Tasmania was recognised as the world's leading university on United Nations Sustainability Goal #13 Climate Action by the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings.

The University was also recognised as the 'Sustainability Institute of the Year' at the Green Gown Awards Australasia 2021, presented by Australasian Campuses Towards Sustainability.

This category recognises sustained, whole-institution commitment and impact to becoming a sustainable organisation. This video explores some of the initiatives which are contributing to the University’s holistic approach to sustainability.