International Journal of Government Auditing – Autumn 2017
The National Audit Office (NAO) of Estonia, in cooperation with the University of Tartu (Estonia), has developed two Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) on environmental auditing.
Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are a form of open, no-cost education accessible through online platforms. MOOCs, developed by universities, or in cooperation with them, make quality higher education available to a wider audience, which contributes to accomplishing Goal 4 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning.
Two pilot courses have been developed: (1) Introduction to Environmental Auditing in the Public Sector, and (2) Auditing Environmental Impacts of Infrastructure.
"Introduction to Environmental Auditing in the Public Sector" presents environmental good governance topics and tools governments use to regulate the environmental behavior of companies and citizens. The course also discusses the entire audit cycle, from selecting an appropriate topic for an environmental audit to drafting an Audit Design Matrix and compiling an audit report.
"Auditing Environmental Impacts of Infrastructure" introduces underlying aspects of infrastructure lifecycle and the aspects' importance in auditing infrastructure environmental and sustainability impacts using performance audit methods. Furthermore, governance tools and methods for managing these impacts are presented.
The courses, which are balanced with NAO of Estonia audit experiences, rely heavily on International Standards of Supreme Audit Institutions (ISSAIs) and International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI), as well as Working Group on Environmental Auditing (WGEA) publications. The training sessions are also balanced with NAO of Estonia audit cases.
The courses consist of reading materials, short video lectures, audit examples, exercises and tests. After passing the tests and successfully completing the course, participants receive a certificate from Tartu University.
Both courses have been held once with the introductory course having more than 200 registered participants from 34 countries, and the infrastructure course welcomed more than 160 students from 34 countries.
Currently, two additional MOOCs are under development: "Auditing Water Issues" (to be designed by members of the European Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (EUROSAI) WGEA by the end of 2018) and "Auditing Waste Management," which will be developed as an INTOSAI WGEA project by 2019.
Visit www.moocs.ut.ee for course information and registration.
For more information, contact Ms. Krislin Kivi at email@example.com.