U.S. Department of Energy – Energy Literacy and Energy Education Initiatives

Community Based

Workforce and education activities support the rapid scale-up of deployed energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies. These activities include supporting technology-specific workforce training, developing career visualization tools and supporting energy education and energy literacy through energy Literacy initiatives and creation of the energy literacy document and the support of energy and workforce education through the energy 101 initiative.

Energy Everywhere – An Introduction to Energy Literacy


Energy Education & Energy 101 Initiative The Energy 101 initiative is an effort to support energy education in the post-secondary setting to increase students’ opportunities to enter the energy workforce, ensuring that the Nation excels in energy research and innovation, and also to maintain a world-leading technical workforce. An initial product of the energy 101 initiative was the Energy 101 Framework. The framework serves as a conceptualization in the form of a course outline, of a multidisciplinary approach to learning about energy.

  • Identify best practices surrounding teaching energy in the post-secondary setting
  • Amplify those best practices,
  • Support the creation of a community of practice of energy education experts
  • Encourage more students to explore careers in energy and science, technology, engineering and math. Energy Literacy Initiative

Energy Literacy: Essential Principles and Fundamental Concepts for Energy Education is an interdisciplinary approach to teaching and learning about energy. The framework identifies seven Essential Principles and a set of Fundamental Concepts to support each principle. The guide does not seek to identify all areas of energy understanding, but rather to focus on those that are essential for all citizens K-Gray. It presents energy concepts that, if understood and applied, will help individuals and communities make informed energy decisions. • Identify the most promising education opportunities to improve domestic energy literacy • Lead the national discussion of energy • Increase the energy literacy of the nation and the world

High Level Impact: 
  • The Energy Literacy Framework was developed with hundreds of stakeholders, including endorsement of 13 Federal agencies.
  • The Energy Literacy Framework was the first nationally recognized blueprint for teaching energy using and interdisciplinary approach with 7 essential principles
  • Over 32,000 hard copies distributed of the Energy Literacy document with an additional 2,500+ downloaded online.
  • Energy literacy document has been translated into several languages including Spanish
  • The Energy 101 Framework has been used to help inform fundamentals of energy courses in a number of colleges and universities in the US
  • The Energy 101 and Energy literacy education initiatives have been recognized as key initiatives energy education in the Journal of Sustainable Education and Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences (“Energy Education: Easy, Difficult, or Both?” and “Energy Education and the Dilemma of Mitigating Climate Change”)
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