We Make it Easy for Course Organizers

We are committed to providing course organizers with a wide range of support tools, including the course organizer’s guide, NWEI’s community blog, how-to videos, registration forms and more. Course organizers choose a topic and invite others to join them to discover change, together. Learn more about organizing a course here.

Our Impact

More than 150,000 people worldwide have participated in NWEI discussion courses. We have helped people— in local communities, on college campuses, within faith communities, at work and through the EcoChallenge —change for good, in ways both small and large. Through shared learning, shared stories and shared action, our courses help foster a spirit of community and inspire change. Thousands have abandoned old habits to embrace more sustainable ways of living—from “buying local” and using reusable bags, to joining bike-to-work challenges and shopping second-hand.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do NWEI discussion courses work?

    It all begins with course organizers and their desire to create a community of change. Anyone can organize a discussion course. We provide a wide range of support tools, including the course organizer’s guide, NWEI’s EcoForum, how-to videos, registration forms and more. Course organizers choose a topic and invite others to join them to discover change, together. Our courses are designed to help break big issues into bite-sized pieces. And they help create a personal network of shared stories and support that makes it easy to take action. Learn more about organizing a course here.

  • Where do discussion courses take place?

    On college campuses, within faith communities, at work, in homes and at neighborhood centers—people organize courses in many different settings, inviting people to discover change, together.

  • How are discussion courses developed?

    A key part of our work as an organization is staying up-to-speed on the ever-changing dialogue of sustainability. From TED talks to blog posts to scholarly articles, something new comes out every day with the power to spark discussion and change.  Our Curriculum Committee of volunteers and staff creates and revises course books on an ongoing basis. Let us know if there’s a topic you’d like to see covered in a future course.

  • Can NWEI help me organize a discussion course?

    Absolutely. We are committed to providing course organizers with a wide range of support tools, including the course organizer’s guide, NWEI’s EcoForum, how-to videos, registration forms and more. Learn more about organizing a course here. Our Outreach Team members are available to provide all the support and guidance needed along the way. Contact us by email or at 503.227.2807.

  • How do I sign up to be a course organizer?

    To get started, sign up online or contact NWEI by email or at 503.227.2807

  • I am organizing a discussion course. Do I need a separate manual in addition to my discussion course books?

    Each course book includes tips and guidelines to help facilitators organize a discussion group – and we offer a variety of tools to help make it easy, from online scheduling to videos and mentoring by experienced organizers. Click here for our Course Organizer guide to get started today.

  • Can I join a course that’s already taking place?

    Our model of shared stories, shared learning, and shared action works best when participants complete the journey together, from beginning to end. Rather than connecting participants with courses, we focus on helping people build their own community of change by becoming a course organizer. If you are interested, we will provide you with a wide range of support tools, including the course organizer’s guide, NWEI’s EcoForum, how-to videos, registration forms and more. To get started, sign up online or contact NWEI by email or at 503.227.2807

  • How long is a discussion course? And how long are the meetings?

    Discussion groups meet from one to seven times, depending on the discussion course and the desires of the group.  Groups generally meet for an hour or hour and a half for each session. Sessions are designed to fit into a lunch break, though many groups chose to extend the sessions when time allows. You can also use our online tools to set up a private page for your discussion group.

  • How long does it take to get a discussion course book in the mail?

    NWEI processes orders twice a week. We use USPS priority mail for all our packages. Once shipped, it generally takes 3-5 business days for packages to arrive. We also provide books for download via PDF.

  • What is included with the course/course book?

    Click here to view a sample.

  • How much does it cost to participate in a course?

    To participate in a course, you will need to purchase a course book (PDF and/or print copy). Depending on the course, our discussion books range from $5-$35. Order your course book online here. To place an order or request sample copies of any of our materials, contact us by email or at 503.227.2807

  • How many participants are in an average discussion group?

    The ideal discussion group size is 8-12 people. We recommend that at least 6 people participate but no more than 15, in order to keep the discussion both lively and manageable.

  • Does each participant need his or her own course book?

    Course participants have readings and exercises to complete on their own before each week’s course. To ensure group members are ready to participate each week, we recommend that each participant have their own book.

  • How can I connect with other discussion course participants?

    Drop us a line at contact@nwei.org and we’ll help you connect with the many communities across the world that are using our programs to change for good.

  • Still have questions?

    Contact us at 503.227.2807 or by email at contact at nwei dot org.