Climate and the Earth System

Climate and the Earth System
Chemical, physical, and biological processes shaping the Earth's surface and climate, emphasizing quantitative methods for measuring and evaluating contemporary climate and environmental changes relative to the last several thousand years.
 Hours3.0 Credit, 3.0 Lecture, 0.0 Lab
Course Outcomes


Define and describe the components and dynamics of Earth's climate system.

Climate Change

Discuss the causes (forcings) of climate change, the natural response of the many components of Earth's climate system to those forcings, and the interactions and feedbacks among these components.

Climate History

Evalute the evidence for and causes of climate change throughout Earth's history and assess the role of greenhouse gases within the climate system at multiple time scales (from tectonic-scale changes to anthropogenic changes).

Quantitative Reasoning

Quantify the response of the climate system to changes in climate forcings through problem sets and laboratory experiments. Use these results to critically evaluate climate sensitivity and climate change over time.