Teaching Atmospheric Science
Designing an Atmospheric Science Course
1. Set goals
Learn more about setting effective course goals from the Course Design Tutorial. Browse course descriptions and syllabi from your colleagues to gauge the range of atmospheric science courses currently offered.
2. Consider assessment optionsAligning your assessment strategies with the goals of your course is an essential part of the design process. You can learn more about assessment in the section about Assessing Student Learning in the Course Design Tutorial and through our module on Observing and Assessing Student Learning.
3. Select pedagogies and specific teaching activities
The pedagogic techniques highlighted below can provide inspiration as you consider various approaches that will help you achieve your course goals. The resource collections are organized to provide a rich set of materials to draw from in constructing the specific set of learning experiences you want for your students. Finally, explore the more in-depth information and ideas available in special topics.
Selected Pedagogical Approaches
Atmospheric science courses help students build a variety of skills and critical thinking abilities. Some pedagogical approaches lend themselves well to teaching these topics and skills, including
- Teaching with Data, Simulations, and Models
- Promising Pedagogical Approaches to Teaching about Complex Systems, including
- Using computer models to teach complex systems,
- Combining an inquiry-based approach with multiple representations of complex systems, and
- Using a role-playing approach to coupled natural and human systems.
- Teaching Climate Literacy
The materials below were contributed by faculty members from across the country.
- Activity Collection contributed by faculty members including classroom activities, lab exercises, problem sets, and more.
- Course descriptions for atmospheric science, including syllabi and course goals.
- Visualization collections for teaching about atmospheric science. Collections include animations, photos, and interactive imagery and are sorted by topic.
- CLEAN Teaching Materials Collection provides a variety of extensively reviewed activities, visualizations, and other resources related to teaching about climate and energy. The collection extends beyond atmospheric science, but you can use the browse or search functions to narrow your results.
- Teaching about Climate
- The Climate Literacies, from CLEAN, provide information and resources for incorporating specific aspects of atmospheric science as it relates to climate change into the classroom. Literacy principles include Climate is complex, Climate is variable, and Understanding climate.
- Teaching Materials created as part of CLEAN workshops, including resources to aid with climate communication, debunking myths, and teaching about the climate system.
- Climate modeling resources, including software, programs, tools, data analysis tools, visualizations, and more.
Workshops and Events
- 2015 Teaching Undergraduate Atmospheric Science in the 21st Century: August 3-5, 2015, at the University of Georgia at Athens. This workshop will focus on teaching and learning in the Atmospheric Sciences. This workshop has been cancelled.
- 2010 Teaching About Complex Systems Using the STELLA Modeling Software: This one-day workshop focused on the benefits of using simple modelling software to teach complex systems. View the workshop program for presentations and associated materials.
- 2010 Teaching About Earth's Climate Using Data and Models Workshop: This online workshop was designed to help faculty enhance their teaching about the climate system by incorporating numerical models. View the workshop program for presentations and associated materials.
- 2008 Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection virtual workshop: This workshop focused on developing materials that integrate research and data about hurricanes and climate into the classroom.
- Contribute Materials: Do you have teaching activities, course syllabi, databases, tools, references or websites you use and recommend for teaching about atmospheric science? We encourage you to share your favorite teaching materials and help us expand the resource collections.
- Join the Discussion: Share insight, ask questions or network with other faculty by joining the Teaching Atmospheric Science email list. This link will also provide access to the email list archives or allow you to unsubscribe.