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Climate Change: Science, Observations & Impacts - ENV00002I

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  • Department: Environment and Geography
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Liz Hurrell
  • Credit value: 10 credits
  • Credit level: I
  • Academic year of delivery: 2021-22
    • See module specification for other years: 2022-23

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Spring Term 2021-22

Module aims

This module will provide students with an understanding of the basic scientific processes that lead to climate change. In addition, the course provides details on how climate change can be observed and the consequent impacts on the environment and society.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of the module you should be able to:

  • Demonstrate a detailed understanding of the underlying science behind climate change
  • Develop an appreciation of the impacts of climate change on society and the environment and possible remediation measures
  • Process, interpret and present data using appropriate qualitative and quantitative techniques (coursework)

Generic / Employability Skills:

The module provides scientific understanding of the causes and impacts of climate change. Given that climate change is the biggest environmental issue we face, such an understanding is likely to be of importance for any future job in the environment sector. Such a scientific understanding is necessary in order to properly assess the various mitigation measures available.

Key generic skills will include:

  • Numerical analysis
  • Use of modelling software and interpretation of results
  • Production of a written report
  • Time management


Task Length % of module mark
2000 word scientific report
N/A 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Online Exam - 24 hrs (Centrally scheduled)
24 Hours Climate Change: Science, Observation & Impacts
8 hours 100

Module feedback

Feedback on individual reports will be provided as written comments on returned work giving generic information on good practice and detailed comments on how to improve next time. Individual coursework will be available for collection according to the assessment schedule.

Indicative reading

Burroughs, W.J. (2009), Climate change: A multi-disciplinary approach, Cambridge. (old edition equally good and cheaper to buy)


Burroughs, W.J., (2005) Climate change in prehistory: The end of the reign of chaos, Cambridge

Dessler A.E. and E.A. Parson (2010), The Science and Politics of global climate change: a guide to the debate, Cambridge (first edition also fine for this course)

Leggett J. (2000), The carbon war: global warming at the end of the oil era, Penguin

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.