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Online Classes – University of Reading

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  • Take a Meteorology Class Online

Online Classes

The Department of Meteorology at the University of Reading has adapted some of its teaching for learners to study online with support from internationally renowned academic staff. Online learners will study over one term in parallel with University of Reading students.

These courses are suitable training for professional meteorologists, consultants, STEM students, graduates and academics seeking to improve their range of skills and knowledge. We welcome applications and enquiries from people in the UK and abroad.

  • Each week you will have access to new lecture notes which are accompanied by videos.

  • For some courses there will be live online interactive sessions in which you can join University students if you are available.

  • There will be exercises and assessments.

  • You can ask for help any time on course discussion boards, at live online sessions, and if you cannot attend the interactive sessions, short one-to-one sessions with the lecturer or their assistant can be scheduled, subject to availability.

  • You should spend in total between 4 and 8 hours per week studying.

  • You will get individual feedback on your work.

  • If you successfully complete the course, you will receive a certificate.

Courses run from September to December and January to March. Applications will be considered until the beginning of the course or until all places are filled.

The Courses

These courses share the same teaching material (e.g. lecture notes) as some of our University of Reading undergraduate and MSc modules. The assessments will be similar to those taken by the Reading students. If a course has live online sessions or a discussion site then they will be shared with the Reading students. However, these courses are not University of Reading modules that can be taken for credit. Sun breaking through the clouds

  • An Introduction to Meteorological Measurements delivered by Professor Chris Scott runs from September 2021 to December 2021 and introduces the concept of making measurements of fundamental environmental quantities such as temperature, pressure, wind speed and humidity. Techniques for measuring each quantity will be discussed in some detail, along with the advantages and disadvantages of each. Online versions of practical classes will enable learners to experience the laboratory environment and become familiar with the techniques necessary for accurate calibration of the instrumentation. To get the most out of the course, learners will need to have A-level or equivalent qualifications in maths and physics. Learners' understanding of the subject will be assessed through an online multiple-choice test and an appraisal of the work submitted for one of the online practicals. You will receive a mark out of 100.

  • Tropical Meteorology delivered by Dr Chris Holloway runs from January 2022 to March 2022 and introduces some weather systems and circulations in the tropical atmosphere such as:

  • Convection El Nino weather plot

  • The intertropical convergence zone

  • The Hadley and Walker Circulations

  • The El Nino-Southern Oscillation

  • The Madden-Julian Oscillation

  • Tropical cyclones.

You will need to satisfactorily complete three out of five problem sheets to pass. Pre-requisites are A-level maths or similar (particularly vector calculus) and an understanding of fluids and meteorology, including familiarity with the ideal gas law, hydrostatic balance, geostrophic balance, thermal wind balance, advection, buoyancy, dry atmospheric convection, potential temperature, latent heating, precipitation and vertical stability.

  • Statistics for Weather and Climate Science delivered by Professor Ted Shepherd and Dr Ben Harvey runs from September 2021 to December 2021. You will learn statistical methods and reasoning relevant to environmental science and gain experience in the proper use of statistics for the analysis of weather and climate data. Practical classes use the R programming language. Some programming experience and A-level mathematics are pre-requisites. There are practical assignments each week (10 in total) and four of these will be assessed.

  • Climate Services and Climate Impact Modelling delivered by Dr David Brayshaw and Professor John Methven and runs from January 2022 to March 2022. You will learn the science, practical techniques and communication skills required for the provision of quantitative climate services and climate impact modelling. There are lectures covering key scientific and technical material and sector-specific case studies presented by external speakers. You will design and write code in Python to develop a simple climate service application using historical and climate forecast data. You will outline a climate service by writing a briefing report of the style used in environmental consultancy. Some programming experience and A-level mathematics is a pre-requisite. met-wave

  • Introduction to Numerical Modelling of the Atmosphere and Ocean delivered by Dr Hilary Weller and runs from September 2021 to December 2021. You will write Python code to solve mathematical and meteorological problems such as interpolation and solution of the diffusion and advection equations. Theoretical analysis of stability and error are backed up by numerical experiments. Some prior programming experience is useful. This worksheet summarises the mathematical pre-requisites. There will be two assessed practicals involving writing code and reporting on results. Learners are expected to spend about five hours per week on this course. A test at the end will assess the mathematical content. You will receive a mark out of 100.

introductory offer

This is the first year that these courses have been offered online so learners will be charged £300 per course once they are accepted. You will be sent payment details if you are accepted onto a course. The same fee will apply for international and UK learners.

to apply

Fill in this online application.  Applications will be judged based on your track record, your suitability to take the chosen course and your motivation. These courses are not available to existing University of Reading students.

For queries and to be kept up to date contact


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