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Monash University

Monash University Handbook 2011 Undergraduate - Unit

6 points, SCA Band 0 (NATIONAL PRIORITY), 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.

FacultyFaculty of Science
OfferedClayton Second semester 2011 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Peter Isaac


Urbanisation has profound influences on cities that causes local changes in climate including increased temperature (the Urban Heat Island). Additional impacts include reduced moisture, modified urban waterways, and reduced vegetation. Moreover, urbanisation is linked to hazards such as poor air quality and heat related illnesses. These matters are of particular concern in the context of climate change. This unit will provide an understanding of the relevant physical processes and impacts, along with the associated technological, and socio-political contexts and examine potential solutions by undertaking a sustainable cities approach including the concept of a water sensitive city as an approach to heat mitigation and climate change adaptation. Emphasis is placed on practical, theoretical, observational, analytical and modelling skills developed through lectures, practicals and project work.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. appreciate urban climate knowledge and the critical role of water in the urban environment;
  2. be able to apply climate knowledge to issues of urban sustainability and adaptation to climate change;
  3. have gained practical experience in problem formulation and solution.


Literature review (1000 words): 20%
Practicals (1000 words): 20%
Group or individual project report/presentation (1500 words): 30%
Examination (2 hours): 30%

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Peter Isaac

Contact hours

Two 1-hour lectures per week, one 3-hour practical per fortnight, plus private study/research time.

Off-campus attendance requirements

One 3-hour practical per fortnight


18 points of geography and environmental science, atmospheric science at second level or permission of the Head of the School of Geography and Environmental Science. Other interested undergraduate and level four students will need to obtain permission from the Head of the School of Geography and Environmental Science.


GES3370 or GYM4370