EAE3111 - Climate dynamics - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

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



Organisational Unit

School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Dietmar Dommenget


Dr Dietmar Dommenget

Unit guides



  • First semester 2019 (On-campus)


One of EAE2011, MTH1030, MTH1035 or ENG1005


ATM2020, ATM3022


The unit provides the opportunity for students to understand the weather and climate of the atmosphere and ocean's. Topics discussed include: the characteristics of the atmosphere, radiation and the global energy balance, the greenhouse effect and climate change, the global wind distribution, Hadley circulation, mid-latitude westerlies, global heat balance, geostrophic wind, thermal wind, the ocean's circulation and causes and characteristics of climate variability from seasons to ice ages.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Discuss the basic physical theory of the earth's energy balance and large-scale climate dynamics and how it can be constructed from basic principles using mathematical analysis and numerical modelling.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge and skills in using mathematical models and applications in atmospheric science and oceanography.
  3. Demonstrate high-level knowledge and skills of the important techniques, terminology and processes of the large-scale physical climate, climate change and variability.
  4. Develop, apply, integrate and generate knowledge to analyse and solve problems in physical climate dynamics.
  5. Discuss the importance of the physical climate dynamics to climate change and variability.
  6. Collect, organise, analyse and interpret quantitative information meaningfully, using mathematical and/or statistical tools as appropriate to physical climate dynamics, including numerical programming.
  7. Explain climate dynamics concepts, processes and results to diverse audiences.


Examination (2 hours): 60%

Assignments, quizzes, tests and support-class activities: 40%

Workload requirements

The workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours spread across the semester (approximately 12 hours per week) - approximately an even mixture of attendance at scheduled activities and self-scheduled study time. Learning activities comprise a mixture of instructor directed, peer-directed and self-directed learning, which includes face-to-face and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study