Module Identifier WS12210  
Academic Year 2003/2004  
Co-ordinator Dr Tony Jones  
Semester Semester 1  
Other staff Dr Tom Coulthard, Mr Jonathan N Turner  
Course delivery Lecture   20 x 1 hr  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours Multiple-choice written paper, computer marked100%
Supplementary Exam2 Hours Same format100%

Learning outcomes

By the end of the module students should be able to demonstrate knowledge of :-

Brief description

The Atmosphere and the Water Cycle provides the basic framework for understanding and investigating the earth-atmosphere system, the dynamics of global change and its implications for life on earth. This module aims to provide an integrated introductory knowledge of the physical interactions between terrestrial, marine and atmospheric systems.


  1. The climate system and global warming (2)
  2. Radiation and atmospheric structure
  3. The global heat budget
  4. The global hydrological cycle
  5. Evaporation procdesses and oceanic patterns
  6. Clouds and precipitation processes (2)
  7. The cryosphere
  8. Global patterns of runoff
  9. The General Circulation of the Atmosphere (2)
  10. Mid-latitude circulation and weather processes
  11. Tropical circulation, weather and climate
  12. Historical climate change
  13. Factors in historical climate change
  14. Storms, floods and droughts (2)
  15. Human modification of the water balance (including case studies from representative climates) (2)


The module aims to impart an understanding of the processes that generate and control weather and climate, and of the water cycle through ocean, atmosphere and land phases.

Reading Lists

** Recommended Text
Barry, R.G. and Chorley, R.J. (1998) Atmosphere, weather and climate 7th. Routledge, London ISBN 0-415-160197
Christopherson, R.W (2001) Geosystems 4th ed.. Prentice Hall, New York. #30.99 including CD-Rom ISBN 0-13-061345-2
Drake, F. (2000) Global warming: the science of climate change Arnold, London ISBN 0-340-65302-7
Jones, J.A.A. (1999) Global hydrology: processes, resources and environmental management Longman, Harlow ISBN 0-582-09861-0
Robinson, P.J. and Henderson-Sellers, A. (1999) Contemporary climatology 2nd. Longman, Harlow ISBN 0-582-27631-4


This module is at CQFW Level 4