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Climate Science for Decision-Making (ATOC90002)

Graduate courseworkPoints: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelGraduate coursework
Subject codeATOC90002
Semester 1
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

Climate change is one of the most important issues of our time. This subject covers the basics of climate science - including climate change, natural variability, extremes, climate scenarios, and detection and attribution - and how this translates into impacts on society, ecosystems and economies. The subject focuses on the production of climate science and data and how its creation, analysis, and use informs decisions made from multiple perspectives and across multiple levels, including governments, industry and communities. The subject has a particular focus on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports. To develop practical skills, students are required to apply knowledge from the course to develop and justify various stakeholder positions, policies, or business cases. Students will build climate profiles for relevant stakeholders in order to assess and debate how national or other circumstances frame responses at the local, state and international level.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this subject students should be able to:

  • Identify the key components of the climate system, including their feedbacks, complexity and variability across a range of time-scales;
  • Discuss the relevance of climate data, scenarios and uncertainties to decision-making;
  • Analyse climate impacts on human and natural systems;
  • Navigate and discuss climate science presented in the IPCC Assessment Reports, scientific peer-reviewed literature and the media;
  • Debate differing international perspectives and policy options pertaining to climate issues; and
  • Analyse and differentiate between climate policy positions based on varying understandings and uses of climate science.

Generic skills

  • Demonstrate advanced independent critical enquiry and analysis and the ability to apply these in a negotiation setting;
  • Apply a strong sense of intellectual integrity and ethics of scholarship;
  • Produce high-level writing and verbal communication;
  • Think critically and creatively, with an aptitude for continued self-directed learning;
  • Critically examine, synthesise and evaluate knowledge across a range of disciplines; and
  • Analyse and prepare evidence to support informed decision-making.

Last updated: 8 August 2019