• Offered by Fenner School of Environment and Society
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Course subject Environmental Science
  • Areas of interest Earth and Marine Sciences, Forestry, Geography, Interdisciplinary Studies - Sustainability, Resource Management and Environmental Science
  • Academic career Undergraduate
  • Course convener
    • Dr Nicholas Engerer
    • Mr Nicholas Engerer
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course ENVS6204
  • Offered in Second Semester 2015
    See Future Offerings

This course focuses on the fundamentals of meteorology and bushfire science, framed within the context of Australian climatology. It is designed to lead students into advanced third year courses in climatology, climate change, bushfire science, climate change science and policy, and water resource management and policy.

This course has three focus areas:

Weather - What is 'weather' and why does it happen?  Learn how weather serves to redisperse heat energy around the globe through global circulation processes, and how to understand the wind, rain and chaos that come along with it.  Includes a special focus on bushfire meteorology. Taught by Nicholas Engerer.

Climate  - Why is Australia's climate amongst the most variable in the world?  Why is water so plentiful at some times, while scarce at others?  Includes emphasis on the fire regime of Australia. Taught by Nicholas Engerer.

Fire - In Australia, fire regimes vary from infrequent, explosive, summer fires to annual, low intensity, fires in winter. How, and more importantly why, do fire regimes vary so much? This is the key to understanding the phenomenon of fire in Australia. Taught by Associate Professor Geoff Cary.


Learning Outcomes

On satisfying the requirements of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Describe and explain the physical processes that drive weather, climate & fire in Australia

  2. Explain the interactions between the above and their variability

  3. Analyse and forecast weather and fire danger

  4. Analyse weather, climate and fire scenarios that vary in location, scale and complexity

  5. Reflect upon, synthesise and explain LOs 1-4

Indicative Assessment

All laboratory and field trip sheets must be submitted in order to achieve a final grade. Assessment will be based on:

  • Mid-term Test (LOs 1,2,4) 15%

  • Final Exam (LOs 1,2,4,5) 20%

  • Practical Assessments (7 best @ 5% each) (LOs 1,2,3,4,5) 35%

  • Weather and Cloud Journal  (LOs 3,4,5) 15%

  • Bushfire Meteorology Report (LOs 2,3,4,5) 15%

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


5 hours of lectures and practicals per week.  Students are expected to spend 8-10 hours per week, on average, on reading and course assignments.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have completed 36 units towards a degree.You are not able to enrol in this course if you have completed SRES2002 or SRES2004 or ENVS6204.

Prescribed Texts

Sturman, AP and Tapper, NJ (2006) The Weather and Climate of Australia & New Zealand. Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

Preliminary Reading

Cheney, P and Sullivan, A (2008) Grassfires. Fuel, Weather and Fire Behaviour. CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood, Victoria. 




Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Band 2
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2015 $3096
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2015 $4146
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings and Dates

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery
2027 20 Jul 2015 07 Aug 2015 31 Aug 2015 30 Oct 2015 In Person

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