• 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, Geography, Science, Climate, Environmental Science

Australia and the Asia-Pacific region experience a wide variety of weather and climate extremes that have remarkable impacts on lives, livelihoods and property. This course focuses on the in-depth analysis of different types of severe weather events and climate extremes, with a focus on Australia and the Asia-Pacific region.  Floods, tropical cyclones, wind events, thunderstorms, hailstorms, tornadoes, heatwaves, droughts, bushfires and dust storms, as well as the impacts of climate change upon these systems, are studied with an emphasis on understanding the meteorological factors that drive these phenomena, their economic and social impacts, and assessing and communicating their associated risks. You will have the opportunity to learn from experts across the ANU and from organisations such as the Australian Bureau of Meteorology and state/territory emergency services. A series of hands-on situational workshops teaches you to apply your knowledge of severe weather and to draw on your learning in complementary areas including atmospheric science, climatology, climate change science and policy, natural hazards, bushfire science, water resource management, epidemiology and economics.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

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

1. Describe and explain the physical processes that lead to the occurrence of severe weather events.
2. Interpret forecasts of severe weather events.
3. Provide assessments of risk from severe weather events through the use of meteorological forecast and observation products.
4. Explain the economic and social costs of severe weather events to a wide range of audiences and stakeholders.

Indicative Assessment

1. Tutorial Facilitation 25%  [LO 1,2,3,4]
2. Situation Room Exercises (3) 45% [LO 1,2,3]
3. Major Report 30% [LO 3,4]

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A total of 130 hours, including 65 contact hours comprising a combination of lectures, practicals, workshops, tutorials and in-class assessment, and a further 65 hours of self study.

Prescribed Texts

Reading materials are provided via the course website and University Library.

Assumed Knowledge

It is strongly recommended that students have taken one or both of ENVS2004 Weather, Climate and Fire and EMSC2021 Fundamentals of Climate System Science.




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:
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
2016 $3276
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2016 $4368
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
4519 20 Feb 2017 27 Feb 2017 31 Mar 2017 26 May 2017 In Person N/A

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