- Class Number 6488
- Term Code 3260
- Class Info
- Unit Value 6 units
- Mode of Delivery In Person
- Dr Frank Mills
- Aaron Tang
- Dr Frank Mills
- Aaron Tang
- Emily Robson
- Dr Frank Mills
- Lamis Kazak
- Class Dates
- Class Start Date 25/07/2022
- Class End Date 28/10/2022
- Census Date 31/08/2022
- Last Date to Enrol 01/08/2022
Climate change is arguably the greatest existential risk that humanity has ever faced. This course explores the increasing impetus from scientific research and academia, the potential and need for sustainable global development, and why, despite this, international and domestic climate action is often limited.
An overview is provided of the fundamentals of climate change science, including the astrophysical, atmospheric, oceanic, and terrestrial processes that drive and amplify natural climatic variability and anthropogenic climate change.
Current and likely future impacts of global warming on ecosystems and human activities are considered, including biodiversity, human health, regional inequality, and vulnerability.
We explore communication, denialism, ethics, and the roles of academia and scientific research. This culminates in an in-class discussion of climate change with climate deniers.
Key principles of International Relations and examples from the realpolitik of international treaties are used to investigate actual and potential societal response strategies. International and Australian climate policies, key actors, and international processes are analysed to assess actual and potential unilateral, private, and collective action. The culmination of the course is a mock treaty negotiation for "The Canberra Agreement" under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Contributors to the course include experts from across the ANU and representatives of various government departments, industry, business, and community groups, and research organisations.
Note: Graduate students attend joint classes with undergraduates but have separate seminars and are assessed separately.
Please direct all enquiries and correspondence to firstname.lastname@example.org
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- evaluate and critique current understandings of the science and uncertainties of climate change, as well as the vulnerabilities of and potential impacts on biophysical and social systems;
- engage effectively with denialism, skepticism, and other forms of disagreement;
- devise, evaluate, and critique a range of response strategies to climate change, including international and Australian climate policies;
- debate and innovate future climate change policy in the context of international climate change negotiations, with application to their professional experience.
Anthropogenic climate change forced by the enhanced greenhouse effect is viewed by many as the single greatest environmental challenge facing humanity in the 21st century. this course is designed to provide an overview of some of the significant current issues and themes in the area of climate change science, policy, and communications. The course is based on the principles of research-led inquiry-based learning; the topic is fundamentally interdisciplinary and theme-based, and it develops students' understanding of the role of science in explaining aspects of the world and the interactions amongst science, policy, society, and politics. A core of lectures given by experts in aspects of climate change research and policy is integrated with a complementary series of workshops that facilitates exploration of issues raised in lectures, providing opportunities for hands-on experience, discussion, problem-solving, and synthesis of knowledge in a collaborative context.
The principal themes in the course are:
Climate change science – The approach is holistic and integrated, and does not require prior knowledge of climate science.
Climate change impacts, vulnerability, and adaptation – The current and potential impacts and management of climate change-related environmental changes.
Climate change mitigation – Current technological and policy approaches and aspects of the perceived tension and trade-offs between adaptation and mitigation.
Climate change politics, communication, and society – The international and national interactions amongst science, policy, society, and politics.
Workshops develop skills including high-level thinking about complex issues, critical analysis and review, and information synthesis and integration.
Additional Course Costs
There are no additional costs for this course.
Examination Material or equipment
Information about any examination material or equipment will be available on the course Wattle site.
There is no final examination for the course.
All required readings will be advised and linked on the course Wattle page.
A laptop computer, tablet, or other WiFi-enabled device is required for many of the weekly workshops, with Word, Excel and PowerPoint (or equivalent software) and a web browser such as Firefox, Chrome, Safari or MS Edge. These devices are not provided by the Fenner School of Environment & Society or the ANU.
Recommended student system requirements
ANU courses commonly use a number of online resources and activities including:
- video material, similar to YouTube, for lectures and other instruction
- two-way video conferencing for interactive learning
- email and other messaging tools for communication
- interactive web apps for formative and collaborative activities
- print and photo/scan for handwritten work
- home-based assessment.
To fully participate in ANU learning, students need:
- A computer or laptop. Mobile devices may work well but in some situations a computer/laptop may be more appropriate.
- Speakers and a microphone (e.g. headset)
- Reliable, stable internet connection. Broadband recommended. If using a mobile network or wi-fi then check performance is adequate.
- Suitable location with minimal interruptions and adequate privacy for classes and assessments.
- Printing, and photo/scanning equipment
For more information please see https://www.anu.edu.au/students/systems/recommended-student-system-requirements
Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:
- written comments
- verbal comments
- feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc
ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.
This course has been adjusted for remote participation in Sem 2 2022, however students are encouraged to attend on-campus activities if possible. Unless requested not to record by a guest lecturer or due to unforeseen technical difficulties, all lectures are intended to be livestreamed and recorded. Recordings will be made available through the course website in a downloadable format. Separate online and in-person workshops are planned with equivalent activities in both delivery formats. PG seminars will be live-streamed and recorded unless requested not to record by a guest lecturer or due to unforeseen technical difficulties.
|Week/Session||Summary of Activities||Assessment|
|1||This course is delivered through online, on-campus 'face-to-face', and/or online livestream weekly lectures, seminars, and workshops. The course is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, and workshops on key theoretical and applied aspects, as well as guest presentations and student-led seminars/workshops. Important information about the structure of the course: During weeks 1-5, there will be up to six lectures per week. During weeks 6-11 there will be up to two lectures per week. During weeks 1-12, there will be one seminar per week. You are expected to attend all workshop sessions for your group (one per week). All students MUST attend their workshop in week 10. You are expected to attend at least 75% of the seminars. Attendance and participation are compulsory. There may be unavoidable changes to the lecture and workshop schedule, depending on the availability of individual lecturers. You will be advised of any changes as early as possible, in lectures or workshops and via the course Wattle site.|
|2||Week 1 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: Online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|3||Week 2 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: Online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|4||Week 3 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: Online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|5||Week 4 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: Online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|6||Week 5 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: Online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|7||Week 6 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: Online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|8||Week 7 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: On-campus and livestream or online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|9||Week 8 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: On-campus and livestream or online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|10||Week 9 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: On-campus and livestream or online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|11||Week 10 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: On-campus and livestream or online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|12||Week 11 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: On-campus and livestream or online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
|13||Week 12 - Theme: Climate science, policy, and society Location: On-campus and livestream or online Please refer to the course Wattle site for the full program.|
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.
|Assessment task||Value||Due Date||Return of assessment||Learning Outcomes|
|Op-ed and reflection on climate change science communication||20 %||*||19/09/2022||1,2|
|Online climate science and climate politics, policy, and negotiation quizzes||20 %||22/08/2022||27/08/2022||1,3|
|Group country brief (national circumstances, interests, country statement, negotiation points)||20 %||05/09/2022||19/09/2022||1,2,3,4|
|PG Presentation||10 %||04/10/2022||21/10/2022||1,2,3,4|
|PG extended policy analysis or literature review with proposal||30 %||26/10/2022||26/11/2022||1,2,3,4|
* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details
ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:
The ANU is using 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. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the Academic Integrity . In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.
Moderation of Assessment
Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.
Participation in this course requires as a minimum:
- familiarity with lecture, seminar, workshop, tutorial and any other course materials, including required reading
- completion of both required and additional reading as needed to support learning and complete assessment items
- attendance at and positive contribution to all workshop sessions
- attendance at a minimum of 75% of the postgraduate student seminars
- submission of all assessable work (practical reports and class tests) in appropriate format to comply with ANU and Fenner School requirements regarding referencing, plagiarism and other standards for academic work
- submission of all work, assessable or not, by the prescribed deadlines.
Participation in the preparation for and presentation of the ANU Conference of the Parties (CoP): Canberra Agreement negotiation sessions is compulsory. Failure to participate in the preparation sessions means that your written report may not qualify for assessment; failure to attend and actively participate in the negotiation session in Week 10 means that your report will receive a grade of 0 (zero).
This course does not include formal examination during the examination period.
Assessment Task 1
Learning Outcomes: 1,2
Op-ed and reflection on climate change science communication
Discussion on climate change denier arguments and/or climate change communication, based on course materials and self-study research, and reflection on learning during the Pushing through Polarisation workshop exercise. Presented as if it were an op-ed article for a non-specialist, non-academic audience. Details are provided on the course Wattle site. Due date during week 4 depends on workshop in which student is enrolled.
Assessment Task 2
Learning Outcomes: 1,3
Online climate science and climate politics, policy, and negotiation quizzes
Covers lectures and workshop materials and designated supplemental readings for weeks 1-4. Short-answer and multiple-choice questions. Completed online through Wattle.
Details are provided on the course Wattle site.
Assessment Task 3
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4
Group country brief (national circumstances, interests, country statement, negotiation points)
A report on (a) your group's (country's) national circumstances, focusing on those that are likely to benefit most from action on climate change, those that are at greatest risk due to climate change, and/or those at greatest risk from action on climate change, (b) the most significant national interests of your country (related to or affected by climate change) that your group seeks to maintain or enhance during negotation of a mock international treaty, (c) your group's (country's) initial negotiation points desired for inclusion in the Canberra Agreement along with justifications relating the chosen negotiation points to your group's (country's) national circumstances and national interests, and (d) a public statement of your group's (country's) climate treaty interests. Parts (a)-(c) are presented as if they were a briefing paper to your national government. Part (d) is presented as if it were a plenary statement at a climate treaty negotiation. Details are provided on the course Wattle site.
Assessment Task 4
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4
Presentation on the topic selected for the PG extended policy analysis or literature review with proposal. Presentations will be recorded and receive peer feedback over several weeks in the PG seminar. Details are provided on the course Wattle site.
Assessment Task 5
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4
PG extended policy analysis or literature review with proposal
Either (a) an academic analysis of a policy related to climate change with a proposal for further research on the policy that could be completed as a one-semester Masters thesis or one-year Masters dissertation or (b) written literature review and proposal for a research project on a topic related to the course that could be completed as a one-semester Masters thesis or one-year Masters dissertation. Details are provided on the course Wattle site.
Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.
The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with.
The Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.
You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.
For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.
Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension is penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline on Wattle for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.
Assessment pieces that are over the maximum specified length will be penalised in accordance with the policy detailed on the course Wattle site. Links to these policies and procedures are provided on the course Wattle site.
Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.
Student work will be marked electronically and comments provided via Turnitin or Wattle in normal circumstances.
Extensions and Penalties
Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.
Resubmission of Assignments
Assignments may not be resubmitted
Distribution of grades policy
Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.
Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.
Support for students
The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).
- ANU Health, safety & wellbeing for medical services, counselling, mental health and spiritual support
- ANU Diversity and inclusion for students with a disability or ongoing or chronic illness
- ANU Dean of Students for confidential, impartial advice and help to resolve problems between students and the academic or administrative areas of the University
- ANU Academic Skills and Learning Centre supports you make your own decisions about how you learn and manage your workload.
- ANU Counselling Centre promotes, supports and enhances mental health and wellbeing within the University student community.
- ANUSA supports and represents undergraduate and ANU College students
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Frank Mills: Atmospheric chemistry on Earth, Venus, and extrasolar planets; Solar radiation and solar energy production; Sustainability, climate change, and climate science education. Other apparently random topics.
Aaron Tang: Climate engineering (greenhouse gas removal and solar radiation management), climate policy, foresight, artificial intelligence governance, World Trade Organization, catastrophic and extinction level risk.
Dr Frank Mills
Dr Frank Mills
Dr Frank Mills