Single-Course English 5 ECTS

Climate change – physics and observations

Overall Course Objectives

To understand where our knowledge of Earth’s climate comes from. To be able to analyse climate data and put it into the context of Earth’s climate system.

Learning Objectives

  • analyze relevant climate data
  • critically appraise scientific literature
  • compare climate forcing and feedback
  • evaluate trends in global temperature data
  • explain how global climate models work
  • explain how temperature is measured and how temperature measurements are used in global analysis
  • discuss how observations are used in models to compute atmospheric reanalysis.
  • appraise sea surface temperature changes and consequences for the climate system
  • appraise sea level changes and their relation to the melting of glaciers and heating of the oceans
  • appraise the role of sea ice for the radiation balance and its effect on the climate system
  • explain different greenhouse gas emission scenarios and their effect on future climate.

Course Content

The course focuses on the data behind specific climate processes. Topics covered are: Global surface temperature, sea level, sea ice, climate forcing and feedback, and climate models (primarily the big Earth System Models).

Recommended prerequisites


Teaching Method

Primarily case-based teaching. For most topics, one or more relevant cases are presented. The students will get to work on the cases themselves. The focus is on working with real climate data to give the students an understanding of how we know the current state of Earth’s climate. The latest report from the UN’s climate panel IPCC will be used as literature along with scientific papers.


Limited number of seats

Minimum: 10.

Please be aware that this course will only be held if the required minimum number of participants is met. You will be informed 8 days before the start of the course, whether the course will be held.

See course in the course database.





13 weeks




DTU Lyngby Campus

Course code 30755
Course type Candidate
Semester start Week 35
Semester end Week 48
Days Mon 13-17

7.500,00 DKK

Please note that this course has participants limitation. Read more