A great introductory course into Global Warming as well as modelling which gives you a better insight into what is actually happening with our planet. Started another course and it all fits in.
A detailed and really knowledgable course. The course structure and the knowledge shared by Prof. David made learning simple and interesting. The assignments are also very well structured.
By Rosanella D C•
The video lectures are great but the level of guidance is nil! The Quizzes are a waste of one's precious time as one needs to rely mostly on the forum. The lecturer is nowhere to be seen on the forums nor course assistant. Looking at posts on the forums, I see students with degrees and Master degrees finding difficult to fathom answers to quizzes.
I was really excited about taking this course and I am now very disappointed. I paid for this course!
By Jon Ø B•
Excellent course. My understanding of the world and how we are affected by climate has grown tenfold if not more. I recommend this to anyone who has an interest in living on this planet.
By Haran S•
Excellent course, thoroughly enjoyable. PROS: - Lectures by Professor Archer are well explained, easy to follow and include useful diagrams. - Good breadth of topics, from basic chemistry (e.g. dipoles from vibrating molecules) to economics (e.g. viability of carbon taxes). - Videos are typically short and sweet and have useful in-lecture questions. - Plenty of opportunity to play around with a variety of climate models - The explainer assignments are useful to ensure understanding of basic principles. CONS - Quizzes can be vaguely worded and frustrating at times (stipulating how many significant figures are required in answers would help) - Some scientific and mathematical background may be helpful: for example I can imagine the explanation of oxidation / reduction status of atoms may be difficult, plus one quiz question involved a basic understanding of logarithmic equations ( I only learned these things at A-level i.e. 17-18 years old). - Peer review of written work means that requests to review work dominate the discussion boards, rather than more useful discussion of course topics.
By Christina M G•
I worked really hard on this course, but was stymied by a couple of quizzes. If I could not answer one question correctly, it meant I could not answer two or three of the next questions, meaning that I could not pass quiz. With no recourse, I was prevented from passing although my overall percentage of points earned was passing. I would still like to pass, as I feel that I really earned the certificate. I would really like a chance to speak to someone who can help me resolve my questions. My other problem was using one of the models, which I never could master, despite reading the help sites and trying two or more times.
By Kristin W•
There is a lot of good information in this course, as well as access to a number of climate models. HOWEVER, the material in the quizzes is NOT the same as the material in the video lectures. Questions are NOT explained well- which, when you're dealing with math and physics, is about the worst thing I can think of. On top of not being explained well, there is next to no help to be found in the forums, and no staff around much to answer new questions from what I could see.
By Carsten H•
For a longer time I have wanted to know more about the scientific background of climate change and global warming, and I am glad that I finally found the time to do this course. I liked the interactive aspect and the variety of tasks including writing small reports and explanations and reading the ones of other students as well as getting feedback from them. This interaction and combination of learning forms is way more effective than just reading a book, I think.
What I do not understand is the grading system for the final task, the term project. There is a scale ranging from 1 to 10, but you can only give a 1,4,7 or 10. It seems that, if do not get a 10 from someone, you fail the whole course. I don't think that this is fair.
Great course!!! The course is comprehensive and it progresses at a good pace (except for week 5 and 6, too fast from my point of view). Professor Archer is a very precise and clear lecturer (he uses very helpful analogies). He writes on a blackboard and does it very well which is a nice change from the usual - poorly prepared - slides. He is calm and has a soft voice but at the same time he is not soporific for one second. If you are interested in the topic, go for it! If you're not, give it a try!
By Sushant K•
It's a very comprehensive and extremely tough course to negotiate. Some of the quiz answers are still a mystery. It has arisen the appetite of Climate Change within me, like never before.
By Agustin J P P•
Eye opening course, interesting content easily explained concepts and fantastic practice materials. Highly recommend this course to start creating conscience on issues affecting us all.
By Deleted A•
Databases very difficult to work with, and badly programmed.
By Kevin N L•
I recommend the course, for anyone who understands some math and science. The quizzes and writing exercises were challenging in different ways, and helped me to develop my skills in computing, understanding, looking at data, and practice sharing in the enterprise of science.
I would give my performance maybe a B since I did very well in some areas (I understood the science very well, and mainly aced the quizzes) but not so well in others (in the writing assignments I kept getting into trouble with the deadlines and the interface, and in grading other people's papers sometimes I wasn't very thoughtful in my judgments and statements.)
Also, I said I understood the science very well, but also I know I could have looked more thoroughly at some parts of the science. Especially about the analysis of radiation as it interacts with the atmosphere, I think I went too fast, and relied on looking at a graph to get myself through the lesson. I am sure the graph has a solid foundation, but I would like to review that part of the course or look at that information more deeply.
There is a term project at the end that took me by surprise and I procrastinated on it - bad habit.
I decided to go ahead and purchase the course since I am willing to support the course. My finances are really not good but considering the amount of time I put into the course, I should be able to afford that much.
By Michael d P•
This is not an easy course. I have taken courses with similar titles and aims on other open leaning platforms (e.g. FutureLearn) and this course is much more difficult. It requires students to use sophisticated models (e.g. MODTRAN for atmospheric transmission) numerically. The course asks questions requiring quantitative answers. I have been involved peripherally around issues related to global warming, but I thought that this course would be informative by bringing together many strands. And it was. David Archer speaks clearly and makes simple physics based arguments to explain the role of the models. Overall, I would say that if you are not phased by the requirement to be numerical, and you like a physicists way of thinking, then this course will appeal to you. Personally. I enjoyed it.
By Yoann H T T•
Great course for independent individuals that wish to do things at their pace and with peer support, playing a role of mentor at times too (through forums and peer-marking). The models available to play with are great fun and really give an insight into how connected things are. What is interesting is how Global Warming is not just an atmosphere problem but everything is involved, from icy poles to life to the Earth's crust. I found the course easy enough to follow and it's totally possible to do it all in less than the recommended 12 weeks, and without much support. Very well presented videos.
By Fahrur R•
Things that can improve from this course is the models as well the phrasing the questions in the model quizzes which can be confusing for students at times. The models can be better if there are 'legends' indicating the labels on the diagrams. The short forms were too confusing and I have to look up for what they actually mean.
But other than that, I have learned a great deal of knowledge on this important issue the world is facing. I am glad that there are possible solutions to alternative energy and I am hopeful for our future.
By Jocelyn C•
It was an amazing class. The content was thorough and I really enjoyed all the models that I got to study. One improvement, however, would be making the peer edits more accessible. I finished this course in three months but then spent the next four waiting for other students from various "sessions" to submit their papers so that I could pass the peer-grading portion. I didn't learn the trick of actively switching between course dates until recently. But overall it was really informative :)
Fabulous overview of the science of global warming! I really appreciated the step-by-step approach and the comprehensive coverage of the subject. Playing with the models was highly useful in most cases, though some of the quiz questions related to the models seemed to be overly finicky in the answers they'd accept as correct. In any case, I thoroughly enjoyed this course and will be using the knowledge I gained from it as I begin pursuing a Master's in environmental science this summer.
By Ross A•
Thoroughly enjoyed this course. Took a while to establish some basic science principles, but in the end, I had a much better understanding of the key relationships and modelling that is driving global warming. I did use David's text but found Frank P. Incropera's 'Climate Change: A Wicked Problem' (2016) more useful. The course is a bit dated, but still relevant. See en-roads for an interesting way to model the future:
By Sheeba K•
This course has given me insight into the realm of climate change. The quest to learn about climate change started with reading a research paper that I could not understand, completely. So I decided to take up this course. The course has kindled a search in me to know more about climate change and that is not going to stop. There are still some answers that I am looking for, but taking up this course has immensely helped me in my journey.
By Timothy K•
This is an outstanding introduction to climate science. It covers a wide range of disciplines in order to explain the whats and hows of our climate. Dr. Archer presents the material in a way that not only is understandable to newbies in the field, but also presents tantalizing information that makes me (and hopefully, others) want to dig deeper. My only regret is that it doesn't dive deeper.
By Aswan K•
Excellent introduction to the mechanics of global warming. However I think that in some places, students may benefit from animations or video clips rather than just blackboard diagrams.....for example, Coriolis acceleration, Modes of molecular vibrations.
I'm only into week 6, but I'm thoroughly enjoying the material which is a wonderful mix of high school geography, physics, and meteorology.
By Kevin B•
A really useful and interesting Course.It does require a level of commitment, like anything worthwhile. When finished, you will great a great sense of achievement at having learned about a very important issue. The Lecturer is engaging and a lot of the assignments involve learning to use research grade climate modelling tools.
By Vivek B S•
Prof. Archer's lectures are interesting and fun. This course is useful for anyone who is interested in understanding in-depth and intricate details of climate change. The various models adds extra flavor and helps one understands the uncertainty and different scenarios which is the crux of the science.
By Francesco L C•
This course has been a very rich source of insights. It provides an introduction to the science behind climate change that is worthy even for researchers in affine areas. Eventually, it provides concepts, tools, and proofs for introducing the climate change issue into business frameworks.
I did learn a lot of things. 2 small comments though, a bit stressful not to have enough reviewers to rate your work especially if you are late. And some quizz lack of explanations, I did not get why one was wrong. Community is fortunatly there to back you up. Many thanks to all of you.
By Frank M•
This is a really excellent course. Prof. Archer's lectures are clear and quite interesting, and the course is well structured. Students are also introduced to the "climatemodels.uchicago.edu" website, which provides both data and analysis tools for studying climate change.