Figure: IPCC AR4

ATOC 6020, Spring 2011

Teaching Climate

This graduate seminar will be a hands-on teaching seminar in support of my ATOC1060 section. I'm teaching ATOC1060 (Our Changing Climate) for the first time Spring 2011 (see below), and I thought it would be a good opportunity to share some of the insider scoop on teaching with ATOC students. This ATOC6020 seminar will be a weekly meeting, where we discuss upcoming topics in the 1060 class, compare perspectives on what are the most important concepts and learning goals, discuss relevant perspectives, and consider how best to present the information. I'll also get some of the Teaching Climate Change experts to come by and discuss their approach and experiences.

I'd like the students who participate to help create some of the homework problems and lecture slides, not (only) because I'm lazy, but also for good pedagogy.

ATOC 1060: Our Changing Environment: El Niño, Ozone, Climate
Discusses the Earth's climate for non-science majors, focusing on the role of the atmosphere, oceans, and land surface. Describes the water cycle, atmospheric circulations, and ocean currents, and how they influence global climate, El Niño, and the ozone hole. Discusses human impacts from climate change. Prereq., ATOC 1050. Approved for arts and sciences core curriculum: natural science. Elective for ATOC minor.

You can access the syllabus, 6020 class notes and calendar, and 1060 class notes and calendar.

Class Meetings and Notes

All meetings will be in Duane E126, 4-5PM on Mondays, unless noted below.

Prof. Fox-Kemper's office hours are Mondays 1:30-3:30PM in Ekeley S250B or by appointment ( TA Ben Blazey's office hours are Mondays 5-7PM in Duane E126 or by appointment ( Quantitative problem sessions and exam reviews are also held during this Monday 5-7 time.

Homework problems should be submitted by Friday@5:00PM via email to Baylor. Please use text in the email and attach figures/equations, not word or pdf.

The calendar and links are below.

The calendar of talks is below; it is also available as a public google calendar called "ATOC6020: Oceanography Seminar".


1060 Reading

Large Print=Required, Small=Optional

6020 Reading



(Due at Monday Meeting)
1 KKC Chp 1, IPCC FAQ, Essential Principles IPCC FAQ, Essential Principles 1/10: Organize and Plan Activities Due 1/14: 5 KKC3 Problems
2 KKC Chp 1, KKC Chp 2 1/17: MLK Day--NO CLASS Due 1/21: 5 KKC4 Problems
3 KKC Chp 3 Compendium of Good Ideas on Teaching 1/24: KKC4--Teaching the Atmosphere Due 1/28: 5 KKC4 Problems
4 KKC Chp 4 1/31: Bloom's Taxonomy Due 2/4: 5 KKC5 Problems
5 KKC Chp 4 2/7: Kim's Presentation Due 2/11: 5 KKC5 Problems
6 KKC Chp 5, 2/14: Review Katie's Slides on Ekman Due 2/18: 5 KKC6-9 Problems
7 KKC Chp 5, 2/21: NO CLASS Due 2/25: 5 KKC10-14 Problems
8 KKC Chp 6, KKC Chp 7, KKC Chp 8, KKC Chp 9 2/28: Susan Buhr. Exam Problem Creation I Due 3/4: 5 KKC15 Problems
9 KKC Chp 10, KKC Chp 11, KKC Chp 12, KKC Chp 13, KKC Chp 14 3/7: Review Brian's Slides on Paleohistory, Review Pam's Slides on Origins & Regulation Due 3/11: 5 KKC16 Problems
10 3/14: Exam Problem Creation II Due 3/18: 5 KKC17 Problems
11 Spring Break Spring Break 3/21: Spring Break Spring Break
12 KKC Chp 15 3/28: What can Realclimate Teach Us? Due 4/1: 5 KKC18-19 Problems
13 KKC Chp 16 4/4: Review Jesse's Slides on Global Warming 3 Due 4/8: 1 Exam Problem, 1 Realclimate Favorite
14 KKC Chp 17 4/11: NO CLASS Due 4/15: 2nd Exam Problem, 2nd Realclimate Favorite
15 KKC Chp 18, KKC Chp 19 4/18: How to do this all better 1: What's missing? Due 4/22: Exam Problem Revisions. Learning Goal List.
16 IPCC 2007: FAQ, Synthesis Summary, Physical Science Policymaker Summary, Physical Science Technical Summary 4/25: How to do this all better 2: Improved learning goals for ATOC1060 & ATOC in general.
17 Exam Week 1060 Final Exam
Tuesday, 5/3, 4:30-7PM
Exam Week Exam Week

6020-Specific Materials

  1. syllabus
  2. Slides and Clicker Assignment Guidelines

1060 Materials Below:

Web Resources and Texts

Course Specific

  1. ATOC1060 Syllabus
  2. Reading assignment guidelines
  3. Significant Digits & Units


  1. Kump, Kasting & Crane, The Earth System, 3rd edition., Coursesmart online version
  2. Climate Literacy: "The Essential Principles of Climate Sciences"
  3. IPCC AR4: FAQ (alt. server), Synthesis Summary (alt. server), Physical Science Policymaker Summary (alt. server), Physical Science Technical Summary, Glossary of Terms


  1. RealClimate
  2. Skeptical Science Greatest Hits
  3. Isaac Held's Climate Blog
  4. AccuWeather Climate Blog
  5. NCAR Weather & Climate Basics
  6. Oxford University, The Basics of Climate Prediction
  7. Pew Center, Global Warming Basics
  8. NASA Earth Observatory
  9. NOAA Paleoclimatology
  10. CIRES Climate Educational Resources
  11. Climate Services Clearinghouse
  12. To What Degree? NSF Climate Change Report
  13. MBARI (Seafood Watch Cards and Info)
  14. Dynamic Periodic Table
  15. Cleon Teunissen's Rotation Physics
  16. GISS Temperature Trends
  17. IPCC Home Site
  18. National Academy: America's Climate Choices
  19. NOAA/NWS Climate Prediction Center
  20. IRI ENSO Page

Lab Experiments

  1. Hart and Kittelman GFD Lab
  2. John Marshall's (MIT) GFD Lab
  3. National Committee for Fluid Mechanics Films

CU Specific Guidelines

  1. Disability Accomodations
  2. Religious Observance
  3. Classroom Behavior, *Note* Prof. Fox-Kemper regards inappropriate cellphone and laptop use as disruptive behavior.
  4. Student Code
  5. Discrimination & Harrassment
  6. Honor Code: here and here.
  7. Policy on conflicts involving Athletics here.

Additional Fun Reading


  1. Arrhenius, Worlds in the making: the evolution of the universe
  2. Lamb, Climate, history and the modern world
  3. Weart, The Discovery of Global Warming
  4. Philander, Our Affair with El Nino
  5. Emanuel, Divine Wind: The History and Science of Hurricanes
  6. Schneider, Science as a Contact Sport: Inside the Battle to Save Earth's Climate

Alternative and Advanced Textbooks

  1. Peixoto & Oort, Physics of Climate
  2. Marshall & Plumb Atmosphere, Ocean, and Climate Dynamics
  3. Jacob, Introduction to Atmospheric Chemistry
  4. Goosse, Barriat, Lefebvre, Loutre, and Zunz. Introduction to climate dynamics and climate modeling.
  5. Volk, CO2 Rising: The World's Greatest Environmental Challenge


  1. Nykanen, Primitive
  2. Theroux, Far North
  3. Chrichton, State of Fear