Student Pages
Undergraduate course

Introduction to the atmosphere, ocean and climate

  • ECTS credits10
  • Teaching semesterAutumn
  • Course codeGEOF100
  • Number of semesters1
  • LanguageNorwegian
  • Resources

Main content

ECTS Credits


Level of Study


Teaching semester

Autumn Enrolment to this course is based on application. Application deadline is Thursday in week 33 for the autumn semester. Please see this page for more information: https://www.uib.no/en/matnat/53431/admission-courses-limited-capacity

Mandatory attendance at first lecture.

Place of Instruction

Geophysical Institute.

Objectives and Content


The course gives an introduction to the fundamentals in meteorology, physical oceanography and climatology with emphasis on a qualitative explanation of the physical processes.


The course covers the physical and chemical characteristics of the atmosphere and the ocean, and how the atmosphere and ocean interact. The forces that drive the circulation of the ocean and atmosphere will be presented and an overview of global weather patterns and the large scale ocean circulation will be given. The students will be introduced to the most important energy forms in the atmosphere-ocean system and how energy is transported in and between the atmosphere and in the oceans. Important physical processes as for example cloud formation and precipitation, tidal motion and wave phenomena will be discussed. The variation and change in climate at different time scales will be presented. In exercises, emphasis will be on a practical introduction to geophysical data analysis using a modern programming language. No prior knowledge in programming is necessary.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the course the student should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:


The student

  • understands basic terminology and expressions
  • has basic knowledge of the chemical and physical composition of the atmosphere and the ocean
  • has basic knowledge of energy sources and transport of energy in and between the atmosphere,ocean and ice.
  • has knowledge of the hydrological cycle and phase changes of the water in the ocean and the atmosphere
  • is familiar with tides in the ocean and wave phenomena on various temporal and spatial scales
  • understands the fundamentals of the circulation in the atmosphere and ocean.
  • is familiar with the dominant weather systems and ocean currents on Earth
  • has an overview of natural climate variations and human induced climate change
  • is familiar with different types of ocean and air pollution


The student

  • can use basic terminology and expressions
  • can locate, evaluate and present scientific information
  • can convey the fundamentals in meteorology and physical oceanography
  • can present scientific information in writing and orally to highlight a certain topic
  • can make numerical programs for simple geophysical calculations and visualization of geophysical data

General competence

The student

  • has gained insight into the subject and its relevance to society
  • has the capacity for reflection and critical thinking about academic questions
  • is able to plan and carry out scientific information gathering

Recommended Previous Knowledge

Fysikk 1+2 or PHYS101

Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap


Access to the Course

Access to the course requires admission to a programme of study at The Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences

Teaching and learning methods

The teaching is given as lectures (4 hours per week) and exersices (2 hours per week). The training will include the use of library resources and practical data analysis using a modern programming language.

Compulsory Assignments and Attendance


Forms of Assessment

The semester thesis counts 30% of the final grade and has to be passed. The thesis is valid in the semester it has been approved and the following semester.

Final exam is written, 5 hours. The final exam counts 70 % of the final grade.

Examination Support Material

Non-programmable calculator, according to the faculty regulations.

Grading Scale

The grading scale used is A to F. Grade A is the highest passing grade in the grading scale, grade F is a fail.

Reading List

Will be made available by 1st of June for the fall semester and 1st of January for spring semester.

Course Evaluation

The course will be evaluated by the students in accordance with the quality assurance system at UiB and the department.

Programme Committee

The Programme Committee is responsible for the content, structure and quality of the study programme and courses.

Course Administrator

Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences - Geophysical Institute

Contact Information

Student Consultant can be contacted on studierettleiar@gfi.uib.no

Exam information

  • For written exams, please note that the start time may change from 09:00 to 15:00 or vice versa until 14 days prior to the exam.

  • Type of assessment: Composed

    Withdrawal deadline