Studying online

There are now 3 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

Units available in Online Restricted mode have been adapted for online study only for those students who require the unit to complete their studies and who are unable to attend campus due to COVID border closures. To be enrolled in a unit in Online Restricted mode, students should contact their Student Advising Office through askUWA and include which of the below criteria applies:

  • You are a student who is currently offshore and unable to enter Australia.
  • You are a student in Australia who is impacted by state or regional border closures.

Click on an offering mode for more details.

ENVT2220 The Climate System

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 2 core unit in the Environmental Science; Geographical Sciences; Environmental Science and Management; Marine and Coastal Processes major sequences
  • Level 2 elective
This unit investigates the physical basis of the climate system and mechanisms of anthropogenic climate change and variability. Importance is placed on the role of the land surface in the climate system including the carbon cycle, land use change and urbanisation. Processes such as the greenhouse effect, aerosols, the El Nino-Southern Oscillation, climate feedbacks and rapid climate change are examined. Paleo, historical and climate model data are presented and assessed. Likely future climate changes are addressed and option for adaptation and mitigation for human society.
Students are able to (1) know the physical basis of the climate system and mechanisms of anthropogenic climate change and variability; (2) interpret land surface data from measurement of key Australian ecosystems; (3) understand the changes in climate over the past, present and future; (4) communicate climate change and appreciate skepticism; and (5) synthesise the physical understanding of the climate system and feedbacks witihin.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) a research report based on interpreting land surface data from measurement of key Australian ecosystems; (2) practical exercises; and (3) final examination. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit except in the case of a bachelor's pass degree student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 overall and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Professor Jason Beringer
Unit rules
none; for pre-2012 courses: none
Contact hours
lectures: 2 hours per week; practicals/tutorials: 2 hours per week

Online material including IPCC report.

  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.