Introduction to Climate Change

Subject UNIB10007 (2013)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2013.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 1 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2013.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 24 Lectures (two per week); 12 hours tutorials (one per week); additional enrichment activities including expert panel discussions, videos etc, up to a total of 8 hours.
Total Time Commitment:

44 contact hours + 26 hours of class preparation and reading + 26 hours of assessment-related tasks





Recommended Background Knowledge:


Non Allowed Subjects:


Core Participation Requirements:

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study and reasonable steps will be made to enhance a student’s participation in the University’s programs. Students who feel their disability may impact upon their active and safe participation in a subject are encouraged to discuss this with the relevant subject coordinator and the Disability Liaison Unit.



Subject Overview:

This subject is an introduction to the major topics in climate change, including the scientific basis of the greenhouse effect, the history of Earth’s climate, energy options, economics and public policy, the effect of climate change on food, water and health, and the national and international legal frameworks for the management of climate change.

The issues around climate change are evolving rapidly, both politically and within the wider community. This subject is the first of a sequence of three subjects, aimed to provide a broad, cross-disciplinary approach to climate change. In particular, students will explore and debate the issues on a range of topics, with an emphasis on the international and global implications.


The subject will provide a comprehensive and up-to-date introduction to all aspects of the climate change debate. Students will be provided with the opportunity to explore current issues, and to interact with Australian scientific and political leaders with expertise and interests in climate change. In addition, students will be asked to evaluate and integrate this information within their own local context.


A research essay of 2000 words due during semester (30%); weekly practical exercises due in tutorials (40%); a 2-hour written examination in the examination period (30%)

Prescribed Texts:

J Houghton, Global Warming: The Complete Briefing, 3rd Ed, CUP 2004

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

On the completion of this subject, students should have developed the following generic skills:

  • Quantitative skills, including the ability to compute estimates of relevant data required to understand the scientific issues;
  • The ability to write a logically argued and properly researched essay;
  • The ability to critically assess information from a range of sources, and assess its quality and relevance to the questions under consideration.

Available to all students as a breadth subject

Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Sustainable Production
Related Breadth Track(s): Climate and Water
Climate Change

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