Atmospheric science is the study of the air that surrounds the planet. It includes all weather phenomena and climate including the chemistry of trace constituents and cloud and particle formation, as well as quantitative studies of severe weather events such as hurricanes and tornadoes. It includes the study of the impacts of human and other biotic activity on the quality of the air we breathe. Changes in regional and global climate are also central to this field of study.
Modern meteorology is a quantitative science that is becoming increasingly computer dependent. In addition to the study of daily weather events, the program deals with fundamental dynamical and physical processes that involve the general circulation of the atmosphere; turbulent mass and energy transfer at the planetary surface as well as within the free atmosphere; the transfer of solar and terrestrial radiation throughout the atmosphere; atmospheric interaction with the biosphere; climate variations; and developments in remote sensing using satellites with modern meteorological instrumentation. In addition, the program has significant expertise in the areas of air quality and its related atmospheric chemistry. As well as providing a broad background in meteorology, the major includes an informal minor area to be chosen from mathematics, computer science, environmental studies, resource management or a physical or biological science.
Internships and Career Alternatives
Atmospheric science students have participated in internships with the California Air Resources Board, various county Air Pollution Control Districts, and the National Weather Service. Job opportunities include: national weather services, weather forecasting for broadcast media or private forecasting firms, environmental consulting firms (such as environmental impact reports, wind farm siting), government agencies at all levels from local (air quality districts, planning departments, etc. ) to State (Air Resources Board) to national (NOAA), and companies whose operations are impacted by weather (such as airlines, futures markets). About half of our graduates continue their education by seeking the M.S. or Ph.D. degree in atmospheric science or related areas.
B.S. Major Program Requirements
|B.S. Major Requirements:||UNITS|
|Written Expression. Also counts toward College English Composition Requirement||3-4|
University Writing Program 101 or one course from 102 or 104 sequences or course selected with adviser's approval
|Preparatory Subject Matter||59-60|
|Plant Sciences 2||4|
|Chemistry 2A, 2B||10|
|Computer Science Engineering 30 or course selected with adviser's approval||4|
|Mathematics 21A, 21B, 21C, 21D, 22A, 22B||22|
|Atmospheric Science 60||4|
|Physics 9A, 9B, 9C||12|
|Depth Subject Matter||41|
|Satisfaction of General Education requirement; additional units in social sciences and humanities to total 28 units.|
|Depth Subject Matter||36|
|Atmospheric Science 110, 111, 111L, 120, 121A, 121B, 124, 128||28|
Internship-Atmospheric Science 192 or 199
|Two upper division Atmospheric Science courses selected with adviser's approval, not including courses 192 and 199||7|
|Coordinated group of courses (minor area) to be chosen with adviser's approval from mathematics, computer science, environmental studies, communication, resource management, or a physical or biological science (at least 10 upper division units)||15|
Total Units for the Major
Major Adviser: Kyaw Tha Paw U
Student Affairs Officer: Lacole Brooks
Advising Center for the major is located in 1150 Plant and Environmental Sciences Building in the Land, Air and Water Resources Teaching Center (530) 752-1603; firstname.lastname@example.org.
B.S. Minor Program Requirements
The minor in Atmospheric Science provides a broad treatment of weather and climate, with the option to focus on such topics as climate change, meteorological instrumentation, and satellite remote sensing. Students undertaking the minor should have completed minimum preparatory course work in calculus and physics (Mathematics 16A-16B, Physics 5A or 7A). Some upper division courses in Atmospheric Science have the Mathematics 21 and 22 series and the Physics 9 series as prerequisites.
|Atmospheric Science 60, 110||8|
|Four courses selected with the approval of the minor program adviser from upper division Atmospheric Science courses (excluding 192 or 199) or Environmental and Resource Sciences 131||12‑16|
Minor Adviser: Kyaw Tha Paw U