There are two sessions of lectures for this course. Students will take only one of these sessions. The session assignment is by discussion section (see below):

Session 1 from 12.30 pm – 1.45 pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays in CSS 2324

Session 2 from 2.00 pm – 3.15 pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays in CSS 2324



Discussion Sections

            For Session 1:

            0101 Wednesday 1.00 pm to 1.50 pm in CSS 1113

            0102 Wednesday 2.00 pm to 2.50 pm in CSS 2428

            0103 Wednesday 3.00 pm to 3.50 pm in CSS 2428

            0104 Wednesday 1.00 pm to 1.50 pm in CSS 2416

            For Session 2

            0201 Wednesday 2.00 pm to 2.50 pm in CSS 1113

            0202 Wednesday 3.00 pm to 3.50 pm inCSS 1113

            0203 Monday      1.00 pm to 1.50 pm in CSS 2416

            0204 Monday      2.00 pm to 2.50 pm in CSS 2416



            Professor Robert D.  Hudson, Room 3421,

            Computer and Space Sciences Building.

            Phone 301-405-5394


            Website http:/


Teaching Assistants

            0102, 0103 Daniel Goldberg,

            0104, 0202 Austin Hope,

            0101, 0201 Argie Kavada,

            0203, 0204 William Miller,



Required Textbook:

            Meteorology – Und,rstanding the Atmosphere, Steven A. Ackerman and John A. Knox.

Published by Thomson Brooks/Cole, ISBN 0-534-37199-X


Course Description:

The influence of weather and climate affect our daily activities, our leisure hours, transportation, commerce, agriculture, and nearly every aspect of our lives. In this class we will address fundamental issues such as the greenhouse effect, severe weather, global temperature patterns and air pollution.  In particular we will address how these factors could be modified as a result of climate change.  Instruction in the lectures will provide the basic knowledge needed to address these issues. In the discussion sections students will be divided into groups to address the implications of the issues on their daily and future lives.


Course Goals:

(1)  For the students to take away an understanding of the fundamental basis of weather and climate change.

(2)  For the students to learn how scientists formulate questions (why does this atmospheric process happen?) and address these questions with reasoning, evidence, and debate.

(3)   To give the students an appreciation of the impact of weather and climate change on their daily and future lives.



            The course will be graded on the basis of a mid-term exam, a final exam, two or three projects and about 6 quizzes during the lecture sessions The final grade will be assessed as follows: -

                                    Quizzes                       16%

                                    Questions                      4%

Projects                       25%

Mid-term exam           25%

Final Exam                 30%


The mid-term exam will be based on the lectures presented up to and including the Thursday before the exam. Two thirds of the final exam will be based on the lectures given after the mid-term exam. The final third will be cumulative. The quizzes will be on specific chapters in the text book. A series of short questions will be given randomly during the course.

In the discussion sections students will be divided into groups to address the implications of weather and climate issues on their daily and future lives. For the project assignments each discussion session will be divided into groups of five students. The final output for each project will be the preparation of a presentation and /or a power-point poster.  The grade will be based on both the quality of the presentation and the participation of each student within the group. Schedules for the projects will be posted on the course web page.



AOSC 200 is a CORE Distributive Studies Mathematics and the Sciences, Physical Sciences non-laboratory course. When taken together with AOSC 201, the combination of AOSC 200 and AOSC 201 are a CORE Distributive Studies, Mathematics and the Sciences Physical Sciences laboratory course.

PLEASE NOTE - Students under the CORE Program requirements must take both AOSC 200 and AOSC 201 during the same semester in order to receive the CORE lab-science credit.


Weather Forecasting

            A web site has been prepared which takes the student through the process of making a simple weather forecast. This site can either be accessed through Prof. Hudson’s web site or at:


In the last fifteen minutes of either Tuesday or Thursday class the instructor will work with the students to make a weather forecast for the coming weekend, using the above website. 


Academic Accommodations: 

If you have a documented disability, you should contact Disability Support Services 0126 Shoemaker Hall.  Each semester students with documented disabilities should apply to DSS for accommodation request forms which you can provide to your professors as proof of your eligibility for accommodations.  The rules for eligibility and the types of accommodations a student may request can be reviewed on the DSS web site at



Regular attendance and participation in this class is the best way to grasp the concepts and principles being discussed. However, in the event that a class must be missed due to an illness, the policy is as follows:

(1)  For every medically necessary absence from class or discussion section a reasonable effort should be made to notify the instructor in advance of the class/discussion section. If the absence is more than one day, then documentation from a health professional is required.

(2)  If the student is absent on days when tests are scheduled, then documentation from a health professional is requires.


Religious Observances: 

The University System of Maryland policy provides that students should not be penalized because of observances of their religious beliefs, students shall be given an opportunity, whenever feasible, to make up within a reasonable time any academic assignment that is missed due to individual participation in religious observances.  It is the responsibility of the student to inform the instructor of any intended absences for religious observances in advance.  Notice should be provided as soon as possible but no later that the end of the schedule adjustment period.  Prior notification is especially important in connection with final exams, since failure to reschedule a final exam before the conclusion of the final examination period may result in loss of credits during the semester. 


Academic Integrity: 

The University of Maryland has a nationally recognized Code of Academic Integrity, administered by the Student Honor Council.  This Code sets standards for academic integrity at Maryland for all undergraduate and graduate students.  As a student you are responsible for upholding these standards for this course.  It is very important for you to be aware of the consequences of cheating, fabrication, facilitation, and plagiarism.  For more information on the Code of Academic Integrity or the Student Honor Council, please visit


The University of Maryland is one of a small number of universities with a student-administered Honors Code and an Honors Pledge, available on the web at  The code prohibits students from cheating on exams, plagiarizing papers, submitting the same paper for credit in two courses without authorization, buying papers, submitting fraudulent documents, and forging signatures.  The University Senate encourages instructors to ask students to write the following signed statement on each examination or assignment:  “I pledge on my honor that I have not given or received any unauthorized assistance on this examination (or assignment).”



            The schedule below gives the class syllabus, the dates of the exams, and the chapter of the text which contains the material to be covered in the class. You can also find this schedule on Prof. Hudson’s web page.  The slides used in the lectures are available in Microsoft power point format on Prof. Hudson’s web page (AOSC200 LECTURES).  Many students have found it useful to print out each lecture in the power point handout mode (6 slides per page) before coming to the class. It makes note taking a lot easier. Please note the LECTURES web site is password protected. You will be given the user name and password during the first lecture.
















The Composition of the Atmosphere


Jan 24


Introduction to the Atmosphere. . Introduction to weather maps

Chapt 1

Jan 29


Atmospheric pressure and structure. How did the Earth's atmosphere

Chap 1



evolve? Hydrologic and carbon global cycles




Why does the earth have seasons? What is the greenhouse






Jan 31


The Energy Cycle. Force, work and heat. Transfer of energy.

Chap 2

Feb 5


Where is the energy from the sun absorbed on the Earth?

Chap 2



Why does the Earth have seasons? What is the greenhouse effect?




What controls the annual and daily temperature cycles.


Feb 7


Controls of annual and daily temperature cycles at the Earth's surface.

Chap 3

Feb 12


Diurnal temperature cycle. Effect of volcanic eruptions.

Chap 3



Adiabatic expansion. Wind-chill factor.




Why does it rain and snow?


Feb 14


Cloud formation and development.

Chap 4

Feb 19


Formation of snow, sleet, freezing rain, and rain fn the atmosphere?

Chap 4



How do we observe the atmosphere?


Feb 21


Observing the atmosphere? Ground based and satellite measurements.

Chap 5



How are winds formed in the atmosphere?


Feb 26


Newton's second law of motion. Coriolis Force

Chap 6

 Feb 28


Geostrophic balance. Flow around low and high pressure systems

Chap 6



Formation of weather systems. Local winds - sea breeze.




What causes the trade winds (easterlies) and Jet Streams?


Mar 5


Global scale winds.

Chap 7

Mar 7




Mar 12


What causes Jet Streams? How do they influence the transfer of heat

from equator to pole?

Chap 7

Mar 14


Influence of ocean/atmosphere interactions on the weather and

Chap 8



.limate. Ei Nino and La Nina


Mar 17

      Mar 24





How and where do hurricanes form?


Mar 26


How are hurricanes formed? Why do hurricanes cause such damage?

Chap 8



Air Masses and Fronts - heat waves and Alberta clippers


Mar 28


Heat waves and Alberta clippers.

Chap 9

Apr 2


Low pressure and high pressure systems. Weather patterns

Chap 10



Severe Weather


Apr 4



Chap 11

Apr 9




Apr 11


Small scale winds. Santa Ana winds. Microburst. Chinook winds 

Chap 12



How do meteorologists forecast the weather?


Apr 16


Forecasting the weather.




Climate and climate change


Apr 18


Present Climates. Climate zones over the Earth.

Chap 14



What controls our current climate?


Apr 23


Past Climates. How do we detect climate change?

Chap 14



Natural causes of climate change


Apr 25


The Changing Climate. Simple Greenhouse model.

Chap 15



 Feedback mechanisms




Air Pollution


Apr 30


What are the causes of air pollution and acid rain

Chap 15

  May 2


Relationship between weather and air pollution


 May 7


Following a typical ozone episode in Maryland


May 9




May 15


FIINAL EXAM SESSION 2 10.30am – 12.30pm


May 16


FINAL EXAM  SESSION 1 1.30 pm – 3.30 pm