Geography (GEOG) 365

Atmosphere, Weather, and Climate (Revision 3)

GEOG 365 course cover

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online (with eTextbook) and home lab component. This course is charged a lab fee.

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Science

Prerequisite: GEOG 265 is recommended but not required.

Faculty: Faculty of Science and Technology

Centre: Centre for Science

GEOG 365 has a Challenge for Credit option

Check availability


Geography 365 is a three-credit course in meteorology, the atmospheric science that makes the news and impacts everyone’s life every day. The course is built around widely adopted and acclaimed instructional materials designed by the American Meteorological Society and the Cooperative Program for Operational Meteorology, Education and Training.

Geography 365 introduces the physical principles and processes that govern the earth’s atmosphere, the nature of weather and climate, the formation of weather systems, and important aspects of weather monitoring, analysis, and forecasting. The course includes a home lab component, which involves completing a set of investigations of everyday weather events and quantitative exercises.


GEOG 365 comprises the following 15 units:

  • Unit 1: Monitoring the Weather
  • Unit 2: Origin, Composition, and Structure of the Atmosphere
  • Unit 3: Solar and Terrestrial Radiation
  • Unit 4: Heat, Temperature, and Atmospheric Circulation
  • Unit 5: Air Pressure
  • Unit 6: Humidity, Saturation, and Stability
  • Unit 7: Clouds, Precipitation, and Weather Radar
  • Unit 8: Wind and Weather
  • Unit 9: General Circulation of the Atmosphere
  • Unit 10: Midlatitude Weather Systems
  • Unit 11: Thunderstorms and Tornadoes
  • Unit 12: Tropical Weather Systems
  • Unit 13: Weather Analysis and Forecasting
  • Unit 14: Light and Sound in the Atmosphere
  • Unit 15: Climate and Climate Change


To receive credit for GEOG 365, you must achieve a course composite grade of at least a D (50 percent). You must achieve a minimum grade of 60 percent on the final examination. You must complete and submit all of the assignments, quizzes, and case studies to receive credit for the course. You may not omit any of them and take a grade of zero. The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Activity Weighting
Fifteen (15) Lab Assignments (2% each) 30%
Fifteen (15) Timed Quizzes (1% each) 15%
Two (2) Weather Case Studies (12.5% each) 25%
Final Exam 30%
Total 100%

A bonus mark up to a maximum of 6% will be granted for completing optional math exercises in the lab assignments.

The final examination for this course must be taken online with an AU-approved exam invigilator at an approved invigilation centre. It is your responsibility to ensure your chosen invigilation centre can accommodate online exams. For a list of invigilators who can accommodate online exams, visit the Exam Invigilation Network.

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Registration in this course includes electronic textbooks. For more information on electronic textbooks, please refer to the eText Initiative site.

Mills, Elizabeth W., ed. (2015). Weather studies: Introduction to atmospheric science (6th ed.). Boston: American Meteorological Society.

American Meteorological Society. (2019). Weather studies: eInvestigations Manual. Boston: American Meteorological Society.

A print version of the textbook can be purchased from Note that the American Meteorological Society does not sell printed versions of the investigation manual anymore.

Other Materials

The course materials also include an online study guide, course guide, and reading file.

Challenge for Credit Overview

The Challenge for Credit process allows you to demonstrate that you have acquired a command of the general subject matter, knowledge, intellectual and/or other skills that would normally be found in a university-level course.

Full information about Challenge for Credit can be found in the Undergraduate Calendar.

Challenge Evaluation

To receive credit for the GEOG 365 challenge registration, you must achieve a minimum grade of 60 percent on the examination and a minimum grade of 50 percent on the weather case studies. The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Two (2) Weather Case Studies (20% EACH) 40%
Challenge Exam 60%
Total 100%

Undergraduate Challenge for Credit Course Registration Form

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

View previous revision

Opened in Revision 3, September 3, 2019.