Meteorology course undergoes changes

by Laraithon Williams | Staff Writer
Published: Last Updated on

Meteorology 211 has been remodeled to better correlate with the subject level. According to Associate Professor of Physics and Earth Space Sciences Tim Duman, this course allows students to gain knowledge about the atmosphere, whether or not they are science majors.

Duman teaches the course and said he discusses many things, including the structure of the earth’s atmosphere and the dynamics of the weather phenomenon that are exposed during the seasons. This course is designed for individuals who do not have a science background, but it is required of Earth space science majors.

Meteorology had been a course offered at the University of Indianapolis at the 300 level. After Duman’s review of the course, he decided to lower its level because it was not taught as a 300-level Meteorology course.

“They gave me the textbook, [and] I recognized the textbook. It was an intro course textbook, not a 300-level textbook,” Duman said. “A 300-level meteorology course usually entails you would use some calculus. It was also offered as a general education core course, so that limited the math ability [required.]”

Duman then instituted other changes to reduce the course level. Duman  prepared the form to explain why the course should be taught at a lower level. Once the documentation was complete, it had to be submitted to the College of Arts and Science for review.

Meteorology 211 is now a newly formed course, and any student coming in with a math course of the 108 level or higher should be prepared for the class. Giving students a better understanding of the science of the earth’s atmosphere is the purpose that propels Duman to teach Meteorology 211 as a class offered in the Physics and Earth Space Sciences Department.

Another new aspect of the course is a project Duman added in which students explore a science project of their own choosing. The assignment is similar to that of “MythBusters,” in which students actually will use the myth buster strategy.

According to Duman, students will examine if a myth in science they have heard of is confirmed, plausible or busted. The project focuses on hands-on learning, which is the main ingredient of this course. Another project has a student launching a hot air balloon in the atmosphere, tracking it and picking it up, according to Duman. Activities such as these let students explore the campus in ways they have not before.

Only four students currently have enrolled in this course. Eight students must enroll for the course, which is offered every two years, for it not to be canceled. Meteorology 211 will meet Mondays and Wednesdays from 2 p.m. to 2:50 p.m. and will have a lab on Fridays at the same time. Both the class and the lab will be held in Lilly Science Hall.

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