How we teach you
Within the Department of Meteorology you will benefit from access to the latest research, and the leading knowledge and expertise of our staff, who are friendly, enthusiastic and approachable. We inspire an interactive, dynamic and practical approach to teaching and learning, nurturing an ambitious and supportive environment in which you can maximise your potential and achieve both your personal and academic goals.
At Reading we aim to produce graduates who are highly employable, and as such we pay particular attention to enhancing transferable skills, as well as delivering key academic content. In addition to lectures, there are tutorials and practical sessions to give you the opportunity to develop valuable expertise in your chosen areas - from aerosols to vulcanology. Some involve making use of or developing mathematical or statistical computing software, whether within the department or sometimes even on supercomputer facilities elsewhere.
Our staff are not just excellent researchers - they are also outstanding teachers, and the Department of Meteorology consistently achieves excellent results in the National Student Survey (NSS). Our latest results speak for themselves:
Within the Department of Meteorology course teaching -
- 100% agreed 'Staff are good at explaining things'
- 100% agreed 'Staff are enthusiastic about what they are teaching'
- 100% agreed 'The course is intellectually stimulating', and
- 100% agreed 'The course has helped me to present myself with confidence'
A high level of support
An excellent staff:student ratio means that most of your teaching will be in small groups and our staff members are able to get to know all our students well. In addition, every member of staff has regular office hours and is easily contactable by e-mail and telephone, providing you with a high level of continuous support. You will also be assigned a personal tutor during enrolment who will provide ongoing help and advice throughout your time at Reading.
Our programmes are modular and taught through lectures, practicals and tutorial classes. You will benefit from a wide variety of student-centred teaching methods from traditional lectures to multimedia online tutorials. You are encouraged to discuss and analyse theory and practice using case studies, group presentations and through open debate. Assessment methods include written examination, presentations, case study evaluations, projects and dissertations.
A key part of meeting your needs is to provide you with flexibility and choice in putting together your programme. All of our degree programmes have a number of compulsory modules featuring core material with additional optional modules, reflecting your specific interests. More information on the modules we offer can be obtained here
During each year of your programme you will take modules amounting to 120 credits which equal an expected 1200 hours of study time (10 hours per credit). The number of contact hours (tutorials, practicals and lectures) per week varies according to the year of studies, programme and choice of optional modules: the average is 16.
High practical content
There's a strong practical element to all courses - after all, weather doesn't just happen in computer models! You can expect to take part in field courses and hands-on exercises in our unrivalled on-campus atmospheric observatory. We are one of only a handful of sites in the United Kingdom authorised to launch weather balloons and their scientific payloads. We also have fully-equipped fluid dynamics, instrumentation and synoptic weather/forecasting laboratories. There's also an option to spend a year in Oklahoma on some programmes, and perhaps experience severe weather 'up close'.
Facilities and resources
As a Meteorology student you will enjoy access to a wide-range of facilities and support services. This includes 24-hour PC use and wireless internet access around campus, access to the main university library (housing over a million items) and the departmental library, as well as facilities shared with the Mathematics and Statistics Department.