Kursussøgning, efter- og videreuddannelse – Københavns Universitet

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Kursussøgning, efter- og videreuddannelse

Climate Change and Water Resources

Practical information
Study year 2016/2017
Block 1
Programme level Full Degree Master
Course responsible
  • Karsten Høgh Jensen (3-73707248716f7636737d366c73)
  • Department of Geoscience and Natural Resource Management
Course number: NIGK14056U

Course content

The contents of the course comprise the following elements:

1. Statistical analysis of historical climatic and hydrologic variables on seasonal and annual basis. Homogeneity test, trend test, analysis of extreme events including floods and draughts.

2. Hydrological processes at catchment scale. Introduction to rainfall-runoff processes and hydrological modeling. Simulation of the hydrological cycle at catchment scale using a simple conceptual hydrological model. Model calibration and validation principles. Trial-and-error and autocalibration techniques.

3. Climate modeling principles for global and regional scales and links to hydrology. IPCC scenarios and projections of climate change. Retrieval of climate projection scenarios of daily values of precipitation and other meteorological variables. Introduction to bias amd downscaling correction methods of climate model results. Bias correction of climate projection scenarios using different bias correction methods.

4. Projection of future hydrological conditions as affected by climate change. Analysis of water balance, seasonal and annual statistics, and extreme events.

5. Analysis of uncertainty factors related to climate modeling, bias correction method, and hydrological modeling.


Learning outcome

The aim of the course is to give an introduction to the topic of climate change and water resources, including understanding, modeling and projection of hydrological processes at catchment scale. After completing the course the student should be able to:


Understand and describe how climate change impacts the hydrological cycle

Account for different approaches and uncertainties related to projection of future climatic and hydrologic conditions


Use of a hydrological model for studying the impacts of climate change on water resources and hydrological processes

Use of statistical methods for analysis of climatic and hydrologic variables on seasonal and annual basis, trend test and extreme events


Assess the impacts of climate change on hydrological processes and water resources using appropriate modeling tools

Recommended prerequisites

BSc in Natural Resources, Food Science, Landscape Architecture, Biology-Biotechnology, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Geography and Geoinformatics and Geology-Geoscience from University of Copenhagen or equivalent.

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MSc Programme in Climate Change
MSc Programme in Geology-Geoscience


Study Board of Geosciences and Management

Course type

Single subject courses (day)


Senior Advisor, Torben Sonnenborg, GEUS


1 block


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Teaching and learning methods

The form of teaching is theory exercises combined with ad hoc lectures. For the teaching plan, please see Absalon.


32 students (2 classes of 16)




Please see Absalon course page.


Category Hours
Theory exercises 35
Project work 35
Preparation 136
English 206


Type of assessment

Written assignment
Oral examination, 20 minutes
The written assignment is prepared during the course and must be handed in prior to the exam week. The oral exam uses the written assignment as its point of departure. It includes the titles listed in the officially approved reading list. A combined grade is given after the oral exam.

Marking scale

7-point grading scale

Criteria for exam assessment

See learning outcome.

Censorship form

No external censorship
Several internal examiners.


Re-submission of written assignment, 20 minutes oral examination. The written assignment must be handed in prior to the re-examination week. The oral exam uses the written assignment as its point of departure. It includes the titles listed in the officially approved reading list.

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