Climate Change: An Interdisciplinary Challenge

Course content

The course will comprise the following themes:

  • The climate system, including climate models
  • Paleoclimatic evidence and tipping elements of the Earth System
  • The Carbon cycle
  • Adaptation to climate change at various levels 
  • Climate change and biodiversity
  • Climate change and agriculture
  • Mitigation strategies, including the role of the land use sector and transformation of the energy system
  • The economics of climate change
  • Geopolitics of climate change 
  • Climate change ethics



MSc Programme in Climate Change

Learning outcome

The aim of the course is to give an interdisciplinary introduction to climate
change, its impacts on the natural environment and human societies, and possible strategies for mitigation and adaptation. After completing the course the student should be able to:



  • Describe the current state of knowledge on climate change
  • Understand and describe the most important processes involved in climate change, and the interactions between the atmosphere, ocean and land surface
  • Describe the basic concepts involved in the economic control of climate change
  • Give an account of possible climate change adaptation strategies in societies in different cultural and economic settings
  • Give an account of climate change mitigation strategies within various sectors
  • Outline different possible environmental ethics positions with regards to climate change


  • Identify and analyse climate change related problems, using methods from a wide range of disciplines
  • Apply scientific terminology from different disciplines correctly
  • Present the results of an analysis in a well-structured, logical coheren scientifically correct form, written as well as orally


  • Work efficiently in an interdisciplinary group to identify solutions to complex climate change related problems
  • Provide qualified contributions to interdisciplinary discussions on climate change issues

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

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 is recommended.

Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Type of assessment
Written assignment, during course
Oral examination, 20 minutes
Type of assessment details
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.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship

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.

Criteria for exam assessment

See learning outcome.

Single subject courses (day)

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Preparation
  • 328
  • Exercises
  • 84
  • English
  • 412


Course number
Programme level
Full Degree Master

2 blocks

Block 1 And Block 2
The number of places might be reduced if you register in the late-registration period (BSc and MSc) or as a credit or single subject student.
Study Board of Geosciences and Management
Contracting department
  • Department of Geoscience and Natural Resource Management
  • Department of Biology
Contracting faculty
  • Faculty of Science
Course Coordinator
  • Thilde Bech Bruun   (4-766a6464426b6970306d7730666d)
Saved on the 19-02-2024

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