BST 200 Introduction to Climate Science

Spring Quarter 2014


BST 200

Introduction to Climate Science

Spring Quarter 2014

Instructor: Prof. Eric Salathé
Tel: 206.616.5351  Email:
Office hours UWB Beardsley Room 253. Weds 11am - 1pm or by appointment

Course objectives:

This course is an introduction to climate science and global climate change. We will consider climate change in the context of other problems of sustainability and the global environment. Material will include the basic science of the atmosphere, the evidence for modern climate change and the human influence on climate, projections of future climate change, and the policy options and governmental responses to climate change. The objectives of this course are to develop an understanding of: (1) the scientific method, (2) the scientific basis of climate change, and (3) how to access and interpret environmental data.


We will make use of high school math so it is essential that students be proficient with these skills: percentage, graphing, scientific notation, logarithms and basic algebra.  No other scientific background is assumed.  You can review basic math skills here:


Your final grade will be based on 2 short quizzes (30%), a final exam (20%), home work (20%), one oral presentation (20%), and one class project (10%). An average of 60% or better is required to pass. The following formula tentatively shows how your percentage score will be assigned to the UW decimal grade:
  A B C D
Score 95 85 75 65
Grade 4.0 3.0 2.0 1.0


The primary text for this course is the book “Introduction to Modern Climate Change” by Andrew Dessler (available from the bookstore or Amazon). Additional readings and class notes will be provided via the class web page.


The class web page is at Here, you will find links to class readings and important information about the class.


The following is quoted directly from the UW Bothell catalog:
Plagiarism is the use of creations, ideas, or words of someone else without formally acknowledging the author or source through appropriate use of quotation marks, references and the like.  Plagiarism is stealing someone’s work and presenting it as one’s own original work or thought.  Student work in  which plagiarism occurs will not ordinarily be accepted as satisfactory  by the instructor, and may lead to disciplinary action against the student submitting it.  Any student who is uncertain whether his or her use of the work of others constitutes plagiarism should consult the course instructor for guidance before formally submitting the course work involved.


From Spring 2013 -- Updated Soon!

Full Syllabus

Adobe Acrobat file icon BST200_Spring_2013.pdf176K Download View

Oral Presentation

Adobe Acrobat file icon Oral presentations.pdf69K Download View


Your grades will be converted from a percentage score to grade points using the following scale: 
  • 95-100% = 4.0
  • 94% = 3.9
  • 93% = 3.8
  • 92% = 3.7
  • 91% = 3.6
  • 90% = 3.5
  • 89% = 3.4
  • 88% = 3.3
  • 87% = 3.2
  • 86% = 3.1
  • 85% = 3.0
  • 84% = 2.9
  • 83% = 2.8
  • 82% = 2.7
  • 81% = 2.6
  • etc.
  • 62% = 0.7
  • 0-61% = 0.0 


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Send questions about this workspace to Eric Salathe.