Holly: MSc Applied Meteorology and Climatology

MSc Applied Meteorology and Climatology

Holly, an MSc Applied Meteorology and Climatology student, describes her experiences of the course and of life in the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Birmingham.


My name’s Holly Turner. I'm studying a Masters in Applied Meteorology and Climatology in the School of Geography Earth and Environmental Science at the University of Birmingham.

The course is about introducing you to aspects – a range of aspects of meteorology and climatology from forecasting to the theory and climate prediction.

The lecturers are very welcoming. They’re always sort of happy to help you out and answer your questions. We have people who are really expert in the field. Like on the forecasting module we have a lecturer who actually works in forecasting for his own private weather company. So it’s really kind of getting in the real people with the expert knowledge to teach you about their field.

The course is mainly delivered through lectures, but we also have some practical sessions, for example in statistics we use the SPSS package, and we have a programming element as well where we use Linux and a FORTRAN which is the software that the Met Office use in their forecasting as well. And we also do a little bit of model validation and making plots as well.

There are about 17 students on the course including part-time students. The postgraduate communities pretty good. There's the Postgraduate Society which we’re able to get involved with – specifically for us. There's also obviously the other societies that you're able to get involved with as well. And within the course we all socialise together too.

Funnily enough I actually originally looked at Birmingham because somebody who I’d heard of had been here for their undergraduate degree, but then when I looked more into what the course was about here I found that actually this was the one that suited me the best, so that was why I applied to here.

My favourite thing would definitely be the weather forecasting module and the model validation because it was just a really nice way to see what you’d actually realistically be doing in the job and the most practical application, and looking at the module visualisation was really interesting because you could see actually what the models do produce.

My plans after I graduate are to study a PhD – I've actually applied for a couple already. There's one that’s very mathematical in nature and another one that’s more practical meteorology based.