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What will I learn in this course?
This course focuses on the basic concepts required for an understanding of atmospheric science. This course is intended to serve as a pre-requisite for the more advanced courses in the OS411 series.

Major topics include:

  • atmospheric structure
  • atmospheric chemistry
  • atmospheric physics
  • stratospheric chemistry

What are the learning objectives for this course?
Upon completion of this course, you will be able to do the following:
  1. Describe the layers of the atmosphere and understand the chemical cycles that occur in them.
  2. Describe the physical process by which chemicals move from one position to another.
  3. Understand current issues in stratospheric chemistry, particularly dealing with the ozone layer and aerosols in the upper atmosphere.

Who is the audience for this course?
This course is intended for all who have an interest in atmospheric sciences, with a specific target audience of those who need to be able to use air quality models or interact with air quality modelers. This course is designed to be an overview of atmospheric science. While this course is designed as a complete course, it is assumed that students taking this course will be continuing on with the more advanced courses in the OS411 series.

What should I already know before taking this course?
Prior to taking this course, we recommend that students complete and/or pass the final examination for the following APTI courses:
  • OS411A: Essential Science for Air Quality Modeling

Do I need to do this module?

Answer these five questions to test your knowledege of this material. You should score at least an 80% before you consider trying to take the final exam for this course.

Tips on Taking the Course
  1. The course is divided up into four modules. Each module contains a number of units. You should carefully read the "Module Description" at the beginning of each module. On this page, we will describe the learning objectives, provide you with a list of topics to be learned, and describe some basic pre-requisite skills or knowledge needed for the module. In addition, there is a short "pre-test" that will help you to determine if you have enough mastery of the module to allow you to either skim that module or skip it altogether.

  2. On each page of each unit, you will be presented with a textual reading, coupled with one or more still or animated graphics to help you understand a particular topic. On many pages you will find an interactive calculator or model that you can use to help you explore the topic in more depth. At the end of each page, there will be a one-question "quiz" to help you self-assess your mastery of the information on that page.

  3. Each unit will culminate with a short unit review and a five-question self-assessment quiz. Likewise, each module has a module review and a 20-question self-assessment review. A graded exam of 50 questions is provided in paper format at the end of the course. See the note below about "Obtaining Course Credit" for more information about the course exam.

  4. The course materials require at least Netscape 4 or Microsoft Internet Explorer 4. A variety of plugins, such as Shockwave, will also be required. Information on downloading and installing these plugins will be provided on the setup page.

If you are a United States state, local, or tribal air pollution control official, register with the Air Pollution Training Institute (APTI).

All others who would like credit or acknowledgement for course completion should register with NC State University.

Go to the Adobe web site to download the Acrobat Reader for free.

Obtaining Course Credit:

To obtain course credit, you must complete the final examination with a minimum score of 70%. The final exam will be sent to your proctor via postal mail once you have completed the course materials. You must secure the services of a proctor who has been approved by the institution with whom you registered. The proctor will administer the exam and return it to the appropriate person (see below) for scoring. No "partial" credit or acknowledgement of partial completion of the course modules is provided.

If you registered through the Air Pollution Training Institute (APTI), your contact for sending you an exam and grading it is:

Deborah Miller
MD 17
Research Triangle Park, NC 27711
(919) 541-5552
If you registered through NC State University, your contact for sending you an exam and grading it is:
Christine Murphy
NC State University
Box 7902
Raleigh, NC 27696-7902
(919) 515-5875

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