|HABYTIME MINI LECTURE 69:
PREPARING FOR UNIVERSITY METEOROLOGY
METEOROLOGIST JEFF HABY
This writing is geared toward students who are interested in entering a university meteorology program. I will cover preparation that can be
done before and while completing a university meteorology program. Several of the most important preparations are given in the diagram below
and I will explain each of these. This list is not comprehensive by any means but it is a good starting point to launch your preparation
for university meteorology.
A) Meteorology is heavy is math and physics concepts. If still in high school, you should take as many math and physics courses that you can. Most
students that enter a calculus based math and physics meteorology program drop out after the first or second year due to the rigor
of the math and physics. The first two math courses (Calculus 1 and Calculus 2) and first two physics courses (General Physics 1
and General Physics 2) are major stumbling blocks for many students. If you start early though, I am going to give you information
that will significantly increase your chance of surviving the university math and physics. Ideally, you would prepare for each math and physic
course before you take the course by going through the tutoring resources below and ideally you would also review these tutorials while
completing a university math and physics course. “The Teaching Company” and “Jason Gibson” both have tutorials in the calculus sequence,
physics sequence, chemistry, and other courses in math and physics. Buying these courses only costs a fraction of what tuition is to
take a college course and it is very possible by going through the tutorials thoroughly that you can increase your grade and success
rate on the homework, quizzes and exams while completing the university math and physics courses.
Teaching Company courses: http://www.thegreatcourses.com (science and mathematics section)
Jason Gibson: http://www.mathtutordvd.com (and can be purchased through places like Amazon.com)
B) Many meteorology students already are prepared when it comes to studying weather data online and interpreting weather data online
since this is one of the more exciting aspects of study in meteorology. For a starting point, study the links below on analysis
charts and model charts. Next, go through the wealth of materials that are available on this and other websites.
C) There is a course called Introduction to Meteorology that typically all meteorology majors will take during Freshman year. Before taking
this course (and even after if you have already taken this course) read or reread a university Introduction to Meteorology textbook from
cover to cover. You will be amazed by all the important meteorology concepts that are covered in that one book without being overly
burdened with calculus and physics.
D) Make sure to get a membership to both the American Meteorological Society (AMS) and the National Weather Association (NWA). Read through
the monthly or quarterly publications that they give you as part of the membership. Read through each magazine cover to cover and try
to understand as much of it as you can. Some of it will be over your head but go through it anyway. Over time the articles will
make more and more sense as your meteorology knowledge, math knowledge and science knowledge build.
E) Another resource to use when preparing for a university meteorology program is to read through all the Haby Hints and read about
10 or so per day. These hints will help familiarize you with meteorology concepts without being overly burdened with calculus and
physics. This will build your knowledge so that when it does come time to take calculus based meteorology courses, you will have
a strong foundation in the principles behind the equations you will study and solve.
F) As mentioned, the items above are a starting point. Other areas of preparation that can be done include learning computer languages,
meetings with a mentor meteorologist, interning in meteorology, becoming familiar with satellite and radar products, storm
spotter training, attending meteorology conferences and going through meteorology and weather books.
Good luck with your studies! Let me know if you have any additional tips that I could add for when I put a second edition together of this posting.