Micro-Program in Climate Change

Micro-Program in Climate Change

New: Several merit-based scholarships are available for the winter 2020 session courtesy of generous support from Énergir. There is no formal application process, and candidates will be considered based on the strength of their application.

Program Description

Micro-Program in Climate ChangeFinding solutions to the problems brought on by climate change requires educating a new generation of global citizens well-versed in the concepts, issues, and challenges associated with such a complex topic. Bishop’s University has responded to this need by developing a new graduate-level Micro-Program in Climate Change. The new program, the first English-language program of its kind in Québec, will offer instruction from leading experts on the science of climate change, its impacts, and strategies for its mitigation. At the end of the program, it is expected that students will be able to:

  • Take a position and provide evidence to support arguments concerning major issues in climate change science
  • Develop an understanding of the causes and effects of climate change on local, regional, and international scales, in major regions of the world (poles, tropics)
  • Articulate a range of plausible solution strategies to confront climate change in terms of adaptation and mitigation

Graduates of the Micro-Program will be well positioned to compete for jobs in both government and the private sector. Moreover, the Micro-Program could be used as a springboard for further study, whether it involves graduate school in a climate or environment-related field, or a professional degree such as law school or an MBA. Indeed, the Micro-Program has been designed so that it will provide students with a solid understanding of both the scientific and non-scientific aspects of climate change and thus will be highly applicable to a range of career options.

Courses Offered

To complete the Micro-Program, students will do three three-credit masters-level courses (for a total of nine credits) from a list of four potential courses:

Arctic and Antarctic Environmental Change (taught by Dr. Alexandre Langlois, Département de géomatique appliquée, Université de Sherbrooke)

ESG 561: Arctic and Antarctic Environmental Change

The polar environments, especially the Arctic, are undoing change at a rate far faster than most other regions. Change at the poles has happened in the past and will continue to have important consequences for all Earth’s systems. This course will examine the development of these extreme environments and examine what can be expected for the future.

Tropical Environments and Climate Change (taught by Dr. Matthew Peros, Department of Environment and Geography)

ESG 575: Tropical Environments and Climate Change

Tropical regions are the home to the majority of the world’s people, many of whom live in poverty. This course will examine major elements of the tropical climate system, including the functioning of tropical cyclones (hurricanes), El Niño, and monsoons, and attempt to understand how these phenomena are inter-connected. In addition, students will undertake a project on the evolution of tropical ecosystems, and learn hands-on methods and techniques in paleoecological analysis.

Energy and the Environment (taught by Dr. Valerio Faraoni, Department of Physics)

ESG 573: Energy and the Environment

This course introduces the concepts of energy and power and their units and reviews energy sources, fossil fuels, their environmental impacts, and resource consumption. The basics of heat transfer, energy conversion, and its efficiency according to thermodynamics are covered (including the concepts of temperature, specific and latent heat, the first and second law of thermodynamics, heat engines, and thermal systems). Other topics discussed include electromagnetic and blackbody radiation, the greenhouse effect, the Earth’s energy balance, the basics of electromagnetism, and electric power. Radioactivity, nuclear energy, and renewable energy sources are introduced.

The Health Impacts of Climate Change (taught by Dr. Elisabeth Levac, Department of Environment and Geography)

ESG 577: The Health Impacts of Climate Change

This course will examine a broad range of potential health impacts associated with climate change. The most obvious health impacts are those associated with thermal stress and extreme weather events such as floods and hurricanes (premature deaths, infectious diseases; diarrheal disease). Global warming will also be associated with a spread of vector-borne diseases (such as malaria, dengue fever, yellow fever, Lyme disease, etc.) and increases in seasonal allergies. Finally, the course will examine the overall impact of environmental degradation, displacement and loss of livelihood on the general physical and mental health of populations

All courses will be offered in the winter semester of each year. Students may take all three courses in one semester, or take courses over a period of several years. Students who take all three courses in the same semester will be registered as full-time students at Bishop’s as this is a graduate-level program. The courses will consist of a combination of seminar, lecture, fieldtrip, and laboratory instruction.

Admission Requirements

The basic entry requirement will be an undergraduate degree in any field from a recognized university with at least a B standing in the final two years of study. There are no specific pre-requisites, but students will need to be comfortable with basic mathematical and scientific concepts.

The admission deadline for the Winter 2020 session has been extended to November 1, 2019 at 4:00 PM. All application materials and questions about the program can be sent to Ms. Jean Porter at jean.porter@ubishops.ca.

Admission procedure

Information for International Students

We welcome international students into the Micro-Program in Climate Change. The language of instruction is English. In order to be accepted, international applicants will also need to submit proof of English-language proficiency, sent directly to the university from the testing organization. We accept any of the following:

  • TOEFL (minimum overall score of 237 for computer-based or 90 for internet-based testing)
  • IELTS (minimum overall score of 6.5)
  • MELAB (minimum overall score of 85)
  • CAEL (minimum overall score of 70)
  • Cambridge English: Proficiency (CPE) minimum score of C
  • Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) minimum score of C
  • Pearson Test of English: Academic (PTE: Academic) minimum score overall score of 61

In addition, international tuition and fees for the Micro-Program are approximately $6000 CAD (subject to change without notification). Bishop’s University does not offer tuition waivers, although a small number of competitive scholarships are available to help partly offset this; prospective students are automatically considered for these upon receipt of their applications. In addition, accommodation, food, and local transportation costs are estimated to be approximately $1000 CAD per month.