An introduction to the full suite of environmental models and modelling methods that are currently used to describe and predict environmental processes and outcomes. Read more Read less

The objective of this course is to give an overview of the different types of models currently being used to describe environmental processes and how they are being applied in practice.

At a glance

  • Dates
    • Please enquire for course dates
  • DurationFive days
  • LocationCranfield Campus
  • Cost


What you will learn

On successful completion of this course you should be able to:

  • Examine the major environmental models currently being applied in soil, water, ecosystems and atmosphere.
  • Recognize the standard types of numerical models in use in environmental sciences.
  • Formulate the generic process of model design, building, calibration and validation. Recognize some of the uncertainties introduced in this process.
  • Explain how the process of model development might be undertaken in different programming environments.
  • Undertake a systems analysis. Relate the model building process to the system under consideration.
  • Apply a model of environmental processes into a user friendly environment.
  • Demonstrate the impact and relevancy of environmental models to policy and scientific discourse.

Core content

  • Introduction to the wide range of applications of numerical models in environmental sciences. Lectures will cover examples of models applied in climate, soil, water, natural ecosystems and atmosphere and others.
  • Overview of the types of models applied; mechanistic, semi-empirical and empirical models. Why these different forms exist, their strengths and weaknesses. How they are applied?
  • Introduction to systems analysis. Overview of the basic concepts and how this relates to model design.
  • Introduction to numerical solutions and empirical solutions to model parameterization and calibration.
  • Identifying what makes models powerful. Predictions, Scenario and Sensitivity testing.
  • Recognizing limits and uncertainties; validating the model. Recognizing the importance of good data.
  • Practical applications of environmental models. How this is done, in what programming language?
  • Illustrating the impact of models and model outputs on current policy and scientific discourse from global climate change to local flooding risk.

Accommodation options and prices

Fees include tuition, course materials and full board accommodation for the duration of the programme.

Accommodation is available at Mitchell Hall which is located on campus. All rooms are en-suite and bookings are on a half-board basis. If you would like to book accommodation for this short course at Mitchell Hall, please indicate this on the registration form and we will arrange this for you.

Alternatively, you may wish to make your own arrangements at a nearby hotel.

Location and travel

Cranfield University is situated in Bedfordshire close to the border with Buckinghamshire. The University is located almost midway between the towns of Bedford and Milton Keynes and is conveniently situated between junctions 13 and 14 of the M1.

London Luton, Stansted and Heathrow airports are 30, 90 and 90 minutes respectively by car, offering superb connections to and from just about anywhere in the world. 

For further location and travel details

Location address

Cranfield University
College Road
MK43 0AL

Read our Professional development (CPD) booking conditions.