Instance: 2019/2020 - 2S
Cycles of Study/Courses
Teaching Staff - Responsibilities
Teaching - Hours
|Theoretical and practical :
Suitable for English-speaking students
Present the fundamentals of descriptive physical oceanography, from physical properties of sea water to regional oceanography.
Develop the student’s abilities to use a high level computing language to process, visualize and analyze ocean data obtained in field campaigns, numerical models or remote sensing techniques. Being capable to analyze data (e.g. water masses) from oceanographic datasets available online.
Learning outcomes and competences
This course develops fundamental aspects of oceanography, as a necessary discipline for any student who plans to understand the marine environment. The main taught topics described below, such as hydrography and ocean water masses, or aspects related to instrumental methods are needed for students who should be able, by themselves, to achieve the objectives of the UC, and develop a critical spirit. The demonstration of the theoretical knowledge in the practical classes, facilitates an innovative and integrative approach because the knowledge acquired is extrapolated to real-world cases in which students may need to work in the future. In this way, the students develop attitudes and skills related to physical processes in oceanography.
Pre-requirements (prior knowledge) and co-requirements (common knowledge)
Basic Calculus and principles of computing programing (in MATLAB). However, previous knowledge or practice in MATLAB is not necessary to attend the course, as these will be progressively introduced during the semester.
1) Introduction to descriptive physical oceanography; some historical notes;
2) Ocean dimensions, shapes and bottom materials;
3) Physical properties of seawater;
4) Typical distributions of water characteristics;
5) Mass, salt, and heat budgets and wind forcing;
6) Data analysis concepts and observational methods;
7) Dynamical processes for descriptive ocean circulation;
8) Gravity waves, internal waves and tides; coastal and deep waters;
9) Global Ocean Circulation;
Lynne D. Talley, George L. Pickard, William J. Emery, James H. Swift; Descriptive Physical Oceanography (an introduction), Elsevier & AP, 2011. ISBN: 978-0-7506-4552-2
Joan Brown, Angela Colling, Dave Park, John Phillips, Dave Rothery, John Wright; Waves, Tides and Shallow-water processes, Gerry Bearman, 1989. ISBN: 0 7506 2827 8
Joan Brown, Angela Colling, Dave Park, John Phillips, Dave Rothery, John Wright; Seawater: its composition, properties and behaviour, Gerry Bearman, 1995. ISBN: 0 7506 3715 3
Joan Brown, Angela Colling, Dave Park, John Phillips, Dave Rothery, John Wright; Ocean Circulation, Gerry Bearman, 1998. ISBN: 0 7506 3716 1
Teaching methods and learning activities
Classical lectures with aid of power point and animations, graphics etc etc.
The students will learn methods to visualise and manipulate oceanographic data in MATLAB.
Natural sciences > Environmental science > Earth science > Marine sciences
Distributed evaluation without final exam
|Trabalho prático ou de projeto
Amount of time allocated to each course unit
|Apresentação/discussão de um trabalho científico
|Frequência das aulas
Eligibility for exams
This is achieved by doing computer assignments and by a Oral presentation based on literature review.
Calculation formula of final grade