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Natural Disasters

Learn the science behind different types of natural disasters and our ability, or inability, to control and predict these events.
This course is archived
Estimated 11 weeks
2–4 hours per week
Instructor-paced
Instructor-led on a course schedule
Free
Optional upgrade available

About this course

Skip About this course

No region on Earth is immune from natural disasters. As we gain scientific understanding into the causes and nature of such phenomena, we become better able to mitigate the effects of disasters. Yet as the world's population continues to grow, an increasingly large number of people are at risk.

This science course examines different types of natural disasters and our ability, or inability, to control and predict such events. You will gain an appreciation of natural disasters beyond the newspaper headlines, and will better understand how the effects of disasters can be reduced.

There is an urgent need for people from all walks of life to better understand the scientific principles behind the occurrence of natural disasters:

  • City planners need to know where, and where not, to site buildings.
  • Politicians need to make scientifically informed decisions.
  • Emergency management officials need to understand the nature of a potential disaster and ways to mitigate such an event.
  • Journalists need to report scientifically accurate information.

Learner Testimonial:

Professors Stix and Gyakum have created and presented an engaging course, and have helped in my quest for a better understanding of the world around me.” – Previous Student

At a glance

  • Institution: McGillX
  • Subject: Physics
  • Level: Introductory
  • Prerequisites:
    None
  • Language: English

What you'll learn

Skip What you'll learn
  • Explore the ongoing conflict between humans and nature
  • Discuss the global impact of natural disasters and how they are linked
  • Explore the scientific principles behind the occurrence of natural disasters

About the instructors

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