Penn State College of Earth and Mineral Sciences
John A. Dutton e-Education Institute
Image of Avalance Weather Station

Effective Fall 2023: This program is being phased out and is no longer accepting new applications. Students already enrolled in the program will continue to receive email updates about remaining course offerings so that they can plan the completion of their studies.

Weather affects nearly every sector of society, from transportation to renewable energy, commerce to emergency management. Thus, preparing for and managing the range of probable weather outcomes is crucial for both businesses and governmental agencies. The question you might be asking is, “How can we know what to expect with regards to the weather, especially at long timeframes?” The answer, to some degree, lies buried within the vast amounts of global weather data generated each day (over 6 TB/day of observational data alone!).

The Department of Meteorology and Atmospheric Science at Penn State now offers a graduate certificate in Weather and Climate Analytics that will teach you how to access, analyze, and manipulate large, publicly available atmospheric data sets. This program is ideal for anyone who works with historical or forecast weather and climate data in a weather-sensitive sector. We will teach you how to manage the tsunami of information, spot patterns within it, and draw conclusions and insights relative to your sector of interest.


At the completion of this program, you will be able to:

  • Identify and collect pertinent sources of global weather and climate data within the context of a specific weather impacted problem;
  • Inspect, clean, transform, and analyze historical weather and climate data in a manner that best defines the characteristics key to understanding a particular weather impact;
  • Use predictive analytic techniques on historical observations in order to forecast the future behavior of the atmosphere and exposure of a stakeholder to those events.
  • Effectively communicate weather and climate data analyses and the implications of the analysis results to decision-makers.
  • Develop a global perspective on the challenges and opportunities that exist when incorporating weather and climate information into the decision-making process over a wide range of business and governmental sectors.


This program consists of five graduate courses (13 credits)

  • Meteo 810: Weather and Climate Data Sets
  • Meteo 815: Applied Atmospheric Data Analysis
  • Meteo 820: Time Series Analytics for Meteorological Data
  • Meteo 825: Predictive Analytic Techniques for Meteorological Data
  • Meteo 830: Weather and Climate Analytics Applications

Prerequisite Competencies

Experience has taught us that you must be at least "comfortable" with computer programming before you enroll. In this program, we will use the statistical programming language "R" to retrieve, analyze, and display very large data sets (Excel just won't cut it). You do not have to be familiar "R" to enroll (and be successful in this class), we will teach you the specifics of the R language. That being said, we strongly suggest that you have some sort of experience with any modern computer programming language (JavaScript, Python, MatLab, etc.) This might be a class that you took, some on-the-job experience, or even just some personal tinkering -- something that taught you the tenets and process of writing and debugging code.

Pre-enrollment Activity:

To be successful in this course, you should be confident performing the following tasks in a modern computer language:

  • Identifying variables, functions and operations within a short snip-its of code.
  • Identifying and converting between data types.
  • Manipulating arrays, including referencing cells or slices within multidimensional arrays
  • Debugging simple errors such as type-o's, missed punctuation, etc.
  • Researching the use of unfamiliar functions or procedures using the Internet or other means.
  • Altering an example code to perform a different (but related) task.

To make sure you meet these competentcies complete the pre-enrollment activity.

Get Started

Additional Questions?

Steve Seman Photo Additional questions may be directed to Steve Seman, Assistant Teaching Professor of Meteorology.

428 Earth Engineering Sciences Building
University Park, PA 16802
Phone: (814) 863-7205