Ice Cores and Ice AgesSemester Course

Environmental Science of the Arctic
Week-Long Study Tour
Core Course Week Study Tour
Major Discipline(s)
Biology, Environmental Science, Geology
Core Course
Fall/Spring semester

Note for Spring 2021: Your two course-integrated Study Tours will take place in Denmark.

NOTE: The lab course, Climate Lab, will not be offered in the spring 2021 semester. It will be offered in fall 2021 and future semesters.

This course focuses on the natural science aspects of climate change during the prehistoric times with focus on the glacial and the deglaciation. You gain an understanding of past climate variability, including its underlying causes and mechanisms as a basis for separating natural and anthropogenic climate change and for making useful projections of future climate and assessing its impacts. The course focuses on pre-human times, and the 100,000 year old Greenlandic ice sheet provides an ideal case study.

I would not be able to experience similar academics at my home university purely because of the DIS professors’ experience in ice core and climate research. They took us to their research center, the Center for Ice & Climate, to ice cores on a field study. It’s an amazing place full of scientists passionate about the climate system! The professors’ enthusiasm really rubbed off and I was able to appreciate the data in a deeper context through their first-hand experience with the research. The Greenland study tour was the best experience. Amazing, wonderful, fantastic just can’t capture the experience! I would encourage any student interested in climate change and scientific adventures to take this new program.

Jessica Lee, Gettysburg College

Related Discipline(s)

This course would also be of interest to the following discipline(s):


Inger Kathrine Seierstad

DIS Copenhagen Semester Faculty

MSc in Geology-Geophysics (University of Copenhagen). Educated within glaciology at Centre for Ice and Climate, Niels Bohr Institute. Research on ice cores, past climate change, volcanic deposits in ice, stable isotopes and stratigraphic dating of ice cores. Participated in ice-core drillings in Greenland and Antarctica multiple times. With DIS since 2018.

Sune Olander Rasmussen

DIS Copenhagen Semester Faculty

Ph.D. (Geophysics, University of Copenhagen, 2006). M.Sc. (Geophysics, University of Copenhagen, 2002). Assoc. professor and coordinator at Centre for Ice and Climate, Niels Bohr Institute. With DIS since 2011.

Environmental Science of the Arctic, Sune Olander Rasmussen