< Martin Jucker - Teaching


The only way to learn (and retain) knew things is by being enthusiastic and having an enthusiastic teacher. Also, knowledge and meaning are best constructed from previous experiences. Thus, I try to engage my students by rousing their curiosity based on their own previous knowledge and, hopefully, interest. Connecting the dots between what they have learned in previous courses and are learning in parallel courses is an important part, as it is much simpler to see the relevance of what you are taught if various subjects come together to form one "big picture". I found that one good way of doing this in my teaching subjects is to work with real-time data from websites most of my students already use, or at least know. One simple example is the discussion of the latest (less than twelve hours ago) measurements of the vertical temperature profiles ("soundings") and how this relates to today's weather forecast from the Bureau of Meteorology.

I strive to provide a clear structure for my course: What is expected from the students and when it's due, what they are allowed to do or not, and how they are going to be marked for the course. Even though I will eventually mark the students' exams, student-teacher interaction should be on equal footing. As far as personal interaction is concerned, I am simply Martin, not "Dr. Jucker", nor "Professor Jucker". We are all there for the course, and we are all necessary ingredients for learning something interesting and useful. In fact, it's interesting how much I learn myself both during the course preparation or when trying to answer those tough questions from my students. The best part of the lectures are always the questions. They show learning progress, interest, engagement and desire to know more.

That's what learning is all about.



I am available for possible student supervision, be it for short-term summer project or research practica, for Masters projects, PhDs or postdocs.

Although I do not have a specific opening at the moment, there are always possibilities if a student is motivated and has a project in mind. If this is you, please check out UNSW's student information and don't hesitate to contact me.

Current HDR students

Valentina Ortiz has a broad background in physical sciences and works on wave dynamics and wave-mean flow interactions in the atmosphere. In particular, Valentina looks at the dynamics and surface weather impact of zonal wave 3 in the southern hemisphere midlatitudes. Co-supervisor is Steve Sherwood.

Chang Xu is a graduate student working on the Madden-Julian Oscillation. Chang is particularly interested in the role of moisture in the propagation of the MJO. Her primary supervisor is Steve Sherwood.

Past HDR students

Deepashree Dutta's PhD was co-supervised with Steve Sherwood, Katrin Meissner and Alex Sen Gupta. Deepashree worked on the causes of actic amplification and integrated ocean and stratosphere dynamics, cloud physics and even paleoclimate into a holistic view of why and how the Arctic warms more than the rest of the globe under climate change.

Rishav Goyal's PhD was co-supervised with Matthew England and Alex Sen Gupta, and concentrated on the dynamics in Southern Hemisphere climate, and in particular the interactions between atmospheric dynamics, ocean dynamics and sea ice. He completed in 2022 and his thesis can be found at the UNSW library. Rishav went on to become a postdoc at the Australian Centre for Excellence in Antarctic Science (ACEAS), where he continued his work on Southern Hemisphere climate and its variability. Rishav received the prestigious 2022 AMOS Uwe Radok award.

Jordan Lorenzatto was digging deep into the mechanisms of troposphere-stratosphere coupling for his Honours which I supervised together with Jan Zika. Jordan looked into how much of the southern hemisphere variability can be attributed to the stratosphere, and under what conditions. He completed in 2021 receiving a High Distinction for his amazing work, and went on to join the Graduate Development Program within the Australian Government Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications in Canberra, ACT.

Preethi Paul's Master thesis took a very close look at how tropical clouds change when the surface warms. Working together with Steve Sherwood and myself, Preethi used the El-Nino Southern Oscillation as a proxy for future warming, and analysed satellite data to find which cloud types change most, and why. Preethi went on to work for BlueVisions management consulting.


CLIM2001 / PHYS2801

I am currently the course convenor and lecturer of Fundamentals of Atmospheric Science, which is taught as an undergraduate class at the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences and the School of Physics within the Faculty of Science at the University of New South Wales.

The course outline can be found here.

CLIM2001 has a long history of being taught by members of the Climate Change Research Centre and aims to introduce the pillars of atmospheric science, including radiation and radiative transfer, atmospheric chemistry, dynamics, thermodynamics, cloud and microphysics, as well as vertical stability, general circulation, and climate and weather modelling. As such, it is a very comprehensive course, and I believe students following the course will get a solid insight into the workings of our atmosphere and possible areas where they are particularly interested and would like to follow up in more detail during their future studies.

Previous courses

Introduction to Atmosphere and Ocean Dynamics (2020, UNSW): Teaching replacement for first four lectures.

General Physics for Mathematicians (2007-2010, EPFL): Teaching Assistant, in-class teaching, mentoring, website management.

Quantum Mechanics for Mathematicians 2007-2010, EPFL): Teaching Assistant, in-class teaching, mentoring.

Computational Physics for Physicists (C++) (2006-2007, EPFL): eaching Assistant, in-class teaching.

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