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wanstead_meteo

Options to study meteorology for a mature student

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Does anyone on here have experience of studying meteorology as a mature student? I have recently talked to professors at UEA, Reading and Birmingham in the hope that face-to-face contact may help my case but to no avail. Although my postgrad background is not scientific I did study chemistry and mathematics at A-level in the early 1990s.

I understand that my options are to retake my A-levels in more relavant disciplines and improve my grades or study for an Open University degree in physics, something that will take years to do and cost a fortune, two things I don't have in abundance.

Much of my experience of meteorology has been self taught - I would just like now to give my knowledge an academic structure. A want to study the weather but one that could lead to a career change, even at this relatively late stage in life.

Any advice would be gratefully received.

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The Met Office do such a wide range of posts a decent honors degree in a physical science, maths, or geography is a good starting point. They obviously have other areas like engineering and computer software/hardware design, project management etc with meteorological aspects to them as well. Vocational qualifications are another option/addition. 

 

As I never got the A levels I needed, I did a technical engineering apprenticeship until I got promoted into a full time post in project management. I was still thinking about the future, because I still want to eventually progress into some form of meteorological career...but for me more so in climate research or observations.

 

So I actually went for the part time study route through the Open University, alongside my full time job. I chose the BSc (Hons) Natural Sciences pathway and currently about half way through my second year. Funnily enough I am currently on two modules which involve weather forecasting, observations and other areas such as climate change. There are some boring subjects to...but I just had to get through them and actually it did introduce me into different ways of researching and presenting my findings.

 

So it depends on what you are most interested in doing in the future. I used to be focused on "I want to be a weather forecaster" but realised there are so many more different posts that were still weather & climate related that could potentially get my interest just as much.

 

Give the Met Office an e-mail. Explain what you are currently doing, and what you might like to do in future. Briefly include any experience you have that may be relevant to weather & climate (used of models etc). Ask what the Met Office normally look for in applicants and whether they had any recommendations for a way forward.

 

I would also recommend looking on the Royal Meteorological Society website: http://www.rmets.org/

 

They often have some good career advice on there.

 

Hope this was of some help.  :good:

Edited by Chris K
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I studied Meteorology as a mature student as the University of Reading. To do this I took A-Level Maths using a distance learning course fro the National Extension College. It really wasn't that expensive, and I could work at my own pace while still employed. The downside is you have to arrange to sit to your own exams, which I did via a local school.

 

Physics was more troublesome, as most qualifications require lab work. I was lucky in that I was accepted on a Science Foundation Degree which brought me up to speed in the maths and physics required for meteorology. Sadly the course is no longer run at Reading, but I believe Leeds still has one with progression into meteorology.

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