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Natural Disasters

McGill University via edX


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

Taught by

John Stix and John Gyakum


3.8 rating, based on 4 Class Central reviews

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  • Keiko Akh

    Keiko Akh completed this course.

    I'M not familiar to use pc. So I need much time to use it easily.

    That is my problem.

    But Anyway I'll try to finish this class.
  • Per Gustav Ousdal

    Per Gustav Ousdal completed this course.

  • Someone

    Someone completed this course and found the course difficulty to be very easy.

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    Samantha Bishop

    Samantha Bishop completed this course.

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