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Weather forecast game

Weather forecast game for week 1.

Before you start the course, we’d like you to have a go at trying to predict the weather in Reading, in our game hosted on the Royal Meteorological Society website. Don’t worry if you don’t know anything about forecasting the weather yet! We’ve included a link to the official Met Office forecast for Reading in the game, which you may find helpful to look at and tweak a little for your first prediction.

We’ll give you the opportunity to make a forecast at the start of each week of the course, and, hopefully, as your understanding of the processes governing the weather improves, you’ll be able to make a more educated guess and see your score improve.

Your task is to try and predict four elements of the weather in Reading, UK for Sunday 24 June 2018. We’d like you to predict the following:

  • The minimum temperature (in degrees C) to the nearest one decimal place

  • The maximum temperature (in degrees C) to the nearest one decimal place

  • The relative humidity at 12:00 (GMT) to the nearest whole number (%)

  • Total rainfall to the nearest decimal place (mm)

What is relative humidity? This is a measure of how much water vapour (gas) is in the air, with 0% indicating that the air is completely dry and 100% being the level at which cloud droplets will start forming (assuming there are cloud condensation nuclei present, for the droplets to condense on to). Water condenses more easily in cold air than in warm air, so the actual amount (or absolute humidity) of water vapour in cold air with a relative humidity of, say, 70%, is less than the actual amount of water vapour in warmer air with a relative humidity of 70%.

In the UK, the relative humidity is usually over 50%. If its been raining recently, you would expect it to be over 90%.

You can find out more about humidity on the Met Office website.

What is UTC? UTC or Coordinated Universal Time is the precisely defined, world standard time. Please note you will see that time is measured as UTC on the Met Office website. For our purposes, it is the same as Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).

Please enter your predictions for this weekend on the link provided at the bottom of this Step and don’t forget to make a note of your predicted forecast so you can refer back to it. Make sure you submit your answers by 24:00 (GMT) on Friday 22 June.

Unfortunately, we have to set this as a cut-off point, to allow us to evaluate the forecasts. If you’ve missed the deadline for this week, you may wish to head to the current week of the course and submit your prediction for that week and then return to Step 1.5 to complete the course.

Please be aware that if you participate in the weather forecasting game:

  • We will ask you to provide your FutureLearn user name so that we can record your score for you. You can choose to use an alternative username if you prefer (only identifiable to you). The username that you chose when taking part in the game, together with your score will appear in the report and will be visible to all participants in the course.

  • We’ll compile and share the results from the game, each week, to help you evaluate your weather prediction skills.

  • The data we gather from the weather forecasting game will only be used for learner feedback within this course and will not be shared outside of this course.

  • When we report the results from the game back to learners at the start of each week, we’ll provide a list of everyone’s score, in alphabetical order by username within a PDF document.

  • Scores will not be ranked.

Enter your prediction on the Royal Meteorological Society website.

The results

After the weekend, you can return to this Step to find out how you did. You’ll be able to compare your results with our data, taken from the World Meteorological Organisation’s weather station at the University of Reading.

We’ll be running this forecasting game at the start of each week of the course, so keep tabs on your predictions to see if you improve. Don’t forget you can share your thoughts in the discussion area below, and if you think one of your fellow learners has made a particularly good suggestion/comment, let them know.

We’re looking forward to hearing how you get on and if you like, please use #FLRainorShine to join in with discussions about the course on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

Update: Monday 25 June 2018.

We invited you to predict the weather of Sunday 24 June 2018. Take a look at the Results Table and Sylvia’s Results Summary to find out how you got on in the Weather Forecasting Game in Week 1.

Did you score higher or lower than you expected? We look forward to hearing your thoughts in the discussion area below. And don’t forget, you’ll have another opportunity to see if you can improve on your score when we repeat the game again in Weeks 2 and 3.

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Come Rain or Shine: Understanding the Weather

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