707 Study Guide

Module 1 Study Guide

Module 2 Study Guide

Module 3 Study Guide

DIM 707: DISASTER RISK ASSESSMENT

 

1. AIM OF COURSE

 

The main aim of this course is to equip students with the necessary tools and knowledge in order to conduct a comprehensive Disaster Risk Assessment.

 

2. WORKING PROCEDURES

 

The course comprises of three modules designed to cover various aspects of disaster risk assessments. Each module spells out its specific objectives, working procedure and study materials. There is an assignment in each module. The assignments are designed to test the students’ ability to apply the theory of the course to practical real world scenarios.

 

3. SUGGESTED STUDY PROGRAMME

 

DIM 707 is one of the electives in the programme, which provides students with options of choice depending on their interests and practical inclinations or orientation. Like the other electives, it carries 16 credits. The choice of elective is also guided by the relevance of the elective to the student’s area of investigation in the Mini Dissertation.

 

4. ASSESSMENT

 

Assignments             2         30%

Practical exercise      1         30%

Examination             1         40%

Total                                100%

 

The assignments will constitute 30% of the final mark. There will be a final examination at the end of the year, which will carry 40% of the total marks. Students should also have to complete a practical assignment which constitutes 30% of the final mark. Details of the practical will be provided during the May contact session.

 

 

3 contact sessions will be held through out the year. The practical examination will be held during the 3rd contact session, information needed for this practical examination will be given out to students during the 3rd contact session. Please find attached an example of the practical examination.

 

DIM 707

MODULE 1: STATISTICAL METHODS AND THEIR USE IN RISK ASSESSMENTS

 

1. AIM

 

The aim of this module is to give the student a thorough understanding of probability theory and how this theory might be applied to choose between risky alternatives.

 

2. LEARNING OBJECTIVES

 

On completion of the module, you should be able to:

 

i) Construct and interpret probability density functions for empirical and other commonly used distributions;

ii) Understand the relationship between probability density functions and cumulative probability distributions;

iii) Construct cumulative distribution functions from probability density functions and to interpret these distributions;

iv) Choose between risky alternatives based on efficiency criteria;

 

3. WORKING PROCEDURE

 

The emphasis of this module is not only to facilitate proper understanding of probability theory and how it might be used in decision analysis under uncertainty but also to get some hands-on experience on generating the necessary information to assess risk with spreadsheets.

 

(i) Work through the study material specified under paragraph 3.

(ii) Show that you understand the linkages between probability density functions and cumulative distribution function by doing all necessary calculations in a spreadsheet. Confirm your understanding of these linkages by drawing the necessary graphs.

(iii) Demonstrate that you know how to discriminate between risky alternatives using efficiency criteria.

(iv) Hand in your practical work as the assignment for this module.

 

4. STUDY MATERIAL

 

All the material used in DIM 706 is also relevant for this module.Please note the additional readings.

 

1. Griffiths, E., Hill, R. C. and Judge, G.G.  (1993)  Learning and practicing econometrics.  John Wiley & Sons, Inc. New York. Chapters 2-4.

 

2. Mead, R., Curnow, R.N. and Hasted, A.M. Statistical Methods in Agriculture and Experimental Biolgy. (Second Edition). Chapman & Hall. London. Chapter 2.

 

3. Steyn, A.G.W., Smit, C.F., Du Toit, S.H.C and Strasheim, C. (1994). Modern Statistics in Practice. J.L. van Schaik. Chapters 9-10.

4. Hardaker, J.B., Huirne, R.B.M and Anderson, J.R. (1997). Coping with Risk in Agriculture. Cab International. United Kingdom. Chapter 3 and Chapter 7.

 

DIM 707

MODULE 2: PRACTICAL APPLICATION

 

1. AIM

 

To develop the analytical skills of the student, to apply to real disasters the theoretical principles and technique learned in Module 1.

 

2. LEARNING OBJECTIVES

 

On completion of the module, you should be able to:

 

i) Assess the vulnerability and risk of disasters through the application of the necessary theoretical foundations used for such an assessment.

 

3. WORKING PROCEDURE

 

3.1 Study included and supplementary material to enable you to conduct disaster vulnerability and risk assessment.

 

3.2 Select a disaster and gather data and information on the disaster that will enable you to conduct disaster vulnerability and risk assessment.

 

3.3 Conduct the disaster vulnerability and risk assessment and present your analysis in the format of a brief scientific report as the assignment for this module.

 

4. EVALUATION

 

The practical assignment for this module is integrated with the assignment for Module 3 and will contribute 50% of the assignment mark.

 

DIM 707

MODULE 3: DISASTER VULNERABILITY AND RISK ASSESSMENT

 

1. AIM

 

To develop the skills of the student, to conduct and complete a participatory disaster risk assessment.

 

2. LEARNING OBJECTIVES

 

On completion of the module, you should be able to:

 

ii) Assess the risk of disasters in a specific community through the application of the necessary participatory risk assessment activities.

 

3. WORKING PROCEDURE

 

3.1 Study included and supplementary material to enable you to conduct a participatory disaster risk assessment.

 

3.2 Use given data and/or select a disaster and gather data and information on the disaster that will enable you to conduct a participatory disaster risk assessment.

 

3.3 Conduct the participatory disaster risk assessment and present your analysis in the format of a scientific report.

 

4. EVALUATION

 

Select a local municipality of your choice and conduct a disaster risk assessment for the municipality. Make sure that you use all the principles and mathematics equations needed to calculate probability, severity etc. of hazards. Also discuss the methodology needed to conduct vulnerability assessments. You may use hypothetical data to illustrate proper understanding of the risk assessment process.

 

This assignment will contribute 50% to the assignment mark .

 

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