Face to face


from £999


Autumn/Winter 2024


  • Interactive online course
  • Bespoke courses at your location
  • Wallingford

UKCEH, Maclean Building, Crowmarsh Gifford Wallingford, Oxfordshire, OX10 8BB, UK
Wallingford location and accommodation guide (update Sep 2022)


Students from £999 
Professionals from £1099 
The above prices are the early bird discount, thereafter £100 more. 


Winter 2023/2024
4 days from 10 am to 4 pm (25 hours learning time)
Please express your interest in the next course here!  

Short course description: 

This interactive 4-day course will teach you about planning, managing, monitoring and forecasting droughts. You will join a series of presentations, exercises and group work to help you better understand all aspects of droughts. There will be a short quiz at the end and you will receive a course certificate on completion.

Learning outcome:

By the end of the course, you will be able to characterise and analyse drought events and their impacts (for your country or region), and will understand the key steps to drought preparedness including monitoring and early warning systems.

Course objectives:

  1. Understand drought development: drought hydroclimatology, propagation & spatio-temporal analysis.
  2. Learn about drought planning & management: drought monitoring; drought management & adaptation in the short- to medium-term (seasonal forecasting) as well as the long-term (e.g. future projections, drought planning & adaptation); use of drought impact data for improved monitoring.
  3. Understand drought risk: drought indicators and indices (e.g. the Standardised Precipitation Index), statistical descriptors; low flow frequency analysis (including, risk and return periods, fitting frequency distributions for low flows); use of drought impact data to support risk assessment.

Target audience:

  • National hydrological and meteorological services and agencies 
  • Charities working in the development sector
  • Consultants
  • PhD and academics preparing to work on drought 


Medium - You need to have an understanding of concepts and techniques used in processing, analysis and interpretation of hydrological data to benefit from this course.



Hardware and software requirements: 

You will need a desktop or laptop computer and access to the internet. Practical exercises will use the R programming language, and so require R and RStudio, in addition to a range of R packages. Details of the required packages will be provided before the course. 


For the courses run at UKCEH Wallingford, the cost of accommodation is not included in the course fee. You may find the Wallingford location and accommodation guide (update Sep 2022) useful to give you an indication of accommodation costs.

Course Leader: 

Lucy Barker, Hydrological Analyst, UKCEH
Lucy Barker is a Hydrological Analyst at UKCEH with over 9 years of experience in drought research, focussing on drought characterisation and identification, and the use of drought indices and impact data to support drought monitoring and early warning and risk assessment. She also leads the National Hydrological Monitoring Programme, reporting operationally on UK hydrological conditions, including drought, placing current conditions in a historical context. Lucy’s work aims to better inform decision-makers, improve resilience and reduce vulnerability to hydrological hazards.

Course developers:

Lucy Barker 

Jamie Hannaford, Principal Hydrologist

Previous course participants said: 

The drought training UKCEH delivered for the Department of Meteorology and Hydrology (DMH) in Myanmar in 2021 had 93% positive feedback.

This course is very good. We got many knowledge and technique for drought monitoring. Thank you very much.” (learner, May 2021)