Continued advances in computational resources are providing the opportunity to operate more sophisticated numerical models. Additionally, there is an increasing demand for multidisciplinary studies that include interactions between different physical processes. Therefore there is a strong desire to develop coupled modeling systems that utilize existing models and allow efficient data exchange and model control. The basic system would entail model "1" running on "M" processors and model "2" running on "N" processors, with efficient exchange of model fields at predetermined synchronization intervals. Here we demonstrate two coupled systems: the coupling of the ocean circulation model Regional Ocean Modeling System (ROMS) to the surface wave model Simulating WAves Nearshore (SWAN), and the coupling of ROMS to the atmospheric model Coupled Ocean Atmosphere Prediction System (COAMPS). Both coupled systems use the Model Coupling Toolkit (MCT) as a mechanism for operation control and inter-model distributed memory transfer of model variables. In this paper we describe requirements and other options for model coupling, explain the MCT library, ROMS, SWAN and COAMPS models, methods for grid decomposition and sparse matrix interpolation, and provide an example from each coupled system. Methods presented in this paper are clearly applicable for coupling of other types of models. ?? 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.