Hydrogeology/Environmental Geochemistry

Subject GEOL90005 (2015)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2015.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2015:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 02-Mar-2015 to 31-May-2015
Assessment Period End 26-Jun-2015
Last date to Self-Enrol 13-Mar-2015
Census Date 31-Mar-2015
Last date to Withdraw without fail 08-May-2015

Lectures and practical sessions, plus 1-2 day Field Excursion.

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 2 x one hour lectures per week over 12 teaching weeks, 1 x two-hour practical class per week over 10 teaching weeks, one 2-day field excursion (exact dates of excursion to be announced after the start of semester)
Total Time Commitment:

170 hours





Recommended Background Knowledge:

At least one semester each of University level maths and chemistry are strongly recommended.

In addition, at least 25 credits in 2nd year Earth Sciences subjects (preferably geology-focused) or the equivalent are suggested. Students should seek approval from the course coordinator if uncertain whether previous coursework is appropriate.

Non Allowed Subjects:

Students who have completed ERTH30001 Hydrogeology and Environmental Geology are not permitted to enrol in this subject.

Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support: http://services.unimelb.edu.au/disability


Dr John Moreau


Email: jmoreau@unimelb.edu.au

Subject Overview:

This subject will investigate, both qualitatively and quantitatively, the fundamental physical and chemical processes governing groundwater flow and composition, including aquifer properties, regional geology and hydrology, water-rock interactions, and subsurface microbial activity. Field and laboratory methods used to characterize aquifer properties and groundwater chemistry, including well pumping tests, chemical tracers, and major ion and isotope analyses will also be covered. A two-day field excursion will draw together many of these concepts and topics.

Learning Outcomes:

The objectives of this subject are to

  • present the basic principles of groundwater flow and chemistry in an engaging and accessible way,
  • to illustrate these principles through effective hands-on learning practices (including fieldwork),
  • to challenge students to conceptualize and describe dynamic groundwater processes in a quantitative way, and
  • to reinforce scientific and critical thinking skills.

Upon completion of this subject, students should have a broad yet rigorous understanding of the physical and chemical processes influencing the distribution and quality of groundwater.

  • Four equally weighted lab reports of approximately 600 words limit each due in Weeks 3, 5, 7, and 9 (40% total);
  • a two-day field trip (March 21-22, 2015) and field report of approximately 600 words limit (10%; due March 30, 2015); and
  • a semester-long written research proposal of approximately 2000 words limit (50%)

The field trip and research component are both prescribed (hurdle) requirements for this subject.

Prescribed Texts:

Nonner, J.C. Introduction to Hydrogeology, 2nd Ed., Taylor & Francis Group PLC, London, UK 2010

A course reader.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

Students will have the opportunity to gain/practice the following generic skills: critical thinking, teamwork, data analysis and interpretation, problem solving.

Links to further information: http://www.earthsci.unimelb.edu.au/hydro

Costs: Costs will be levied for fieldwork components. $25 course reader, $100 weekend field excursion (covers transportation and lodging).

Related Course(s): Master of Science (Earth Sciences)
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Conservation and Restoration
Conservation and Restoration
Earth Sciences
Earth Sciences
Environmental Science
Environmental Science
Honours Program - Earth Sciences
Integrated Water Catchment Management
Integrated Water Catchment Management
Sustainable Forests
Sustainable Forests
Tailored Specialisation
Tailored Specialisation
Waste Management
Waste Management

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