1. Handbook
  2. Subjects
  3. Hydrogeology/Environmental Geochemistry
  4. Print

Hydrogeology/Environmental Geochemistry (ERTH30001)

Undergraduate level 3Points: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

You’re viewing the 2019 Handbook:
Or view archived Handbooks


Year of offer2019
Subject levelUndergraduate Level 3
Subject codeERTH30001
Semester 1
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

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.

Intended 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.

Generic skills

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

Eligibility and requirements


One of

Code Name Teaching period Credit Points
CHEM10003 Chemistry 1
Semester 1
Semester 2
CHEM10004 Chemistry 2
Summer Term
Semester 2
CHEM10007 Fundamentals of Chemistry
Semester 1
CHEM10006 Chemistry for Biomedicine
Semester 1

Plus two Geology subjects.

(i.e. subjects with subject codes beginning with 'GEOL' or 'ERTH')



Non-allowed subjects


Recommended background knowledge

A knowledge of basic algebra concepts will be assumed in this subject.

Familiarity with basic calculus concepts (e.g. integration, differentiation) will also be helpful for understanding some lecture content.

Core participation requirements

The University of Melbourne is committed to providing students with reasonable adjustments to assessment and participation under the Disability Standards for Education (2005), and the Assessment and Results Policy (MPF1326). Students are expected to meet the core participation requirements for their course. These can be viewed under Entry and Participation Requirements for the course outlines in the Handbook.

Further details on how to seek academic adjustments can be found on the Student Equity and Disability Support website: http://services.unimelb.edu.au/student-equity/home


Additional details

  • 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 and field report of approximately 600 words limit (10%); and
  • and a two-hour comprehensive written final examination of approximately 2000 words limit (50%).

The field trip and final exam are both prescribed (hurdle) requirements for this subject

Dates & times

  • Semester 1
    Principal coordinatorJohn Moreau
    Mode of deliveryOn Campus — Parkville
    Contact hours2 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 commitment170 hours
    Teaching period 4 March 2019 to 2 June 2019
    Last self-enrol date15 March 2019
    Census date31 March 2019
    Last date to withdraw without fail10 May 2019
    Assessment period ends28 June 2019

    Semester 1 contact information

Time commitment details

Estimated total time commitment of 170 hours.

Further information

  • Texts

    Prescribed texts

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

    A course reader.

  • Subject notes

    This subject is available for science credit to students enrolled in the BSc (both pre-2008 and new degrees), BASc or a combined BSc course.

    Previously known as 625-307 Hydrogeology and Environmental Management (prior to 2009)

    Previously known as ERTH30001 Hydrogeology (prior to 2011)

    Previously known as ERTH30001 Hydrogeology and Environmental Geology (prior to 2012)

    Costs: Fees will be levied for the course reader and 2-day field excursion (further information will be provided on the subject LMS site).

  • Breadth options
  • Available through the Community Access Program

    About the Community Access Program (CAP)

    This subject is available through the Community Access Program (also called Single Subject Studies) which allows you to enrol in single subjects offered by the University of Melbourne, without the commitment required to complete a whole degree.

    Entry requirements including prerequisites may apply. Please refer to the CAP applications page for further information.

  • Available to Study Abroad and/or Study Exchange Students

    This subject is available to students studying at the University from eligible overseas institutions on exchange and study abroad. Students are required to satisfy any listed requirements, such as pre- and co-requisites, for enrolment in the subject.

Last updated: 10 August 2019