Credit points: 15

Subject outline

Groundwater (water beneath the earth's surface) is a crucial resource in many parts of the world for urban and agricultural use, and its importance is increasing as surface water supplies become over-exploited. This subject covers how groundwater moves (flow, recharge and discharge) and the chemical processes influencing its composition (e.g. evaporation, weathering, mineral precipitation). There is a strong emphasis on environmental aspects and applications, particularly groundwater contamination (including salinization and acid mine drainage) and estimation and sustainability of groundwater resources.

SchoolLife Sciences

Credit points15

Subject Co-ordinatorJohn Webb

Available to Study Abroad/Exchange StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 3 - UG

Available as ElectiveYes

Learning ActivitiesN/A

Capstone subjectYes

Subject particulars

Subject rules



Incompatible subjectsENV2EGW

Equivalent subjectsN/A

Quota Management StrategyN/A

Quota-conditions or rulesN/A

Special conditionsThis subject is co-taught with ENV2EGW, but ENV3EGW uses different marking criteria that assess a higher order of thinking (explain, analyse, relate, apply) than is expected in ENV2EGW.

Minimum credit point requirementN/A

Assumed knowledgeN/A

Learning resources

Physical and chemical hydrogeology

Resource TypeBook

Resource RequirementRecommended

AuthorDomenico, P.A. and Schwartz, F. W.





Chapter/article titleN/A



Other descriptionN/A

Source locationN/A

The geochemistry of natural waters

Resource TypeBook

Resource RequirementRecommended

AuthorDrever, J. I.


Edition/Volume3RD EDN



Chapter/article titleN/A



Other descriptionN/A

Source locationN/A

Career Ready


Work-based learningNo

Self sourced or Uni sourcedN/A

Entire subject or partial subjectN/A

Total hours/days requiredN/A

Location of WBL activity (region)N/A

WBL addtional requirementsN/A

Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes

Graduate Capabilities

COMMUNICATION - Cultural Intelligence and Global Perspective
INQUIRY AND ANALYSIS - Creativity and Innovation
INQUIRY AND ANALYSIS - Critical Thinking and Problem Solving
INQUIRY AND ANALYSIS - Research and Evidence-Based Inquiry
PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL - Adaptability and Self-Management
PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL - Ethical and Social Responsibility
PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL - Leadership and Teamwork

Intended Learning Outcomes

01. Describe the parameters that control the ability of aquifers to store and transmit groundwater, and an understanding of the techniques used to measure these parameters.
02. Analyse the physical and hydraulic parameters and properties of groundwater flow in order to solve complex constructed and real-world problems involving groundwater resources.
03. Apply the principles and techniques of geochemistry to interpret the composition of groundwater, including the ability to solve solubility and precipitation problems for a range of dissolved species found in natural and contaminated waters, and an assessment of the appropriate remediation techniques for groundwater contamination
04. Analyse groundwater hydraulic and chemical data collected in the field using numerical calculations and graphical representations, in order to prepare a written report using appropriate organisation and referencing.
05. Describe the major groundwater resources of Victoria and the relevant government controls on their usage and protection

Subject options

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Start date between: and    Key dates

Melbourne (Bundoora), 2021, Semester 1, Day


Online enrolmentYes

Maximum enrolment sizeN/A

Subject Instance Co-ordinatorJohn Webb

Class requirements

Field TripWeek: 20 - 20
One 1.00 day field trip per study period on sunday during the day from week 20 to week 20 and delivered via face-to-face.

LectureWeek: 10 - 22
One 1.00 hour lecture per week on weekdays during the day from week 10 to week 22 and delivered via face-to-face.

LectureWeek: 10 - 22
One 2.00 hours lecture per week on weekdays during the day from week 10 to week 22 and delivered via face-to-face.

PracticalWeek: 10 - 22
One 3.00 hours practical per week on weekdays during the day from week 10 to week 22 and delivered via face-to-face.


Assessment elementCommentsCategoryContributionHurdle% ILO*

Laboratory/practical reports (10 reports, 1,000-words equivalent)

N/AReportIndividualNo40 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3, SILO5

One individual excursion report (500-word equiv) 18%; data collection in groups of 4 students 2% teamwork.

N/AReportIndividualNo20 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3, SILO4, SILO5

One 3-hour end of semester open book examination

N/ACentral examIndividualNo40 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3