Course Title: Hydrogeology

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Hydrogeology

Credit Points: 12.00

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


120H Civil, Environmental & Chemical Engineering


Sem 2 2006,
Sem 2 2007,
Sem 2 2008,
Sem 2 2009,
Sem 2 2010,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 1 2012,
Sem 1 2013,
Sem 1 2014,
Sem 1 2015,
Sem 1 2016


City Campus


172H School of Engineering


Sem 1 2017

Course Coordinator: Dr. Matthew Currell

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 0402

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 10.13.11

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

A basic knowledge of geology

Course Description

This course covers the principles and techniques required to conduct hydrogeological investigations and solve common problems involving groundwater. You will learn the theoretical concepts and practical skills required by environmental and civil engineers, environmental scientists and natural resource managers when conducting hydrogeological assessments, such as groundwater impact assessments, groundwater resource appraisals and groundwater contamination investigations.

You will learn the basic skills required to work in professional hydrogeology practice, including how to develop conceptual hydrogeological models, assess the rates and direction of groundwater flow, use analytical models to predict impacts of development activities on groundwater, analyse water balances and assess ground-surface water interaction.

The course also introduces you to sustainable groundwater management concepts, with reference to international and local examples and policies.

Students who wish to continue with more advanced hydrogeological studies (e.g. CIVE1122) will learn the necessary skills required to do so. In this regard, it is also recommended that students complete OENG1039 Land Contamination and Geohazards.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes for BH080 Bachelor of Environmental Engineering (Hons):

1.1. Comprehensive, theory based understanding of the underpinning natural and physical sciences and the engineering fundamentals applicable to the engineering discipline.

1.2. Conceptual understanding of the, mathematics, numerical analysis, statistics, and computer and information sciences which underpin the engineering discipline.

1.3. In-depth understanding of specialist bodies of knowledge within the engineering discipline.

2.1. Application of established engineering methods to complex engineering problem solving.

3.2. Effective oral and written communication in professional and lay domains.

3.4. Professional use and management of information.

On completion of this course you should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the laws governing groundwater flow in porous media. 
  2. Develop and analyse conceptual hydrogeological models, synthesising qualitative and quantitative information about groundwater systems.
  3. Apply basic quantitative analysis techniques to solve practical hydrogeology problems
  4. Professionally report findings and recommendations from a groundwater study in written and oral formats.

Overview of Learning Activities

This course involves lecture sessions, practical exercises and a field trip. Assessments are completed individually (practical assignments), and in teams (group presentation assignment). These assessments build analytical and communication skills relevant to professional hydrogeology practice. 

Total study hours: Total of 48 teacher guided hours. It is recommended students conduct 4 hours per week of self-supervised study.

Overview of Learning Resources

Lecture notes, references and further reading material will be posted on the course web-site.

RMIT Library Subject Guide: 

Overview of Assessment

Assessment is based on practical activities, an in-class presentation and a final exam which assesses theoretical and applied principles.

Note that: ☒This course has no hurdle requirements.

Assessment Task 1:  Conceptual hydrogeological models

Weighting 20%

This assessment task supports CLOs  1,2,3 & 4

Assessment Task 2: Analytical model applied to groundwater problems

Weighting 15%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1,3 & 4

Assessment Task 3:  In-class presentation (group)

Weighting 15%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1 & 4

Assessment Task 4: Final exam

Weighting 50%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1 & 3