Course Title: Aquatic and Soil Chemistry: Natural Processes

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Aquatic and Soil Chemistry: Natural Processes

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


135H Applied Sciences


Sem 1 2006,
Sem 1 2007,
Sem 1 2008,
Sem 1 2010,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 1 2014,
Sem 1 2015,
Sem 1 2016


City Campus


171H School of Science


Sem 1 2017,
Sem 1 2019,
Sem 1 2020,
Sem 1 2021,
Sem 1 2022,
Sem 1 2023

Course Coordinator: Dr Andrew Hung

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 1974

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: Room 003.02.024 City Campus

Course Coordinator Availability: By appointment, by email

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

Assumed Knowledge

You should have a background in university-level theoretical and practical chemistry, and have completed at least one year of study in university chemistry.

Course Description

This course aims to help you develop further understanding of the fundamental chemical and physical processes occurring in aquatic and soil environments, and of the chemistry and physicochemical processes underlying anthropogenic impacts on these environments. 

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs) for: 

BP192 Bachelor of Environmental Science and; 

the environmental science side of the following double degrees: 

BP161 Bachelor of Environmental Science / Bachelor of Business (Management); 

BH096 Bachelor of Environmental Science / B Engineering (Environmental Engineering) (Honours) and; 

BP193 Bachelor of Environmental Science / Bachelor of Environment and Society: 


This course contributes to the B. Science Program Learning Outcomes: 

 PLO-2 Scientific knowledge 

  • PLO-2.1 You will have exhibited depth and breadth of chemistry knowledge by demonstrating a knowledge of, and applying the principles and concepts of chemistry

PLO-3 Inquiry, Problem Solving and Critical Thinking 

  • PLO-3.1 You will be able to investigate and solve qualitative and quantitative problems in the chemical sciences, both individually and in teams, by synthesising and evaluating information from a range of sources, including traditional and emerging information technologies and methods 
  • PLO-3.2 You will be able to formulate hypotheses, proposals and predictions and design and undertake experiments and projects in a safe and responsible manner.

PLO-4 Communication 

  • PLO-4.1 You will be able to communicate chemical knowledge by presenting information, articulate arguments and conclusions, in a variety of modes, to diverse audiences, and for a range of purposes

PLO-5 Personal and professional responsibility 

  • PLO-5.4 You will develop an ability to work collaboratively 

On successful completion of this course you should be able to: 

  1. Demonstrate broad and coherent knowledge of aquatic chemistry, soil chemistry, and physical chemistry concepts applied to understanding processes in natural environments;
  2. Gather, synthesize and critically evaluate information from a range of sources;
  3. Collect, record, interpret and draw conclusions from scientific data;
  4. Communicate results, information or arguments in aquatic and soil chemistry, and physical chemistry concepts applied to understanding processes in natural environments, effectively in written mode;
  5. Perform practical and other tasks effectively, responsibly, ethically and safely in individual contexts and work collaboratively in team contexts. 

Overview of Learning Activities

This is a theory and laboratory based course. 

The learning activities included in this course are: 

  • Pre-recorded lectures and lectorials where syllabus material will be presented and explained, and the subject will be illustrated with practical examples; 
  • Revision and tutorial questions as well as assignments to develop deeper understanding of lecture materials. Providing opportunities to use a wide range of information sources and for feedback on student progress and understanding; 
  • Laboratory analyses of environmental water and soil samples, including both wet-lab approaches as well as using analytical instrumentation. Lab reports on the results from these practical activities will help develop communication skills. 
  • Private study (self-directed learning), working through the course as presented either in classes or on-line, as well as learning materials, and gaining practice at solving conceptual and numerical problems. 

Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through myRMIT Studies Course

There are services available to support your learning through the University Library. The Library provides guides on academic referencing and subject specialist help as well as a range of study support services. For further information, please visit the Library page on the RMIT University website and the myRMIT student portal.

Overview of Assessment

This course contains hurdle requirements. All hurdle requirements for this course are indicated clearly in the assessment regime that follows, against the relevant assessment task(s) and all have been approved by the College Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Learning & Teaching).

The Practical assessments are a hurdle for this course, meaning that you must achieve more than 50% on the Practical component in order to pass the course. The skills learned in Practical are essential to ensure that you can operate safely as a professional.  

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task 1: Laboratory reports 
Weighting 30%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2, 3, 4, & 5 

Assessment Task 2: In-semester assignments  
Weighting 40% total
This assessment task supports CLOs 1 & 4 

Assessment Task 3: Final quiz 
Weighting 30%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1 & 4 

If you have a long-term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or Equitable Learning Services if you would like to find out more.