Course Title: Develop a water quality monitoring program

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2022

Course Code: ENVI5117C

Course Title: Develop a water quality monitoring program

Important Information:

Please note that this course may have compulsory in-person attendance requirements for some teaching activities.

To participate in any RMIT course in-person activities or assessment, you will need to comply with RMIT vaccination requirements which are applicable during the duration of the course. This RMIT requirement includes being vaccinated against COVID-19 or holding a valid medical exemption.

Please read this RMIT Enrolment Procedure as it has important information regarding COVID vaccination and your study at RMIT:

Please read the Student website for additional requirements of in-person attendance:

Please check your Canvas course shell closer to when the course starts to see if this course requires mandatory in-person attendance. The delivery method of the course might have to change quickly in response to changes in the local state/national directive regarding in-person course attendance.

School: 530T Built Environment and Sustainability

Campus: City Campus

Program: C5418 - Diploma of Conservation and Ecosystem Management

Course Contact: Thierry Demathieu

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 8359

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Nicole Fergusson

Nominal Hours: 120

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

In this course you will develop the skills and knowledge required to establish requirements for monitoring water quality and developing a program to monitor water quality in a given site. This includes carrying out water monitoring activities and evaluating program effectiveness.

The course applies to individuals working in the role of manager concerned with gathering information for land or water management purposes, which may include consultation with specialists such as hydrologists and hydrographers. They also analyse information and exercise judgement to complete their duties with a deep knowledge in water management. They have accountability for the work of others and analyse, design and communicate solutions to a range of complex problems.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

AHCNRM510 Develop a water quality monitoring program


1. Determine water quality monitoring program requirements

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Consult with client to identify scope, objectives and constraints in a program brief

1.2 Research and evaluate background information relevant to survey type and site

1.3 Determine water quality indicators to be measured, frequency and volume of sampling required to meet program brief

1.4 Establish procedures for data collection, processing and reporting according to program brief and legislative requirements

1.5 Seek estimates of costs and source of funds for the program

1.6 Identify and assess workplace health and safety hazards for conducting the sampling program

1.7 Provide a survey strategy to stakeholders for discussion and approvals according to program brief


2. Undertake a site analysis

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Identify and record biophysical elements of the site

2.2 Identify and record resource management factors contributing to water quality

2.3 Survey site biota according to program brief

2.4 Identify and evaluate sampling points for safety, accessibility and opportunities for repeatable data collection


3. Plan monitoring program

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Select suitable sites for repeatable monitoring to obtain representative samples

3.2 Source laboratory and field equipment for monitoring program, and determine costs

3.3 Confirm suitability and availability of laboratory and field equipment

3.4 Confirm surveyor access to site for duration of the monitoring program

3.5 Document workplace health and safety controls and emergency procedures for the program according to workplace policies

3.6 Document environmental sustainability policies and procedures and biosecurity measures

3.7 Document sampling techniques to be used

3.8 Document methods of data collection, monitoring and field techniques for field operators

3.9 Present survey schedules and procedures to stakeholders and client for approval


4. Monitor water quality

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Carry out water quality monitoring tasks according to plan

4.2 Transport, store and treat samples to preserve the reliability and fidelity of sample results

4.3 Monitor surveying process for accuracy, and compliance with the survey plans and procedures

4.4 Implement contingency plans when problems arise, whilst continuously assessing and evaluating the plan for errors and inconsistencies


5. Evaluate program

Performance Criteria:

5.1 Record and save data according to plan requirements

5.2 Analyse data collected according to industry policies and guidelines and scientific standards

5.3 Draw outcomes, conclusions or trends from the monitoring program using industry standards for interpretation of water quality data and appropriate evidence and reasoned arguments

5.4 Seek advice from client as to satisfaction with monitoring program in terms of the process and outcomes

5.5 Provide report on outcomes to client with recommendations for changes and improvements for any further monitoring activities

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course you will have developed and applied the skills and knowledge required to demonstrate competency in the above elements. 

Details of Learning Activities

In addition to face to face classes, the course has field trips, inclass exercises, written reports and group discussions.

Teaching Schedule

Delivery and assessment plan – Develop a Water Quality Monitoring Program ENVI 5117C 

Monday 1.00 – 4.00
C Semester 1, 2022:

Week No.


Learning activity

Assessment  and Additional Details


Introduction to Unit and Project

The Rivers of Melbourne

Phys Chem testing

Prac-Phys Chem Testing



Water Resources

Macroinvertebrate sampling

Prac-Macro ID





Water Properties

Water Quality

Prac-DO testing

Prac-Field Work




Meet at 10am for an Introduction to the Stony Creek

Project by Richard Akers and Fin

Anderson (Melbourne Water) TBC

Sample 1


Riparian Vegetation

Wetland vs running water macros

Wetland Design Principles










Prac-Wetland Design and Water Parameters at Trin Warren Tam Borree Field Trip

Meet at Trin Warren at your usual class time



Water Issues

Water Standards

Prac-Field Work




Meet at 10am for phys chem and macro sampling

Sample 2




ALT and SIGNAL Sampling

Prac- ALT macroinvertebrate method






Water Treatment

Wastewater Management




Mid Semester Break

Prac Western Treatment Plant Tour


Meet at 8.45am outside building 51

Assessment Task 1 due Apr 12





Nasty stuff living in Water

Testing Water for microbes

Prac-E coli test and Blue Green Algae test

Prac – Field Work





Thursday Meet at 10am at Stony Creek

Sample 3


Water Contaminants

Prac-E coli testing using coliscan





Camp week (TBC)

No DWQMP Classes




Briefing on Major Assessment Items

Practical exam Revision


Prac-Field Work



 Meet at 10am at Stony Creek inc macros and bacteria

Sample 4


Data collation

Analysis of Results

Prac-Practical exam revision




Student Interviews


Prac-Field Work



Meet at 10am at Stony Creek

Sample 5


Practical and theory test


Assessment Task 2




Assessment 3  and 4 due June 7



End of Semester


Note : All Field Work is Compulsory. Special Consideration may be sought if you are unable to attend on a particular day

Any changes to this plan will be communicated via Canvas Course Page

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

Overview of Assessment

Assessment for this course is ongoing throughout the semester. Your knowledge and understanding of course content is assessed through participation in class exercises, oral presentations and through the application of learned skills and insights to your written tasks. Full assessment briefs will be provided and can be found on CANVAS. 

Assessment Tasks

Date Details
6 Mar 2022
Assignment Learning Activity 1 due by 23:59
19 Apr 2022
Assignment Assessment type 1 Field Report due by 23:59
24 May 2022
Assignment Assessment Task 3 Water Testing Video due by 23:59
1 Jun 2022
Assignment Assessment Task 2 Practical and Theory Test due by 14:00
7 Jun 2022
Assignment Assessment Task 4 Water Quality Assessment Plan and Report on Waterwatch site. due by 23:59

Assessment Matrix

Other Information

Credit Transfer and/or Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL):
You may be eligible for credit towards courses in your program if you have already met the learning/competency outcomes through previous learning and/or industry experience. To be eligible for credit towards a course, you must demonstrate that you have already completed learning and/or gained industry experience that is:

  • Relevant
  • Current
  • Satisfies the learning/competency outcomes of the course

Please refer to to find more information about credit transfer and RPL.

Study Support: 

Study Support provides free learning and academic development advice to you. 
Services offered by Study Support to support your numeracy and literacy skills are: 

assignment writing, thesis writing and study skills advice 
maths and science developmental support and advice 
English language development 

Please Refer to find more information about Study and learning Support 

Equitable Learning Services (ELS):

If you are suffering from long-term medical condition or disability, you should contact Equitable Learning Services (ELS) to seek advice and support to complete your studies.
Please refer to to find more information about services offered by Equitable Learning Services (ELS).

Late submission: 

If you require an Extension of Submittable Work (assignments, reports or project work etc.) for 7 calendar days or less (from the original due date) and have valid reasons, you must complete and lodge an Application for Extension of Submittable Work (7 Calendar Days or less) form and lodge it with the Senior Educator/ Program Manager. 
The application must be lodged no later than one working day before the official due date. You will be notified within no more than 2 working days of the date of lodgment as to whether the extension has been granted. 
If you seek an Extension of Submittable Work for more than 7 calendar days (from the original due date) must lodge an Application for Special Consideration form under the provisions of the Special Consideration Policy, preferably prior to, but no later than 2 working days after the official due date. 

Submittable Work (assignments, reports or project work etc.) submitted late without approval of an extension will not be accepted or marked. 

Special consideration: 

Please Refer to find more information about special consideration 

Academic Integrity: 

"Academic integrity means acting with the values of honesty, trust, fairness, respect and responsibility in learning, teaching and research."

It means referencing the work of others while developing your own insights, knowledge and ideas.

Breaches of academic integrity include:

  • plagiarism and failure to correctly acknowledge sources
  • contract cheating or paying/getting another person to prepare an assignment
  • submitting work prepared by another person
  • copying other people’s work
  • cheating in exams
  • breaching the Research Code
  • using unauthorised materials or devices

Please Refer: to find more information about plagiarism. 

All email communications will be sent to your RMIT email address and you must regularly check your RMIT emails.

Students will be able to access course information and learning materials through the Learning Hub and may be provided with additional materials in class. Lists of relevant reference books, resources in the library and accessible Internet sites will be provided where possible. You will also use equipment and software packages in the laboratory for the project work. During the course, you will be directed to websites to enhance your knowledge and understanding of difficult concepts

Check the Library Subject Guides: RL:

Course Overview: Access Course Overview