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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Geosciences : Earth Science

Undergraduate Course: Hydrogeology 1: Applied Hydrogeology (EASC10082)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryHydrogeology, groundwater, is fascinating. Being able to understand where it comes from, how much there is, how the rocks and minerals influence its quality, how it flows through the ground is a skill set which is vital both from an environmental management perspective and for the maintenance and provision of a key resource to growing society today. From a ground engineering aspect, understanding groundwater flow and fluid pressure is essential. Students will gain a knowledge that covers and integrates most of the fundamental areas, features, boundaries, terminology and conventions of applied hydrogeology. The principle theories and concepts behind the development of conceptual hydrogeological models will be addressed. A range of standard techniques for the investigation of hydrogeological parameters is covered. Students will be knowledgeable and skilled in the use of numerical data to solve issues in hydrogeology. They will be able to use both analytical and graphical techniques to predict the movement of groundwater and contaminant transport, as well as be able to produce water balances for catchment areas. Through group-based case studies on real life problems, which the students will present, the applicability of the subject area, its use and its limits are demonstrated. Completing these projects will require the students to appreciate the distribution of groundwater in different hydrogeological environments, requiring a synoptic understanding of hardrock and surface geology, facies interpretation and material characteristics. Reference is made to the parameter uncertainty and its impact in terms of risk.
Course description The course will consist of lectures, tutorials and a field excursion

During lectures you will get exercises to complete which you can self asses. Tutorials will include help for the questions set. Students should use these tutorials to get ongoing self-managed feedback on your work and provide a forum to discuss any items which are not clear from the previous lectures.

Attendance at lectures and a weekly tutorial is expected.

Chapter 1 Introduction to Applied Geoscience Foundations
Chapter 2 Soil description for Applied Geoscience Purposes
Chapter 3 Groundwater Flow
Chapter 4 Groundwater Geochemistry
Chapter 5 Groundwater Equations
Chapter 6 Aquifer Investigation Techniques
Chapter 7 Contaminant Transport
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Students MUST NOT also be taking Applied Hydrogeology and Near Surface Geophysics (EASC10101)
Other requirements Students should show a background in applied science. For non-engineering or non-geoscience students who wish to take the course, contact should be made with the course organiser.
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Lecture Hours 10, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 3, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 63 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 80 %, Coursework 20 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Written Exam 80 %, Coursework 20 %, Practical Exam 0 %

Exam comprises a number of compulsory questions.
Assessment comprises
1. Produce a report on your chosen research theme 20% of course assessment mark, HAND IN Semester 1, Week 6, 12:00, 12:00 GMT
2. Participate in a group presentation on your research theme (pre-requisite for satisfactory completion of the course. Group presentations lasting 10 minutes or less to be recorded as a video presentation//powerpoint slide show (Slide show -ยป Record) Hand in with research theme, HAND IN Semester 1, Week 6, 12:00.
3. Complete a theory exam December, 80% of course assessment.

The report on your chosen research theme should be ~1000-word essay on a topical hydrogeology related research theme. Research themes are suggested in class, and include a choice of the following:
Carbon Capture and Storage: CO2 Sequestration in saline aquifers
Groundwater mining and subsidence
Regional Groundwater Management, (The Aral Sea, and other examples)
Saline water ingression in coastal aquifers
Urban groundwater
Heavy metals in Groundwater
Groundwater salinification
Radwaste storage
Water and conflict
& other topical themes
Assessment deadlines:
Report on Research Theme Semester 1, Week 6, 12:00
Written Exam Semester 1, December Exam Diet

Feedback Weekly tutorials for discussion of voluntary class work and exercises accompanying lecture notes.

Students will be able to sign up for one of four tutor groups.

In class discussion of unclear points.

Weekly tutorials and test questions.

Student presentation.

Feedback on student essay making 20% of class mark

Field course for soil and rock descriptions.
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S1 (December)Hydrogeology 1: Applied Hydrogeology1:20
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Gain an understanding of applied geoscience, particularly engineering hydrogeology.
  2. Understand the impact of geology on groundwater flow and distribution
  3. Understand the geochemistry and the classifications of groundwater
  4. Understand the key concepts of contaminant transport (diffusion, dispersion, sorption, decay).
  5. Apply hydrogeological knowledge to a critical analysis of water management issues demonstrated in terms of key case studies
Reading List
Freeze, R .A. and J.A. Cherry (1979): Groundwater.- Prentice-Hall, Englewood Cliffs
Fetter, C.W. (2001): Applied Hydrogeology.- Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs
Fetter, C.W. (1993): Contaminant Hydrogeology. - Macmillan Publishing Company, New York; S. 458
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Additional Class Delivery Information Professor Christopher McDermott, Dr. Katriona Edlmann and Dr. Ian Molnar will participate in different aspects of the course delivery and assessment.

Total Hours: 100 (Lecture Hours 10, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 3, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 63)
Course organiserDr Chris McDermott
Course secretaryMr Johan De Klerk
Tel: (0131 6)50 7010
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