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CIVL3614: Hydrology (2020 - Semester 2)

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Unit: CIVL3614: Hydrology (6 CP)
Mode: Normal-Day
On Offer: Yes
Level: Senior
Faculty/School: Civil Engineering
Unit Coordinator/s: Dr Maggi, Federico
Session options: Semester 2
Versions for this Unit:
Site(s) for this Unit:
Campus: Camperdown/Darlington
Pre-Requisites: CIVL2611.
Brief Handbook Description: The overall objective of this unit of study is to give a general introduction to water resources, how these are linked the hydrological processes, and how engineering plays a role in the management of water resources. The aim of this unit is to provide a detailed understanding of: the hydrologic cycle of water as a whole and its specific components including: geophysical flows of water throughout the environment, dynamics of precipitation formations, transformations into runoff, reservoir and lake dynamics, stream flow discharge, surface runoff assessment, calculation of peak flows, the hydrograph theory, ground water flows, aquifers dynamics, concept of water quality and water treatment methods and units. The topics mentioned above will be covered in both qualitative and quantitative aspects. Use will be made of essential concepts of energy, mass and momentum conservation. An intermediate level of integral and differential calculus is required as well as knowledge and use of calculation software such as Excell and Matlab.
Assumed Knowledge: (ENGG1802 OR CIVL1802) AND CIVL3612 AND MATH2061.
Additional Notes: The unit of study builds on the theory and concepts learnt in CIVL2611 Introductory Fluid Mechanics and CIVL3612 Fluid Mechanics.
Lecturer/s: Faheem, Ahmed
Tutor/s: Dr. Maggi, Federico
Timetable: CIVL3614 Timetable
Time Commitment:
# Activity Name Hours per Week Sessions per Week Weeks per Semester
1 Lecture 2.00 1 13
2 Tutorial 2.00 1 13
3 Independent Study 4.00 13
4 Site Visit
5 Laboratory
T&L Activities: Lecture notes

The material presented during class is collected in Lecture Notes slides. Lecture notes are posted in the Blackboard system under this unit at the beginning of the semester. Students are however encouraged to take notes.


Tutorials in this unit are an opportunity for the students to be exposed to problem solving of typical engineering occurrence. Tutorials will be presented in the form of calculation exercises based on hypothesis-test principles, bibliographic research and survey, and writing short reports. The full collection of tutorials theme and proposed solutions are posted on Blackboard at the beginning of the semester. For tutorials that mainly base on computations, solution to the problems will be provided as well in the same package. The students may continue their tutorials outside the class, or through recommended books. For tutorials for which a survey/analysis/interpretation work is required, students may be invited to propose their outcomes to the class for open discussion the next tutorial hours.

Audio streaming

When available, audio streaming of lectures will be posted weekly on Blackboard.

Teaching Support Materials

It is the student’s responsibility to download the teaching material from the Blackboard system, or be present in class. Presence is not registered and is not part of the assessment.

Learning outcomes are the key abilities and knowledge that will be assessed in this unit. They are listed according to the course goal supported by each. See Assessment Tab for details how each outcome is assessed.

(8) Professional Effectiveness and Ethical Conduct (Level 2)
1. Develop and apply computational, analytical and interpretative tools to typical hydrological cases
2. Apply conservation and management principles to water resources and uses.
3. Understand and apply management principles to water supply, reuse and disposal.
(2) Engineering/ IT Specialisation (Level 3)
4. Understand multiple processes responsible for water movement throughout the environment
5. Calculate the characteristic rate of various hydrological processes
6. Understand modelling procedures for hydrological processes.
7. Predict rates of contaminant dispersion in rivers, estuaries and the ocean.
8. Analyse and interpret in a qualitative and quantitative manner hydrological aspects in environmental engineering
(1) Maths/ Science Methods and Tools (Level 2)
9. Understanding of the governing equations of hydrological processes
10. Understanding the role of boundaries and initial conditions in solving equations of flow
11. Describe water characteristics and properties of water quality.
Assessment Methods:
# Name Group Weight Due Week Outcomes
1 Quiz 1 No 20.00 Week 6 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11,
2 Quiz 2 No 20.00 Week 11 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11,
3 Final Exam No 50.00 Exam Period 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11,
4 Tutorial No 10.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11,
Assessment Description: This is a 6 CP unit. Multiple individual assessment sessions will be carried out. The following schedule is tentative and subject to possible change. Two 2-hour quizzes are planned during the tutorial hours of week 6 and week 10. Each is given a tentative weight of 20%. However, weights may change slightly depending on the design of the assessment and progression through the lectures. An additional assessment worth 10% includes a practical/calculation exercise; this is tentatively planned during one tutorial session but it may alternatively be included in Quiz 2 depending on the progress with lectures and tutorials. A final exam of 3 hours is planned in the exam period. The final exam is given a weight of 50%. The criterion for passing the unit of study equals 50% of the combined assessment marks.
Grade Type Description
Standards Based Assessment Final grades in this unit are awarded at levels of HD for High Distinction, DI (previously D) for Distinction, CR for Credit, PS (previously P) for Pass and FA (previously F) for Fail as defined by University of Sydney Assessment Policy. Details of the Assessment Policy are available on the Policies website at . Standards for grades in individual assessment tasks and the summative method for obtaining a final mark in the unit will be set out in a marking guide supplied by the unit coordinator.
Policies & Procedures: See the policies page of the faculty website at for information regarding university policies and local provisions and procedures within the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies.
Recommended Reference/s: Note: References are provided for guidance purposes only. Students are advised to consult these books in the university library. Purchase is not required.
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Water Quality
  • Water Resources Engineering
Online Course Content: Access to Blackboard can be found at:

Note that the "Weeks" referred to in this Schedule are those of the official university semester calendar

Week Description
Week 1 Global water resources
Week 2 Elements of statistics for hydrology
Week 3 Elements of meteorology
Week 4 Precipitation
Week 5 Evaporation
Week 6 Transpiration
Assessment Due: Quiz 1
Week 7 Infiltration
Week 8 Surface hydrology
Week 9 Groundwater characteristics (soil hydraulic properties)
Week 10 Groundwater hydrology (Darcy’s Law and the Richards equation)
Week 11 Groundwater dynamics (unconfined and confined aquifer dynamics)
Assessment Due: Quiz 2
Week 12 Reservoir dynamics (physics and design)
Week 13 Principles of water characterization (chemical and biological)

Principles of water conservation (treatment and recycling)
STUVAC (Week 14) Week 14 is not available for classes – University policy
Exam Period Assessment Due: Final Exam

Course Relations

The following is a list of courses which have added this Unit to their structure.

Course Year(s) Offered
Civil (Environmental) (till 2014) 2013, 2014, 2011, 2012
Civil (Environmental) 2015
Civil (till 2014) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil Engineering / Arts 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil Engineering / Project Management 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil Engineering / Science 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil (Construction Management) (till 2014) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil (Geotechnical) (till 2014) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil (Structures) (till 2014) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil/ Project Management 2019, 2020
Civil 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020
Civil / Arts 2015, 2016, 2017
Civil / Project Management 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Civil / Science 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020
Civil/Science (Health) 2018, 2019, 2020
Civil (Construction Management) 2015
Civil (Geotechnical) 2015
Civil (Structures) 2015
Civil Mid-Year 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020
Project Engineering and Management (Civil) (till 2012) 2011, 2012
Project Engineering and Management (Civil) / Science 2011
Civil/Science (Medical Science Stream) 2018, 2019, 2020
Flexible First Year (Stream A) / Science 2012
Civil / Commerce 2015
Civil / Design in Architecture 2015
Civil / Medical Science 2015
Civil / Law 2016, 2017

Course Goals

This unit contributes to the achievement of the following course goals:

Attribute Practiced Assessed
(8) Professional Effectiveness and Ethical Conduct (Level 2) No 20%
(6) Communication and Inquiry/ Research (Level 2) No 0%
(2) Engineering/ IT Specialisation (Level 3) No 50%
(1) Maths/ Science Methods and Tools (Level 2) No 30%

These goals are selected from Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table 2018 which defines overall goals for courses where this unit is primarily offered. See Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table 2018 for details of the attributes and levels to be developed in the course as a whole. Percentage figures alongside each course goal provide a rough indication of their relative weighting in assessment for this unit. Note that not all goals are necessarily part of assessment. Some may be more about practice activity. See Learning outcomes for details of what is assessed in relation to each goal and Assessment for details of how the outcome is assessed. See Attributes for details of practice provided for each goal.