The University of Newcastle, Australia
Available in 2019

Course handbook


This course brings together a general understanding of environmental physics, acquisition and use of environmental data and numerical modelling of transport of particles and nutrients. Students will gain experience with several management tools for addressing environmental degradation.

Availability2019 Course Timetables


  • Semester 2 - 2019

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate a broad understanding of the Australian environment, with particular emphasis on the atmospheric environment and soils.

2. Illustrate the theoretical background of land surface transport processes.

3. Employ adequate skills in environmental monitoring (including data collection, storage, retrieval and analysis).

4. Discuss environmental models of land surface processes and apply their knowledge through hands-on experience with hydrological models.

5. Apply model-based tools for management of major environmental issues.


  • Natural environment
  • Climate and weather (principles, Australian climates)
  • Soils (physical, chemical, biological characteristics; soil formation; Australian soils)
  • Process models
  • Environmental modelling (introduction to distributed models, heterogeneity, effective parameters, sub-grid parameterisations, model fitting; scale effects)
  • Modelling soil-vegetation-atmosphere transfer processes (SVATs)
  • Soil erosion (principles, comparison of models, applications) (SOILOSS)
  • Soil fertility and vegetation modelling

Assumed knowledge

CIVL2050 Engineering Computations and Probability or CIVL2040 Engineering Probabilities and CIVL2060 Numerical Methods; CIVL4330 (previously CIVL3330) Hydrology; SURV3650 Spatial Data Systems and Remote Sensing

Assessment items

Written Assignment: Assignments

Formal Examination: Formal Examination

Contact hours



Face to Face On Campus 3 hour(s) per Week for Full Term

Note: The above distribution of contact hours may alter on a weekly basis and will be confirmed in the course outline handed to students in Week 1.