Earth Science 341
Spring, 2012

w COURSE DESCRIPTION:  An introduction to surface water hydrology, emphasizing applications in urban and agricultural environments of the glaciated Midwest.  Basic principles of the processes, interrelationships, and measurement of precipitation, infiltration, evaporation, evapotranspiration, interflow, overland flow, stream flow, and ground water flow.  Introduction to quantification of watershed hydrologic budgets, hydrographs, flood routing, hydraulic drainage and control structures, and estimation of extreme events. Lecture 2 hrs., laboratory 3 hrs.  4 Credit hours.

The outline of topics will be updated several times each week.  Check frequently for changes!  

w Complete the readings before class on the day shown.
w For daily learning objectives, click the date.  Links will be added daily as the semester progresses.

Text:  The textbook for the course is Andy D. Ward and Stanley W. Trimble (2004), "Environmental Hydrology, second edition", published by CRC Press.  The first edition is not an acceptable substitute, because the two editions are significantly different from each other. 
textbook cover
CLASS ACTIVITIES (Click the date for a list of daily learning outcomes; these will be added throughout the semester.)
Week TUESDAY 5:40 - 7:20 pm THURSDAY 5:40 - 8:10 pm
1 JAN 10  The hydrologic cycle.  Watersheds, drainage basins, and catchments.  Quantitative calculations involving water:  units, dimensions, rates. JAN 12  Designing a rain garden.  The St. Charles rain garden project.  Read the textbook Introductions (preceding the Table of Contents), and Chapter 1, p. 1-11.
2 JAN 17  Dew point, humidity, and saturation.  Causes of precipitation.  Design storms and time trends.  Read Chapter 2. JAN 19  Measuring dew point.  Measuring precipitation.  Finding data for the St. Charles rain garden project.  
3 JAN 24  Precipitation intensity, duration, and frequency.  Frequency distributions.  Accessing and working with online precipitation data. JAN 26  Design storms and IDF curves.
4 JAN 31  Infiltration and soil water.  The USDA textural triangle.  Porosity, saturation, and soil water content.  Read Chapter 3.  Measuring snowfall equivalent depths (if we have snow).  FEB 2  Field capacity and capillary action.  Lab activites on soil properties.
5 FEB 7   Completing the St. Charles Rain Garden project; evaluating the reports. FEB 9  Wilting point, PAW.  Factors determining infiltration rates.  Measuring infiltration rates. 
6 FEB 14  Complete St. Charles Rain Garden report due.  Hydrologic Soil Group (HSG).  FEB 16  Evaporation   Pan evaporation.  Read Chapter 4. 
7 FEB 21  Evapotranspiration.  Potential ET and Actual ET.  Measuring ET.  FEB 23  Using the water balance method to estimate AET.   
8 FEB 28   Basic statistical analysis.  Correlation.  Regression equations.  Read Chapter 1, p. 11-26.  MAR 1  Runoff and overland flow.  Storm hydrographs.  Watershed factors affecting hydrograph shape.  Read Chapter 5. 
9 MAR 6  Stream hydrographs.      MAR 8  Introducing the watershed project.
10 MAR 13  Predicting peak runoff volume from a storm.  The NRCS Curve Number procedure.  Read p. 132-147. MAR 15  Basics of auto-level (Dumpy level) surveying. 
11 MAR 20  Spring Break--no class. MAR 22  Spring Break--no class.
12 MAR 27   Predicting peak discharge from a storm.  The Kirpich Equation and the Rational Method. MAR 29  USGS empirical regression models.  Read p. 259-269. 
13 APR  3  The Universal Soil Loss Equation.  Soil conservation. APR  5  The Chicago water and wastewater system. 
14 APR 10  The Chicago water and wastewater system.  Work on projects. APR 12  Work session for the final project.  Bring all needed files, materials, whatever you need to make progress on your research.    
15 APR 17  Field trip to the St. Charles Rain Garden.  We will depart campus at 4:15 pm. APR 19  Practical hydrologic projects.  Read Chapter 14. 
16 APR 24  Practical hydrologic projects, continued. APR 26  Practical hydrologic projects, continued.
  MAY 1 6:00-7:50 pm Final exam period.  Please check for conflicts and notify me by January 31 if you have any.  
MAY 5 Commencement MAY 8  Grades due at midnight.  
Instructor:  Dr. Laura L. Sanders (website)
E-Mail (the fastest way to reach me!):  L-Sanders (at) neiu (dot) edu
Voice messages may be left at this number: 773/442-6051
Office:  During office hours and in general, you can find me in BBH 130/132.
Mail:  Mail may be left for me in the envelope on the door to BBH 130.
Office Hours:  Tuesday 4-5 pm, 7:20 - 8:20 pm
                        Wednesday 11:50 a.m. - 12:50 pm
                        Thursday 4:30 - 5 pm; 8:10 - 8:40 pm

                        or by appointment.
Grades will be based on the criteria described below.  Some work will be completed individually, and some, in groups.

25% In-Class Work:
 Activities completed in class may range from lab activities to computer-based work to group analyses and presentations.  Credit for work completed during class sessions cannot be made up.

30% Homework:
 See the Assignments page for homework. 

45% Hydrologic Projects:  Several hydrologic projects of varying duration will be completed during the course of the semester.  More details on each project will be provided as the semester progresses.  One project will involve constructing a water budget for a specific watershed; it will be completed in several parts and will result in a written report containing several sections.  Another will involve making a presentation to the class.  For examples of various types of hydrologic projects, see Chapter 14 of the textbook.
w Attendance at all class sessions is expected.  The NEIU policy on class attendance, published in the NEIU catalog, applies to this course.  Frequent in-class assignments will be given, and they cannot be made up. 

w A few field trips will be scheduled as part of the course.  Every effort should be made to attend.

w All course requirements must be completed to pass the course. 

w Students should check e-mail at least every two days to watch for course announcements and updates.

Late homework assignments will not be accepted unless there is an approved reason for missing the deadline, and only if I approve the excuse before the assignment is due.

w Please note the schedule for the final exam period (inside the back cover of the Schedule of Classes.)  No exceptions will be made other than those allowed by this policy.

w The official gradebook will be kept by the instructor.  Please check your scores periodically and let the instructor know of any concerns.

w Students should bring the following to every class meeting: scientific calculator, notebook, handouts, pencil, and eraser.  Also bring your textbook if possible.  You may find it helpful to have a small ruler and a colored pencil (any color). 

w If you have a tablet, notepad, netbook, or laptop computer you are welcome to use it in class for taking notes and performing class-related activities.  Do not use it during class for activities such as social networking or web-surfing.  Doing so is disruptive to you and everyone sitting behind you.

w Cell phones should be off or set to silent mode during class.  Do not answer your phone or text in class; to do so is disruptive.   

w During "closed-book" assignments in class, you may not use any electronic devices, nor may you send or receive any messages.

w Please participate in all course assessments: anonymous "minute papers", ungraded quiz-type questions, concept maps, or survey-type questions.  This information will help me determine the extent to which the course is meeting its goals.  To provide the most information so that I can improve the course, I ask that you give your most thoughtful, honest feedback--the more, the better.

w Academic integrity:  The NEIU policy on academic misconduct will be strictly enforced.  A site from Indiana University explains and gives examples of plagiarism and provides helpful tips on how to avoid it.  Cheating on homework, exams, quizzes, or other course components will result in a score of zero for that assignment or more severe penalties, as described in the NEIU policy.

w Flexibility:  This outline will change as the semester evolves.  Check this page frequently for updates!
COURSE GOALS  Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to do the following:
 1) Explain the physical processes of the formation of precipitation, infiltration, evaporation, evapotranspiration, interflow, overland flow, stream flow, and ground water flow.
2) Describe and explain methods and technology for collection of measurements of hydrologic data.
3) Demonstrate methods for quantifying a hydrologic budget for a watershed.
4) Use historical data and areal regression curves for estimating probability and magnitude of extreme flood or storm events.
5) Construct hydrographs and unit hydrographs, and interpret historical hydrograph data.
6) Demonstrate simple methods (e.g. the Muskingum method) for flood routing.
7) Describe strategies for soil drainage of urban or agricultural land.

Web Link to Emergency Information

It is recognized that a safe university environment is a shared responsibility of faculty, staff, and students, all of whom are expected to familiarize themselves with and cooperate with emergency procedures.  Web links to Campus Safety: Emergency Procedures and Safety Information can be found on NEIUport on the MyNEIU tab or as follows:



NEIU Earth Science
Private consulting firms and g
overnment agencies like these:

Natural Resources Conservation Service
US Army Corps of Engineers
w  Mean annual salary for US hydrologists:  $79,280.
Growth in this field is expected to be faster than average.

Copyright 2012 Laura L. Sanders.  Last updated April 26, 2012.