Take sessions anytime, at your own pace with unlimited course access for 45 days.

This course covers the physical hydrology and hydraulics of groundwater flow lead by groundwater experts across four sessions. The presenters will lead you through steady groundwater flow for a number of cases by combining Darcy's law and the continuity equation (water balance), demonstrating the application of theoretical approaches with practical examples.

The Groundwater essentials course has been developed in collaboration with industry and academic experts. The course explores the equations that are hidden inside the “black box” of most groundwater modelling programs and aims to provide practicing water professionals with a refresher or a theoretical introduction to groundwater hydrology principles.

Full course details below.


Format x4, 3 hour sessions + Pre/post-course materials via the learning platform
Cost Standard fee $1095.00 (INC GST)
Code OD-23-4-077
Contact training@awschool.com.au
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Martin Hendriks

Utrecht University

Dr Martin R. Hendriks is Associate Professor (retired) of Physical Geography & Hydrology at the Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University. He studied Physical Geography at the University of Amste... Read more

Andreas de Jong

Educated at the University of Southampton and University College London (UK), Andreas de Jong is a freelance hydrogeologist and project manager with international experience in the water sector in ove... Read more

Jamie Burgess

Water Corporation

Jamie Burgess is a Hydrogeologist and Drinking water quality specialist with over 20 years' experience in Canada, New Zealand, Ireland and Australia. Jamie has worked for both private and public secto... Read more

Karen Johnston

Managed Recharge

Karen Johnston is a Principal Hydrogeologist/Geochemist with over 20 years’ experience in Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR).  She has recently established an independent groundwater consultancy, Manag... Read more

Ferdinand Flechtner


Ferdinand is an experienced professional in hydrogeology, geotechnical engineering, and environmental projects. His work has taken him across Germany, Peru, and Western Australia, where he has demonst... Read more

Konrad Miotlinski

Edith Cowan University

Dr Konrad Miotlinski has 15+ years research and consulting experience across Europe, Australia and South America. He has used his models to plan and optimise operation of managed aquifer recharge... Read more

Krey Price

International Water Training Institute

Educated at the University of California at Berkeley, Krey is a civil engineer and project manager with international experience in water resources. He is engaged in computational modelling, engineeri... Read more


Advances in groundwater modelling software are providing increasingly impressive results, with the ability to model countless iterations and produce 3-dimensional animations; however, a basic understanding of the underlying concepts remains key in correctly interpreting, applying and presenting results.

Each of the four parts of groundwater hydrology are hosted by experts in their field, who delve in-depth into the key topic, explaining best practice techniques and approaches covering theoretical background material and practical applications and case-studies, specifically catered to practitioners in the water sector, allowing them to apply the knowledge from the series and learn, hands-on how to use various modelling software packages.

Whatever your preferred groundwater modelling software, this course provides the background knowledge to allow you to appropriately select input variables, troubleshoot, and interpret results. The course is designed to introduce basic equations that are used to compute key parameters and results for comparison to numerical models ensuring attendees build their skills piece by piece through every session.

The content of each session is presented below:

Schedule overview

Part 1: Groundwater physics 

Learn about the general behaviour of groundwater: what are the general laws, and how can we apply these in a sound manner? Or conversely, what are the common misconceptions and pitfalls that we need to avoid in groundwater hydrology?

  • Misconceptions and pitfalls?
  • The water table
  • Bernoulli: theory and examples
  • Specific discharge (volume flux density) and effective groundwater velocity
  • Darcy’s law for macroscopic groundwater flow
  • Hydraulic conductivity and porosity
  • Aquifer thermal energy storage
  • Refracting groundwater
  • Transmissivity and hydraulic resistance

Session 2: Groundwater hydraulics: one-dimensional steady flow 

The beauty of groundwater hydraulics is how readily the models apply to real hydrological settings and how well the models perform in providing a quick, first estimate to many groundwater flow problems.

  • Laplace equation
  • Terminology
  • Confined groundwater and boundary conditions
  • Vaiont Dam Disaster
  • Unconfined groundwater: Pennink and Dupuit-Forchheimer
  • Groundwater flow regimes and systems
  • Fresh and saline: Ghijben-Herzberg
  • Leaky aquifers and seepage
  • Unconfined aquifers with recharge

Session 3: Groundwater hydraulics: radial-symmetric steady flow 

Groundwater is pumped up for drinking water, crop irrigation, agricultural production, and industrial processes. For instance, learn how contaminated groundwater can hydrological be isolated and how we can counteract salinization of our water wells.

  • Radial flow in a confined aquifer: Dupuit equation
  • Radial flow in an unconfined aquifer
  • A well in a regional groundwater flow field
  • Pump and treat
  • Superposition and boundary conditions
  • Extra resistances
  • Freshkeeper concept
  • Contaminated groundwater: three cases
  • Adapted Stiff diagrams

Session 4: Introducing numerical groundwater models 

For conceptually complex hydrological problems, hydrologists use numerical computational methods that run on a computer. Different types of numerical approaches can be distinguished that use finite differences, finite volumes, finite elements, or analytical elements. An introduction to these approaches is provided here.

  • Introducing numerical models
  • Analytical element method
  • Introducing Python


The Groundwater Essentials course includes four individual intensive 3-hour sessions. Each session in the series focusses on a key principle of groundwater hydrology and hydraulics.

  • 16+ hours of session recordings with unlimited access for 45-days;
  • Pre-and-post-course materials to go through via the AWS learning platform;
  • Exercises between the 4 sessions;
  • Ability to ask questions to the presenters at anytime through the learning platform;
  • Attendees earn CPD hours/points (ie with Engineers Australia) for at least 30 hours for the entire course.


On completion of the course, attendees will be issued with a Certificate of Participation.

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