Hydrogeology Field Course Outcomes

Participants in the Hydrogeology Field Course at Western Michigan University can expect to acquire the following experience upon completion of the series  (course activities may change from year to year). Each course module is designed to introduce to one the skills and techniques that prepare students for the type of work that is highly sought after by employers in the hydrogeological and environmental work force. 


  • OSHA 40 hour Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response Certification.

Applied skills training

  • Set-up, operation and data-processing of geophysical equipment, including:

    • Iris Syscal -R2 and Iris Syscal Pro 48 Channel resistivity systems; T-VLF (Very Low Frequencies) survey instrument.
    • Geometrics G-858 cesium vapor magnetometer
    • Strataview Seismograph.
    • Geonics EM-31; EM-61.
    • Pulse Ekko Ground Penetrating Radar system with 100MHz, and 500MHz antennae and multi-channel capabilities.
    • Using the associated geophysics processing programs and Surfer® to create maps of geophysical anomalies.
  • Hydrogeological logging of drill core and cuttings in the field.

  • Preparing field investigation, health and safety and remedial action plans.

  • Monitoring and production well design, installation and development.

  • Sediment sample collection and characterization using:

    • Direct push soil samplers.
    • Hand augers.
    • Mud/air rotary drilling.
    • Roto Sonic drilling.
    • Split spoon samplers.
  • Observing drilling techniques, including:

    • Cable tool.
    • Geoprobe Direct-Push Technology.
    • Hollow stem augers.
    • Solid stem augers
    • Mud and air rotary methods.
    • Roto Sonic.
    • Managing and communicating with drilling contractors.
  • Collecting and interpreting natural gamma logs.

  • Preparing geological and environmental reports.

  • Collecting and processing data for a 24-48 hour aquifer pumping test with fourteen monitoring wells.

  • Deploying and processing data from state-of-the-art water level loggers.

  • Conducting pneumatic and physical slug tests and analyzing the data.

  • Collecting and analyzing ground water samples utilizing low-flow sampling techniques.

  • Observing and evaluating environmental remediation and monitoring systems from a variety of industrial sites.

  • Working together in diverse teams to achieve common goals. 
  • Succinct and copious field notetaking techniques.
  • Phase I and II Environmental Site Assessments.
  • Networking and resume building.
  • Scientific data presentation.

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