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Unit of study_

CIVL5670: Reservoir, Stream and Coastal Engineering

The objectives of this unit of study are to develop an understanding of the processes occurring in lakes, reservoirs, streams and coastal seas, an introduction to transport and mixing in inland waters, and to the design the design of marine structures. The unit will cover the mass and heat budget in stored water bodies, mixing, and the implications for water quality. In streams, natural river systems will be discussed, and the principles of sediment transport and scour, monitoring and management will be introduced. The basic equations for linear and nonlinear wave theories in coastal seas will be introduced, and wave forces on structures and an introduction to design of offshore structures will be discussed.


Academic unit Civil Engineering
Unit code CIVL5670
Unit name Reservoir, Stream and Coastal Engineering
Session, year
Semester 1, 2020
Attendance mode Normal day
Location Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney
Credit points 6

Enrolment rules

Assumed knowledge

(CIVL3612 OR CIVL9612) AND MATH2061

Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff and contact details

Coordinator Amin Chabchoub,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Tutorial quiz Mid-semester quiz
40% Week 07 n/a
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO4
Assignment group assignment Group assignment
20% Week 12 n.a
Outcomes assessed: LO3
Tutorial quiz End of semester quiz
40% Week 13 n/a
Outcomes assessed: LO2 LO3 LO5
group assignment = group assignment ?

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range


High distinction

85 - 100



75 - 84



65 - 74



50 - 64



0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

For more information see

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

Special consideration

If you experience short-term circumstances beyond your control, such as illness, injury or misadventure or if you have essential commitments which impact your preparation or performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website provides information on academic honesty, academic dishonesty, and the resources available to all students.

The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic dishonesty or plagiarism seriously.

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic dishonesty. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of dishonesty, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 The water balance and water quality; the hydrological cycle; properties of water Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 02 Stream engineering: river systems; intro to river engineering types of flow; review of open channel flow; bed shear stress, roughness, drag Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 03 Geomorphological concepts; sediment transport; scour Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 04 Monitoring and management; hydraulic structures Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 05 Modelling; case studies Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 06 Lakes and reservoirs: mass and heat budgets in lakes and reservoirs; radiation environment; surface heat exchanges; radiation absorption Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 07 Stratification and the one dimensional assumption; internal waves. Energy considerations; potential energy and mixing requirements; energy inputs Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 08 Surface induced mixing models; formation of the surface mixed layer (epilimnion); mixing in the hypolimnion Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 09 Coastal engineering: wave theory; linear wave theory; wave energy, groups, standing and short-crested waves; non-linear wave theories Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 10 Risk analysis; wave forecasting and hindcasting, design wave, wave statistics Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 11 Wave forces (breaking and non breaking) and design of walls. Design of coastal structures - rubble mound breakwaters Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 12 Sediment transport; Scour around coastal structures. Design of beaches and coastal protection structures Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  
Week 13 Overview of course; exam discussion Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)  

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University’s graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. understand the important transport processes in rivers
  • LO2. demonstrate familiarity with the design of offshore structures
  • LO3. understand the important mixing and transport processes in lakes and reservoirs
  • LO4. demonstrate familiarity with water quality issues in rivers, and develop simple models
  • LO5. understand wave theories.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities
Information will be disseminated in the first lecture.


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