CEG8111 : Environmental Fate of Contaminants (Inactive)

Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


This module’s aims are:
a) to demonstrate the entire life cycle of environmental water samples from sample taking to analysis and data interpretation;
b) to introduce current and advanced chemical analytical techniques for environmental water analysis, from principle of analysis to hands-on experience;
c) to provide an overview of inorganic and organic contaminants in ground- and surface water; and
d) to enable the students to qualitatively and quantitatively assess the fate of different contaminants in aqueous environments.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module combines theory with practice by providing background information in the form of lectures, which is then applied in the extensive field/lab based component (2.5 days), providing hands-on experience in advanced current analytical methods for organic and inorganic contaminant quantification.
Topics in lectures include:
(Field) Experimental design and sampling strategies & techniques
Sources and types of water contamination
Inorganic and organic contaminants and analytical methods for their quantification
Processes determining the fate of organic and inorganic contaminants, examples from current research projects and case studies, including modelling (qualitative, quantitative)
Discussion, analysis and critiquing of measured data

Field trip:
water sampling, examples of different polluted water sources, principles of aqueous sample pre-treatment and preservation (partly carried out in the lab)

Lab practical (on own collected samples):
ICP-MS - metals,
IC - anions,
HPLC/LC-MS - soluble organic contaminants,
GC-MS/GC-ECD - volatile organic contaminants

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture131:0013:00Lectures
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture111:0011:00Taught (interactive) tutorials
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion12:002:00Unseen Exam
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion200:3010:00Revision for exam
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion120:0020:00Report
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical34:0012:00Analyses of field samples
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork14:004:00Field Trips
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study128:0028:00Includes background reading and reading lecture notes for a full understanding of material
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The use of lectures allows the presentation of fundamental knowledge required for the subject, and the development and consolidation of detailed technical understanding through classroom based small group teaching activities (taught tutorials) within each teaching period. Application and reinforcement of the gained knowledge and development of technical skills are provided in field visits and lab practicals. Specialist knowledge and understanding is developed in problem solving exercises and the assigned coursework activity. Students are also encouraged and expected to learn through reflection and independent reading. They are supported in this by the provision of an extensive, but prioritized, reading list. Critical thinking and analyzing skills will be furthered in discussions during the teaching sessions and applied in the coursework assignment. Short quizzes throughout the module enable students to monitor the progress of their learning and identify critical topics for their independent study.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination1202A50Unseen Exam
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise2M50Coursework assessment as described in Assessment Rationale. Up to 1500 words plus figures/tables
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The specialist knowledge and understanding imparted during this module are assessed by means of unseen written examination and a single coursework item.

The examination paper employs a range of approaches in order to accurately assess student abilities. These include multi-part questions aimed at testing basic knowledge, data interpretation, and application of the discussed principles and approaches.

The coursework is designed to further develop understanding and skills taught during the module through a written report involving assessment of a water contamination problem, including analysis, evaluation and discussion of their own collected data, and the integration of all data into a conceptual model.

Reading Lists