Catchment Systems

Module code: GY2433

A catchment is the area of land drained by a stream or river. It is the fundamental landscape unit that collects and redistributes water and sediment from uplands to the sea and is the focus of study in both hydrology and geomorphology. This module considers the fundamentals of catchment hydrology (the conversion of rainfall to runoff on hillslopes and the generation of floods) and river geomorphology (the form of, and processes operating in, streams and rivers).

Topic covered

  • Precipitation and evapotranspiration
  • Infiltration into soils
  • Surface and subsurface runoff
  • River hydrographs and flow regimes
  • Flow and sediment in rivers
  • Explanations for the diversity of channel forms

Learning

  • 16 hours of lectures
  • 16 hours of fieldwork
  • 118 hours of guided independent study

Assessment

  • Practical exercise (25%)
  • Exam, 2 hours (75%)