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ENV4203 Public Health Engineering

Semester 2, 2017 On-campus Springfield
Short Description: Public Health Engineering
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences
School or Department : School of Civil Engineering and Surveying
Student contribution band : Band 2
ASCED code : 030907 - Water and Sanitary Engineering
Grading basis : Graded


Examiner: Antoine Trzcinski


Pre-requisite: ENV1101 or ENV2103 or Students must be enrolled in one of the following Programs: GCEN or METC or MEPR or GCNS or GDNS or MENS


An efficient water supply and distribution system, a reliable supply of potable water, an appropriate system of wastewater collection, treatment and disposal, and an effective municipal solid waste management are essential for the health and well being of modern urban communities. The design, installation, operation and maintenance of these facilities are traditionally the responsibilities of local government engineers or consulting engineers employed by local government. This course therefore includes the modules on water supply and distribution system, conventional and advanced water treatment processes, wastewater treatment, sludge and solid waste treatment. In order to understand the principles and processes of water and wastewater treatment, there is a need to appreciate the vectors of waterborne diseases, microbiology, as well as topics in water chemistry. Environmental matters (notably solid refuse management) and legislation likely to be included in the responsibilities of a local government engineer are also included in this course.


The course objectives define the student learning outcomes for a course. On completion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. understand the global and local distribution of water resources, describe available sources of supply, apprise the water demand, explain the factors leading to water scarcity and measures taken to combat the water shortage;
  2. describe the essential components of a water supply and distribution system and design the capacities of trunk mains and service reservoirs in a reticulation network;
  3. understand the relevant principles of fundamental water chemistry and microbiology, describe the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of water which are of significance to urban water quality management and understand the guidelines for drinking water quality;
  4. understand the overview of conventional water treatment processes and modern trends in advanced water treatment;
  5. understand and design the various components involved in a typical water treatment processes;
  6. describe the objectives of wastewater collection and treatment, understand the sources of wastewater and contaminants, design a wastewater collection system (sewer network) for a subdivision;
  7. understand the characteristics of wastewater and the measurements of them;
  8. describe the processes involved in primary, secondary and tertiary treatment of wastewater and design attached and suspended wastewater treatment processes;
  9. describe sludge treatment and disposal methods;
  10. describe the collection, storage, management and disposal of solid refuse;
  11. apply the state guidelines for water supply and sewerage schemes and recognise the relevant legislations.


Description Weighting(%)
1. Urban water and wastewater management 5.00
2. Water supply and distribution system 10.00
3. Water chemistry and microbiology 5.00
4. Overview of conventional and modern water treatment processes 10.00
5. Design of typical water treatment processes 20.00
6. Wastewater collection systems 10.00
7. Characteristics and measurement of wastewater 5.00
8. Wastewater treatment processes 25.00
9. Sludge treatment and disposal methods 5.00
10. Municipal solids waste management 5.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

  • A hand held battery operated calculator which does not have text storage capabilities.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
  • Davis, ML & Cornwell, DA 2013, Introduction to environmental engineering, 5th edn, McGraw-Hill, Dubuque, IA.
  • Hammer, MJ & Hammer Jnr, MJ 2013, Water and wastewater technology, 7th edn, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ.
  • Metcalf & Eddy, Inc 2013, Wastewater engineering: treatment and reuse, 5th edn, McGraw Hill, Boston, MA.
  • Twort, AC, Law, FM, Growley, FW & Ratnayaka, DD 2000, Water supply, 5th edn, Edward Arnold, London.
  • Walski, TM, Chase, DV & Savic, DA 2001, Water distribution modelling, Haestad Press, Waterbury, CT.

Student workload expectations

Activity Hours
Assessments 30.00
Examinations 2.00
Lectures 46.00
Private Study 71.00
Tutorials 6.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
ASSIGNMENT 1 150 15 07 Aug 2017
ASSIGNMENT 2 150 15 04 Sep 2017
2 HOUR RESTRICTED EXAMINATION 700 70 End S2 (see note 1)

  1. Student Administration will advise students of the dates of their examinations during the semester.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    It is the students' responsibility to attend and participate appropriately in all activities (such as lectures, tutorials, laboratories and practical work) scheduled for them, and to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an individual assessment item a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks or a grade of at least C-. (Depending upon the requirements in Statement 4 below, students may not have to satisfactorily complete each assessment item to receive a passing grade in this course.)

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    Students should refer to the Assessment Procedure (point 4.2.4)

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade in a course a student must obtain at least 50% of the total weighted marks for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the weighted aggregate of the marks (or grades) obtained for each of the summative assessment items in the course.

  6. Examination information:
    In a Restricted Examination, candidates are allowed access to specific materials during the examination. The only materials that candidates may use in the restricted examination for this course are: writing materials (non-electronic and free from material which could give the student an unfair advantage in the examination); calculators which cannot hold textual information (students must indicate on their examination paper the make and model of any calculator(s) they use during the examination).

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    Any Deferred or Supplementary examinations for this course will be held during the next examination period.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. The due date for an assignment is the date by which a student must despatch the assignment to the USQ. The onus is on the student to provide proof of the despatch date, if requested by the Examiner.

  2. Students must retain a copy of each item submitted for assessment. This must be despatched to USQ within 24 hours if required by the Examiner.

  3. In accordance with University Policy, the Examiner may grant an extension of the due date of an assignment in extenuating circumstances.

  4. If electronic submission of assessments is specified for the course, students will be notified of this in the course Introductory Book and on the USQ Study Desk. All required electronic submission must be made through the Assignment Drop Box located on the USQ Study Desk for the course, unless directed otherwise by the examiner of the course. The due date for an electronically submitted assessment is the date by which a student must electronically submit the assignment. The assignment files must be submitted by 11.55pm on the due date using USQ time (as displayed on the clock on the course home page; that is, Australian Eastern Standard Time).

  5. If the method of assessment submission is by written, typed or printed paper-based media students should (i) submit to the Faculty Office for students enrolled in the course in the on-campus mode, or (ii) mail to the USQ for students enrolled in the course in the external mode. The due date for the assessment is the date by which a student must (i) submit the assessment for students enrolled in the on-campus mode, or (ii) mail the assessment for students enrolled in the external mode.

  6. The Faculty will NOT normally accept submission of assessments by facsimile or email.

  7. Students who do not have regular access to postal services for the submission of paper-based assessments, or regular access to Internet services for electronic submission, or are otherwise disadvantaged by these regulations may be given special consideration. They should contact the examiner of the course to negotiate such special arrangements prior to the submission date.

  8. Students who have undertaken all of the required assessments in a course but who have failed to meet some of the specified objectives of a course within the normally prescribed time may be awarded one of the temporary grades: IM (Incomplete - Make up), IS (Incomplete - Supplementary Examination) or ISM (Incomplete -Supplementary Examination and Make up). A temporary grade will only be awarded when, in the opinion of the examiner, a student will be able to achieve the remaining objectives of the course after a period of non directed personal study.

  9. Students who, for medical, family/personal, or employment-related reasons, are unable to complete an assignment or to sit for an examination at the scheduled time may apply to defer an assessment in a course. Such a request must be accompanied by appropriate supporting documentation. One of the following temporary grades may be awarded IDS (Incomplete - Deferred Examination; IDM (Incomplete Deferred Make-up); IDB (Incomplete - Both Deferred Examination and Deferred Make-up).

  10. Harvard (AGPS) is the referencing system required in this course. Students should use Harvard (AGPS) style in their assignments to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The Harvard (AGPS) style to be used is defined by the USQ Library's referencing guide.

Other requirements

  1. Students can expect that questions in assessment items in this course may draw upon knowledge and skills that they can reasonably be expected to have acquired before enrolling in the course. This includes knowledge contained in pre-requisite courses and appropriate communication, information literacy, analytical, critical thinking, problem solving or numeracy skills. Students who do not possess such knowledge and skills should not expect to achieve the same grades as those students who do possess them.

  2. Students can expect that questions in assessment items in this course may draw upon knowledge and skills that they can reasonably be expected to have acquired before enrolling in the course. This includes knowledge contained in pre-requisite courses and appropriate communication, information literacy, analytical, critical thinking, problem solving or numeracy skills. Students who do not possess such knowledge and skills should not expect to achieve the same grades as those students who do possess them.