Teach the Earth > Hydrogeology > Hydrogeology, Soils, Geochemistry 2013 > Teaching Activities > Groundwater Discharge and Flow Rate

Groundwater Discharge and Flow Rate

Tej Gautam, Marietta College

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This activity was selected for the On the Cutting Edge Reviewed Teaching Collection

This activity has received positive reviews in a peer review process involving five review categories. The five categories included in the process are

  • Scientific Accuracy
  • Alignment of Learning Goals, Activities, and Assessments
  • Pedagogic Effectiveness
  • Robustness (usability and dependability of all components)
  • Completeness of the ActivitySheet web page

For more information about the peer review process itself, please see http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/review.html.

This page first made public: Jun 6, 2013


This activity allows students to understand the groundwater flow. Using a groundwater map, they will draw flow lines and determine the discharge and rate of flow.



It is useful for undergraduate level hydrogeology course or related topics in physical or environmental geology courses.

Skills and concepts that students must have mastered

Be familiar with the terminologies such as water table, contour lines, potentiometric surface, hydraulic conductivity etc. and understanding of Darcy's law.

How the activity is situated in the course

Lab activity


Content/concepts goals for this activity

-Understand the concept of water table or potentiometric surface in a aquifer to draw contours.
-Develop skills to draw flow lines and understand groundwater flow.

Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity

See potential aquifer contamination and develop mitigation strategies.
Computing discharge and other flow properties.

Other skills goals for this activity

Description and Teaching Materials

Grounwater Flow (Acrobat (PDF) 563kB Apr14 13)
water_table_map (Acrobat (PDF) 222kB Apr14 13)

Teaching Notes and Tips


References and Resources