On Campus
4 x 1-hour workshops per semester
1 x 1-hour on-line tutorial fortnightly

1 x 1-hour on-line tutorial fortnightly
Enrolment not permitted
ENVS9731 has been successfully completed
Topic description

This topic is designed to provide an understanding of how drinking water can impact on human health and how to manage and effectively communicate risks associated with human exposure to hazards potentially associated with drinking water supplies. The topic will outline the basic disciplines required to understand and assess health risks such as epidemiology, toxicology and microbiology. It will then use these disciplines to assess health risks from a range of exposure to both chemical and microbiological hazards in potable water supplies using the 'risk' framework. The topic will cover all aspects of drinking water's ability to impact on public health from the perceptions and expectations of the public regarding a 'safe' water supply through the regulatory aspects of developing guidelines based on public health to assessing and managing risk associated with chemical, radiological and biological (including microbiological) hazards in water from catchment through treatment, reticulation and supply to customer tap.

Educational aims

This topic aims to provide students with an understanding of how drinking water can impact on human health using a risk based framework and how to manage and effectively communicate risks associated with human exposure to drinking water.

Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic you will be expected to be able to:

  1. Describe public health issues relating to the supply of safe drinking water
  2. Interpret and evaluate epidemiological, toxicological and microbiological data relevant to water quality
  3. Appreciate the importance of a multidisciplinary approach to the provision of safe drinking water
  4. Use risk analysis to generate management and communication solutions based on the scientific principles of risk assessment
  5. Recommend a whole of catchment approach and the use of preventive measures and multiple barriers to minimise public health risks associated with drinking water

Key dates and timetable

(1), (2)

Each class is numbered in brackets.
Where more than one class is offered, students normally attend only one.

Classes are held weekly unless otherwise indicated.


If you are enrolled for this topic, but all classes for one of the activities (eg tutorials) are full,
contact your College Office for assistance. Full classes frequently occur near the start of semester.

Students may still enrol in topics with full classes as more places will be made available as needed.

If this padlock appears next to an activity name (eg Lecture), then class registration is closed for this activity.

Class registration normally closes at the end of week 2 of each semester.

Classes in a stream are grouped so that the same students attend all classes in that stream.
Registration in the stream will result in registration in all classes.
  Unless otherwise advised, classes are not held during semester breaks or on public holidays.