Education
 

The National Ground Water Association can provide customized training on a variety of topics at your company or agency facility, or arrange for facilities at a convenient location.  Programming can be designed for almost any number of attendees, but is generally only cost-effective with 10 (or more) students.  Those desiring personalized training for less than five students on a topic not listed below should state the specific content areas they desire.

Please contact Kathy Butcher at kbutcher@ngwa.org for more information or request a quote for custom training.

An Introduction to Groundwater

This is a foundational NGWA course providing hydrogeological knowledge and fundamental technical skills necessary to pursue more advanced topics in groundwater.  The course takes students through a general groundwater study starting with the geologic setting and ending with an analysis of a contaminant plume.  The primary focus will be on field problems with case studies and sample problems.

Analysis and Design of Aquifer Tests Including Fracture Flow

This course is designed for hydrogeologists, engineers, geologists, and other groundwater professionals interested in refining their skills in aquifer-test procedures and analyses.  This is an intermediate course for individuals with previous analytical experience in groundwater hydrology.  It is one of the core fundamental courses recommended for those pursuing a career in hydrogeology.

Application of Health-Risk Assessment for Environmental Decision-Making 

This two-day intermediate- to advance-level course exposes participants to the quantitative, statistical, modeling, and problem-solving skills used in human health-risk assessments.  The course curriculum consists of an overview of risk assessment, hands-on calculations to estimate dose, and explanation of the development of risk-based clean-up levels.  In addition, the application of several publicly available analytical contaminant fate and transport models that are most commonly used in performing exposure assessments will be addressed.

Design and Construction of Wells    

A well is more than a hole in the ground that is used to produce water or for monitoring water quality.  Each well needs to be designed and constructed to meet the unique aspects of the hydrogeologic environment and the purpose for which it is intended.  The purposes range from obtaining thousands of gallons per minute from a heterogeneous sand aquifer to monitoring for contaminants in a fractured rock environment.
 
What are the advantages and disadvantages of air rotary vs. mud rotary or cable tool drilling techniques?  How do you select a drilling technique for a given site?  How big should the pump chamber casing be?   Should a wire-wrapped well screen be used or louvered casing?  What interval should be screened for a monitoring well? How do you avoid change orders and driller problems during well construction?  This course addresses these and other questions.
 
Both of the instructors for this course have a broad background in the design and construction of wells for a variety of purposes.  They have well construction experience in drilling environments ranging from unconsolidated glacial and alluvial sediments to a variety of fractured rock settings including basalt, limestone, sandstone, granite, and various metamorphic rocks.  Water supply wells have ranged in depth to 2,000 feet and in yield to 3,000 gpm.  The instructors have been involved in designing and constructing monitoring wells in both sedimentary and fractured rock environments.
 
Topics presented in this course include: (1) general aspects of well design including meeting state and federal standards, (2) selection of a drilling technology to meet site conditions and well objectives, (3) design and construction of production wells, and (4) design and construction of monitoring wells.  Numerous case study examples will be presented during the course.  Attendees will work individually or in small groups during the second day to do a detailed design of a production well (morning session) and a monitoring well network (afternoon session).

Environmental Geochemistry of Metals - Investigation and Remediation    

Soil and groundwater at many mining, industrial, and power utility sites in the United States and elsewhere are contaminated by metals, radionuclides, and other inorganic chemicals.  Remediation by natural attenuation, also known as intrinsic remediation, is a viable approach for reducing the risk associated with metal/inorganic solute plumes in groundwater.  Chemical manipulation of aquifer material and groundwater is also being implemented at some sites to immobilize redox-sensitive contaminants, including chromium, technetium, and uranium.
 
Regulatory agencies support risk-based approaches to remediation including intrinsic remediation for metal/inorganic contaminants.  Collecting and interpreting site characterization data and information must support intrinsic remediation options, which are technically defensible.  This includes assessment of the geochemistry of contaminants of concern and quantification of geochemical properties of aquifer material.  Important geochemical interactions that influence fate and transport of contaminants include aqueous speciation of native groundwater and dissolved contaminants; distribution and abundance of reactive minerals including hydrous ferric oxide, clay minerals, and carbonate minerals; adsorption reactions; mineral equilibrium; and radioactive decay.  Designing an effective sampling program that supports intrinsic remediation and chemical manipulation is based on a thorough understanding of site hydrogeochemistry and hydrology.
 
This course provides practical information needed to effectively evaluate intrinsic remediation and chemical manipulation of sites contaminated with metals, nonmetals, and radionuclides.  Chemicals of concern discussed in this short course include aluminum, antimony, arsenic, barium, beryllium, boron, cadmium, chromium, cobalt, copper, iron, lead, manganese, mercury, molybdenum, nickel, nitrogen, perchlorate, selenium, silver, thallium, uranium, vanadium, and zinc.   Intrinsic remediation of radionuclides, including americium-241, cesium-137, neptunium-237, plutonium-238, -239, and -240, strontium-90, and tritium, as well as others, are also discussed.  In addition, the course consists of in-depth discussions on metals/inorganic geochemistry and investigation methods, geochemical aspects of intrinsic remediation of inorganic chemicals and radionuclides, and chemical manipulation of aquifer material and groundwater.
 
The course emphasizes hydrogeochemical processes and field implementation procedures for quantifying and assessing intrinsic remediation and chemical manipulation of metal/inorganic contaminants.   Data collection and analyses, assessment of hydrogeochemical processes, quantification of contaminant mobility, and understanding regulatory considerations involved in implementing intrinsic remediation and chemical manipulation as viable restoration/remediation options are also presented.  Case histories are presented throughout the course.  Class exercises focusing on geochemical processes, intrinsic remediation, and chemical manipulation are included each day of the course.

Fracture Trace and Lineament Analysis - Application to Groundwater Characterization and Protection    

This opportunity presents instruction in the skills of identifying bedrock type and mapping fractures and lineaments of stereopair aerial photographs and appropriate satellite images for investigative site analyses.  Fracture trace and photogeologic analysis is a recognized field tool hydrogeologists, geoscientists, and engineers use for locating high-yield wells and/or wellfields, springs, wetlands, and pollutant sources; siting monitoring wells in aquifers dominated by fracture flow; intercepting pollutants for aquifer restoration; and characterizing the state and nature of bedrock and surficial deposits for foundation and slope stability investigations and related geotechnical projects (room stability in mines and tunnels, landfills, and dam sites).  Geoscientists and engineers with a working knowledge of fracture trace analysis eliminate much guesswork and uncertainty involved in field projects.

Fundamentals of Groundwater Geochemistry    

This is an introductory geochemistry course for scientists and engineers working in the fields of groundwater site characterization, contamination, and remediation.  Basic chemical interactions occurring between water and soil/aquifer material that determine the composition of natural water and affect the migration of contaminants will be covered, as will the anticipated efficiency of remediation practices.   Data collection, presentation, and interpretation of results will be discussed.  This is also an excellent introductory course for attorneys, regulators, or hydrologists who are new to the field.

Hydrogeology in Plain English    

This course has been designed for professionals associated with the groundwater industry either through business interactions or their workplace environment.  Attendees need not be trained in math and science, and need no prior introduction to hydrogeology.  The course, presented in everyday conversational language, is more inclusive than a primer course in hydrogeology in the academic sense.  The background and concepts of hydrogeology are presented, jargon-free, using real projects involving the application of state-of-the-art techniques utilized in risk assessments, remediation design, natural attenuation studies, and water supply.  Attendees will benefit from the course by gaining a clearer understanding of the hydrogeological issues involved in decision-making in their business and workplace interactions.

Low-Cost Remediation Strategies for Organic Contaminants in Soil and Groundwater    

This course covers several low-cost techniques for remediation of soil and groundwater contaminated with organic contaminants, such as fuel hydrocarbons and chlorinated solvents.  Some of the remediation strategies to be covered include natural attenuation, bioventing, soil vapor extraction, addition of low-cost substrates to stimulate biodegradation of chlorinated solvents, sparging/biosparging, and bioslurping for product removal.  The objective of the course is to help property owners, consultants, and scientists evaluate and implement the most cost-effective approach to remediate a site contaminated with organic contaminants.

Natural Attenuation for Remediation of Contaminated Sites    

This course provides the practical information needed to form a coherent approach for applying remediation by natural attenuation at field sites.  It stresses the underlying concepts and field implementation procedures for evaluating and applying remediation by natural attenuation.  It also provides in-depth discussions of the mechanisms of natural attenuation, data collection and analysis, quantification of contaminant transport and fate processes, and regulatory considerations involved in implementing natural attenuation as a remedy for groundwater contamination.

Practical Applications of Groundwater Geochemistry    

This is a course for scientists and engineers who work in the fields of groundwater characterization, contamination, and remediation.  Conditions resulting from groundwater and aquifer/soil interactions will be discussed in this course; the effect of introducing a variety of contaminants will be examined.  Case studies will be used to explain data collection requirements, laboratory analytical methods, and interpretation of data.  Class exercises will be used to reinforce concepts presented in the lectures.

Principles of Groundwater - Flow, Transport, and Remediation    

This three-day course is designed to examine the concepts, theories, and processes in hydrogeology.  Discussions address a range of issues including the movement and occurrence of groundwater, transmissivity, hydraulic head and gradient, aquifer test procedures and analysis, water quality characterization, solute transport, plume configuration and delineation, capture zone analysis, groundwater, modeling, and remediation techniques.

Risk Assessment for the Environmental Professional    

This two-day intermediate- to advance-level course exposes participants to the quantitative, statistical, modeling, and problem-solving skills used in human health-risk assessments.  The course curriculum will consist of an overview of risk assessment, hands-on calculations to estimate dose, and explanation of the development of risk-based clean-up levels.  In addition, you will learn about the application of several publicly available analytical contaminant fate and transport models that are most commonly used in performing exposure assessments.

Understanding Migration, Assessment, and Remediation of Non-Aqueous Phase Liquids    

Scientists and engineers designing remediation systems must first have knowledge of the characteristics and behavior of NAPLs in the subsurface to begin conceptualizing and characterizing an NAPL plume.  A thorough understanding of how NAPLs migrate in a hydrogeologic system will guide you in considering the technical practicability of remediating the source and its plume.  This three-day course is designed to educate you with respect to the compounds and properties of NAPLs, their migration characteristics, and remediation technologies.  Case histories are presented that describe the detection, characterization, monitoring, and remediation of contamination scenarios involving DNAPLs and LNAPLs such as TCE/PCE, chlorinated solvents, PCM, coal tar, and fuels.

Water Well Rehabilitation    

This course provides the information needed to prevent and/or correct problems related to declining water quality and hydraulic performance.  Troubleshooting and diagnostic exercises will be presented. The course will show you how to deal with these problems and will help you move from "crisis management" to cost-effective maintenance.

Well Construction and Groundwater    

This hands-on course featuring both classroom and field exercises may span three or four days depending on your unique needs.  The curriculum addresses the principles of hydrology and hydrogeology, well design, well construction, logging, well maintenance and rehabilitation, and pumping tests.  It is designed for those who have an engineering or field operation background.  (This course may not be available for presentation in all locations.)