Earth Science 432

Surface-Water Resources Lecutre Syllabus
Fall Semester 2011 
Steve Custer
Office Hours
e-mail:; Phone 994 6906
200 Traphagen Hall
Lecture: WF 16:10-17:00;  Laboratory Friday 13:10-16:00
Lecture: 147 Gaeins Hall; Laboratory: 147 Gaines Hall

Flume and Fluvial Geomorphology Videos from SERC
Check out this web page

Course Schedule ESCI 432 Surface Water Resources
Mon Date Day Topic Reading
Aug 31
W  Course Introduction Syllabus (Lecture and Lab)
F Survey Techniques Harrelson et al., 1994, p.13-32

Sep 07 W Channel Cross Section Custer, Ch 9 p. 1-5; Lord et al. 2009; WSXPro Program
F Substrate;  Slope Methods
Ch 7a; Chapter 5, p. 3-5

Sep 14 W Bankfull Discharge Video West and First third of East
Website with Videos

16 F Channel Change
(Lab introduction)
Floods--Recurrence Interval
Ungaged-Basin-Stream-Flow Estimation:
 Ch. 9, p. 5-8
Parrett et al., 1983 p.12-24;
National Flood Frequency Program

2011 Flood information

 Sep 21 W Channel Pattern Ch. 7, p. 1-28
 Sep 23 F Channel Pattern Ch. 7, p. 1-28

Sep 28 W Channel Pattern;   Stream Mapping  Ch. 7, p. 28-37;  Appendix II
Sep 30
F Discharge Measurement

Custer Appendix 1; 
For more detail see
Nolan et al, 1998  or USGS Methods Appendix F 536-550

 Oct 5 W Channel Features  Depositional Ch 8, p. 1-6
Channel Features  Erosional;  Work up results section of your laboratory report in groups. Work Time See Lab Syllabus
WinXSPro orientation

 Oct 6-7
AWRA Meeting.

Oct 12
W Video on Froude and Chezy
Ch 8.p. 6-10
Oct 14 F Examination Through Discharge Measurement Custer, Ch 10, p. 1-7
Rosgen Classification Chart

Oct 19
W 1) Overview
2) Channel Classification Rosgen

Oct 21 F 3)  Montgomery and Buffington  Custer, Ch 10, p. 7-16


Oct  26 W Slope, Energy, Roughness, Reynolds

Custer,  Ch 5, p. 5 ; Ch 6, p. 1-4
Hydraulic Equation Summary
Turn in Graf Park Including Classification

Oct 28
F Froud Number, Stream Power, Shear if time example application Ch 6 p.4-7

Nov 02 W Froud Number, Stream Power, Shear Applications Custer, Ch 6, p. 4-7
 Nov 04 F Run-Off Estimation Techniques -- curve number Grove et al., 1998; Optional: Dingman, 1994, p. 389-95

 Nov 09
W Infiltration and Runoff -- Horton and Dunne
11 F
Veteran's Day  Custer, Ch 3

 Nov 16 W Precipitation -- Measurement and Consistency   Dingman, 1994, p. 100-110. Peck, 1997
F Precipitation -- Space and Time Dingman, 1994, p. 111-128


Nov 23 W Thanksgiving Holiday

  25 F Thanksgiving Holiday  

W Evapotranspiration Custer Chapter 19
02 F Evapotranspiration
Custer Chapter 19

 Dec 07
W Drainage Basin Dropped this lecture due to time.
Custer, Ch 4
 Dec 09
F Review/Wrap-up

Dec 15
Final Examination 16:00-17:50
147 Gaines Hall
Includes Channel Features through Drainage Basin. 

Please Turn off your cell phone when you come to class.


Your instructor is writing a book.  Some of the reading for this course is from a draft of that book (Custer, 2006).  There are additional  Readings  identified on the syllabus as well.  

Course Grade

Grading: Tests (50%) (Exam 1= 25%; Exam 2 = 25%)
Laboratories (50%).

Late Papers

Because of grading problems created by late papers, there is a  10% penalty for each day late including holidays and week ends.

Disagreements Regarding Grading

If, after looking at the key, you believe any written product has been miss scored, you may submit your test and a brief written defense of why you believe your work has been miss marked.


  The student conduct code (2005) is on the web at MSU and on the Student Affairs and Services (2006) web page.   The penalty for academic dishonesty is failure on the piece of work.  A repeated offence will result in failure in the course.

Turn off and stow your cell phone during all exams – anyone caught with their cell phone out and on during an exam will
receive an automatic failing grade on the exam (out and on = F).


Attendance is not taken in class, but you are responsible for lecture and text material.  Class notes should be obtained from a fellow student if a lecture is missed.  The professor does not copy notes.  If you are ill or have a family emergency and will miss an examination if at all possible, please call the instructor BEFORE the absence so arrangements can be made to make up the test.  At least leave voice mail at 994 6906 or e-mail at stating what has happened.

Students with Disabilities:

If you have a documented disability for which you are or may be requesting an accommodation(s), you are encouraged to contact your instructor and Disabled Student Services as soon as possible.

Last modified by Steve Custer 30 August 2011