Water is the elixir of life. It is the universal solvent. It is the moderator of Earth’s climate. Without water, life would not exist on Earth. Our everyday reliance on water is betrayed by the relative fragility of our water resources. Whilst water is common, fresh drinking water is much less so, and what is available is not equally available to all people on Earth. Hydrological extremes of drought and flood, or new patterns of water distribution brought on by global climate change, result in water being one of the most critical resource issues today.

To understand water as a resource, we must understand how water moves in its various states through the Earth system. Water is unusual in that it occurs as a liquid, solid, and gas. It is found high on top of mountains and deep below the surface. It is plentiful in the forests and wetlands and limited in deserts and polar regions. But water is constantly moving from place to place and changing from one form to another. We know this as the hydrological cycle.

The Bachelor of Science in Hydrology program at the University of Saskatchewan was developed for students who are interested in how the hydrological cycle controls the wide variety of natural processes on Earth. The University is ranked as the best school for water resource education in Canada and in the top 20 around the world. Students in the Hydrology program will benefit from learning from top teachers and researchers and from a diverse set of courses that cover a wide range of water-related topics such as surface and groundwater, weather and global climate change, land-atmosphere interactions, and aqueous chemistry. Students are also provided with the tools needed to pursue careers in hydrology such as geographic information systems, field and laboratory analyses, and data analysis and presentation.


Interested in Hydrology?


Dr. Krystopher Chutko

Assistant Professor and Chair, GEPL Environmental Programs
Department of Geography and Planning
University of Saskatchewan
Rm. 104, 117 Science Place
Saskatoon, SK  CANADA  S7N 5C8

Hydrology Faculty

Dr. Alec Aitken 

Dr. Cherie Westbrook

Dr. Dirk de Boer

Dr. John Pomeroy

Dr. Martyn Clark

Dr. Scott Bell

Dr. Xulin Guo

Environmental Studies Students Association (ESSA)

To become a member or to contact the Association, please contact essa.club@usask.ca or on Facebook.

Prospective Students

The Hydrology program is offered by the Department of Geography and Planning. Any student admitted to the College of Arts and Science can enroll in the program by choosing to major in Hydrology and taking the required courses. To enroll in the program you must meet the admission requirements to apply to the College of Arts & Science; there is no special application or acceptance procedure for the Hydrology program.

The Hydrology program is offered as either a 4-year or an Honours program. A co-operative education option is also available. Please contact the Program Chair for further information.

Example 4-year program and courses (course availability and options may vary; students must consult the program requirements for the most up-to-date information):

 Year 1
CHEM 112: General Chemistry I Structure Bonding and Properties of Materials
CMPT 141: Introduction to Computer Science
ENG 120: Introduction to Creative Writing
GEOG 120: Introduction to Global Environmental Systems
GEOG 130: Environmental Health and Planning
GEOG 150: Introduction to the Circumpolar World
GEOL 121: Earth Processes
INDG 107: Introduction to Canadian Indigenous Studies
MATH 110: Calculus I
PHYS 115: Physics and the Universe

Year 2:
CHEM 115: General Chemistry II Chemical Processes
GEOG 222: Introduction to Geomatics
GEOG 225: Hydrology of Canada
GEOG 233: Introduction to Weather and Climate
GEOG 290: Field Methods and Laboratory Analysis
GEOL 224: Mineralogy
HIST 155: History Matters Science and Environment
MATH 116: Calculus II
PHYS 125: Physics and Technology
PLSC 214: Statistical Methods 

Year 3:
CHEM 375: Environmental Chemistry
EVSC 220: Environmental Soil Science
GEOG 235: Earth Processes and Natural Hazards A Canadian Perspective
GEOG 302: Quantitative Methods in Geography
GEOG 325: River Systems
GEOG 328: Groundwater Hydrology
GEOG 333: Global Climate Change
GEOL 229: Introductory Geochemistry
GEOL 245: Introduction to Sedimentary Rocks
GEOL 258: Structural Geology 

Year 4:
EVSC 420: Environmental Fate and Transport of Toxic Substances
GEOG 335: Glacial Geomorphology
GEOG 390: Methods in Hydrometeorology
GEOG 427: Advanced Hydrology
GEOL 413: Aqueous Geochemistry
5 x 3 credit unit electives

Career Opportunities

Students that complete the Hydrology program are eligible to apply to the Association of Professional Engineers & Geoscientists of Saskatchewan (APEGS) as a Member-in-Training.

All employers wishing to post positions for graduates of the Hydrology program or summer employments opportunities for continuing Hydrology students should use the services of the Student Employment and Career Centre. They can be contacted at 306-966-5003. You may also contact the Program Chair with job advertisements for continuing or graduating students.

Scholarships and Awards

Dr. A.K. Chakravarti Scholarship

Dr. Chakravarti taught and conducted research in the Department of Geography from 1965 – 1994 and helped develop undergraduate and graduate programs in climatology. The purpose of this scholarship is to recognize the academic achievement of a student pursuing a Bachelor of Science Honours degree in Environmental Earth Science or Hydrology. Preference is given to students enrolled in the Minor/Certificate in Water Science, or who have taken the following courses: GEOG 233: Introduction to Weather and Climate; GEOG 333: Global Climate Change; GEOG 390: Methods in Hydrometeorology; GEOG 330: Climate History. Awarding of the scholarship is based on academic achievement.

John McConnell Bursary

The John McConnell Bursary was established to provide financial assistance and to recognize the academic achievement and service to the environment by an undergraduate student pursuing a degree in environmental studies or geography. The bursary is open to Environmental Biology, Environment and Society, and Hydrology majors who have completed at least two years of study in an undergraduate degree program, and who are members of the Environmental Studies Student Association. Awarding of the bursary is based on academic achievement, financial need, and demonstrated service to the environment.

Margaret Mary Richards Scholarship

This scholarship was established by Dr. J. Howard Richards, founder of the Department of Geography and professor from 1960-1983, and his wife Mrs. Margaret Mary Richards, in memory and honour of their daughter Pegi Richards. It is awarded annually to recognize the academic achievement of an Honours student in the Department of Geography and Planning. Awarding of the scholarship is based on academic achievement.

Harvey Undergraduate Scholarship

The Harvey Undergraduate Scholarship is open to students who have completed at least two years of study in B.A. or B.Sc. with a major in Biology, Environmental Earth Sciences/Hydrology, Environmental Biology, and Environment and Society. One student from each program is awarded the scholarship each year. Awarding of the scholarship is based on academic achievement.

NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Awards (USRA)

The NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Award is an opportunity to gain work experience in academic research, and possibly encourage students to take further studies at the graduate level, as well as provide financial support. Applicants will need to find an NSERC grant holder willing to supervise their project and who will support the application before applying to NSERC by January 5 each year. See here for complete details.