Gerhard Furrer: Catalogue data in Spring Semester 2019

Name Prof. em. Dr. Gerhard Furrer
Consultation hoursBy appointment
DepartmentEnvironmental Systems Science
RelationshipRetired Adjunct Professor

701-0208-00LIntroduction to Environmental Chemistry and Microbiology
Prerequisites: Chemistry I & II and Microbiology.
1 credit1GG. Furrer, M. Lever, K. McNeill
AbstractWith excursions the students gain insights into scientific as well as practical aspects of various areas in which environmental chemistry and microbiology play a key role. Topics include a.o. waste water treatment, landfills, drinking water purification, impact of agriculture on surface water quality and environmental assessment of synthetic chemicals.
ObjectiveLearning of typical problems in environmental chemistry and microbiology. Applying basic knowledge of chemistry and microbiology to environmentally relevant problems.
ContentDiscussion of case studies combined with excursions.
Lecture notesMoodle (
Zusätzliche Unterlagen werden evtl. abgegeben.
Prerequisites / NoticeChemistry I and II and Microbiology
701-0825-10LEnvironmental Education Didactics II Restricted registration - show details
Prerequisite: Successful attendance of 701-0823-00L Environmental Education Didactics I.
4 credits9GC. Colberg, G. Furrer, F. Keller
AbstractEnvironmental Education Didactics II covers the planning, implementation and reflection of comprehensive teaching units. The major focus will be put on an intensive discussion of the didactical analysis and the use of extensive teaching methods. The objective is a selective and effective use.
ObjectiveThe objective is to compare and match educational models resp. teaching methods with current research findings.
The students
- learn to make a detailed analysis of didactic lessons to learn a broad topic by different sources, they will review, procure materials and reflect on the relevance of the topic of their choice and access to vocational, technical, didactic, and possibly social terms.
- make a semester plan autonomously.
- use and reflect on appropriate teaching methods in the context of various teaching-learning strategies within practice lessons.
- arrange the conditions of teaching for their target groups.
ContentUnterrichtseinheiten (mehrere Lektionen) werden unter Berücksichtigung verschiedener Lehr-Lern-Strategien (Direkte Instruktion, Adaptive Instruktion, Entdeckenlassendes Lehren, Problemorientiertes Lehren, Kooperative Lehrarrangements, Selbstgesteuertes Lernen) konzipiert und praktisch umgesetzt.
(1) Semester
- Exemplarische fachwissenschaftliche Elemente mit einem pädagogischen Fokus
(2) Intensivwoche in der 2. Junihälfte gemeinsam mit DZ - AGRL
- Peer Teaching einer präparierten Lektion
- Umfangreiche Unterrichtsmethoden
Lecture notesDie Unterlagen zu den behandelten Themen werden über die elektronische Lernplattform abgegeben (Anmeldung obligatorisch).
LiteratureGemäss Literaturliste
Prerequisites / NoticeFachdidaktik Umweltlehre 1
701-1334-00LModelling of Processes in Soils and Aquifers Information Restricted registration - show details
Number of participants limited to 18.
First come, first serve.
3 credits2GG. Furrer, W. Pfingsten
AbstractComputational modelling of biogeochemical processes and transport of water and solutes in soils and aquifers.
The content of the course builds on the students' basic knowledge in soil and aquatic chemistry as well as in soil physics (see below: Prerequisites).
This course addresses the modelling of impacts by pollutants on terrestrial and aquatic environments. It helps to acquire to model hydrological, geochemical and microbial processes in soils and aquifers in order to predict the mobility of contaminants in heterogeneous environmental systems. Computer models used will be provided by the internet platform PolyQL (

- Conveying the fact that there are different modelling approaches
- Learning how to parameterize physically-based models
- Developing skills for critical judgement of modelling results
- Applying theoretical models to real systems
- Gaining competence with web-aided learning
Content- Applying computer models for biogeochemical and transport processes
- Chemical equilibria, speciation in aqueous systems
- Chemical kinetics, biogeochemical processes, redox processes
- Steady-state approach, serial-box models, sensitivity analysis
- Basic concepts in modelling water flow and solute transport
- Hydraulic processes in variably saturated soils
- Using models for pollutant transport in soils and aquifers
Lecture notesAvailable as hardcopy and on-line material (
Literature- CAJ Appelo and D Postma, 2005. Geochemistry, Groundwater and Pollution. Taylor & Francis
- D Hillel, 2004. Introduction to environmental soil physics. Elsevier
Prerequisites / NoticePrerequisites: Courses (or equivalent knowledge)
- Soil Chemistry (701-0533-00, autumn semester, German)
- Environmental Soil Physics/Vadose Zone Hydrology (701-0535-00, autumn semester, English)