Colby Steelman

Colby Steelman
Lecturer, Environmental Geophysics
Location: EIT 2049
Phone: 519-888-4567 x32799


Colby Steelman’s research focuses on the dynamic processes of groundwater flow systems. Specific interests include hydrogeophysical characterization and monitoring of groundwater process dynamics and their importance in regional flow systems. Recently, he is exploring surface and airborne geophysical techniques that support regional-scale groundwater resource characterizations, and how these styles of data can be integrated into conventional groundwater monitoring strategies.

Research Interests

  • Hydrogeophysics, hydrogeology, vadose zone, applied geophysics
  • Multi-scale geophysical characterization of groundwater flow systems
  • Geophysical imaging of hydrodynamics, landform architecture, and geologic structures
  • Source water protection and management
  • Water resource assessment and monitoring

Scholarly Research

Dr. Steelman has made significant advancements in geophysical imaging techniques using ground-penetrating radar, electrical resistivity, electromagnetic induction, and seismic, in combination with direct hydrogeologic observations to better understand the parameters and processes that define complex groundwater flow systems. His research utilizes a combination of field-based geophysical, hydrogeological, and geological information in the context of local to regional-scale groundwater flow systems to better understand the complex relationship between anthropogenic and natural groundwater processes.


  • 2012 Ph.D. Earth Science, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada
  • 2007 B.Sc. Earth Science, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada


  • 2014-2016: Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship (NSERC), University of Guelph.
  • 2012-2014: NSERC Postdoctoral Fellowship, University of Guelph.
  • 2012: W.B. Pearson Medal in Science, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Waterloo.


  • Principal Investigator, G360 Institute for Groundwater Research, University of Guelph

Professional Associations

  • Association of Professional Geoscientists of Ontario (APGO)
  • American Geophysical Union (AGU)
  • Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG)
  • European Association of Geoscientists & Engineers
  • International Association of Hydrogeologists​​

Affiliations and Volunteer Work

  • Member, Water Institute


  • EARTH 223 - Field Methods in Hydrology
    • Taught in 2018, 2019, 2020
  • EARTH 260 - Introductory Applied Geophysics
    • Taught in 2021, 2022, 2023
  • EARTH 458L - Field Methods in Hydrogeology
    • Taught in 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023
  • EARTH 461 - Near-Surface Geophysics
    • Taught in 2023
  • EARTH 668 - Advanced Applied Geophysics
    • Taught in 2023
  • EARTH 671 - Field Methods in Hydrogeology
    • Taught in 2021, 2022, 2023
  • SCI 250 - Environmental Geology
    • Taught in 2019, 2020, 2021

* Only courses taught in the past 5 years are displayed.

Selected/Recent Publications

  • Please see Colby Steelman's Google Scholar profile for a current list of his peer-reviewed articles.