Dr. William P. Anderson Jr.

Dr. William P. Anderson, Jr., has been a member of the Appalachian faculty since 2004 and was chair of the Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences from 2012-2021. He is broadly trained as both a hydrogeologist and a civil engineer, and has established a research program that uses groundwater modeling techniques and field data collection to quantify the controls on groundwater flow and solute and heat transport through unconfined aquifers. He studies this general problem in a variety of settings, from coastal barrier and barrier-island aquifers of the Outer Banks, southwestern England, and Wales, to the alluvial aquifers adjacent to mountain streams in northwestern North Carolina. Much of his work focuses on the effects of storm events, such as the inundation of coastal aquifers during hurricane and tropical storm surges or the effects of individual storm events on urban aquifers, especially those that occur along Boone Creek.

Anderson works extensively with undergraduate students on this research, from simple field data collection to more complex groundwater modeling projects, and he considers this undergraduate research mentorship to be some of the most important teaching that he does. Many of his students give talks or present posters at professional meetings and several have published their findings in peer-reviewed journals such as the Journal of Hydrology, the Hydrogeology Journal, and the Journal of the American Water Resources Association. He also brings much of his research into the classroom, whether in introductory courses like Water: Mountains to Sea (GLY 1104) and Introduction to Environmental Science (ENV 1010) or in upper-level classes like Hydrogeology (GLY 4630).  He won a Board of Governors / Appalachian Excellence in Teaching Award in 2018.


  • B.C.E. (Civil Engineering) - University of Dayton
  • B.S. (Geology) - University of Dayton
  • M.S. (Geological Sciences) - University of Maine
  • Ph.D. (Earth Sciences) - North Carolina State University

Courses Taught

  • GLY 1104 - Water: Mountains to Sea
  • ENV 1010 - Introduction to Environmental Science

Website and CV

 Recent Publications

Visit Dr. Anderson's profile on Google Scholar.

  • Gu, C., Cockerill, K., Anderson Jr, W. P., Shepherd, F., Groothuis, P. A., Mohr, T. M., ... & Zhang, C. (2019). Modeling effects of low impact development on road salt transport at watershed scale. Journal of Hydrology574, 1164-1175.
  • Rushby, G. T., Richards, G. T., Gehrels, W. R., Anderson Jr, W. P., Bateman, M. D., & Blake, W. H. (2019). Testing the mid-Holocene relative sea-level highstand hypothesis in North Wales, UK. The Holocene, 0959683619854513.
  • Cockerill, K., Mohr, T., Anderson Jr, W. P., Groothuis, P., Gu, C., & Whitehead, J. (2019). Managing stormwater runoff in Appalachia: what does the public think?. Journal of Environmental Planning and Management, 1-19.
  • Thaxton, C. S., Anderson, W. P., Gu, C., Stosic, B., & Stosic, T. (2018). Detrended fluctuation analysis and entropy-complexity causality analysis of temperatures in an urbanized mountain stream. Stochastic environmental research and risk assessment32(3), 843-858.

Title: Professor: Hydrogeology, (he/him/his), Office: HSH 217
Department: Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences

Email address: Email me

Phone: (828) 262-7540