As recognized in the 1980s by Gaylon Campbell (1985), the teaching of soil physics is ideally suited to the integration of numerical modeling with the presentation of basic physical principles and fundamental system behaviors. The nonlinear, hysteretic equations of water retention and flow in soils permit few student-accessible analytical solutions, while numerical solutions can solve problems that students recognize as being important and interesting. On this basis, the powerful and user-friendly modeling framework provided by the well-known HYDRUS software package has been an integral and essential part of teaching soil physics at Oregon State University since 1993, with excellent...

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