ENGCV231-20A (HAM)

Geotechnical Engineering 1

15 Points

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Division of Health Engineering Computing & Science
School of Engineering


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Placement/WIL Coordinator(s)


Student Representative(s)

Lab Technician(s)

: tom.robertson@waikato.ac.nz


: cheryl.ward@waikato.ac.nz
: debby.dada@waikato.ac.nz

You can contact staff by:

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Paper Description

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Paper provides an introduction to the basic principles and concepts of geotechnical engineering to aid civil engineering design of earthworks, foundations , slope stability and retaining structures. As such the paper covers phase relationships, effective stress, pore pressure, soil strength. These mechanical properties are then applied to analysis of slope stability, earthwork design and foundation design (shallow spread foundations and deep pile foundations)
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Paper Structure

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This paper is taught using a combination of lectures, laboratory soil tests, computer laboratory assignment and field visits. In the first month, the paper concentrates on engineering geology aspects of landslide processes. The paper then considers classical engineering soil mechanical properties in terms of soil phase relationship, effective stress, and shear strength followed by application for design and analysis of slope stability, earthworks and foundations design.
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Learning Outcomes

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Students who successfully complete the course should be able to:

  • Geotechnical Engineering Design

    Understand the underlying principles used to model mechanical properties of engineering soils

    Understand and evaluate laboratory tests used to measure engineering mechanical soil properties

    Apply mechanical principles to model geotechnical structures such as foundations, slopes and earthworks,

    Analysis external and internal forces and stresses acting on geotechnical structures

    Evaluate ultimate and serviceability states of geotechnical structures

    Linked to the following assessments:
  • Engineering Geology
    Understand, evaluate and analysis the stability of engineering earthworks in a geological setting
    Linked to the following assessments:
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Summative assessment (marked) will take the form of

Factual laboratory reports (3) to report test results and interpret the results in terms of a recognized engineering mechanical soil property

Computer modelling report (1) to report on the results from use of computer modelling software (SLICE) to analysis slope stability for earthworks

Geotechnical Design Report (1) to evaluate borehole and laboratory tests data in order to design foundations for a building or bridge structure.

Formative assessment (no marks) will take the form of

Logging disturbed soil samples for a borehole log

Field visit to a construction with geotechnical construction works underway (earthworks, slope cuttings, foundations)

Further details of submission requirements are included on Moodle.

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Assessment Components

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The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 100:0. There is no final exam. The final exam makes up 0% of the overall mark.

The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 100:0 or 0:0, whichever is more favourable for the student. The final exam makes up either 0% or 0% of the overall mark.

Component DescriptionDue Date TimePercentage of overall markSubmission MethodCompulsory
1. Factual Laboratory Report: Lab. 1
8 May 2020
No set time
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
2. Factual Laboratory Report: Lab. 2
15 May 2020
No set time
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
3. Factual Laboratory Report: Lab. 3
22 May 2020
No set time
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
4. Geotechnical Design Report
22 May 2020
5:00 PM
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
5. Computer Modelling Report
9 Apr 2020
5:00 PM
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
6. Exam
Assessment Total:     100    
Failing to complete a compulsory assessment component of a paper will result in an IC grade
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Required and Recommended Readings

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Recommended Readings

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Craig's Soil Mechanics, Eighth Edition, Jonathan Knappet and Robert F. Craig, Spon Press, 2012

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Online Support

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Online support material provided on Moodle
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3 x 12 hours lectures

1 x 12 hours tutorials

3 x 2 hours of laboratory tests (marked)

1 x 2 hours soil logging (unmarked)

3 x 5 hours laboratory reports

1 x 10 hours computer modelling and reporting

1 x 15 hour geotechnical design report

1 x 10 hours field visits (unmarked)

1 x 5 hour field borehole construction (unmarked)

1 x 39 hours preparation for examinations

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Linkages to Other Papers

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Prerequisite papers: ENGEN110 or ENGEN112 or ENGG110 or ENMP102




Restricted papers: ERTH352 or EARTH313

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