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CS2005 - Introduction to Geotechnical Engineering

Credit points: 3
Year: 2023
Student Contribution Band: Band 2
Administered by: College of Science and Engineering

Engineering classification of soils, engineering characteristics and uses, phase relationships, Atterberg limits, compaction. Origin of soils. Saturated and unsaturated soils, effective stress and pore pressure, capillary effects simple stress states in soils. Permeability and one-dimensional seepage, filter design, quick conditions. Consolidation. Shear strength of soils, Mohr-Coulomb failure theory, direct shear and triaxial testing. Foundation types, bearing capacity of shallow foundations, introduction to stresses beneath footings. Lateral pressures on retaining walls, Rankine's earth pressure theory, design of simple retaining walls. Foundations on reactive soils, shrink-swell behaviour, site classification. Simple site investigation, disturbed and undisturbed sampling.

Learning Outcomes

  • calculate the earth pressures on simple retaining walls and check their stability;
  • classify soils from an engineering viewpoint and appreciate their likely characteristics;
  • determine Mohr-Coulomb strength parameters given the results of standard laboratory strength tests on soil;
  • interpret the results from basic site investigations;
  • perform standard laboratory classification and compaction tests and specify appropriate methods and standards for field compaction;
  • perform calculations relating to moisture/density relationships, total and effective stress and pore water pressure, permeability and one-dimensional seepage in saturated soils;
  • perform simple calculations for stress beneath footings, bearing capacity and settlement.

Subject Assessment

  • Written > Examination (centrally administered) - (50%) - Individual
  • Written > Examination - In class - (25%) - Individual
  • Written > Test/Quiz 1 - (10%) - Individual
  • Performance/Practice/Product > Practical assessment/practical skills demonstration - (15%) - Individual.
Prerequisites: EG1011


Townsville, Study Period 2, Internal
Census Date 24-Aug-2023
Coord/Lect: Assoc. Professor Siva Sivakugan.
Workload expectations:

The student workload for this 3 credit point subject is approximately 130 hours.

  • 39 hours lectures
  • 13 hours tutorials
  • 27 hours workshops
  • assessment and self-directed study

Note: Minor variations might occur due to the continuous Subject quality improvement process, and in case of minor variation(s) in assessment details, the Subject Outline represents the latest official information.