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We are aiming for an incremental return to campus in accordance with guidelines provided by NSW Health and the Australian Government. Until this time, learning activities and assessments will be planned and scheduled for online delivery where possible, and unit-specific details about face-to-face teaching will be provided on Canvas as the opportunities for face-to-face learning become clear.

Unit of study_

CIVL9410: Soil Mechanics

This course provides an elementary introduction to Geotechnical Engineering, and provides the basic mechanics necessary for the detailed study of Geotechnical Engineering. This course aims to provide an understanding of: the nature of soils as engineering materials; common soil classification schemes; the importance of water in the soil and the effects of water movement; methods of predicting soil settlements, the stress-strain-strength response of soils, and earth pressures.

Code CIVL9410
Academic unit Civil Engineering
Credit points 6
Assumed knowledge:
An understanding of simple statics, equilibrium, forces and bending moments, and of stress and strain and the relationship between them (CIVL9802 and CIVL9201). Familiarity with the use of spreadsheets (Excel, Mathcad) to obtain solutions to engineering problems, and with the graphical presentation of this data, and familiarity with word processing packages for report presentation. Familiarity with partial differential equations, and their analytical and numerical solution.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. demonstrate proficiency in handling experimental data, including strength parameters.
  • LO2. analyse and report the results of a laboratory experiment at a professional standard
  • LO3. develop and use a spreadsheet to analyse a geotechnical design problem
  • LO4. give an engineering classification of any piece of soil, and on this basis, predict how it will perform as an engineering material
  • LO5. calculate the settlements, and rates of settlement, under structures of various shapes and sizes
  • LO6. explain the advantages and limitations of the different methods of settlement calculation
  • LO7. determine the strength parameters appropriate to a range of stability problems, and understand the difference between total and effective stress approaches
  • LO8. understand the principle of effective stress, and be able to apply this to calculate the stresses causing soil deformation
  • LO9. calculate quantities of water flowing through the ground, and understand the effects that water flow has on the soil

Unit outlines

Unit outlines will be available 2 weeks before the first day of teaching for 1000-level and 5000-level units, or one week before the first day of teaching for all other units.

There are no unit outlines available online for previous years.