ENG06023 2012 Soil Mechanics and Geology 202

General Details

Full Title
Soil Mechanics and Geology 202
Transcript Title
Soil Mechanics and Geology 202
N/A %
Subject Area
ENG - Engineering
CENG - Civil Eng. and Construction
06 - NFQ Level 6
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2012 - Full Academic Year 2012-13
End Term
2019 - Full Academic Year 2019-20
Kathryn Ryan
Programme Membership
SG_ECIVL_H08 201300 Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) in Civil Engineering SG_EENVI_B07 201300 Bachelor of Engineering in Environmental Engineering *** Copy *** SG_ECIVI_C06 201200 Higher Certificate in Engineering in Engineering in Civil Engineering SG_ECVIL_B07 201400 Bachelor of Engineering in Engineering in Civil Engineering SG_EENVI_B07 201400 Bachelor of Engineering in Environmental Engineering SG_ECIVI_H08 201400 Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) in Civil Engineering SG_EENVE_B07 201400 Bachelor of Engineering in Environmental Engineering

This module is an introduction to Soil Mechanics & Geology, assuming no prior knowledge of the subject. The student starts with the formation and origin of rocks and the processes which result in the formation of soil before learning how these processes influence soil behaviour due to external loading or the flow of fluid through the soil.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


Identify and classify soils and rocks and calculate their phase relations. Describe how rock and rock structures are formed and weathered.


Compute coefficients of permeability from standard laboratory tests and compute critical hydraulic gradients.


Calculate total stress, effective stress and porewater pressure and evaluate the shear strength parameters of the soil in drained and undrained conditions. Calculate lateral earth pressures.


Estimate one-dimensional settlements in soils.


Use standard laboratory equipment and perform as a team member in the execution, compilation, analysis and interpretation of laboratory experiments


Compile and report, in both written and oral form, using word and excel, the results and conclusions of laboratory work

Module Assessment Strategies

1. 1 hour MCQ exam mid-semester

2. 2 hour written final exam

3. Laboratory practical copy and oral presentation

Indicative Syllabus


  1. Phase relationships, Atterberg Limits, Classification, Compaction
  2. Permeability, falling & constant head, flownets, filters, Critical hydraulic gradient, piping. Field measurement of permeability, water in excavations
  3. Effective stress, pore pressure
  4. Shear strength, drained, undrained, shear box, introduction to triaxial, lab and field vane
  5. Consolidation, Terzaghi’s one dimensional consolidation, Oedometer testing, settlement calculations
  6. Lateral earth pressures, active, passive and at rest


  1. Introduction: Composition of earth. Formation and classification of rocks. Identification of rocks
  2. Weathering processes and weathered rocks
  3. Main rock types: Engineering behaviour of main rock types.
  4. Geological structures: Folds. Faults. Joints
  5. Site Investigations: Boreholes. Geophysical surveys


  1. Atterbery limits
  2. Wet & dry sieving
  3. Standard and heavy compaction, CBR
  4. Sand replacement test
  5. Constant head permeability
  6. Shear box clay
  7. Triaxial, UU
  8. Oedometer
  9. Rock identification and classification

Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
40 %
End of Semester / Year Formal Exam
60 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Practical Evaluation Laboratory reports and Oral Presentation Continuous Assessment UNKNOWN 30 % OnGoing 5,6
2 Multiple Choice 1 hour Continuous Assessment UNKNOWN 10 % Week 7 1,2

End of Semester / Year Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Final Exam Written exam 2 hours Final Exam UNKNOWN 60 % End of Term 1,2,3,4,6

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Lecture Flat Classroom Theory 3 Weekly 3.00
Practical Engineering Laboratory Practicals 2 Weekly 2.00
Independent Learning UNKNOWN Preparation of practical reports, reviewing lecture material 2 Weekly 2.00
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 5.00 Hours

Module Resources

Non ISBN Literary Resources

Essential Reading

Knappett, J., Craig, R.F.  Craig's Soil Mechanics CRC Press 2012

Recommended Reading


  1. Powrie, W. Soil Mechanics Concepts & Applications Third Edition CRC Press 2013
  2. Smith, I. Elements of Soil Mechanics 6th Edition 2006
  3. Whitlow, R Basic Soil Mechanics Prentice Hall 2001
  4. Bell, F.G. Engineering Geology Butterworth-Heinemann 2007
  5. Matthews, M.C. & Simons, N.E. A Short Course in Geology for Engineers Thomas Telford 2008
  6. Waltham A.C Foundations of Engineering Geology Blackie 1995
Other Resources


Additional Information