Course Curriculum

Undergraduate Courses

CE 3300 Geotechnical Engineering

Course Description

Provides a fundamental understanding of the engineering properties and mechanical behavior of soil materials and their main applications in geotechnical engineering practice.  Main course topics: soil classification, compaction, permeability, seepage, in-situ stresses, compressibility (consolidation), and shear strength.

Chapter 01 – Introduction - Rock cycle, Weathering, Origin of Soils, Clay mineralogy.

Chapter 02 - Phase Diagrams & Soil Classification - Weight-volume relationships, Specific gravity, moisture content, Grain size distribution, Stoke’s law, hydrometer analysis, Atterberg limits, Soil Classification Systems (USCS/IS).

Chapter 03 – Compaction - Compaction principles, Standard/modified compaction methods, factors affecting compaction, field compaction methods, factors affecting field compaction, specifications of field compaction.

Chapter 04 – Permeability - Bernoulli’s equation, Darcy’s law, Hydraulic conductivity, equivalent hydraulic conductivity in stratified and compacted soils.

Chapter 05 – Seepage - Laplace equation of continuity, Flow nets, Seepage calculations from flow nets, Uplift pressure under hydraulic structures, Seepage through an earth dam.

Chapter 06- In situ stresses - Effective stress principle; in situ stresses; stresses in saturated soil with upward and downward seepage; seepage force; capillary rise in soils.

 Chapter 07 - Stresses in Soil Mass - Stress state; Mohrs’ circle; stress due to point load line load, strip load, circular load, rectangular load, and embankment load; stress path.

Chapter 08-Compressibility and consolidation of soil - Immediate settlement; 1-D consolidation; normal and overconsolidated clays; primary consolidation settlement; rate of consolidation; secondary consolidation

Chapter 09-Shear strength of soils - Sources of shear strength; Mohr-Coulomb failure criterion; direct shear test; drained and undrained behavior of sands; triaxial test; CD, CU, and UU triaxial tests; drained and undrained behavior of clays; small-strain stiffness

Reference Text Books: 

  • Principles of Geotechnical Engineering by B. M. Das, Seventh Edition, Cengage Learning, 2010.
  • An Introduction to Geotechnical Engineering by R. D. Holtz, W. D. Kovacs and T. C. Sheahan, Second Edition, Pearson, Prentice Hall, 2011.

Other Readings: 

  • Geotechnical Engineering – Principles and Practices by Donald P. Coduto, PHI Learning Private Ltd., (Indian Edition), 2009.
  • Soil Mechanics and Foundations by Muni Budhu, 3rd Edition, Wiley, 2010.