Location

Chicago, Illinois

Session Start Date

4-29-2013

Session End Date

5-4-2013

Abstract

One of the challenges of civil engineering practice in central and western Pennsylvania, as well as neighboring states is the variety of geotechnical problems encountered when trying to develop or improve a given site. Slope stability issues, mine subsidence, expansive soils and slag fills, and karst landforms are some of the more common geotechnical problems that might be encountered at a given site. While undergraduate courses and supporting textbooks generally cover the basic principles of geotechnical engineering, time and reference materials necessary to cover some of the specific geotechnical problems commonly encountered in local professional practice are often not available. The end result is that graduates are exposed to the basics of geotechnical engineering with little appreciation of how the principles are applied in local engineering practice. To help improve undergraduate students’ understanding of the breadth and challenges of geotechnical engineering projects in the local area, an oral presentation assignment was implemented using local case histories published in the literature. Student teams presented to the class a summary of their assigned case history. A survey assessed the effectiveness of the assignment, gathered student perceptions of the benefits of the activity and solicited suggestions for improvement.

Department(s)

Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Appears In

International Conference on Case Histories in Geotechnical Engineering

Meeting Name

Seventh Conference

Publisher

Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

4-29-2013

Document Version

Final Version

Rights

© 2013 Missouri University of Science and Technology, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

File Type

text

Language

English

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Apr 29th, 12:00 AM May 4th, 12:00 AM

Using Local Case Histories in Undergraduate Teaching

Chicago, Illinois

One of the challenges of civil engineering practice in central and western Pennsylvania, as well as neighboring states is the variety of geotechnical problems encountered when trying to develop or improve a given site. Slope stability issues, mine subsidence, expansive soils and slag fills, and karst landforms are some of the more common geotechnical problems that might be encountered at a given site. While undergraduate courses and supporting textbooks generally cover the basic principles of geotechnical engineering, time and reference materials necessary to cover some of the specific geotechnical problems commonly encountered in local professional practice are often not available. The end result is that graduates are exposed to the basics of geotechnical engineering with little appreciation of how the principles are applied in local engineering practice. To help improve undergraduate students’ understanding of the breadth and challenges of geotechnical engineering projects in the local area, an oral presentation assignment was implemented using local case histories published in the literature. Student teams presented to the class a summary of their assigned case history. A survey assessed the effectiveness of the assignment, gathered student perceptions of the benefits of the activity and solicited suggestions for improvement.