1.364 | Fall 2003 | Graduate

Advanced Geotechnical Engineering



Prof. Andrew Whittle


This course describes the application of soil mechanics in the analysis and design of foundations (shallow and deep) and earth retaining structures. The lectures include an overview of geotechnical site investigation methods and in situ tests used to estimate engineering parameters. The course emphasizes the importance of parameter selection in calculations of ultimate and serviceability limit state calculations for both shallow and deep foundations, and discusses methods of soil improvement. The section on earth retaining structures considers systems ranging from gravity walls to composite construction (reinforced earth), from structural support to field monitoring of excavations (bracing, tieback anchors etc.).


1.031 (or equivalent)
Co-registration: 1.361


There are no required textbooks for this course. Instead, students rely on the course notes.

Organization of Course


Lectures: 3 sessions / week, 1 hour / session


There will be 5 homework assignments which will provide practice in applying the analysis methods described in class. There will also be a 3 hour final exam.

Term Paper

The term paper is intended to provide an opportunity to learn more about aspects of a selected geotechnical problem. A list of possible projects will be distributed during the second week of classes. Each student must submit a one page outline of their proposed paper by Lecture 10. The final written paper must be submitted by Lecture 35.


Homeworks 30%
Term Paper 30%
Final Exam 40%

Course Info

As Taught In
Fall 2003
Learning Resource Types
Design Assignments
Written Assignments