Introduction to

Course Syllabus
CLASS SESSIONS
Lecture: Tuesday and Thursday, 11:4012:55pm, online until further notice
Lab Session: Monday OR Wednesday, 1:102:25pm
INSTRUCTOR
Professor: Steve Sun, 614 Mudd, wsun@columbia.edu
Office Hour: Friday 3:005:00PM or by appointment
TEACHING ASSISTANT
Hyoung Suk Suh. h.suh@columbia.edu
Office Hour: TBA
TEXTBOOK
COURSE DESCRIPTION
The objective of this course is to present the fundamental principles of soil mechanics that are essential for engineering practice and to prepare students for more advanced study on geotechnical engineering and geomechanics. We will cover the methods to classify soil for construction projects, procedures to compress soils for construction of roads and embankments, basic tools such as linear algebra and Mohr circle to perform stress analysis for foundations, dams, and retailing walls, and the effective stress principle and shear strength analysis for design problems and consolidation process to estimate settlement.
PREREQUISITES
ENME E3133 or equivalent course(s). Linear algebra and mechanics of materials.
COURSE LEARNING OBJECTIVES
Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:
ASSESSMENT AND GRADING POLICY
Grades will be based on:
Laboratory Report..................................................... 20%
Homework................................................................. 20%
Online Quiz 1 ............................................................ 10%
Online Quiz 2 ............................................................ 10%
Online Quiz 3 ............................................................ 10%
Online Quiz 4 ............................................................ 10%
Comprehensive Final Exam....................................... 20%
COURSE OUTLINE
LABORATORY SESSIONS
Laboratories will be held at Carleton Lab. Lab reports from each individual student will be due exactly one week after the lab session. The ability to correctly interpret results from experiments and understand the limitations of such interpretation is crucial for being a successful engineer. As a result,
lab attendance is compulsory. Students are required to attend one of the two lab sessions on Monday OR Wednesday.
EXAMINATION
The pandemic has led to significant difficulties to administrate exams fairly while balancing the stress imposed on the students as well as the protection of privacy. We will have the comprehensive final exam in a video form in which students will be given 3 days to finish the exam but we require to explain each individual answer they provided.
HOMEWORK
One homework assignment will be given every two weeks. There will be 7 homework assignments. They will be due exactly oneweek after the assignment is given. Homework must be submitted online. Late homework and lab reports will receive a 50% penalty if submitted within one week after deadline, and will not be accepted thereafter under any circumstance.
POLICIES AND EXPECTATIONS
Academic Integrity
Students are required to adhere to the Codes of Conduct, Community Standard and Academic Integrity, available online at http://apam.columbia.edu/files/seasdepts/appliedphysicsandappliedmath/pdffiles/SEAS_conduct.pdf
Disability Access
In order to receive disabilityrelated academic accommodations, students must first be registered with the Office of Disability Services (ODS). Students who have, or think they may have a disability are invited to contact ODS for a confidential discussion at 212.854.2388 (V) 212.854.2378 (TTY), or by email at disability@columbia.edu. If you have already registered with ODS, please speak to your instructor to ensure that s/he has been notified of your recommended accommodations by Lillian Morales (lm31@columbia.edu), the School’s liaison to the Office of Disability Services.
Lecture: Tuesday and Thursday, 11:4012:55pm, online until further notice
Lab Session: Monday OR Wednesday, 1:102:25pm
INSTRUCTOR
Professor: Steve Sun, 614 Mudd, wsun@columbia.edu
Office Hour: Friday 3:005:00PM or by appointment
TEACHING ASSISTANT
Hyoung Suk Suh. h.suh@columbia.edu
Office Hour: TBA
TEXTBOOK
 An Introduction to Geotechnical Engineering, R.D. Holtz, W.D. Kovacs, T.C. Sheahan, Prentice Hall, 2nd edition, 2010 (1st edition acceptable).
 Supplement materials will be available in Coursework
COURSE DESCRIPTION
The objective of this course is to present the fundamental principles of soil mechanics that are essential for engineering practice and to prepare students for more advanced study on geotechnical engineering and geomechanics. We will cover the methods to classify soil for construction projects, procedures to compress soils for construction of roads and embankments, basic tools such as linear algebra and Mohr circle to perform stress analysis for foundations, dams, and retailing walls, and the effective stress principle and shear strength analysis for design problems and consolidation process to estimate settlement.
PREREQUISITES
ENME E3133 or equivalent course(s). Linear algebra and mechanics of materials.
COURSE LEARNING OBJECTIVES
Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:
 Be able a basic understanding of the natural materials.
 Be able to conduct laboratory tests and interpret experiential data independently.
 Understand the responsibility of geotechnical engineers through case studies.
ASSESSMENT AND GRADING POLICY
Grades will be based on:
Laboratory Report..................................................... 20%
Homework................................................................. 20%
Online Quiz 1 ............................................................ 10%
Online Quiz 2 ............................................................ 10%
Online Quiz 3 ............................................................ 10%
Online Quiz 4 ............................................................ 10%
Comprehensive Final Exam....................................... 20%
COURSE OUTLINE
 Overview and brief history of geotechnical engineering
 Historical background
 Basic definition
 Index and classification properties of soil
 Compaction
 Hydraulic properties of soil
 Permeability and seepage of porous media
 Darcy’s law
 Permeability estimation
 Flow nets
 Mechanical properties of soil
 Mohr’s circle, Stress at a point
 Shear strength of drained soil
 MohrCoulomb failure criteria
 Lateral pressures and retaining structures
 Hydromechanical properties of soil
 Effective stress theory
 Onedimensional consolidation
LABORATORY SESSIONS
Laboratories will be held at Carleton Lab. Lab reports from each individual student will be due exactly one week after the lab session. The ability to correctly interpret results from experiments and understand the limitations of such interpretation is crucial for being a successful engineer. As a result,
lab attendance is compulsory. Students are required to attend one of the two lab sessions on Monday OR Wednesday.
 Grain size analysis
 Atterberg limits
 Constant head permeability test
 Drained direct shear test
 Drained Consolidated Triaxial compression test
EXAMINATION
The pandemic has led to significant difficulties to administrate exams fairly while balancing the stress imposed on the students as well as the protection of privacy. We will have the comprehensive final exam in a video form in which students will be given 3 days to finish the exam but we require to explain each individual answer they provided.
HOMEWORK
One homework assignment will be given every two weeks. There will be 7 homework assignments. They will be due exactly oneweek after the assignment is given. Homework must be submitted online. Late homework and lab reports will receive a 50% penalty if submitted within one week after deadline, and will not be accepted thereafter under any circumstance.
POLICIES AND EXPECTATIONS
Academic Integrity
Students are required to adhere to the Codes of Conduct, Community Standard and Academic Integrity, available online at http://apam.columbia.edu/files/seasdepts/appliedphysicsandappliedmath/pdffiles/SEAS_conduct.pdf
Disability Access
In order to receive disabilityrelated academic accommodations, students must first be registered with the Office of Disability Services (ODS). Students who have, or think they may have a disability are invited to contact ODS for a confidential discussion at 212.854.2388 (V) 212.854.2378 (TTY), or by email at disability@columbia.edu. If you have already registered with ODS, please speak to your instructor to ensure that s/he has been notified of your recommended accommodations by Lillian Morales (lm31@columbia.edu), the School’s liaison to the Office of Disability Services.
Online Course Materials



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