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2010/1 Module Catalogue
 Module Code: ENGM224 Module Title: GEOTECHNICAL ENGINEERING 2
Module Provider: Civil, Chemical & Enviromental Eng Short Name: ENGM224
Level: M Module Co-ordinator: WOODS RI Dr (C, C & E Eng)
Number of credits: 15 Number of ECTS credits: 7.5
Module Availability
Assessment Pattern

Assessment Pattern


Unit(s) of Assessment


Weighting Towards Module Mark (%)


Unseen examination






·          Design of a slope in fractured rock


·          Design of an earth-retaining structure



Qualifying Condition(s)


An overall mark of 50% is required to pass the module.

Module Overview



Completion of the progress requirements of Level HE3 and modules ENG1017, ENG2075 and ENG3146.

Module Aims

Module Aims


To provide students with:


·         an understanding of the failure mechanisms for rock slopes


·         a knowledge of the geotechnical parameters for rock slope design


·         an understanding of the basic computational methods used in rock slope design


·         a knowledge of construction techniques and associated design methods for some modern earth-retaining systems, with a particular focus on excavation support and bridge abutments


Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes


Upon successful completion of the module, students will be able to:


·         identify and classify landslip mechanisms in rock masses.

·         carry out kinematic feasibility analysis for rock slope failure mechanisms

·         carry out computations for plane failure in rock

·         design a simple cut slope in rock

·         identify relevant design limit states for an earth-retaining structure

·         carry out earth pressure calculations for gravity and embedded walls

·         design a braced excavation and estimate adjacent ground movements

·         design a reinforced soil retaining wall


Module Content
Module Content


Rock Slope Engineering


classification of slope failures


moment and force equilibrium analysis


selection of parameters


methods of stabilisation


design of rock slopes


characterisation of rock masses


failure mechanisms in rock slopes


remedial measures


Earth-Retaining Structures


basic design considerations


embedded wall design and construction


support systems


reinforced soil


influence and control of groundwater


estimation of ground movements

Methods of Teaching/Learning

Methods of Teaching/Learning


33 hours of lectures/tutorial classes, and 117 hours independent learning.

Total student learning time 150 hours.

Selected Texts/Journals

The module is supported by comprehensive printed notes; further reading includes:


Essential reading




Required reading


Managing Health and Safety in Construction, Construction (Design & Management) Regulations 2007. Approved Code of Practice L144 HSB Books 2007 ISBN 978 0 7176 6223 4.


Recommended background reading


Bond A and Harris A, Decoding Eurocode 7, Taylor and Francis, 2008. (ISBN 978-0415409483)


Clayton CRI, Matthews MC and Simons NE, Site Investigation, 2nd ed, Blackwell Science, 1995.  (ISBN 06320 29080) [Available as a free download from]


Clayton CRI, Milititsky J and Woods RI, Earth Pressure and Earth-Retaining Structures, 2nd ed, Blackie, 1993.  (ISBN 978-0751400670)


Simons NE, Menzies BK and Matthews MC. A Short Course in Soil and Rock Slope Engineering, Thomas Telford, 2001.  (ISBN 978-0727728715)


Wyllie DC and Mah CW, Rock Slope Engineering: Civil and Mining, 4th ed, Spon, 2004. (ISBN 978-0415280013)


BS8002:1994 Code of practice for earth retaining structures, British Standards Institution.


BS 8081:1989 Code of practice for ground anchorages, British Standards Institution.


BS EN 1997 Eurocode 7 Geotechnical Design, British Standards Institution. [Available as a free download from BSI online]


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