Yearbooks

Programme: BEngHons (Geotechnical Engineering)

Code Faculty Department
12240215 Faculty of Engineering, Built Environment and Information Technology Department: Civil Engineering
Credits Duration NQF level SAQA ID
Minimum duration of study: 1 year Total credits: 128 NQF level:  08 SAQA ID:  13950

Programme information

Refer also to G16-G29.

The curriculum is determined in consultation with the relevant heads of departments. A student is required to pass modules to the value of at least 128 credits.

The degree is awarded on the basis of examinations only.

Admission requirements

  1. BEng degree awarded by the University of Pretoria or relevant four-year bachelor’s degree in engineering that the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) regards as acceptable for registration as a candidate engineer and for eventual registration as a professional engineer
  2. An entrance examination may be required
  3. Comprehensive intellectual CV

Examinations and pass requirements

Refer also to G18 and G26.

  1. The examination in each module for which a student is registered, takes place during the normal examination period after the conclusion of lectures (i.e. October/November or May/June).
  2. G18(1) applies with the understanding that under exceptional circumstances an extension of a maximum of three years may be approved: provided that the Dean, on reccommendation of the relevant head of department, may approve a stipulated limited extension of this period.
  3. A student must obtain at least 50% in an examination for each module where no semester or year mark is required. A module may only be repeated once.
  4. In modules where semester or year marks are awarded, a minimum examination mark of 40% and a final mark of 50% is required.
  5. No supplementary or special examinations are granted at postgraduate level.

Pass with distinction

A student passes with distinction if he or she obtains a weighted average of at least 75% (not rounded) in the first 128 credits for which he or she has registered (excluding modules which were discontinued timeously). The degree is not awarded with distinction if a student fails any one module (excluding modules which were discontinued timeously). The degree must be completed within the prescribed study period. 

Minimum credits: 128

Core modules

  • Module content:

    A research term paper will be prepared.

    Solution of confined and unconfined seepage problems using the methods of fragments, finite differences and finite elements.  Numerical solutions of consolidation problems and secondary compression.  Slope stability analysis methods.  The point estimate method.  Monte Carlo simulation.

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  • Module content:

    A research term paper will be prepared.

    Introduction to critical state soil mechanics.  Stress and strain invariants.  Stress paths.  State boundary surfaces including Roscoe and Hvorslev surfaces.  Cam clay model.  Application of geotechnical constitutive models in finite element analysis.

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  • Module content:

    A research term paper will be prepared.

    Test procedures and interpretation of; Standard Penetration Test (SPT), Cone Penetration Test (CPT), Piezocone (CPTU) and seismic methods.  Theory, application and interpretation of advanced geotechnical laboratory tests.  Laboratory Instrumentation and calibration.  Stress and strain conditions for laboratory tests.  Triaxial stress space, stress paths.  Triaxial tests, direct shear tests, oedometer test and Rowe cell test.

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  • Module content:

    *This is a compulsory module.

    The course will require all honours students to conduct research in an appropriate field of civil engineering, linked to the main discipline in which the student specializes for their honours degree.

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Elective modules

  • Module content:

    A research term paper will be prepared.

    The course will apply some of the basics theories and methodologies in statistics and operations research to solve common civil engineering problems. The course seeks to demonstrate the use and application in the civil engineering field. Each of the applications seeks to determine how best to design and operate a system, usually under conditions requiring the allocation of scarce resources.  Emphasis will be on the applications of these methods in common civil engineering practice. Some of the applications will include; optimum network design, maximum flow problem, project scheduling, queuing theory, probabilistic analysis, Markov chain applications, etc.

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  • Module content:

    In the first part of this course, numerical procedures and some underlying theory for solving systems of equations, eigenvalue problems, integration, approximation and boundary value problems will be discussed. The second part of the course covers general finite element theory, discretization aspects related to geometry, nodes and numbering, element type and shape, interpolation functions, formulation of element characteristic matrices and vectors for elasticity problems, assembly and solution of the finite element equations, modelling procedures and results processing. The student will use Finite Element software to apply the theory that was covered in the course for solving typical Civil Engineering problems.

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The regulations and rules for the degrees published here are subject to change and may be amended after the publication of this information.

The General Academic Regulations (G Regulations) and General Student Rules apply to all faculties and registered students of the University, as well as all prospective students who have accepted an offer of a place at the University of Pretoria. On registering for a programme, the student bears the responsibility of ensuring that they familiarise themselves with the General Academic Regulations applicable to their registration, as well as the relevant faculty-specific and programme-specific regulations and information as stipulated in the relevant yearbook. Ignorance concerning these regulations will not be accepted as an excuse for any transgression, or basis for an exception to any of the aforementioned regulations.

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