There are so many students who don’t always know what civil engineering discipline to choose when applying for college, and then, when it becomes time to take their FE Exams, they battle even more as they might have chosen a discipline that does not fit their interests or personality. Therefore, we thought it would be helpful to start a series on each of the 5 civil engineering disciplines to give you a better idea what to expect both in your studies, and FE exams. We will discuss the roles and responsibilities of each one of these disciplines and the skills needed for each discipline, to help you in your decision making process, and in this article (and video above), we will take a look at The Geotechnical Engineering Discipline.
What Do Geotechnical Engineers Do?
Geotechnical engineering is a branch of civil engineering; however, it involves using scientific methods and principles to collect and interpret the physical properties of the ground. Geotechnical engineers are involved in all stages of the design of structures, from concept to construction. Their work is essential in the design and planning process as they assess the integrity of soil, clay, silt, sand, and rock, prior to construction commencing. They start by undertaking a desk (or in office) study, assessing maps, and contacting local authorities. This is followed by a ground (or field) investigation based on the findings of the desk study and involves trial pitting and sampling to uncover any potential issues.