Development of an Engineering Geology field trip for Civil Engineering students

Richard Ghail, Jamie Standing

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This paper describes and discusses the various elements of a one-week Engineering Geology field trip that has been developed for second-year undergraduate students studying Civil Engineering at Imperial College London. It is an essential component of the education of civil engineers and, as such, is a requirement of the accreditation defined by the Institution of Civil Engineers Joint Board of Moderators (ICE JBM). The trip is structured to develop the students' awareness of geological features and their ability to record and sketch key observations in the field. Having described the geological features, the students are prompted to think about consequent potential engineering hazards relating to them and also the influence of human activity, past and present, on the ground and environment. During the course of the week the students develop their observational and logging skills, with constant staff feedback both outdoors and during summary student presentation sessions in the evenings. A marked progressive improvement has been noted as a consequence of this approach. On the final day of the week the students have to map a coastal section, observing and recording the stratigraphy and significant features such as bedding, discontinuities and faulting, with the latter quantified by measuring quantities such as dip, strike and plunge, as appropriate. The students' work, assessed as part of the field trip, is completed by them and handed in just before final departure at the end of the week, most of it being completed in the field.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalQuarterly Journal of Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology
Publication statusPublished - 12 Sept 2019

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