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Guidelines for Geotechnical Reports

John Huang, Ph.D., PE and John Poullain, PE

This three-hour online course discusses guidelines and recommendations for developing geotechnical reports. GTRs consist of preliminary (data) reports and final (design and P&S) reports. This course primarily covers data reports and the specific information required for subsurface soil, rock and water conditions to be presented in a project report. Also presented are review checklists useful for preparing accurate reports, which include elements such as site investigations, embankments and excavations, structural foundations and material sites. The student will gain an understanding of the types of subsurface investigations and the requirements for the minimum number of borings, depths, and spacing of borings, samplings and for testing for various types of construction projects and types of soil.

The course covers the development of geotechnical reports for the preliminary and design stages of a project. The importance of the GTR and thorough subsurface investigations is stressed. Additional costs may result if the investigations are inadequate and the presentation or interpretation of subsurface conditions is incomplete in the report. The design of foundations for buildings, roadways, excavations, and embankments requires a complete understanding of soil strength; soil characteristics, problem soils and how soil behaves under imposed loads. Drilling and coring provide the necessary samples for laboratory tests, for in-situ field-testing and for the detailed subsurface record, the boring log and profile presented in the GTR.

From the initiation of a project, subsurface investigations progress through several phases from the concept to construction and to operation and maintenance. Initially the investigations are general and cover data gathering for subsurface conditions. As the project develops from the planning and concept phases to plans and specifications for construction the reports are more detailed for design and interpretation of subsurface conditions. It is important to follow established criteria and guidelines in order to select the appropriate drilling, sampling and testing methods given the expense of subsurface exploration.

This course includes a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.

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NY PE & PLS: You must choose courses that are technical in nature or related to matters of laws and ethics contributing to the health and welfare of the public. NY Board does not accept courses related to office management, risk management, leadership, marketing, accounting, financial planning, real estate, and basic CAD. Specific course topics that are on the borderline and are not acceptable by the NY Board have been noted under the course description on our website.