BA6064 - Geotechnical calculation methods


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Home examination
Grade: Letter grades

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
Home examination 100/100 4 hours

Course content

The course provides theoretical knowledge of mechanics and material properties in geotechnical design as well as skills in calculations of specific issues within stability of slopes and embankments and bearing capacity on a total and effective stress basis. Effect of inclined loads and eccentric loads on bearing capacity, time development of settlements, axial capacity of piles, earth pressure against structures, retaining walls and anchoring systems, reinforcement and strengthening of soil as well as the use of lightweight fill materials and elements.

Learning outcome


After the course, you should have knowledge of:

  • Strength of soil expressed in terms of total and effective stresses
  • Principles for determining characteristic strength parameters
  • Principles for determining safety margins according to EC7.
  • Landslides and principles for calculating equilibrium on slopes as well as safety assessments.
  • Mechanisms for sentence development against time.
  • Principles for calculating earth pressure against retaining walls and required dimensions of foundations
  • How piles work in soil and how they are installed.
  • Application of reinforcement and other strengthening of soil to provide increased capacity of construction or improved strength of soil.


After the course, you should be able to use hand calculations to:

  • Assess the stability of a slope for given assumptions about geometry, soil strength and external and internal water pressure conditions
  • Calculate the earth pressure and forces that will act on a vertical wall surface (retaining walls, basement walls and sheet pile walls)
  • Calculate the required width and embedment depth for foundation to be able to accommodate given foundation loads (vertical, horizontal and moments) by direct foundation
  • Calculate the axial bearing capacity and driveability of piles
  • Calculate the effect of reinforcement in support structures and under embankments as well as assess how the strength of the soil can be improved

General competence

After the course, you should be able to:

  • Calculate design earth pressure against vertical walls
  • Calculate the bearing capacity of piles and foundations
  • Assess the stability of slopes, cuttings and embankments
  • Put the knowledge into a larger engineering context

Learning methods and activities

Two compulsory 4-day sessions, with a break between sessions for self-study, practice work and problem solving. Parts of this can be carried out digitally. Subject to a sufficient number of applicants for the course to be completed.

The course is part of NTNU's continuing education portfolio, and has a tuition fee. See our portal for continuing education, NTNU Videre.

Compulsory assignments

  • Attendance
  • Assignment

Specific conditions

Admission to a programme of study is required:
Continuing Education, Faculty of Engineering Science and Technology (EVUIVC0)

Credit reductions

Course code Reduction From To
TBA4105 7.5 AUTUMN 2020
TBA5100 7.5 AUTUMN 2020
TBM4342 7.5 AUTUMN 2022
More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Further education, higher degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  SPRING 2025

Language of instruction: Norwegian

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Technological subjects
Contact information
Course coordinator: Lecturer(s):

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering


Examination arrangement: Home examination

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Spring ORD Home examination 100/100 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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