Engineering Geology at University Complutense of Madrid: 30 years of postgraduate courses

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1 FIRST INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE on EDUCATION and TRAINING in GEO-ENGINEERING ENGINEERING SCIENCES Constantza, Romania - June 2008 Engineering Geology at University Complutense of Madrid: 30 years of postgraduate courses L.I. González de Vallejo Universidad Complutense de Madrid

2 UNIVERSITY COMPLUTENSE OF MADRID Founded in 1499 Students: 120,000 Engineering Geology and Geological Engineering have been taught at the University Complutense of Madrid during the last 30 years.

3 FACULTY OF GEOLOGY Students: 1,000 Geology: 700 Geological Engineering: 300 Staff: First Degree - Licenciate (BSc) in Geology: 5 years (4 years in the immediate future) - Engineer (BSc) in Geological Engineering: 5 years ( ) - Postgraduate Degrees in Engineering Geology Postgraduate Degrees in Engineering Geology - Diplomat ( ) - MSc Course ( today)

4 ENGINEERING GEOLOGY SUBJECTS BSc. in Geology (5 years): - Introduction to Engineering Geology: 4,5 credits ( 7 ECTS) Bsc.. in Geological Engineering (5 years): - Soil Mechanics - Rock Mechanics - Engineering Geology - Applied Geotechnical Engineering - Construction Techniques

5 POSTGRADUATE COURSES ON ENGINEERING GEOLOGY - Postgraduate Course ( ) - MSc Course ( today) - The first Postgraduate Course in engineering geology in Spain was organized at UCM in This was an introductory course, which provided an introduction to soil and rock mechanics, site investigations and applied engineering geology to civil engineering. - This course expanded over 140 hours, including theoretical and practical lectures. - The number of students ranged from 15 and 20 per year and most of them came from a geological background. After 10 editions, this postgraduate course was transformed in 1990 into an MSc degree in Engineering Geology, lasting two academic years. Nine editions of this MSc have been carried out until 2008.

6 MSc DEGREE on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY (1990 today) - Over 250 students have been awarded with the MSc degree in geological engineering since Requirements to obtain the MSc degree are as follows: - Field and practical work - 3 months of professional practice in consulting or construction companies - Thesis presentation - Examinations

7 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Objectives /1 The MSc Course is based on the principles of engineering geology and its methods to solve geological problems in the project, construction and operation of engineering works, and to prevent and mitigate geological hazards. MAIN OBJECTIVE: TO PROVIDE THEORETICAL AND PRACTICAL TRAINING IN GEOLOGICAL ENGINEERING

8 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Objectives /2 Students who pass the course should be capable to solve the following issues: 1. Where to site a civil engineering facility or industrial plant being geological secure and economically feasible. 2. How to avoid unfavourable geological conditions. 3. How to design foundations under acceptable geological and geotechnical conditions. 4. How to excavate a slope to be stable and economically feasible. 5. How to excavate a tunnel or underground facility to be stable. 6. Availability of geological materials to built dams, embankments, roads, etc.

9 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Objectives /3 7. Ground treatments to prevent or correct seepages, subsidence, settlements, landslides. 8. Under what geological conditions and materials can be stored toxic, urban or radioactive wastes. 9. How to control, prevent or mitigate geological hazards (earthquakes, landslides, etc.) 10. What geologic and geotechnical criteria must be taken into account in land use and urban planning and to mitigate environmental impacts.

10 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Course Profile The MSc Course consists on 500 hours (50 credits), divided into two academic years. The first year is divided in two periods: - Theoretical learning on fundamentals and methods in engineering geology, practical learning on laboratory and practical exercises - Applications of engineering geology to foundations, slopes, tunnels nels and underground excavations, dams and geological hazards. During the second year the following activities are developed: - Training period in a company - Field work - Tutorials - Thesis - Examinations Lecturing on site

11 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Admission Qualified applicants must fulfil the following requirements: - A first degree in geology, earth sciences, civil or mining engineering - No professional experience is required - Fluent Spanish and acceptable level of English language Job Opportunities The main sources of employment for MSc graduates in engineering geology are engineering consulting companies and contractor companies. More than 90% of the engineering geologists/geological engineers usually get a job before the MSc course ends. Several national agencies and technical institutions of Spain also offer opportunities to our postgraduates. This MSc course is also recognized by UNESCO as Advanced Course in Earth Sciences and it is recommended in its international program.

12 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Study Program Soil mechanics. Soils in geological engineering. Geotechnical behaviour of problematic soils. Rock mechanics and geomechanical behaviour of rock masses. Hydrogeology applied to geological engineering. Methods in geological engineering and site investigations. Geotechnical mapping. Applied geological engineering. Construction materials and earth structures. Foundations. Dams and reservoirs. Slopes and surface excavations. Tunnels and underground excavations. Ground geotechnical treatments. Prevention and mitigation of geological hazards. Geological engineering in civil engineering projects. Case studies. Codes and legal regulations in geo-engineering.

13 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Field work During the course several field trips are organized: - One-day visit to sites near Madrid - One or two 5 days long field trips to other regions of Spain and abroad Emphasis is focussed on civil engineering works under construction, e.g. tunnels, motorways, open pit and Underground excavations, etc. Visits are also organized at consulting companies, laboratories and geotechnical contractors. Field trips always raise a great interest and learning achievements. Visit to LNEC, Lisbon

14 SOME EXAMPLES OF TECHNICAL VISITS: - Athens Metro - Lisbon Metro - Vasco de Gama bridge in Lisbon - High-speed railway system in northern Italy including the Bologna-Firence line Field trip to Athens - Vaiont Dam - Tunnels of Guadarrama (28 km long) and Pajares (30 km long) - Madrid Metro Field trip to Italy, Vaiont Dam

15 TECHNICAL VISITS and FIELD WORK Field trip to the north of Italy

16 TECHNICAL VISITS and FIELD WORK Tunnel front excavation, Spain Underground cavern, Italy Dam foundation, Spain

17 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Training activities Training is one of the most important aspects during the course. Training is provided throughout the following activities: - In-house practical work on case histories presented by experienced practitioners in geological and civil engineering. The students have to present reports including solutions and recommendations, which later on are discussed with the lecturers. - Technical visits to engineering firms, contractors and projects under construction. - A TRAINING PERIOD of three months in a company is compulsory for students without previous experience. Course staff organizes this s training period with the help of professional associations. - UCM administrative staff provides to the students an insurance to cover accidents, and a contractual agreement between the student and the employer for this training period. Although it is not stated any economical compensation, most companies provide a basic salary to the students.

18 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Master Thesis One of the requirements to obtain the Master of Science degree is the successful completion of a thesis. The aim is to focus on an important aspect of geological engineering. The student should include a literature review, summary of the state of the art and application to a case history. Students must demonstrate their capacity for analysis and synthesis, good knowledge on the subject and sound scientific basis for technological development and practical applications. Emphasis is also given on the way of presentation, use of appropriate terminology and written style. Thesis must be completed during the second year of the course. MSc theses are evaluated by external examiners.

19 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Students /1 - During the period more than 250 post-graduated students have been awarded by the MSc degree. Average number of students per year has been 29, ranging from 17 to 36 under exceptional conditions. - More than 80% were under 30 years old. > 30 years (17%) < 25 years (39%) - Most of the students (65%) did not had previous experience on engineering geology years (44%) Field trip to Cantabria, Spain, 2007

20 PAÍSES DE PROCEDENCIA 1 st Int.Conf.on EDUCATION and TRAINING in GEO-ENGINEERING SCIENCES MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Students /2-60% of the students were male - More than 90% came from Spain and the rest came from European and Latin American countries Andorra Chile Colombia El Salvador Germany Greece Italy Morocco Panamá Perú Serbia Spain Venezuela Visit to high speed railway tunnel of Pajares, Spain (28 km)

21 MSc on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY RESULTS Academics: - During the period more than 250 post-graduated students have been awarded by the MSc degree. - More than 80% of the students have successfully passed the examinations. - Many of the MSc theses results have been published in journals.

22 RESULTS Employment: - No unemployment exists among the UCM-MSc engineering geologists. Most of them got his/her first job before the end of the course. - A fluent communication between employers and course staff has been an important aspect for the course achievements, and career orientation. - Good integration of UCM-engineering geologists within civil engineering companies, use of a common technical language and jointly cooperation between employers, civil engineers and engineering geologists have been key factors, not only for job opportunities, but also for the excellent acceptance of the new professionals in the engineering industry. - Different inquires among employers, students and practitioners carried out during the last decade support these results.

23 RESEARCH ACTIVITIES and PhD on ENGINEERING GEOLOGY Besides the MSc course, engineering geology at UCM also offers a full program on research leading to obtain the Ph.D. degree and the Certificate of Advances Studies. The main research fields related with engineering geology include the following issues: Engineering geology and rock mechanics applied to tunnelling In situ stress Rock mass classifications Engineering geology of volcanic soils and rocks Earthquake hazard analysis Landslides and slope stability Socio-economic impacts of geological hazards Geotechnical mapping Properties of expansive and over-consolidated clays

24 Thank you very much Mulţumesc umesc foarte mult

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