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Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering: Innovative Solutions in Modeling, Design, and Education


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Shawn Griffiths, Ph.D.
  -Shawn Griffiths

“I believe in teaching engineers to teach themselves through asking questions and seeking answers. Attitude and hard work are the two most important ingredients in successful learning. As such, I strive to have a classroom that is filled with ideas, questions, and a positive environment. I also believe school is the place to make mistakes, and I encourage students to be brave enough to “try, try again,” until they succeed. In my program, we work hard and enjoy what we do. We value professionalism, quality research, and a balanced life outside of the classroom.”

Shawn teaching - writing on boardCourses

Soil Mechanics (CE 3600)
Nearly all civil engineering projects begin in or on the soil. This class covers the fundamentals necessary to understand soil and how it behaves. The emphasis in this class includes soil stresses, fluid flow, settlement and consolidation, soil classification, and includes a lab section where soils are tested. This class is a pre-requisite to all other geotechnical engineering classes offered at the University of Wyoming.

Geotechnical Engineering (CE 4630/ CE 5700-07)
This class covers a broad range of topics in geotechnical engineering including; soil improvement techniques, retaining structures, ground water monitoring and control, as well as tiebacks and anchors. Guest lectures from local practitioners are included in the class as well as a field trip to a local project involving some type of soil improvement/modification. The class reinforces self-learning habits through a research project and presentation.

Shawn teaching with lab equipment in foregroundGeotechnical Earthquake Engineering (CE 5640)
The non-homogenous and lateral variability in soil deposits makes modeling soil behavior difficult, especially when considering earthquake loads. Additionally geotechnical earthquake engineering requires some understanding of other fields of study including; seismology, data transform analyses, geology, mechanics, and in some cases structural response. This class exposes students to the fundamentals of geotechnical earthquake engineering, with an emphasis on soil dynamics, and site response analyses.

Contact Us

Civil & Architectural Engineering

EN 3074

Dept. 3295

1000 E. University Ave.

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307)766-2390


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1000 E. University Ave. Laramie, WY 82071
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