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CIVL4903: Civil Engineering Design (2014 - Semester 2)

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Unit: CIVL4903: Civil Engineering Design (6 CP)
Mode: Normal-Day
On Offer: Yes
Level: Senior Advanced
Faculty/School: Civil Engineering
Unit Coordinator/s: A/Prof Reid, Stuart
Session options: Semester 2
Versions for this Unit:
Campus: Camperdown/Darlington
Pre-Requisites: None.
Brief Handbook Description: This is a fourth year core unit of study for the degree in Civil Engineering and fourth year elective for the degree in Project Engineering and Management (Civil).

The objective of this unit is to give students an appreciation of the role of the designer in the development of Civil Engineering projects. At the end of this unit, students will have developed an understanding of the design philosophy. They will gain this through their involvement in a number of exercises which cover the design sequence from concept to documentation.

The syllabus comprises: design sequence beginning with a 'brief' and including definition, value and criteria selection; generation of proposals; analysis of proposals; selection of design; development of details of a particular design selected; feasibility studies and examination of existing works; study of design projects by stages, including details of some aspects.

This unit is under the direction of an engineer in professional practice in cooperation with other professional practitioners and members of the academic staff. Lectures and exercises on the interaction between civil engineering and architectural design and practice are included in the unit.
Assumed Knowledge: CIVL3205 AND CIVL3206.
Additional Notes: NOTE: From 2015 onwards CIVL3205 and CIVL3206 will be prerequisites for this unit.
Lecturer/s: Hewitt, John
Timetable: CIVL4903 Timetable
Time Commitment:
# Activity Name Hours per Week Sessions per Week Weeks per Semester
1 Lecture 1.00 1 12
2 Tutorial 3.00 1 12
3 Independent Study 5.00 1 13
T&L Activities: Tutorial: group work on design challenges - facilitated by lecturer and tutors

Independent Study: independent study to complete design assignments and to reinforce learning from lectures and tutorial work

Attributes listed here represent the key course goals (see Course Map tab) designated for this unit. The list below describes how these attributes are developed through practice in the unit. See Learning Outcomes and Assessment tabs for details of how these attributes are assessed.

Attribute Development Method Attribute Developed
design exercises to formulate and solve design problems at the level of a trainee engineer Design (Level 3)
exercises requiring the application of appropriate discipline specific expertise to develop solutions to design problems Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 3)
In order to complete design tasks students must obtain and interpret information from a variety of sources Information Seeking (Level 3)
preparation of documentation for design assignments Communication (Level 3)
preparation of design assignments to meet expected professional practice requirements for a trainee engineer Professional Conduct (Level 2)
group projects requiring management of individual contributions for successful completion Project and Team Skills (Level 2)

For explanation of attributes and levels see Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table.

Learning outcomes are the key abilities and knowledge that will be assessed in this unit. They are listed according to the course goal supported by each. See Assessment Tab for details how each outcome is assessed.

Design (Level 3)
1. ability to formulate and solve structural design problems
2. ability to formulate and solve geotechnical engineering problems
3. ability to formulate and solve design problems for civil engineering works
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 3)
4. ability to apply appropriate discipline specific expertise to develop solutions to design problems
Communication (Level 3)
5. ability to prepare documentation to communicate results of design tasks (appropriate for engineering practice)
Project and Team Skills (Level 2)
6. Ability to manage and contribute to successful completion of group projects
Professional Conduct (Level 2)
7. ability to meet expected professional practice requirements for a trainee engineer
Assessment Methods:
# Name Group Weight Due Week Outcomes
1 Assignment Yes 70.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7,
2 Final Exam No 25.00 Exam Period 1, 4,
3 Artwork No 5.00 Week 3 5,
Assessment Description: Assignment: Series of small-group design assignments.

Artwork: Preparation of a work of art to satisfy a design brief.

Final Exam: Final examination.

Students must achieve a final exam result of at least 48%, as well as a total assessment of at least 50% to be awarded a passing grade in CIVL4903.
Grade Type Description
Standards Based Assessment Final grades in this unit are awarded at levels of HD for High Distinction, DI (previously D) for Distinction, CR for Credit, PS (previously P) for Pass and FA (previously F) for Fail as defined by University of Sydney Assessment Policy. Details of the Assessment Policy are available on the Policies website at . Standards for grades in individual assessment tasks and the summative method for obtaining a final mark in the unit will be set out in a marking guide supplied by the unit coordinator.
Policies & Procedures: See the policies page of the faculty website at for information regarding university policies and local provisions and procedures within the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies.
Recommended Reference/s: Note: References are provided for guidance purposes only. Students are advised to consult these books in the university library. Purchase is not required.
  • Australian Standards
Note on Resources: The unit is of a wide-ranging nature, and all text and reference books from previous and current courses have relevance. In addition, reference will be made to many codes and guides to practice, of which the following list covers only the structural field: Current SAA Codes, Manuals and Specifications, particularly AS4100 - Steel Structures Code, AS3600 - Concrete Structures Code, AS1554 - Manual Welding (Part I), AS/NZS1170 - Loading Code (Parts I and II).

Note that the "Weeks" referred to in this Schedule are those of the official university semester calendar

Week Description
Week 1 Design problem
Week 2 Design problem
Week 3 Design problem (artwork)
Assessment Due: Artwork
Week 4 Design problem
Week 5 Design problem
Week 6 Design problem
Week 7 Design problem
Week 8 Design problem
Week 9 Design problem
Week 10 Labour Day Holiday
Week 11 Design problem
Week 12 Design problem
Week 13 Design problem
Exam Period Final exam
Assessment Due: Final Exam

Course Relations

The following is a list of courses which have added this Unit to their structure.

Course Year(s) Offered
Civil 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Civil Engineering / Arts 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil Engineering / Commerce 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil Engineering / Design in Architecture 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil Engineering / Medical Science 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil Engineering / Project Management 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil Engineering / Science 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil (Construction Management) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Civil (Environmental) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Civil (Geotechnical) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Civil Engineering / Law 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Civil (Structures) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Civil / Arts 2015
Civil / Commerce 2015
Civil / Design in Architecture 2015
Civil / Medical Science 2015
Civil / Project Management 2015
Civil / Science 2015
Project Engineering and Management (Civil) 2010, 2011, 2012
Project Engineering and Management (Civil) / Science 2011

Course Goals

This unit contributes to the achievement of the following course goals:

Attribute Practiced Assessed
Design (Level 3) Yes 40.5%
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 3) Yes 26.5%
Information Seeking (Level 3) Yes 0%
Communication (Level 3) Yes 19%
Project and Team Skills (Level 2) Yes 7%
Professional Conduct (Level 2) Yes 7%

These goals are selected from Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table which defines overall goals for courses where this unit is primarily offered. See Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table for details of the attributes and levels to be developed in the course as a whole. Percentage figures alongside each course goal provide a rough indication of their relative weighting in assessment for this unit. Note that not all goals are necessarily part of assessment. Some may be more about practice activity. See Learning outcomes for details of what is assessed in relation to each goal and Assessment for details of how the outcome is assessed. See Attributes for details of practice provided for each goal.