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Course Description

Spread Footings: LRFD Design and Construction

PROGRAM AREA: Geotechnical
Instructor-led Training (ILT)Instructor-led Training (ILT)
Calendar Year
Host Price
2 Days
1.2 Units
$775 Per Participant

TRAINING LEVEL: Intermediate

CLASS SIZE: Minimum: 20 Maximum: 30


This updated course (January 2012) replaces NHI training 132037 Shallow Foundations, which was developed in 2001. Designed in accordance with the AASHTO Bridge LRFD Specification, 5th Ed., 2010, the course describes basic principles and state-of-the-practice analysis, load and resistance factor design (LRFD) procedures, and construction procedures for shallow foundations in soil and rock with particular application to transportation facilities.

The main topics covered are LRFD procedures for spread footings, vertical stress distribution, tolerable settlement criteria, settlement criteria in coarse-grained soils, settlement in fine-grained soils, time rate of consolidation settlement in fine-grained soils, bearing resistance in soil and rock, sliding resistance in soil and rock, problematic soils and ground improvement techniques, and inspection and construction monitoring methods for spread footings. Group exercises are interspersed throughout the course, enabling participants to be actively involved in the learning experience. This course provides FHWA recommended technical guidance in accordance with standard of practice for design and construction of spread footings for LRFD.


Upon completion of the course, participants will be able to:

  • List the key steps in the design of spread footings
  • Identify common significant construction points for an abutment footing
  • Compute settlement of spread footings at service limit states
  • Use the bearing capacity equation to evaluate the nominal bearing resistance of spread footings at strength limit state
  • Recognize the impact of each parameter on the calculated bearing resistance
  • Estimate nominal bearing resistance for spread footings on rock
  • List the ground improvement techniques that may be used to improve problematic soils
  • Identify key geotechnical construction activities as they relate to spread footings


This course is intended for geotechnical professionals, foundation designers, highway/bridge engineers, and project engineers who are involved in the analysis, design, construction, and maintenance of spread footings for surface transportation facilities. The target audience may also include FHWA, State, and local highway agency employees, college and university faculty, and consultant engineers/geologists who are or will be involved in the research, design, construction and maintenance of spread footings/shallow foundations.

If you have questions about this NHI training, please contact NHI at or 877.558.6873.


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Host this Course

The National Highway Institute (NHI) has been accredited as an Accredited Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET). In obtaining this accreditation, NHI has demonstrated that it complies with the ANSI/IACET Standard which is recognized internationally as a standard of good practice. As a result of their Accredited Provider status, NHI is authorized to offer IACET CEUs for its programs that qualify under the ANSI/IACET Standard.


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