CIE 272: Civil Engineering Measurements & Analysis

Fall 2010


Catalog Description:

Skills for civil and environmental engineering. Map reading and theory of measurement. Numerical analysis and methods. Problem solving using computers.

Instructor's Description:

There are two major emphases in this course: plane surveying and data analysis. These topics represent fundamental tools in civil and environmental engineering. We will build on the experiences of ECS 101 to refine students' problem-solving abilities, and continue the development of logical thinking. Both surveying and data analysis require disciplined, organized approaches to problem solving.

The course includes lectures and weekly laboratory sessions. The first 6-7 weeks of the course will be devoted to the study of surveying. Students will gain hands-on experience with modern surveying equipment. All of the surveying laboratories will be conducted outdoors, rain or shine.

The final 7-8 weeks of the course will be devoted to data analysis. We will revisit some ideas from ECS 101 and freshman mathematics, and develop the techniques by which data are summarized, uncertainties are expressed, functional relationships are derived, and hypotheses are tested. In many respects, these are some of the most important concepts you will learn at Syracuse University.


Teaching Assistants:

Chris E. Johnson

Steven Herman

151G Link Hall

Stacy Ingersoll

Michael Kurker

443-4425 (office)

Zhuang Lin;

443-1243 (fax)

Thomas Maxner

Office Hours: M, W 8:30 - 10:00 AM

Melody Miller



"MRH": Engineering Statistics, 4th Ed., Douglas C. Montgomery, George C. Runger,and Norma F. Hubele. John Wiley & Sons, New York, NY, 2007.

"SB": Engineering Surveying, 6th ed. Wilf Schofield and Mark Breach, Butterworth-Heinemann, Oxford, UK, 2007. (Available electronically through the SU Library web page. To access the book, follow this link and click on the link for "Books 24x7".

Additional References:
Elements of Plane Surveying, Arthur R. Benton Jr. and Philip J. Taetz, McGraw-Hill, 1991.

Surveying: Principles and Applications, Barry F. Kavanagh and S. J. Glenn Bird, Prentice-Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ, 2000.


Grades in CIE 272 will be computed as follows:

Examinations (3)


Homework Exercises


Laboratory Exercises



Attendance Policy:

I will not take attendance at lectures, though I think attendance is critical. If you miss class, it is your responsibility for getting materials for the missed classes. I do not share my notes. I may refuse to help people who are regularly absent. Lab attendance is mandatory. If you miss a lab, you will receive a zero grade for that exercise.

Academic Integrity

Complete academic honesty is expected of all students. Any incidence of academic dishonesty, as defined by the SU Academic Integrity Policy, will result in both course sanctions and formal notification of the College of Engineering and Computer Science and the Syracuse University Office of Academic Integrity. A link to the policy can be found here. In this course, students are allowed and strongly encouraged to study together and to consult each other concerning the homework and laboratory assignments. No collaboration of any kind is allowed during examinations.

Academic Accommodations for Students with Disabilities:

Students who are in need of disability-related academic accommodations must provide a current Accommodation Authorization Letter from the Office of Disability Services (ODS) to the instructor. This letter is obtained by registering with ODS, 804 University Avenue, Room 309, 315-443-4498. The instructor will review, in advance, all disability-related accommodations. Academic accommodations will not be provided retroactively; therefore, planning for accommodations as early as possible is necessary.

Prerequisites by Topic:

Students enrolled in this course should enter with these abilities:

  1. Knowledge of differential and integral calculus (MAT 295; MAT 296 may be taken concurrently).
  2. Basic facility with computers and the World Wide Web (ECS 101).

Course Objectives:


Course Outcomes:

At the completion of this course, the student should be able to:

  1. Generate, analyze, and portray plane surveying data.
    1. Measure distances by taping.
    2. Use a total station for measuring angles, elevations, and horizontal distances.
    3. Understand the basic concepts of the global positioning system (GPS) and its use to determine the positions of points on the ground.
    4. Determine angles, distances, elevations, postions, areas, and volumes from surveying data.

  2. Create high-quality graphical displays of data.
    1. Determine the most appropriate graph type for the graphical display of data.
    2. Create high-quality graphs by hand and using computer software.
    3. Develop quantitative relationships from bivariate graphs.

  3. Carry out appropriate statistical analyses of univariate and bivariate data.
    1. Compute summary statistics (mean, median, variance, etc.)
    2. Plot and use histograms and cumulative frequency plots.
    3. Compute confidence intervals and carry out hypothesis tests on a single variable.
    4. Carry out hypothesis tests comparing the means or variances of two variables.
    5. Perform regression analysis on two variables, including the computation of correlation and hypothesis testing of slopes and intercepts.

  4. Work in teams to collect, analyze, and report data.
    1. Prepare a joint report for a group project.
    2. Negotiate with colleagues to reach consensus decisions.
    3. Present engineering calculations in a clear, effective manner.

Course Topics:

  Types of surveying
  Methods of distance measurement
  Errors in distance measurement
  Errors in leveling
  Angle measurement
  Bearing and azimuth
  Errors in angle measurement
  Closed-loop traverse
  Open traverse (route surveying)
  The global positioning system
  Using coordinates in surveying
  Latitudes and departures
  Computation of areas and volumes
  Compass and map work
  Summary statistics
  Graphical display of data
  Graphical analysis and model-building
  Probability fundamentals
  Discrete and continuous data
  Populations vs. samples
  Normal (Gaussian) distribution
  Confidence intervals
  Linear regression
  Coefficient of determination
  (Easy) non-linear regression
  Hypothesis tests on a single mean
  Hypothesis tests comparing two means (paired and unpaired samples)
  Confidence and prediction intervals in regression
  Hypothesis testing on regression parameters

Course Schedule:

Subject to Change!

Week Of:

Lecture Topics

Lab Exercise


Aug. 30

Introduction, Surveying
Concepts, Distance


SB: 1.1-1.5, 4.1-4.6

Sept. 6

M: Labor Day (No Class or Lab)
Bench Marks, Leveling

F: Eid-Ul-Fitr (No Class or Lab)


SB: 3.1-3.10

Sept. 13

Angles, Bearings


SB: 5.1, 5.2, 5.4-5.6

Sept. 20

Latitude and Departure


SB: 6.1,6.2

Sept. 27

Coordinates, Areas


SB: 6.1, 11.1

Oct. 4

Global Positioning System


SB: 9.1-9.3, 9.8

Oct. 11

Topographic Maps
Data Analysis



Oct. 18

Exam I
Summary Statistics

Excel Basics

MRH: Ch. 1 and 2

Oct. 25

Discrete and
Continuous Data


MRH: 3-1 to 3-7

Nov. 1

Normal Distribution
Confidence Intervals

Frequency Data

MRH: 4-1, 4-2

Nov. 8



MRH: 6-1, 6-2

Nov. 15

Exam II
"Testing" Hypotheses

Correlation and

MRH: 4-3

Nov. 22

Testing a Single Mean
W,F: Thanksgiving Break


MRH: 4-4 to 4-5

Nov. 29

Paired T-test
Two-Sample T-test


MRH: 5-1 to 5-5

Dec. 6

Satterthwaite Test
Philosophical Issues



*** Exam III will be held Thursday, December 16, 3:00-5:00 PM.***

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