Professional Master Program in Geotechnical Engineering and Management (PME-GEM) - Intake 2017
Start time: 16/09/2017


Master Program in Geotechnical Engineering and Management (GEM) emphasizes on solving of geotechnical problems related to soft and thick clay deposits facing infrastructure development of major cities in the Red River and Mekong delta (i.e., Hanoi, HCM City, Can Tho etc)., and construction of oil and gas facilities on the coastal areas.

The participants will be able to learn the up-to-date knowledge in geotechnical engineering and management for infrastructure development projects, including site investigation, geoexploration, soil characterization, soil improvement, tunneling in soft ground, foundation design, computational geotechnics, mitigation of the geo-hazards.

Offered by one of the most prestigious geotechnical engineering programs in Asia, the PME-GEM program  caters for the major geotechnical and construction companies (local and overseas) operating in Vietnam.


The program was first launched on April 2009 in HCM city with students from many well-known companies in the South of Vienam, (i.e., Tedisouth, PortCoast, HEC II, Technical World, Nam Khang, CDCo Consultant company, Gia Doan Construction and Trading Co. Ltd). Following the succeses of the first, the second batches and the third. The fifth intake is going to be opened in August 2017.

Notable features
1. Focus of the program

   - Advanced site characterization for mega infrastructure projects
  -Engineered soils and rocks including modern techniques for underground space development, tunneling, ground improvement.
  - Mitigation of geotechnical hazards related to infrastructure development (land    subsidence, slope stability, coastal and river bank erosion etc.)
  - Management of infrastructure project
  - Internship at major geotechnical companies in the SE Asia

    2. Resources and Management

        - Faculty from the School of Engineering and Technology (SET), Asian Institute of Technology
        - Highly qualified and experienced invited lecturers, high-ranking officers from prominent construction companies and projects
        - Operation follows the procedure approved by AIT for Two-Stage and -     Professional Program in Vietnam.

        Program structure

        Students who expect to obtain Professional Masters of Engineering (PME) degree in Geotechnical Engineering and Management (GEM) will need to complete a 33-credit curriculum, consisting of 24 credits of course work and 9 credits of project work and/or customized courses over a period of 12 months

        For the convenience of working conditions, each course of 3 credits will be delivered in 45 hours. In most cases, the students will complete 45 hours intensively in the evenings and weekends from Saturday to the Saturday of the following week.

        The program is designed in such a way that provides flexible options for students who would not have favorable conditions to support his/her study; particularly it consists of three components:

            - Course works (24 credits) will be delivered totally in Vietnam (compulsory)

            - Field trips in one of countries in the region. (optional)

            - Research projects in Vietnam (compulsory)

        Application procedure

        Interested applicants who meet the qualifications for admission can download application forms from: To apply for admission, applicants must submit:
           - A completed AIT application form
           - A certified copy of undergraduate certificate (in English).
           - A certified official student transcript (in English).
           - Two letters of recommendation.
           - A Certificate of English proficiency

        Admission schedule


        August 2017

        Deadline for application

        June 2017 

        Deadline for Interview & Test AITEIT

        July 2017

        Intensive English Training

        June– August 2017

        Class start

        September 2017 



        Entry requirement

        - Hold a 4-year bachelors degree or equivalent in Geological science, Geotechnical engineering, Civil Engineering, structural engineering, Geophysics or other related fields.
        - Professionals with at least two years of working experience in infrastructure development.
        - Proficiency in English to meet AIT entry requirements.
        - Pass an interview

        English requirement

        AIT is an international institute with English as the sole language of instruction. Admission to AIT requires proof of English language proficiency which may be satisfied in any of the following:

           -IELTS (4.5)
           -TOEFL (Paper -based: 500; Computer - Based:173; or Internet - based: 61)
           -AITEIT (4.5). Applicants can apply for English Test offered by AIT at      AIT-VN. English Test fee: 420,000 VND

        AIT-VN will support for those who need more English and Academic Skills before joining the program. AIT-VN will provide consultation and advise candidates to take AITEIT test and conduct the test on request.






        Amount in VND

        Amount in USD


        Application fee




        Registration fee for
        coursework semesters

        USD 250/semester*2 semester




        Semester 1 - Coursework

        USD350/credit*12 credits




        Semester 2 - Coursework

        USD350/credit*12 credits




        Semester 3 – Research Study

        USD350/credit*9 credits




        2 Field Trips to Thailand






        Exchange rate: 1 USD = 22,480 VND
        This rate is valid for payment until 31 December 2017
        In order to prepare the students for the program, AIT provides them with 80 hours of Communication and Academic English training in professional environment. The training is totally free of charge.

        Ord. No.

        Course ID

        Course Title – Credits (Lecture-lab hour)


        September-December SEMESTER (12 credits)



        Soil Engineering 3(3-2)

        - Module 1:  Soil engineering, theory and practice

        - Module 2:  Practical problems for MK delta



        Dr. P. V. Long /Prof. Jin Chun Chai



        Foundation Engineering and Design 3(3-0)

        - Module 1:  Shallow & deep foundation. Earth structure and slope stability

        - Module 2:  Hi-rise building foundation & deep excavation.

        Prof. Denes.T. Bergado/ Dr. Noppadol Phien-wej/



        Engineering Geology 3(3-0)

        - Module 1: Rocks and Soils,  Geological processes. Ground characterization, GW engineering 

        - Module 2:  Geology for infrastructure  dev. project


        Dr. Pham Huy Giao/

        Dr. Thanu H.



        Instrumentation and Advanced Soil Testing

        -    Module 1: Instrumentation and Basic Soil Testing

        -    Module 2: Advanced Soil Testing

        Dr. Tian. Ho. Seah


        Jan-May SEMESTER at AITCV (12 credits)



        Ground Improvement techniques 3(3-0)

        - Module 1:  Earth reinforcement, geosynthetics,  PVD and Deep Mixing methods

        - Module 2:  Numerical Analysis for ground improvement

        Prof. Denes.T. Bergado/

        Dr. P. V. Long



        Underground Excavation and Tunnelling 3(3-0)

        - Module 1:  Tunneling in rock

        - Module 2:  Soft ground and urban tunneling

        Dr. Noppadol Phien-wej/ Dr. T.T.Van



        Geotechnical Investigation & Exploration 3(3-0)

        - Module 1:  In-situ geotechnical testing

        - Module 2:  Engineering geophysical techniques

        Dr. Yoichi Watabe/

        Dr. Pham Huy Giao



        Risk management for infrastructure development and planning 3(3-0)

        - Module 1: Geotechnical Risk and Safety

        - Module 2: Geotechnical Asset &  Risk Management

        Prof. Yusuke Honjo/

        Prof. Hiroyasu Ohtsu


        Course Outline:

        CE71.31 Engineering Geology 3(3-0) Semester: August

        To provide a balanced and comprehensive understanding of the methods and approaches, which is useful in dealing with the great variety of geologic conditions encountered in engineering works.

        Catalog Description: Qualitative and quantitative description of soils and rock masses with emphasis on the physical properties; identification of the influence of geological structures on engineering projects; geological processes, e.g. weathering that influence soil/rock engineering properties; practical application with case studies and histories

        CE71.51 Foundation Engineering and Design 3(3-0) Semester: August

        Foundation Engineering is an important component of education and training of Civil Engineers. All super-structures are to be supported on well-designed foundations for their safety and subsequent performance. The course imparts the principles of foundation analysis and design.

        Catalog Description: Design criteria, stability analysis based on plastic theorem, earth pressure related on foundation engineering, types of shallow foundations, bearing capacity of soils, settlement of foundations, type of pile foundations, bearing capacity of pile foundation, case histories

        CE71.9005 Practical Soil Engineering 3(3-0) Semester: August

        The soil-engineering field of study involves three categories. The first category deals with the principles and mechanics of soil behavior both under laboratory and field conditions. The second deals with applied topics such as foundations and earth structures, while the third category is more advanced in nature and research oriented. This course on "Mechanics of Soils", which belongs to the first category, deals with the fundamental principles of soil behavior as a prerequisite for courses related to the design of foundations and earth structures

        Catalog Description: Soil formations and their relevance to engineering properties, mechanical analysis, index properties and soil classifications, effective stress principle for saturated and partially saturated soils, permeability, seepage analysis, stress-history and compressibility of soils, stress distribution in soils, stress-strain behavior and strength characteristics, introduction of stress path method and stress-strain theories.

        CE71.9006 Intrumentation and Advanced Soil Testing 3(3-0) Semester: August

        Geotechnical testing and instrument monitoring play a crucial role in the field of geotechnical engineering for both design and construction. It is important for the geotechnical engineers to have a good knowledge on what the testing methods and tools are available, so that appropriate design soil parameters can be obtained. For ensuring construction safety and performance, geotechnical instrumentation is commonly implemented to monitor the ground movement during construction. Understanding of the operating principles of various testing equipment and instruments is essential for practising geotechnical engineers, which is emphasized in the course.

        Catalog Description: Engineering properties of soils; constant rate of strain consolidometer, advanced triaxial testing, direct simple shear, electronic instruments, static and dynamic cone penetration tests, pressuremeter, vane shear, dilatometer, seismic test, settlement measurements, inclinometer, extensometer, piezometers, pressure cell, strain gauges.

        CE71.52 Ground Improvement and Geosynthetics 3(3-0) Semester: January

        As more engineering structures are built, it becomes increasingly difficult to find a site with suitable soil properties. The properties at many sites must be improved by the use of some form of soil improvement methods, such as: static or dynamic compaction, reinforcement, drainage or by the use of admixtures. Thus, it is important for the soil engineers to know the different soil improvement methods; the degree to which soil properties may be improved; and the costs and benefits involved. In this way, the soil engineer can gain knowledge in order to design ground improvement projects as well as to advise the client regarding value engineering to save cost and obtain maximum benefits for the specific project. In this course, we will be studying the latest state-of the-art techniques of soil improvement including the following

        Catalog Description: Surface compaction, deep compaction, preloading, vertical drains, vacuum drainage, mechanically stabilized earth (reinforced earth), granular piles, micropiles, lime stabilization, cement stabilization, chemical stabilization, grouting, geotextiles; lightweight embankment materials.
        CE71.53 Underground Excavation and Tunneling 3(3-0) Semester: January
        Rapid urbanization and the development of infrastructures in the Asian region, coupled with the increase in people's environmental awareness have given a great impetus to the demand for underground space utilization and tunneling activities in the region, in line with the global trend in sustainable development of infrastructures.

        Catalog Description: Types of underground opening; elastic and elasto-plastic stresses and displacements around underground openings; ground reaction curve; tunnel ground condition; excavation methods (drill-and-blast and machine); excavation systems for large openings and difficult ground conditions; supports and linings; determination of rock loads; exploration and instrumentation; case histories.

        CE71.9012 Geotechnical Investigation & Exploration 3(3-0) Semester: January

        In planning, designing, construction, and maintenance/management stages, characteristics of the ground condition is one of the most important geotechnical issues. There are many techniques to investigate/explore the soil stratigraphy and depth profile of soil parameters to meet the required quality and quantity in engineering sense. This course provides the students and practical engineers with the updated and advanced techniques of in-situ geotechnical investigation of soft clay ground. In addition, shallow exploration geophysics as a powerful tool to add the soil investigation will be taught to equip the student with the latest development in geoexploration technology.

        Catalog Description: physical and mechanical properties of soils; effect of soil survey and in-situ test on soil parameters; ground survey and design; experiences in Japan on soil survey; surface and borehole geoelectric survey; seismic refraction and reflection survey, surface wave seismic survey, downhole and cross hole seismic; ground penetration radar (GPR); magnetic and magnetic susceptibility; electromagnetic survey; case studies of shallow exploration geophsyics.