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Soil Compaction and Field Control (000037)


This course is intended to instruct participants involved in the construction of structural measures where soil compaction have a significant impact on the quality and integrity of the final product. The focus of compaction is earth fill. The course examines basic properties of soil compaction, and the field control processes used to attain quality earthwork construction. The course will address soil compaction procedures for density, moisture content and permeability or hydraulic conductivity. Additionally, the course will address soil additives like lime and bentonite.


Upon completion of this training, participants will be able to:

  • List the basic volume weight relationship for soils and describe how to use the appropriate equations for defining these relationships;
  • Describe the effects of compaction on compaction water content on the engineering properties of soil water content;
  • Identify three primary factors or parameter that affect the compaction characteristics of soil;
  • Describe the general compaction characteristics and most appropriate construction equipment for each major Unified Soil Classification System Group;
  • Interpret drawings, specifications and field test results of earthwork for various types of NRCS construction projects;
  • Demonstrate proper installation and use procedures for specific commonly used soil amendments; and
  • List the five major field tests for measuring the compacted density of the earth fill.


Basic knowledge and familiarity of the Unified Soil Classification System as documented in ASTM D 2487. Some field experience in the installation of basic conservation structural measures involving earthwork.


4 days

Target Audience

Engineers, construction inspectors, field technicians or those who will be assigned responsibility in construction involving earthwork in the field.

NEDC Contact

Dean Prine

Technical Specialist

Steve Reinsch


Go to AgLearn to request enrollment in Soil Compaction and Field Control (NRCS-NEDC-000037).