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Mr. H.B. Gould (F) : Mr. President, we have heard an introduction to a very interesting paper. It occurs to me that in saying that the Institution would not wish to block the entrance of technicians into the professional side, Mr. Severn describes
a position that the people concerned may not agree with. I am thinking here of people who, for example, were left outside in the cold when the regulations changed in 1973-people who were quite near to qualification. They may, for example, have taken and failed the Institution's final examination. They found then that to achieve chartered status it was necessary for them to start at university or polytechnics without any
credit for the work they had done at the technician stage.
Any paper which encourages the adoption of better methods in routine site investigations is to be welcomed, and Mr. Thorburn should be congratulated for drawing attention to the use of the static penetration test in the design of driven piles.
An investigation of the ability of civil engineering students to understand the basic behaviour of structures is described. The study is based on two tests, each consisting of a number of two-dimensional structures. The candidate is required to draw the approximate bending moment diagrams. The results of tests on a number of student groups are presented and discussed. Based on these results, the authors conclude that the ability of the average student is less than should be expected.
D.M. Brohn and J. Cowan