University of Vermont

Dr. Donna Rizzo Ph.D.


  • CE 11 - Computer-based Tools for Civil Engineers: The course provides an introduction to computer programming using MatLab, and to the use and applications of GIS, and the Global Positioning System (GPS) in civil engineering. The application of this high-level language with visualization tools enables students to solve a variety of engineering problems. (Co-taught with Cully Hession Spring 2003)
  • CE 125 - Engineering Economic Analysis: The focus is on the comparison of engineering alternatives, economic evaluations (including the time value of money, rate of return and cost/benefit analysis, taxes and depreciation), project optimization, scheduling, and budgeting. Nonlinear optimization methods, uncertainty analysis, and simulation are emphasized.
  • CE 134 - Sustainable Engineering Economics: This course provides a framework for applying systems analysis tools to engineering economic decision analysis to address the environmental impacts, energy efficiency and cost-effectiveness needed for sustainable engineering solutions. The application of these problem-solving techniques is focused on modeling two real-world problems (i.e., greenhouse gas emissions and soil/groundwater remediation strategies) to address the increased levels of sophistication inherent across many complex human systems and their interactions with the natural environment. CE 134 is the second in a series of systems courses.
  • BIOL 196 - Math-Biology Program Activities: This colloquium is required of the National Science Foundation (NSF) UMEB grant entitled; "Diversity & Excellence in environmental biology" (Dr. Lori Stevens Co-PI - Department of Biology). It includes recruitment of students from under-represented groups, the development of cross-disciplinary and interdisciplinary research and scholarship, training in problem-oriented computer modeling, introductory statistics, population genetics and a capstone spatial statistics course.
  • CE 295 - Special Topics - Spatial Statistics for Stream Data Evaluation and Applied Computational Biomechanics: Material for the Spatial Statistics for Stream Data Evaluation course focused on a variety of multivariate statistics, gradient analysis (both direct and indirect analyses), and geostatistical techniques to predict patterns of variation given explicitly measured environmental data from extensive sampling designs of spatially and temporally correlated Vermont stream data. The Applied Computational Biomechanics course focused on computational methods for the calculation of continuous strain fields from sparse data from intervertebral discs obtained using roentgen-stereophotogrammetry.
  • CE 295B - Subsurface Site Characterization: This is a graduate/senior design course co-taught by Dr. Dewoolkar and myself. It provides a comprehensive approach to subsurface site characterization for geotechnical and environmental designs and a systems approach for integrating the two. The course goals are to: (1) provide an understanding and appreciation of the importance of subsurface site characterization and associated parameter evaluation in geotechnical and environmental engineering; (2) provide students with an understanding and appreciation of the importance of design verification and construction monitoring in geotechnical and environmental engineering, and (3) provide a comprehensive understanding of laboratory and field testing methods as tools for geotechnical and environmental site characterization. Grading is based on weekly homework, two design projects, and an oral presentation.
  • CE 295C - Water Resources Engineering II: Material covers key topics in hydrology and open channel flow and several topics in groundwater to emphasize the linkages between these three subject areas. Specific goals include: Understanding the basic principles of hydrology; Aptitude for collecting, analyzing, and describing hydrologic data; Broad awareness of available hydrologic resources, techniques, models; Ability to apply hydrologic techniques to solve design problems.
  • CE 295 / GEOL 295 / GEOL 297 / NR285 - Watershed Field Camp: This is a summer field course taught in the Winooski River watershed. Students work across a continuum of elevation and human impact beginning in a mountain basins and working down tributaries and the main stem river to lake Champlain. Students learn specific data collection skills: landscape and geologic, flow, water quality, physical property, geochemical data acquisition and, ecological assessment. (Co-taught with P. Beirman and G. Druschel from Geology; B. Wemple from Geography and M. Watzin from the Rubenstein School of Environmental and Natural Resources, Spring 2007).
  • CE 359 - Applied Artificial Neural Networks: This course introduces both artificial and biological neural networks to engineering graduate students. Students experiment with artificial neural networks (ANNs), by studying and implementing a few (five) ANN paradigms. A broad range of example applications and equations that govern each networks' computation are provided. Students are expected to code (in a language of their choice) each of the algorithms.
  • CE 369 - Applied Geostatistics: The objective is to develop a fundamental understanding of the theory of regionalized variables (i.e., produce the "best" estimation of an unknown value at some location within an area). This course provides an introduction to geostatistics (techniques known as kriging - including simple, ordinary, co-, indicator, probability, and factorial kriging methods) including some special methods in multivariate analysis. The analysis of real data exposes students to the challenges and surprises associated with real complex problems.
  • CE 395 - Special Topics - Advanced Computational Methods: The objectives of the course are to develop a fundamental understanding of computational numerical methods capable of solving problems that are common in engineering practice (i.e., handling large systems of equations, nonlinearities, and complex geometries). The study of computational methods reinforces the understanding of mathematics, computers and commercial programs.
  • CE 395 - Special Topics - Engineering & Science Ethics: The course uses the reading and discussion of journal articles and popular papers to stimulate discussion and further our understanding of the ethical issues common in science and engineering practice.
  • GEOL 371 - Communicating What We Know About Science: Student-initiated topics are selected as catalysts to examine how we write about science. The reading and discussion of journal articles and popular papers is used to further the understanding of the current topics in geologic, climatic and ecological history, as well as to help us all deal with the difficulties of communicating science well. (co-taught with Paul Bierman fall 2005)

Last modified February 18 2015 04:11 PM

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