This paper presents the results from parametric finite element analyses of geocell-supported embankments constructed on weak foundation soils. A composite model is used to numerically simulate the improvement in the strength and stiffness of the soil as a result of geocell confinement. The shear strength of the geocell-encased soil is obtained as a function of the additional confining pressure due to the geocell encasement considering it as a thin cylinder subjected to internal pressure. The stiffness of the geocell-encased soil is obtained from the stiffness of the unreinforced soil and the tensile modulus of the geocell material using an empirical equation. The validity of the model is verified by simulating the laboratory experiments on model geocell-supported embankments. Parametric finite element analyses of the geocell-supported embankments are carried out by varying the dimensions of the geocell layer, the tensile strength of the material used for fabricating the geocell layer, the properties of the infill soil, and the depth of the foundation layer. Some important guidelines for selecting the geocell reinforcement to support embankments on weak foundation soils are established through these numerical studies. © 2007 NRC Canada.