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Development And Integration Of A New Course In Structural Loads & Systems In A Civil Engineering Technology Program

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Curriculum Development in Civil ET

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.424.1 - 9.424.7



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Paper Authors

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Abi Aghayere

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2649

Development and Integration of a New Course in Structural Loads & Systems in a Civil Engineering Technology Program

Abi Aghayere College of Applied Science and Technology Rochester Institute of Technology


One of the Civil criteria in ABET TC2K1 is that programs “apply current knowledge and adapt to emerging applications of technology,” such as, changes in the building codes. Structural design firms also have the expectation that Civil Engineering Technology (CET) graduates should be able to apply current codes to determine structural loads, required for the analysis and design of structures. While most CET programs expose their students to structural analysis and design using instructor or textbook-prescribed loads, few expose students to the detailed calculation of actual structural loads using current codes.

Many jurisdictions in the United States, including New York State, have recently adopted the International Building Code (IBC) 2, which contains the latest provisions on structural loads, including wind and seismic loads for buildings. Prior to 2002, in New York State, the building code only required buildings to be designed for wind loads using a very simple tabular method. Seismic loads were not considered. Under that dispensation, it was possible and feasible to integrate the topic of structural loads, dead, live, snow and wind load, into any one of the structural design courses, all-be-it at an elementary level. However, with the adoption of building codes, such as the IBC 2000, the calculation of structural loads has become complex and time consuming.

In order to meet the changing needs in this subject area of the CET curriculum, a new stand- alone course in structural loads and systems has become a necessity. This paper discusses the development and integration of a 2-credit hour required course in structural loads and systems that is offered to 3rd year students in the CET program at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). The topics discussed include: impetus for developing the course, course structure and syllabus, integration into the curriculum, intended learning outcomes, course text development (no available structured textbook exists), typical homework assignments, summary and conclusions.


As the loads section of the major building codes has become more complex, the need for a separate structural loads course has become more apparent1, 2, especially now with many jurisdictions in the United States, including New York State, adopting the International Building Codes (IBC 2000). The IBC 2000 Code2 is considerably more detailed and complex than the previous New York State Code, especially with regards to wind and seismic load calculations,

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Aghayere, A. (2004, June), Development And Integration Of A New Course In Structural Loads & Systems In A Civil Engineering Technology Program Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13739

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