Asee peer logo

Engaging Students Through Concrete Beam Fabrication

Download Paper |


2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Architectural Engineering Division Technical Session 3

Tagged Divisions

Architectural Engineering and Construction Engineering

Tagged Topic


Page Count




Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Christina McCoy P.E. Oklahoma State University

visit author page

Professor McCoy is a licensed Structural Engineer and Architect. She holds a Bachelor Degree in Architectural Engineering and a Bachelor in Architecture from Oklahoma State University. She holds a Masters of Science in Architecture from the University of Cincinnati and Masters of Civil Engineering (Structural Emphasis) from the University of Kansas. She worked in the structural engineering profession for 10 years before joining the full-time Architectural Engineering faculty at Oklahoma State University School of Architecture.

visit author page


John J. Phillips Oklahoma State University

visit author page

JOHN PHILLIPS, a registered engineer and associate professor of architectural engineering, practiced as a structural engineer for nine years before returning to his alma mater to teach at Oklahoma State University. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses to architecture, architectural engineering, and civil engineering students that include Statics, Analysis I, Foundations, Timbers, Steel, Concrete, Masonry, Steel II, Concrete II, Steel III, Concrete III, and the Comprehensive Design Studio.

visit author page

Download Paper |


This paper seeks to evaluate the challenges and successes in incorporating a beam fabrication module into a Concrete 1 engineering design class for Architecture and Architectural Engineering students. While this class is usually taught in a lecture format, the inclusion of a hands-on activity aimed to accomplish the following goals:

• Student learning about principles of flexure and shear through hands-on exercises • Engage students in course material by giving the first-hand experiences with concrete construction • Structure task to encourage competition between small groups • Prompt students to consider multiple solutions to a given problem • Involve other learning settings to give students a more well-rounded educational experience • Help students visualize engineering principles • Give students an opportunity to apply flexure and shear equations from ACI-318 to a physical model

The beam fabrication project consisted of three parts:

1) Beam Fabrication, wherein students designed and fabricated reinforcement configurations, mixed concrete in a lab setting, and cast concrete into forms 2) Beam Testing, wherein students utilized a beam press to apply load to their beams until failure was reached 3) Beam Report, wherein students produced a report of their experience. The report included an application of capacity equations for shear and flexure, conclusions pertaining to failure mechanisms, as well as photos of the project. The report also included a survey for students to assess the educational goals of the project.

This paper contains a review of past exercises and outlines resources used, parameters of project, student deliverables, and a survey of learning outcomes.

McCoy, C., & Phillips, J. J. (2020, June), Engaging Students Through Concrete Beam Fabrication Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34543

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2020 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015