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Innovations In Teaching Upper Level Structural Design: The Italian Experience From The 2nd Century To 1979

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1996 Annual Conference


Washington, District of Columbia

Publication Date

June 23, 1996

Start Date

June 23, 1996

End Date

June 26, 1996



Page Count


Page Numbers

1.256.1 - 1.256.5

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Paper Authors

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W. Max Lucas

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


-— . . . . . . .- Session #2306 ‘

..— Innovations in Teaching Upper Level Structural Design: The Italian Experience from the 2nd Century to 1979

W. Max Lucas University of Kansas


Upper level students with a structural analysis and design emphasis in architectural engineering programs are anxious to try their hands at the design of large, complex structures, especially large span shells and domes. However, while most of these students are well founded in the basics of structural analysis and design, many have not been exposed to the trials and innovations of engineers and architects who have dealt with these issues throughout history. In addition, few students have been exposed to intuitive methods of structural design. This paper reports on a short course-within-a-course developed to fill this void in architectural engineering curricula.

Background ... The architectural engineering program at the University of Kansas is a five-year, ABET-accredited curriculum which is jointly administered by the School of Engineering and by the School of Architecture and Urban Design. Graduation from architectural engineering requires the completion of 164 credit hours of courses which, in the last three years of study, are taught mostly by faculty from either the School of Engineering or from the School of Architecture and Urban Design.

Architectural engineering students are exposed to a broad range of topics including architectural design, building technology, structural analysis and design, mechanical and electrical equipment, illumination and construction management. As part of the humanities and social sciences requirements of the cqyiculum, students also complete a three course sequence in architectural history. However, this three course sequence is taught with an architectural design emphasis rather than an emphasis on the technological or engineering aspects of the buildings studied.

The basic philosophy of the architectural engineering curriculum at the University of Kansas is to expose students to the wide range of engineering and architectural subjects involved in the design and construction of buildings. While students do have a series of elective courses available in each of the above areas, which allow them to develop an “area of emphasis”, students do not “major” in any single area. However, graduating seniors are required to complete their education with a capstone course taken ‘ during their last semester in school which does allow them to design complete building systems in their chosen area of emphasis.

The capstone course for students with an emphasis in structural analysis and design is ARCE 681 - Architectural Engineering Design II, Structural Section. Since this will be the last course these students take before entering their professional internship, it was decided to allow them to utilize their engineering education and tackle a semester-long problem that would not only reinforce the engineering

Lucas, W. M. (1996, June), Innovations In Teaching Upper Level Structural Design: The Italian Experience From The 2nd Century To 1979 Paper presented at 1996 Annual Conference, Washington, District of Columbia.

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