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Teaching Constructability Using Third World Constraints

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

ASEE Multimedia Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.1066.1 - 7.1066.12



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Paper Authors

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Shawn Gross

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David Dinehart

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

Main Menu Session 2793

Teaching Constructability Using Third-World Constraints

By David W. Dinehart and Shawn P. Gross

Assistant Professors, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Villanova University, Villanova, PA 19085


Given the ever-expanding technical requirements for producing a proficient bachelor of civil engineering, departments need to develop innovative courses that incorporate aspects of many civil disciplines not otherwise covered within the curriculum. Students are not often asked to consider design, construction, architectural, material, and economic issues in combination, yet they must be proficient at handling these issues in order to be successful in their professional careers. In the spring semester of 2000 the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Villanova University initiated a structural engineering capstone design course that brings to focus the role of structural engineers in a global context, highlighted by structural design and construction in a third world country. The initial project involved the design and construction of a 25 foot tall reinforced concrete cross for a Catholic orphanage in Posas Verdes, Honduras. The project was challenging due to many constraints and limitations such as time, third world conditions, communication, material quality and availability, and other construction issues. Presented herein is a description of the cross project, the course format, and the associated engineering and construction challenges.


Villanova University is an independent coeducational institution of higher learning founded by the Augustinian Order of the Roman Catholic Church. A medium-sized Catholic institution and comprehensive university, Villanova emphasizes undergraduate instruction and is committed to a strong liberal arts component in each of its undergraduate programs, including engineering (Villanova, 1979). Furthermore, the University has always encouraged and supported its faculty, students, and staff in providing public service to the community. Ultimately, all of these programs and support are seen as a means of developing a well-rounded student.

The mission of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering is to provide students with a high quality, contemporary, broad-based, civil engineering education within the context the Judaeo Christian mission of the University. The department offers multiple courses in five specialty areas of civil engineering: environmental, geotechnical, structural, transportation, and

Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Gross, S., & Dinehart, D. (2002, June), Teaching Constructability Using Third World Constraints Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10695

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