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Teaching Modern Concrete Technology At The University Of Houston Downtown

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Real World Applications

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.1218.1 - 10.1218.10



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Paper Authors

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Alberto Gomez-Rivas

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Jorge Tito-Izquierdo

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George Pincus

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

Session 2249

Teaching Modern Concrete Technology at the University of Houston-Downtown Jorge Tito-Izquierdo, Alberto Gomez-Rivas, and George Pincus Visiting Associate Professor/Professor and Chair/Professor and Dean Engineering Technology, University of Houston-Downtown, Houston, TX


This paper describes a course developed by the Structural Analysis and Design Engineering Technology program at the University of Houston-Downtown to train the students in modern design of concrete mixes. The approach allows students to understand the dynamic nature of the concrete industry and how to adopt new technologies. The course has trained over 150 students that today apply modern concrete technologies at their place of employment.

Students need to understand modern developments in concrete mix design such as: high performance concrete, very high strength concretes, self-compacting concrete, and green concrete among many newer concepts. Students design twenty to thirty different mixes and 400 cylinders are made and tested to verify the design and reach conclusions.

Students measure the physical characteristics of the materials to obtain a mix design with the help of a spreadsheet developed by the faculty. The spreadsheet is based on current recommendations of the American Concrete Institute for the production of trial mixes. Students then mix the materials to acquire hands-on experience on the texture and workability of different concretes. Cylinders are cured and tested at different ages and results are compared with target objectives and with the literature. Incorporation of additives such as silica fume, fly ash, and super plasticizers to arrive at the desired mix characteristics are also investigated.


Hydraulic concrete or “concrete” is a mix of different materials, principally Portland cement and other cementitious materials, water, coarse and fine aggregates, and chemical admixtures. Each element has properties which have a particular influence on the behavior of concrete. The interaction between components is also an important topic. In modern concrete industry, it is very important to understand the behavior of each material and the interaction between them, in order to define a better mix design.

The course called Modern Concrete Technology is a new version of the course formerly called Concrete Design. The course is offered to students of junior level standing in Engineering Technology and includes learning about characterization of the components and behavior of concrete for different mix designs, different materials, construction practice, compaction, and

“Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright ©2005, American Society for Engineering Education”

Gomez-Rivas, A., & Tito-Izquierdo, J., & Pincus, G. (2005, June), Teaching Modern Concrete Technology At The University Of Houston Downtown Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--15274

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