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Teaching Reinforced Concrete Design With Mathcad Application

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Conference

2008 Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Publication Date

June 22, 2008

Start Date

June 22, 2008

End Date

June 25, 2008

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Curriculum Development in Civil Engineering Technology

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count

18

Page Numbers

13.1172.1 - 13.1172.18

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/3806

Download Count

2633

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Paper Authors

biography

Nirmal Das Georgia Southern University

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Nirmal K. Das is an associate professor of Civil Engineering Technology at Georgia Southern University. He received a Bachelor of Civil Engineering degree from Jadavpur University, India, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Civil Engineering (structures) from Texas Tech University. His areas of interest include structural analysis, structural reliability and wind engineering. Dr. Das is a registered professional engineer in Ohio and Georgia, and is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers.

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

Teaching Reinforced Concrete Design with Mathcad Application

Abstract

Reinforced Concrete Design is typically offered as a senior-level required course in an undergraduate Civil Engineering or Civil Engineering Technology curriculum. The design of various components of a building structure is performed based on the American Concrete Institute (ACI) Building Code 318. One of the major topics covered in the course is design of beams. The design involves myriad computations to account for several aspects of the design: from determining the required strengths of the beam, to selecting an adequate beam size and the necessary amount of steel reinforcement, to checking for deflection and crack widths, to ensuring adequate development lengths for selected steel reinforcing bars. All these topics are usually covered as separate modules in traditional lecture-format instruction.

Typically code-based structural design uses trial-and-error procedure that often requires several iterations, involving tedious, repetitive calculations. Also, only a limited number of examples can be presented in the classroom due to time constraint. To circumvent the situation, a logical option is to capitalize on the computer’s abilities to compute, and interface with the user.

The purpose of this paper is to present a computer-based problem-solving courseware that has been developed to complement traditional lecture-format delivery of the Reinforced Concrete Design course to enhance student learning. The courseware consists of several interlinked modules, each addressing a different aspect for design of a beam.. The Mathcad software, which supports custom designed documents called electronic books that explain complex topics and provide reusable computational templates, has been used to develop the modules. Besides allowing for faster solution of a problem, this tool is useful for providing live math examples that promote the exploration of the underlying relationships between problem variables and solutions. Thus, the students would have a holistic view of the entire design process; more specifically, they will have a better understanding of how the different design parameters are interconnected.

Introduction

The four-year ABET-accredited Civil Engineering Technology curriculum at Georgia Southern University includes a required, senior-level course in Reinforced Concrete Design. The two main objectives of the course are: (1) the students gain a thorough understanding of the fundamental principles underlying design of various structural components and the relevant stipulations in the ACI Code and (2) they correctly apply that knowledge to various practical design problems. A combination of homework and computational laboratory assignments is used for meeting the second objective. However, a significant amount of design activities is based on trial-and-error procedure that often requires several iterations, involving tedious, repetitive calculations. Also, only a limited number of examples can be presented in the classroom due to time constraint. To circumvent the situation, a logical option is to capitalize on the computer’s abilities to compute, display graphics, and interface with the user, letting students focus on substantive issues and thereby engage in additional problem-solving for varied scenarios, outside the classroom at their own pace.

Das, N. (2008, June), Teaching Reinforced Concrete Design With Mathcad Application Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. https://peer.asee.org/3806

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