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ECM3155 - Structural Engineering (2019)

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MODULE TITLEStructural Engineering CREDIT VALUE15
MODULE CODEECM3155 MODULE CONVENERDr Prakash Kripakaran (Coordinator)
DURATION: WEEKS 11 weeks 0 0
Number of Students Taking Module (anticipated) 39
DESCRIPTION - summary of the module content

A good knowledge of the philosophies and techniques of structural design and analysis are essential elements of the training of civil engineers. In this module you will learn about these philosophies and techniques, and their application to the design of steel and reinforced concrete structures. In hands-on laboratory sessions, you will learn about factors such as elasticity, cracking, tensile strength, shear and flexure, through observation and analysis. You will complete two design projects, one in steel, one in concrete, and will get the chance to carry out calculations, create drawings and make critical judgments. Furthermore, you will get the opportunity to hone your skills in methods of structural analyses, technical report writing and presentation.

In addition, the module emphasises the role of the Engineering Council's Code of Practice, the application of engineering judgment, and the execution of appropriate structural analyses in the context of design problems.

Prerequisite module: ECM2108, ECM2109 or equivalent

AIMS - intentions of the module

This module aims to consolidate and extend methods of analysis for both linear elastic and plastic modes of behaviour, and to help you gain an understanding of how engineers apply these methods to real structures. It focuses particularly on steel and reinforced concrete, materials that are often used in civil engineering, despite their complex properties. You will learn how, for this reason, simplified but realistic engineering approaches are required for design purposes. In addition, the module aims to help you appreciate the limitations of these methods, to understand the underlying philosophies of current professional Codes of Practice, and to gain competence in using appropriate methods for the design of simple structures.

INTENDED LEARNING OUTCOMES (ILOs) (see assessment section below for how ILOs will be assessed)

This is a constituent module of one or more degree programmes which are accredited by a professional engineering institution under licence from the Engineering Council. The learning outcomes for this module have been mapped to the output standards required for an accredited programme, as listed in the current version of the Engineering Council’s ‘Accreditation of Higher Education Programmes’ document (AHEP-V3).

This module contributes to learning outcomes: SM1m, SM5m, EA1m, D4m, D6m, EP3m, EP6m, EP8m, G1m, G2m

A full list of the referenced outcomes is provided online:

The AHEP document can be viewed in full on the Engineering Council’s website, at

On successful completion of this module, you should be able to:

Module Specific Skills and Knowledge: SM1m, SM5m, EA1m 

1 understand a range of structural theories and methods of analysis, and comprehend their relevance to real structures fabricated in steel and/or concrete and the roles of Codes of Practice;

2 execute appropriate structural analyses in the context of design problems and understand the reasons behind the choices of methods of analysis;

3 design steel and concrete structural elements according to limit state design principles of Eurocodes.

Discipline Specific Skills and Knowledge: D4m, D6m, EP3m, EP6m, EP8m

4 appreciate design synthesis and the importance of engineering judgement in the context of design within the civil engineering discipline;

5 understand the uncertainties of civil engineering environments, and apply engineering knowledge and judgement to effectively manage them;

6 explain the underpinning principles of the codes of practice and apply them to design steel and concrete structural elements;

7 create a detailed design along with relevant supporting calculations to support manufacture of the designed element.

Personal and Key Transferable/ Employment Skills and Knowledge: G1m, G2m

8 undertake independent studies;

9 communicate effectively through reports and detailed drawings.

SYLLABUS PLAN - summary of the structure and academic content of the module

Structural analyses:

- review basic assumptions for linear elastic analyses;

- moment distribution as a simple iterative technique for carrying out a stiffness method;

- influence lines;

- plastic methods for limit analyses;

- non-linear aspects of material behaviour and slenderness effects;

- Perry-Robertson curves;

- limit state design

- SLS and ULS concepts and associated partial safety factors and their significance in terms of stochastic behaviour;

- structural materials;

- an overview of steel production and fabrication;

- steel plate girders;

- stiffeners;

- buckling with consideration for ULS.

Reinforced concrete beams:

- an overview of concrete production, casting, and structural properties with consideration of shrinkage and creep;

- analytical models based on Bernoulli and/or equilibrium;

- cracked elastic behaviour for SLS;

- deflections & creep effects;

- modes of failure for ULS;

- under/over-reinforced modes of failure;

- plastic hinges & moment redistribution;

- shear modes;

- reinforcement detailing.

Scheduled Learning & Teaching Activities 37.00 Guided Independent Study 113.00 Placement / Study Abroad 0.00
Category Hours of study time Description
Scheduled learning and teaching activities 22 Lectures
Scheduled learning and teaching activities 4 Site visits
Scheduled learning and teaching activities 11 Tutorials
Guided independent study 113 Guided independent study


FORMATIVE ASSESSMENT - for feedback and development purposes; does not count towards module grade
Form of Assessment Size of Assessment (e.g. duration/length) ILOs Assessed Feedback Method
Not applicable      


Coursework 35 Written Exams 65 Practical Exams 0
Form of Assessment % of Credit Size of Assessment (e.g. duration/length) ILOs Assessed Feedback Method
Written exam – open book 65 2 hours - January Exam All Written and class discussion
Coursework – Steel Design Project 23 20 hours All Written and class discussion
Coursework – Concrete laboratory report 12 4 hours 1-3, 8-9 Written and class discussion


DETAILS OF RE-ASSESSMENT (where required by referral or deferral)
Original Form of Assessment Form of Re-assessment ILOs Re-assessed Time Scale for Re-reassessment
All Written exam (100%) All August Ref/Def period



If a module is normally assessed entirely by coursework, all referred/deferred assessments will normally be by assignment.

If a module is normally assessed by examination or examination plus coursework, referred and deferred assessment will normally be by examination. For referrals, only the examination will count, a mark of 40% being awarded if the examination is passed. For deferrals, candidates will be awarded the higher of the deferred examination mark or the deferred examination mark combined with the original coursework mark.

INDICATIVE LEARNING RESOURCES - The following list is offered as an indication of the type & level of
information that you are expected to consult. Further guidance will be provided by the Module Convener


Reading list for this module:

Illston JM, Domone PLJ. Construction Materials – Their Nature and Behaviour. 3rd Edition. Spon 2001.

Mosley; WH, Hulse; R, Bungey; JH. Reinforced concrete design to EuroCode2. Macmillan 2012. ISBN: 978-0230500716

MacGregor, J G. Reinforced Concrete – Mechanics and Design. Prentice Hall 2009. ISBN: 000-0-132-33974-9

The Steel Construction Institute (eds Davison, Buick, Owens, Graham, W). Steel Designers’ Manual. The Steel Construction Institute (Blackwell Science Ltd) 2005. ISBN: 978-1-4051-3412-5

Trahair, N.S, Bradford, M.A, Nethercot, D.A, Gardner, L. The behaviour and design of steel structures to EC3. 4th Edition. Taylor and Francis 2008. ISBN: 978-0-415-41866-9

Reading list for this module:

Type Author Title Edition Publisher Year ISBN Search
Set Illston JM, Domone PLJ Construction Materials – Their Nature and Behaviour 3rd Spon 2001 [Library]
Set Mosley; WH, Hulse; R, Bungey; JH Reinforced concrete design to EuroCode2 Macmillan 2012 978-0230500716 [Library]
Set MacGregor, J G Reinforced Concrete – Mechanics and Design Prentice Hall 2009 000-0-132-33974-9 [Library]
Set The Steel Construction Institute (eds Davison, Buick, Owens, Graham, W) Steel Designers’ Manual The Steel Construction Institute (Blackwell Science Ltd) 2005 978-1-4051-3412-5 [Library]
Set Trahair, N.S, Bradford, M.A, Nethercot, D.A, Gardner, L The behaviour and design of steel structures to EC3 4th edition Taylor and Francis 2008 978-0-415-41866-9 [Library]
ORIGIN DATE Tuesday 10 July 2018 LAST REVISION DATE Monday 08 July 2019
KEY WORDS SEARCH Steel design; reinforced concrete; prestressed concrete.