Civil and Structural Engineering

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New Courses

The Direct Stiffness Method for Truss Analysis with Python

Build your own finite element truss analysis software using Python and tackle large scale structures.
After completing this course…
  • You’ll understand how to use the Direct Stiffness Method to build complete structural models that can be solved using Python.
  • You’ll have your own analysis programme to identify displacements, reactions and internal member forces for any truss.
  • You’ll understand how common models of elastic behaviour such as plane stress and plane strain apply to real-world structures.

Fundamentals of Engineering Structural Dynamics with Python

Leverage fundamental structural dynamics to build your own flexible numerical solutions in Python.

After completing this course…
  • You’ll understand how to model dynamic behaviour using spring-mass-damper models and how to simulate free vibration behaviour.
  • You’ll be able to model the influence of harmonic loading and how to characterise the transient and steady-state responses.
  • You’ll be able to use Python to implement the Piecewise Exact Method to model any form of general dynamic loading.
Shear-and-moment-diagrams-example-featured-image| DegreeTutors.com
Structural Analysis

Shear and Moment Diagrams – An Ultimate Guide

Shear force and bending moment diagrams tell us about the underlying state of stress in the structure. Determining shear and moment diagrams is an essential skill for any engineer. Unfortunately it’s probably the one structural analysis skill most students struggle with most. So in this post we’ll give you a thorough introduction to shear forces, bending moments and how to draw shear and moment diagrams. By the end of this post you’ll know a lot more about shear forces and moment moments then when you started.

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Propped cantilever plastic hinge 4 | DegreeTutors.com
Mechanics of Materials

Yielding, Plastic Deformation and Moment Redistribution in Beams (2/2)

In this tutorial, we’re going to work out exactly how to determine the plastic moment capacity of a cross-section. We’ll also explore the concept of moment redistribution with an illustrative example. By the end of this post you’ll be able to calculate the plastic moment capacity of any cross-section and understand in detail how moment redistribution occurs in a structure and ultimately how collapse can occur as a result of hinge formation.

Read More »
Stress-strain-curve | DegreeTutors.com
Mechanics of Materials

The Stress-Strain Curve & Plastic Hinges in Beams (1/2)

So why is plastic behaviour so important to understand? It’s probably fair to say that most of our engineering analysis assumes linearly elastic behaviour. But in reality, if we limit our designs to purely elastic behaviour, we’re leaving a lot of structural capacity untapped. Structures very often have more load carrying capacity than a linearly elastic analysis suggests. In this post we’ll explore this reserve capacity.

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Structural Analysis and Stability - Finite Element Analysis
Structural Analysis

Structural Analysis and Stability – Asymmetrically Propped Structures (2/2)

In part two of this tutorial series we’ll consider how to analyse the lateral stability of a multi-storey structure with an asymmetrical arrangement of stabilising elements. Asymmetrically propped structures undergo twisting or rotation about the centre of stiffness in addition to direct lateral translation. We will consider how to determine the additional forces induced by this twisting. Finally we’ll compare our hand analysis results to a simple finite element analysis model.

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Structural Analysis and Stability, Multi-storey reinforced concrete building
Structural Analysis

Structural Analysis and Stability – Symmetrical Structures (1/2)

All structures typically experience some form of lateral loading during their design life. Typical sources of lateral loading include forces due to wind blowing against the structure, hydrostatic forces due to groundwater (acting against basement walls for example) or inertia forces due to ground motion (earthquakes). In this, the first of a two-part series on structural stability, we will introduce common lateral stability schemes before diving into some numerical examples in this and the next post.

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Column Buckling with eccentric compression force
Structural Analysis

Column Buckling: Realistic Buckling Behaviour (3/3)

In this final post in this series on Column Buckling, we’ll look at more realistic buckling behaviour you’re likely to observe in reality. In particular we’ll explore the behaviour of columns subject to eccentric axial load and columns with an initial deformation, i.e. columns that don’t start out straight. It’s important to recognise that for a column with these characteristics, we do not observe the strict mathematical behaviour predicted for perfectly loaded perfectly straight columns

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Structural Analysis Courses

Fundamentals of Structural Analysis

Get to grips with civil engineering structural analysis once and for all.

After completing this course…
  • You will understand key concepts such as the moment of a force, static equilibrium and determinacy.
  • You will be able to determine the support reactions for structures subject to a range of loading conditions.
  • You will learn to use the Joint Resolution Method and Method of Sections to analyse pin-jointed truss structures.
Average Rating
4.6
4.6/5
(4,221 students)

Mastering Shear Force and Bending Moment Diagrams

Your complete roadmap to mastering these essential structural analysis skills.

After completing this course…
  • You will be fully competent in drawing shear force and bending moment diagrams for statically determinate beams and frames.
  • You will have a robust system of analysis that allows you to confidently tackle the analysis of any statically determinate structure.
  • You will understand the relationship between external loading and the shear forces and bending moments they induce.
Average Rating
4.6
4.6/5
(1,455 students)

Shear Forces & Bending Moments: Analysis Bootcamp

Sharpen your civil engineering analysis skills with  questions designed to test your understanding.
After completing this course…
  • You will have a reliable procedure for correctly determining shear force and bending moment diagrams for statically determinate structures.
  • You will be comfortable analysing both 1-dimensional beam and 2-dimensional frame structures.
  • You will be able to utilise pre-existing pin-joints in structures to facilitate your analysis.
Average Rating
4.75
4.75/5
(292 students)

Indeterminate Structures & The Moment Distribution Method

Unlock indeterminate structures using the moment distribution structural analysis method.

After completing this course…
  • You will have a deep understanding of how structures respond to loading.
  • You will clearly understand the methods used to analyse statically indeterminate beams and frames.
  • You will be able to analyse both non-sway and sway frames – essential when designing real world structures.
Average Rating
4.5
4.5/5
(725 students total)

Moment Distribution Method: Analysis Bootcamp

Step up your structural analysis skills by working your way through these indeterminate structures.

After completing this course…
  • You will have an even deeper understanding of how structures respond to loading.
  • You will be comfortable determining shear force, bending moment and deflected shape diagrams.
  • You will be able to analyse both non-sway and sway frames – essential when designing real world structures.
Average Rating
4.5
4.5/5
(244 students total)

Fundamentals of Virtual Work for Civil Engineers

Level up your structural analysis skillset with these powerful Civil Engineering analysis techniques.

After completing this course…
  • You will have a complete understanding of how concepts such as work, energy and elasticity combine to give us the Principle of Virtual Work.
  • You will be able to use Virtual Work to calculate unknown nodal displacements in pin-jointed truss structures.
  • You will be able to use Virtual Work to calculate internal forces in pin-jointed truss structures.
Average Rating
4.6
4.6/5
(204 students total)

Mastering Virtual Work for Civil Engineering

Analyse complex beam and frame civil engineering structures using Virtual Work.

After completing this course…
  • You will have a complete understanding of the Principle of Virtual Work and how it can be applied to bending behaviour.
  • You will have robust, repeatable strategies to apply Virtual Work to beam and frame structures in bending.
  • You will be able to use Virtual Work techniques to calculate unknown displacements in beams and frames.
Average Rating
4.8
4.8/5
(248 students total)

Analysing Hybrid Indeterminate Civil Engineering Structures

Powerful techniques for analysing realistic civil engineering structures.

After completing this course…
  • You will learn how to analysis complex and indeterminate structures using hand-analysis techniques.
  • You will learn how to calculate deflections, member forces and bending moments in indeterminate structures.
  • You will learn how the Principle of Superposition can be used to decipher and unlock the behaviour of complex structures.
Average Rating
4.75
4.75/5
(108 students total)

Fundamentals of Engineering Structural Dynamics with Python

Leverage fundamental structural dynamics to build your own flexible numerical solutions in Python.
After completing this course…
  • You’ll understand how to model dynamic behaviour using spring-mass-damper models and how to simulate free vibration behaviour.
  • You’ll be able to model the influence of harmonic loading and how to characterise the transient and steady-state responses.
  • You’ll be able to use Python to implement the Piecewise Exact Method to model any form of general dynamic loading.
Average Rating
5.0
5/5
(29 students total)

The Direct Stiffness Method for Truss Analysis with Python

Build your own finite element truss analysis software using Python and tackle large scale structures.
After completing this course…
  • You’ll understand how to use the Direct Stiffness Method to build complete structural models that can be solved using Python.
  • You’ll have your own analysis programme to identify displacements, reactions and internal member forces for any truss.
  • You’ll understand how common models of elastic behaviour such as plane stress and plane strain apply to real-world structures.
Average Rating
5.0
5/5
(8 students total)

What students say

Your Tutor

Hi, I’m Seán, the person behind DegreeTutors.com. I’m a senior lecturer in Structural Engineering in a leading UK university and I’m also a chartered engineer and Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. DegreeTutors is a website designed to support students along the road to obtaining their engineering degree. 

As a lecturer, I see first hand the difficulty many students have with structural analysis; from the basics of constructing free body diagrams, right up to complex analysis of statically indeterminate structures. The tutorials and courses on DegreeTutors are designed to help you build these skills and develop the intuition for structural behaviour that all good engineers need.

Dr Seán Carroll
B.Eng (Hons), M.Sc, Ph.D, CEng MIEI, FHEA

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