Concrete for Freshmen


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International Concrete Abstracts Portal


Title: Concrete for Freshmen

Author(s): E. N. Landis and W. P. Manion

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 206


Appears on pages(s): 513-520

Keywords: concrete education, freshman engineering, teaching laboratories

Date: 4/1/2002

An intoductory construction materials course was developed for first year civil and environmental engineering students at the University of Maine. Because it is typically the first engineering course in which most civil engineering students enroll, the course also serves as an introduction to principles of engineering aalysis and desing. We have adopted a materials science approach in our coverage of construction materials. That is, we emphasize how material properties are a function of their microstructure, and that we control microstructure through processing. We have found concrete to be an ideal material with which to illustrate this concept. Students are easily able to observe the processing-microstructure-properties links through laboratory and homework exercises in concrete mix design and testing. In the broader context we have found materials in general, and concrete in particular, to be excellent model topics for intoducing the general topics of engineering analysis and design.