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Title: Teaching Concrete Through Context

Author(s): Behrouzi

Publication: Web Session

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DOI:

Date: 4/1/2021

Abstract:
Concrete continues to be the most widely used material in the world, only after water. It comprises significant proportions of the majority of civil infrastructure systems. Yet, remains often not adequately understood by the profession. In order for civil engineers to adapt to a world requiring ever-increasing efficiency, durability, and sustainability, and in which novel material formulations and products are introduced on a weekly basis, engineers must be able to make decisions as to the adequacy of these materials, and their effect on the performance of civil infrastructure. Essential to that ability is students’ understanding of the basics of cement hydration and its relationship to property development in hardened concrete systems. To aid in that goal, this talk presents and explains several simple approaches to convey the concepts around which cement hydration is based, to undergraduate students. Topics addressed include: simple demos and toys that can be used to explain cement hydration and microstructural elements and link these ideas to practical properties, low-tech (and low cost!) classroom compatible experiments, and approaches to organize, convey, and promote student learning.