NJIT – College of Architecture & Design

Course Syllabus


Structures III                                      Faculty:

Rima Taher, PhD, PE, Senior University Lecturer

Arch 429 –Summer I - 2013               Prerequisite: Structures II (Arch 329)


NAAB Criteria: A1, A2, A3, A5, A7, A11, B9, B12, C1, C3, C7, C9

  • Type of Course


Undergraduate course – Lecture format – 3 credits – Meets three times a week on Monday, Wednesday & Thursday from 9 am to 12 noon.


  • Course Overview


This is an advanced structural analysis and design course. It covers the principles of design of reinforced concrete structures first then covers some advanced topics and applications in steel, wood, and masonry structures. It focuses on indeterminate systems and integrated structural systems, and includes an introduction to the finite element method (FEM).


  • Learning Objectives


The objectives of this course are to teach:

-          The difference between determinate and indeterminate structural systems.

-          The analysis and design of various concrete structural elements and slab systems.

-          The implementation of structural technology into a practical design project using a 3D-approach, some computerized applications and a traditional structural material.

-          Case studies of complex modern buildings designed by well-known architects or architectural firms.

-          An overview of the finite element method (FEM).


·         Course Requirements


Students are expected to take a test, a mid-term examination and a final examination, in addition to some homework assignments and a main project. The BIM tool REVIT 2013 will be used for the project.

Students are required to upload their assignment files to Moodle by the posted due date. No late assignments will be accepted. Please do not e-mail your homework files to the instructor. All e-mailed assignment files will be deleted. Assignments will be graded on Moodle. Grades and comments will also be posted on Moodle.

Tests and exams will be given in class and will generally consist of two parts: a closed-book part with questions to answer, and an open-book part with a few problems to solve. Students can use their textbook and their notes for the open-book part only. The use of electronic devices will not be permitted during the tests. Only a basic scientific non-communicating calculator will be allowed. All students are expected to take the tests at the scheduled dates and times. Make-up tests will not be given without a valid reason and the related paperwork. The computer programs used in this course are installed on the university network at the main NJIT computing facility. Students are expected to maintain their academic computing account in working order.

Attendance is mandatory and the instructor can lower the student’s grade based on the attendance record as permitted by the university policies.

The NJIT-Honor Code will be upheld, and any violations will be brought to the immediate attention of the Dean of Students.


·         Grading Criteria


Test 1: 20% - Tentative Date: Monday, June 10, 2013

Mid-Term Examination: 25% - Tentative Date: Monday, June 17, 2013

Assignments: 5% - Due dates to be announced.

Project: 20% - Due date to be announced.

Final Examination: 30% - On the last day of Summer I, Monday, July 1st, 2013


  • Instructor’s Office Hours


Instructor, Rima Taher, will be available for counseling on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday from 12:00 to 12:30 or by appointment. Office number: Weston 521.


·         E-mail Address/ Websites


E-mail: taher@njit.edu




  • Required Texts


Simplified Engineering for Architects and Builders, 11th Edition, by James Ambrose and Patrick Tripeny, Wiley & Sons, 2011, ISBN # 978-0-470-43627-1


  • Useful References


1.      Structural Design – A Practical Guide for Architects, by Rod Underwood and Michele Chiuini, 2nd Edition, John Wiley $ Sons

  1. Design of Wood Structures, by Donald Breyer, McGraw Hill, 6th Edition
  2. Structural Steel Design, 5th Edition, by Jack C. McCormac, Pearson, Prentice Hall
  3. The Architect Studio Companion – Rules of Thumb for Preliminary Design, by Edward Allen and Joseph Iano, Wiley & Sons
  4. Shaping Structures – Statics, by Waclaw Zalewski and Edward Allen, Wiley & Sons


  • Codes and Standards


  1. The 2012 International Building Code (IBC) published by ICC, International Code Council
  2. Minimum Design Loads for Buildings and Other Structures, ASCE 7-2010, by the American Society of Civil Engineers
  3. The 2010-AISC Specification and the 14th Edition of the Manual of Steel Construction by AISC, American Institute of Steel Construction, 2010
  4. National Design Specification for Wood Construction (NDS), 2012, by the American Forest and Paper Association, American Wood Council
  5. Minimum Code Requirements for Structural Concrete and Commentary, ACI 318-2011, by the American Concrete Institute


Week-by-Week Schedule


Week 1                  5/27 to 5/31


-          Introduction

-          Review of the Traditional Structural Systems, General Properties and Structural Rules of Thumb

-          Review of Structural Analysis

-          Indeterminate structures: continuous beams and rigid frames


Week 2                  6/3 to 6/7


-          Reinforced concrete and prestressed concrete systems

-          Simplified design of concrete beams

-          Simplified design of reinforced concrete one-way and two-way slabs


Week 3                  6/10 to 6/14


-          Test 1

-          Simplified design of reinforced concrete one-way and two-way slabs (Continued)

-          Masonry Structures

-          Advanced Topics in Foundation Design

-          Case Studies of complex Concrete and Steel Modern Buildings:

o        Cincinnati’s New Art Center (Zaha Hadid)

o        Milwaukee Art Museum Addition, Satolas TGV Station (Calatrava)

o        Seattle Central Library (Rhem Koolhaas)

o        Walt Disney Concert Hall (Frank Gehry)


Week 4                  6/17 to 6/21


-          Mid-Term Examination

-          Project Assigned

-          Advanced Topics in Steel and Wood Design


Week 5                  6/24 to 6/28


-          Additional Case studies of complex modern buildings:

    • China’s National Stadium/ Bird’s Nest (Herzog & De Meuron)
    • Italy’s Fiera Milano/ Milan’s Fairgrounds (Massimiliano Fuskas)

·         The New Terminal at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport, SOM

·         Hong Kong’s New International Airport


-          Introduction to the finite element method.

-          Project Due


Final Examination: Monday, July 1st, 2013