The evolution of structural engineering education in the era of computer
Contributor(s)Universidad de Sevilla. Departamento de Estructuras de Edificación e Ingeniería del Terreno
KeywordsEuropean higher education area
Structural engineering education
Computer assisted learning
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AbstractCongreso celebrado en la Escuela de Arquitectura de la Universidad de Sevilla desde el 24 hasta el 26 de junio de 2015.
In the last decades, the universalization of computer analysis has meant a revolution in the structural analysis methods that are being used in the professional practice. As a consequence, the need has arisen both in academic and professional circles to redefine the teaching of structures in the engineering and architecture schools. This study analyses, in the first place, the literature on structural analysis teaching to synthesize the characteristics that should have a structural analysis course in the context of the XXI century. Starting from the analysis of shortcomings in the current teaching, a panorama on future directions in the teaching of structures is outlined, in relation to the objectives, the contents, the instructional method, the use of computer and the role of hand calculation. The literature revision allowed establishing a theoretical framework for the design of a structures course syllabus adapted to the present needs. In general, it is assumed that the universalization of computer analysis should lead to a paradigm shift in the teaching of structures. Instead of focusing in learning hand analysis methods, the structures courses should be aimed at the understanding of the structural behavior, which is required to carry out successfully the tasks that the graduates should undertake in their professional practice. Finally, we present an experience carried out in the Seville School of Architecture, where a course based in the principles outlined in the literature and also following the guidelines of the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) has been designed and implemented. The program evaluation has yielded positive results, which include a significant increase in the attendance and success rate.