cod. 18219

Academic year 2023/24
2° year of course - First semester
Academic discipline
Indefinito/interdisciplinare (NN)
"altre conoscenze utili per l'inserimento nel mondo del lavoro"
Type of training activity
72 hours
of face-to-face activities
9 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Learning objectives

Knowledge and ability to understand:
At the end of the course, the student must have acquired the basic notions for understanding the static behavior of structures. More in detail, the student should be able to distinguish between various types of structural elements and their functions, define their static scheme, choose between different building materials and assess their compliance with project specifications, know the various types of actions on buildings and perform the design of simple structural elements. The knowledge acquired from the structural point of view will allow the student to actively collaborate in the processes of design and construction of buildings.

At the end of the course, the student must have developed the ability to understand and identify the main structural design issues related to buildings made with different materials and technologies. The student must be able to draw up technical reports and produce/understand correctly technical drawings, according to current regulations. The student must also have acquired basic skills regarding acceptance tests of building materials.

Autonomy of judgement:
At the end of the course, the student will have developed the ability to identify, formulate and solve basic problems related to the design and construction of new buildings, to establish the degree of compliance of materials with project specifications, to correctly understand executive drawings. The autonomy of judgement is mainly developed through classroom exercises, organized seminars, realization of small structural models, drafting and/ or analysis of project works.

Communication skills:
During the course, students must refine their language skills, with specific reference to the technical terminology of the course, in order to communicate their project effectively and accurately to both specialist and non-specialist audiences.

Learning skills:
Materials and techniques in the construction sector are subjected to continuous and rapid innovation. Therefore, the student should be able to constantly update his/her knowledge in relation to the evolution of regulations and products in the construction sector. In this way, he/she will acquire the ability, once the problem to be solved has been identified, to select the most suitable intervention, by also evaluating options not necessarily exposed during the course.


Basic knowledge of Structural Mechanics.
It is useful to have knowledge of CAD programs (Autocad type), and spreadsheets (Excel type).

Course unit content

Course contents:
• Conceptual approach to structural design. The structural design process.
• Evaluation of different loads acting on structures.
• Properties of construction materials (concrete, steel, wood, masonry) and acceptance tests on site.
• Verification methods: the allowable stress method and the limit state method.
• Vertical-resisting systems, lateral-resisting systems. Structural typologies commonly used in constructions. Load paths in buildings.
• Bearing structures and static behavior of RC, steel, wooden and masonry elements. Brief notes on construction technology.
• Preliminary design of the main structural elements of a RC building. Structural details and executive drawings.

Full programme

The extended program and the extended bibliography will be made available during the lessons


- Millais M., “Building structures – Understanding the basics”, Routledge
- Salvadori M., “Perchè gli edifici stanno in piedi”, Bompiani
- Heyman J., "The Stone Skeleton: Structural Engineering of Masonry Architecture", Cambridge University Press
- Carbone I.V., Fiore A., Pistone G., "Le costruzioni in muratura", Hoepli
- Piazza M., "Strutture in legno", Hoepli
- Cosenza E., Manfredi G., Pecce M., "Strutture in cemento armato: basi della progettazione", Hoepli
- Albano A., “Progettazione esecutiva di strutture in cemento armato in zona sismica”, Maggioli
- Angotti F., “Progetto delle strutture in calcestruzzo armato”, Hoepli
- Ballio G. Mazzolani F., Bernuzzi C., Landolfo R., “Strutture di acciaio” Hoepli
- Arbizzani E., "Progettazione tecnologica dell’architettura – Processo, progetto, costruzione”, Maggioli

Further teaching material (copy of the slides used during the course) will be made available on the web-page

Teaching methods

The course consists of a series of frontal lessons, also with the help of Powerpoint presentations, and reviews of laboratory activities. Lectures will take place in the classroom, but if necessary they will be broadcasted in streaming on Teams platform.
During the course, some seminars with external lecturers may be organized, to inspect more deeply specific issues. An educational visit to the laboratory of Test, Materials and Structures will be also organized, as well as – if possible - to a building site (so to deepen the topic of building construction stages).

30-35% of the total hours of the course will be destined to laboratory activities, focused on the design of simple structural elements, reading and understanding of real executive drawings, drafting of simple executive drawings, drafting of a brief technical report. This activity (that is compulsory) will be mainly developed within the lessons’ timetable, and the teacher will remain available for clarifications and reviews.

Assessment methods and criteria

The acquisition verification of the course will take place in oral form and will consist of:
- discussion of the design/laboratory activities carried out during the course (1/3 of the total mark);
- oral examination on the entire program carried out during the year (2/3 of the total mark).
During the exam, the ability of the student to design/verify a simple structural element will be also verified.

The exam will be held in presence. If the sanitary emergency will limit the possibility of exams in presence, the oral exam will take place on the Teams platform.

Other information

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