Civil Engineering BEng/MEng

Mechanics of Structures 2B ENG2082

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Engineering
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 2 (SCQF level 8)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

This course covers basic solid mechanics (stress and strain in 3D, including elastic behaviour and yielding), application of the principles of virtual work and superposition in structural mechanics and an introduction to buckling of columns.


2 lectures per week

Excluded Courses





80% Written Exam

20% Written Assignment

Main Assessment In: April/May

Course Aims

The aims of this course are to:

■ develop understanding of the basic principles of solid mechanics and the application of these to simple 2D and 3D problems;

■ introduce the principles of virtual work and superposition and their application in structural mechanics;

■ introduce the concepts of buckling and instability for columns and other structural members subjected to compressive loads.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of the course students will be able to:

■ apply the concepts of stress and strain in 2D and 3D, including principal stresses and strains, 3D elastic stress-strain relations and yield criteria (Tresca and Von Mises), to the solution of simple problems, such as thin-walled cylindrical or spherical pressure vessels;

■ apply the principle of virtual work to simple structures;

■ calculate the elastic deflections of simple structures using the principle of superposition;

■ evaluate the elastic stability of columns subjected to various boundary conditions.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must attend the degree examination and submit at least 75% by weight of the other components of the course's summative assessment.


Students must attend the timetabled laboratory class.


Students should attend at least 75% of the timetables classes of the course.


Note that these are minimum requirements: good students will achieve far higher participation/submission rates. Any student who misses an assessment or a significant number of classes because of illness or other good cause should report this by completing a MyCampus absence report.