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PCI eLearning Course T120: Design Loads and Load Distribution
T120: This third course on bridge design teaches one of the fundamental tasks of collecting information on permanent and transient loads that may act on a bridge and how these forces are distributed to the structural components. It presents the load types and load distribution provisions of the LRFD Specifications related to superstructure systems.

After completing this course, the student will be able to:
  • Recognize definitions of basic load types
  • Select appropriate load factors to use for load combinations
  • Explain the meaning of distribution factors and choose the appropriate equation to use for a bridge cross section
  • Apply distribution factor equations to a bridge cross section with skew
  • Identify the effects of obtuse corners on exterior girders
  • Examine cases to determine if the Approximate Method applies
  • Identify the types of analyses that can be done for bridges where approximate live-load distribution factors should not be used
PCI eLearning Courses T100: Courses on Design and Fabrication of Precast, Prestressed Concrete Bridge Beams

These courses grew from the need for readily accessible, authoritative educational resources. PCI, with assistance provided by the Federal Highway Administration and in collaboration with the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, enlisted a large team of educational course developers, all with practical experience in the design of bridges, many have conducted university research, and most have National Cooperative Highway Research Program development experience. These courses were written by authors who are experts in design. Teams of subject matter experts reviewed and critiqued each course. The courses were then balloted and approved by the PCI Committee on Bridges and the PCI Technical Activities Council. The courses provide the overarching theory, the concise design steps, and information about various issues that will be encountered during design and fabrication of precast, prestressed concrete flexural bridge members.

On the PCI eLearning portal, course participants are able to download reference materials in pdf format to build a library of cited and relevant publications.

At random locations in each course, short quizzes will appear to be sure concepts are being understood. Continuing Education Units (CEUs) and Professional Development Hours (PDHs) are available for compliance with state requirements for registered professional engineers. The credits are accepted in every state. After successful completion of the course, a simple application is all that is required. There is no cost.
Availability: On-Demand
Cost: FREE
Credit Offered:
1 PDH Credit
1 LU Credit
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