Guided Online Course

The last date to register for this course is July 17, 2023.

If you are not currently logged into ASCE, you will be asked to log in or create an ASCE account.

Certificate Programs

Save up to $275 when you purchase this course through the Structural Earthquake Engineering for Buildings Certificate Program


2.4 CEUs / 24 PDHs


Member $1045 | Non-member $1345 —new lower pricing


Finley A. Charney, Ph.D., P.E., F.ASCE F.SEI  
Justin D. Marshall, Ph.D., P.E., M.ASCE 

Purpose & background

This course introduces the fundamental concepts of earthquake engineering, and provides the foundation for understanding the analysis and design requirements in ASCE 7. Covered in the course are seismic hazard analysis, structural dynamics, development of response spectra, inelastic behavior of structures, seismic resistant structural systems, and seismic load analysis.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • Explain the process under which the seismic loading requirements of ASCE 7 are developed.
  • Describe the primary motivating factor used in earthquake design.
  • Match the scientific principles of earthquake engineering and how they relate to dynamic effects, quantification of ground motions, inclusion of inelastic effects, and prediction of response using structural analysis.
  • Apply lessons learned from previous earthquakes to development of good practices in building codes and building construction.
  • Use the USGS Ground Motion Tool to obtain ground shaking parameters. Quantify the effects of ground shaking and mitigate the ground shaking hazards that result from earthquakes.
  • Discuss how geological processes generate earthquakes, and investigate the best ways to mitigate the various hazards that results from earthquakes.
  • Match a building made of different materials to the damping they would likely exhibit.
  • Recall concepts of resonance, frequency/period of vibration, and damping, procedures used to estimate the expected intensity of ground shaking at a given site, and why inelastic response is necessary in seismic design, and how building codes use the “equal displacement concept” to accommodate inelastic behavior without the need for advanced nonlinear analysis procedures.
  • Identify the advantages and disadvantages of the various structural systems that are allowed in seismic design and methods of structural analysis that are provided by ASCE 7.
  • Recognize ways in which configuration irregularities, excessive torsional response, and lack of redundancy can have severe consequences on the seismic performance of building structures.

Who should attend?

  • Practicing engineers
  • Building code officials
  • Architects
  • Developers

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