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eCourses (Online Courses)

These courses are free to explore and learn. Many courses do, however, require a basic understanding of engineering principles. To start an available course, click on an icon representing the format you prefer next to the course number (the course numbering does not imply prerequisites).

HTMLClick on the Flash symbol under the course number for a free voice-over presentation. Use onscreen controls to pace the course to your liking, view the script, etc.

webinarClick on the webinar symbol under the course number for a free stream of the American Wood Council's Wood Engineering Standards Webinar Series

PDF

Click on the PDF symbol under the course number for a free downloadable scripted PDF file with color images for the respective course.

Podcast

Click on the MP3 symbol under the course number for immediate playback, or RIGHT CLICK on the mp3 then SAVE TARGET AS... to save an audio mp3 file of the eCourse.

Continuing education credits (eQuizzes) are no longer available from the American Wood Council. However, some courses below which are designated as “Recorded Webinars” may have education credits available from the WoodWorks website. Follow the Recorded Webinar links below to learn more.


Course Listing

 

Design Standards for Wood Structures

STD 103 - Designing with the National Design Specification (NDS) for Wood Construction (NDS 2001)

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The NDS for Wood Construction 2001 contains many changes from the 1997 edition which are summarized in this eCourse. Significant changes include new product chapters on prefabricated wood I-joists, structural composite lumber, wood structural panels, poles, shear walls and diaphragms, fire design, and a new appendix for local stresses in members at connections. The course also covers revised provisions for: shear design (coinciding with increased shear design values) and notching, end grain bearing, volume factors, connections, and connection tables.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be:

1. Familiar with the many changes between the 2001 and 1997 NDS, including:

  • new product chapters on I-joists, structural composite lumber, wood structural panels, poles, shear walls and diaphragms, fire design
  • new Appendix for local stresses at connections

2. Knowledgeable about revised provisions for shear design with increased shear design values, notching, end grain bearing, volume factors, connections, and connection tables.

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STD 104 - ASD and LRFD with the 2005 National Design Specification for Wood Construction PDF

The 2005 NDS® for Wood Construction is a dual format ASD and LRFD document with some enhancements from the 2001 version. In this eCourse, learn about the format of the new document and how to apply its ASD and LRFD design provisions to wood construction through worked examples and much more.

Recorded Webinars
2005 NDS for Wood Construction – ASD/LRFD – Part I: Member Design
2005 NDS for Wood Construction – ASD/LRFD – Part II: Connection Design

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be knowledgeable of:

  1. Load Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) and how it applies to wood structure design.
  2. Similarities and differences with respect to ASD, design values, and behavioral equations.
  3. How to design in ASD and LRFD for wood using worked examples.
  4. Format and content within the 2005 NDS.
  5. Changes in the 2005 NDS and Supplement relative to previous editions.
  6. Detailed ASD and LRFD design for timber rivet connections.
  7. Documents comprising the 2005 Wood Design Package and how they're used.

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STD 105 - ASD and LRFD with the 2012 National Design Specification for Wood Constructionwebinar

Recorded Webinar

AWC's National Design Specification (NDS) for Wood Construction 2012 is the dual format Allowable Stress Design (ASD) and Load Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) document referenced in US building codes and used to design wood structures worldwide. Participants will learn about changes in the 2012 NDS and Supplement relative to previous editions and gain an overview of the standard.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be knowledgeable of:

  1. Be able to understand Load Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) and how it applies to wood structural design.
  2. Be familiar with the significant changes between the 2005 and 2012 NDS and supplement.
  3. Be able to identify the similarities and differences with respect to ASD, design values, and behavioral equations.
  4. Be able to analyze format and content within the 2012 NDS.

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STD 302 - Wood Frame Construction Manual 2001 Edition

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Apply provisions for designing wood frame structures for wind, snow, and seismic loads based on the Wood Frame Construction Manual (WFCM) for One- and Two-Family Dwellings, 2001 Edition. This edition is a dramatic enhancement of the 1995 WFCM that is applicable nation-wide.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be knowledgeable about:

1. The purpose of the 2001 WFCM and its development process.
2. Code acceptance and references.
3. 2001 WFCM document layout.
4. Design provisions including:

  • shear walls and the “Standard” Shear Wall concept
  • wind load resistance and behavior
  • snow load resistance
  • seismic load resistance and behavior.

5. Design Examples for each load type.

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STD 303 - Design of Wood Frame Buildings for High Wind, Snow, and Seismic Loadings (WFCM Workbook)

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This learn-by-example workbook-course provides a design example, typical checklist, and background information related to design of a wood-frame structure in accordance with AF&PA's Wood Frame Construction Manual (WFCM) for One- and Two- Family Dwellings, 2001 Edition. The design example uses plans from a 2-story residence as the basis for a structural design to resist wind, seismic, and snow loads. The workbook is heavily referenced to the 2001 WFCM to aid in understanding how to use the time-saving tools and tables offered by the 2001 WFCM. Download the PDF workbook and work through it from the beginning.

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PDFSTD 310 – 2012 Wood Frame Construction Manual – Part 1: Wind Speed and Design Pressure Determination According to ASCE 7-10

This presentation uses the 2012 Wood Frame Construction Manual (WFCM) as the basis for describing how wind loads are developed from the wind speeds shown in ASCE 7-10 Minimum Design Loads for Buildings and Other Structures. The WFCM prescriptive method will is used to illustrate the magnitude and applied location for loads applicable to low-rise wood frame construction.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Be able to determine site-specific wind speeds using ASCE 7-10
  2. Understand how wind speeds are used for calculating Main Wind Force Resisting System (MWFRS) and Components and Cladding (C&C) loads
  3. Understand how to convert from ASCE 7-10 back to ASCE 7-05 wind speeds
  4. Understand how to develop loads from wind speeds

Recorded Webinar:

Webinar Questions and Answers

 

This presentation has been approved for ICC Education Provider Program.

 

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PDFSTD 311 – 2012 Wood Frame Construction Manual – Part 2: Wind Load Distribution on Buildings - Load Paths

This webinar will be a continuation of the Loads webinar and use the loads developed previously to illustrate the importance of load path continuity in buildings. Vertical and lateral load paths will be described including the role of shear walls in buildings. The 2012 Wood Frame Construction Manual (WFCM) will be used as the basis for loads and load paths that must be determined in design of low-rise wood frame construction.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Be able to describe how loads are distributed to buildings both vertically and horizontally
  2. Be able to describe several different load paths that are critical to improved building performance during high winds
  3. Be able to recognize structural configurations or significant loading in building framing that might present construction challenges to framing continuous load paths
  4. Be able to recognize construction defects that could potentially fail under high wind loads

Recorded Webinar:

Webinar Questions and Answers

This presentation has been approved for ICC Education Provider Program.

 

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PDFSTD 312 – 2012 Wood Frame Construction Manual – Part 3: Connections

This webinar builds on the two previous Load and Load Path webinars and describes how connectors are used to create load paths in the structure and how the 2012 Wood Frame Construction Manual (WFCM) and calculated loads are used to determine connector type and size. Reference to connector products available in the marketplace will be made without identifying particular manufacturers.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Be able to describe various methods for making connections
  2. Understand how connections are expected to perform
  3. Understand various locations in a load path that require sound connections
  4. Understand what type of connections provide continuity to the foundation

Recorded Webinar:

This presentation has been approved for ICC Education Provider Program.

 

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PDFSTD 313 – 2012 Wood Frame Construction Manual – Part 4: Foundation Design to Resist Flood Loads and WFCM Calculated Wind Loads

This webinar builds on the three previous Load, Load Path, and Connections webinars to describe how loads must be transferred through the building to reach the foundation system. Foundation systems utilizing elevated piles will be emphasized. Due to minimal design information on elevated foundations in the building code, this webinar is intended to provide some design basics that may not be readily available.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Understand the concepts of load path for wind pressure applied to buildings
  2. Understand how loads are distributed into foundations
  3. Be able to describe various foundation systems best-suited for wind and flood loads
  4. Understand the most likely foundation failures attributable to wind only

Recorded Webinar:

This presentation has been approved for ICC Education Provider Program.

 

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STD 401 - 2005/2008 Special Design Provisions for Wind and Seismic ASD/LRFD

The 2005/2008 Special Design Provisions for Wind and Seismic is a dual format allowable stress design (ASD) and load and resistance factor design (LRFD) document. In this Course, learn about the format of the SDPWS and how to apply its ASD and LRFD design provisions to shear walls and diaphragms. Also learn about changes to the International Building Code for lateral design.

PDFDiaphragm Deflection Calculations

Recorded Webinar:

Calculation of wood-frame diaphragm deflection should account for bending and shear deflections, fastener deformation, chord splice slip, and other contributing sources of deflections. The 2008 SDPWS incorporates both a 3-term and 4-term deflection equation that accounts for these variables. This webinar will provide an overview and comparison of the 3-term and 4-term deflection equations. Additionally, an example showing calculation of mid-span deflection of a blocked wood structural panel diaphragm will be presented.

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Copyright and Limited License

All course materials are Copyright © 2001 - 2011 American Wood Council. All rights reserved.

Limited License: Permission is granted to download and print one copy each of the eCourse PDF files available on this website. However, you may not otherwise reproduce, resell, or reconvey, nor grant others permission to download or reproduce these files. All eCourse documents are owned by the American Wood Council, and all rights are retained.

Building Codes and Wood Design

BCD 101 - Building Codes & Wood Design

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Discussion of building code requirements for wood-frame buildings with an emphasis on the International Building Code's allowable heights and areas. Also discusses fire resistance issues like flame spread performance, component additive method to determine fire resistance, one-hour rated fire walls, and heavy timber fire resistance calculations.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be:

1. Familiar with building code requirements for wood frame buildings.
2. Familiar with International Building Code’s allowable heights and areas.
3. Functional with fire resistance issues such as:

  • flame spread
  • component Additive Method to determine fire resistance
  • one-hour fire wall designs
  • heavy timber fire resistance calculations.

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BCD 103 - The International Residential Code (IRC) and Wood Construction

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This eCourse discusses the development of the International codes with an emphasis on the relationship between the IRC and the CABO One- & Two-Family Dwelling Code. Also provides a summary of how the IRC addresses the use of wood in dwellings within the scope of the IRC.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be:

1. Familiar with the development of the International Codes, specifically, the relationship between the IRC and the CABO One- & Two-Family Dwelling Code
2. Familiar with how the IRC addresses the use of wood in dwellings within the scope of the IRC.

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BCD 104 - Wood Structural Design in the 2000 International Building Code

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A layout of how structural wood provisions are presented in the IBC 2000; Chapter 23 in particular. This is a first stop for those new to the IBC 2000. Course also covers how AF&PA documents are referenced.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be:

1. Familiar with how structural provisions are presented in the IBC 2000.
2. Familiar with the layout and content of Chapter 23.
3. Familiar with how AF&PA documents are referenced.

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BCD 201 - Fire Design for Code Acceptance

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Apply provisions for designing wood members for fire safety including component additive method, designing heavy timber for fire resistance, flame spread ratings, and fire-rated assemblies.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be:

1. Able to apply provisions for designing wood members for fire safety including the Component Additive Method.
2. Able to design heavy timber for fire resistance.
3. Able to determine flame spread ratings.
4. Familiar with fire-rated assemblies.

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BCD 202 - Fire Protection in Wood Buildings
Expanding the possibilities of wood design
(1.0 AIA/CES HSW Learning Unit (LU) 1.0 GBCI CE Hour for LEED credential maintenance)

This CEU provides an overview of fire protection in wood buildings with a focus on compliance with the 2009 IBC, and is based on the Code Conforming Wood Design Series developed by the American Wood Council (AWC) and the International Code Council. Building fire safety incorporates a combination of passive and active features. A passive fire safety feature may limit the height and area of the building, prescribe the use of fire-rated building elements or provide for adequate means of egress. Active fire safety features are those such as automatic fire detection or suppression systems that provide occupant notification, alarm transmittance and the ability to suppress fire growth until the fire service arrives. Codes are relying increasingly on active systems, since, with proper maintenance and alarm supervision, they have a high degree of reliability. This CEU covers the fundamentals of passive and active fire protection. It includes a summary of allowable wood use in buildings in accordance with the 2009 IBC, emphasizing the design flexibilities permitted for wood in non-residential and multifamily construction.

Learning Objectives - After reading this article, you will be able to:

  1. Analyze fire protection in wood buildings in terms of compliance with the 2009 International Building Code (IBC).
  2. Discuss the fundamentals of passive and active fire protection.
  3. Determine allowable wood use in buildings in accordance with the 2009 IBC.
  4. Describe provisions in the IBC for increasing the height and area of wood buildings beyond the base tabular amounts.
  5. Identify and select tested fire-rated wood-frame assemblies or, to use non-listed assemblies, calculate the fire endurance of load bearing and non-load bearing wood assemblies using the Component Additive Method (CAM).

To learn more please go to http://continuingeducation.construction.com/article.php?L=312&C=1110

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BCD 301 - Prescriptive Residential Wood Deck Construction Guide (DCA6) Webinar

PDF

DCA 6 includes guidance on provisions of the 2009 International Residential Code (IRC) pertaining to single level residential wood deck construction. Provisions contained in this document that are not included in the IRC are considered good practice recommendations. Based on the limited number of changes to deck provisions in the 2012 IRC, the DCA 6 2009 IRC version can be used in jurisdictions enforcing the 2012 IRC. This webinar will provide an overview of DCA 6 along with its Commentary and include several examples showing application of the deck guide.

Recorded Webinar from August 2013

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Topics on Wood Design and Detailing

DES 110 - Connection Design

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This seminar presents current wood connection design philosophy, behavior, serviceability issues, and connection design techniques for small and large wood members, panel products, and wood assemblies, using dowel-type and specialized components. Glued connections will also be discussed along with a brief introduction to connection design software.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you be:

  1. Familiar with current wood connection design philosophy, behavior, and serviceability issues.
  2. Familiar with design techniques for small and large wood members, panel products, and wood assemblies.
  3. Familiar with dowel-type and specialized components and adhesives.
  4. Briefly introduced to connection design software solutions.

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DES 120 - Designing for Permanence

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Construction techniques that prevent moisture from entering a wood-framed structure including:  a discussion of code-required clearances, site drainage, correct placement of moisture barriers, remedies for improper design, preservative treated wood, grading issues, and tips on preventing moisture-related insect and fungal attack.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be:

1. Functional with construction techniques that prevent moisture from entering a wood-framed structure, including:

  • code-required clearances
  • site drainage
  • correct placement of moisture barriers

2. Functional with remedies for improper design.

3. Knowledgeable about:

  • pressure treated wood
  • grading issues
  • tips on preventing moisture-related insect and fungal attack

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DES 130 - Lateral Load Resisting Systems for Wood Structures

PDF

This eCourse explains different construction types and the behavior of small structures and structural elements under gravity, seismic, and wind forces. Principles and typology of lateral load resistance systems are discussed including prescriptive braced wall lines as addressed by the IBC/IRC. An introduction to engineered shear wall design, location, and inspection points is offered. Throughout, this eCourse demonstrates how AF&PA's Wood Frame Construction Manual addresses these topics for one- and two-family dwellings.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you be:

1. Able to differentiate construction types and understand the behavior of small structures and structural elements under gravity, seismic, and wind forces.
2. Knowledgeable about the principles and typology of lateral load resistance systems, including braced wall lines as addressed by the IBC and IRC.
3. Familiar with engineered shear wall design, components, location, and inspection points.
4. Familiar with how AF&PA's Wood Frame Construction Manual addresses these topics for one- and two-family dwellings.

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DES 140 - Designing for Torsional Stability in Wood Members

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Lateral-torsional buckling is a limit state where beam deformation includes in-plane deformation, out-of-plane deformation, and twisting. This eCourse explores AWC's Technical Report No. 14 which describes the basis of the current effective length approach used in NDS and summarizes the equivalent uniform movement factor approach; provides a comparison between the two approaches; and proposes modification to NDS design provisions.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be knowledgeable of:

1. The concept of lateral torsional buckling behavior for beams.
2. How to design for it.
3. The design process with a few illustrative examples.

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DES 150 - Green Building - Designing with Wood

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In this eCourse, the definitions of green building and their relationship to sustainable building materials are reviewed. Various green building rating systems are examined and their respective treatments of wood as a building material are discussed. The differences in those treatments will be reviewed and their ramifications will be further explored. Internet sources for information on the subject of sustainable buildings are examined. Finally, the qualities which make wood a sustainable construction material are reviewed, the characteristics which make wood a green building material are discussed, and how various rating schemes treat each of wood's characteristics are reviewed.

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DES 160 - Wood and Environmental Product Declarations
New EPDs are part of a growing trend
(1.0 AIA/CES HSW Learning Unit (LU) 1.0 GBCI CE Hour for LEED credential maintenance)

This course will explain why EPDs are important, and how to understand and use the information in an EPD, with particular reference to EPDs recently released for lumber and glued laminated timber (glulam). The wood industry in the U.S. and Canada has been at the forefront of the trend, undertaking research and developing life cycle information that verify the environmental impact of wood building products. As the tools for analyzing and substantiating environmental performance become more sophisticated, the wood industry is working to use them to help the building community better understand wood as a building material in the context of its environmental impact.

Learning Objectives - After reading this article, you will be able to:

  1. Describe the function and format of Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs), and how they are used to analyze a building product's environmental impact throughout its life cycle.
  2. Differentiate EPDs from other types of ecolabels, rating systems, and certifications of environmental performance.
  3. Explain how EPDs are being used now, and the factors driving more product manufacturers to develop them and more designers and specifiers to use them as a standard part of sustainable product selection.
  4. Evaluate the information in an EPD, using recently published EPDs on wood products.

To read article please see PDF

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DES 170 - Shear Wall Design

There are several design tools and standards to assist engineers, architects, and building officials with the design of shear walls. Prescriptive approaches such as those outlined in International Code Council's (ICC) International Residential Code (IRC) and AWC's Wood Frame Construction Manual (WFCM) for One- and Two-Family Dwellings tend to provide conservative results. Engineered approaches such as those outlined in AWC's Special Design Provisions for Wind and Seismic (SDPWS) typically result in more efficient designs. This course will outline several resources available for shear wall design and compare design results.

Learning Outcomes:
Upon completion of this course, participants will:

  1. Identify and understand the basic shear wall system to resist wind and seismic loads.
  2. Understand the difference between segmented and perforated shear wall design.
  3. Understand hold down design.
  4. Be able to identify and analyze shear walls per the IRC, WFCM, and SDPWS and understand the differences between them.

To read article please see PDF

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Wood as a Building Material

MAT 100 - The Basics of Wood Frame Construction

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MAT100 is a complete eCourse composed of MAT 101 through MAT 110 (below) in one comprehensive program for building officials on wood frame construction basics.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be knowledgeable about:

  1. IBC Chapter 23 format; what is conventional construction?
  2. Growth characteristics of wood, grade marks, and protection against termites and decay.
  3. Floor, roof/ceiling, and wall framing.
  4. Wall bracing and introduction to Wood Frame Construction Manual.
  5. Fireblocking & draftstopping.

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MAT 101 - What Is Conventional Construction?

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Learn about the term "conventional construction" as used in the International codes. This course discusses the origination of conventional construction, it's limits, and points out that many elements seen in buildings that may be assumed to be conventional construction aren't.

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MAT 102 - Characteristics of Wood

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Learn about natural characteristics of wood and the impact of those characteristics on the serviceability of lumber.

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MAT 103 - Grade Marks

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Learn about and apply code requirements for grade marking of lumber. This eCourse explains what information grade marks should contain, how grading is done, variations in grade marks such as are found on finger-jointed lumber, and a code-accepted alternative to a grade mark.

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MAT 104 - Protection Against Termites and Decay

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Learn about naturally durable and preservative treated wood, about code requirements for those materials, and see examples of those requirements.

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MAT 105 - Conventional Floor Framing

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Begin to learn the code requirements for framing of structures under conventional construction provisions. This course talks in some depth about the use of I-joists as floor framing products.

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MAT 106 - Conventional Wall Framing

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Like the section on floors, this eCourse addresses code requirements for general wall framing. Bracing requirements are discussed under Lateral Load Bracing.

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MAT 107 - Lateral Load Bracing

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Learn in depth about the general concept of bracing wood structures and in detail about the IRC requirements for wall bracing.

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MAT 108 - Roof / Ceiling Framing

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Learn in detail about the code requirements for roof framing, and about the use of engineered wood products such as I-joists and trusses as alternates to conventional solid-sawn lumber.

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MAT 109 - Introduction to the Wood Frame Construction Manual

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Begin to learn the scope of the Wood Frame Construction Manual, its format, and the concept of perforated shear walls.

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MAT 110 - Fireblocking and Draftstopping

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Learn and apply code requirements for controlling the spread of fire, smoke, and gases. Examples are given.

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MAT 120 - Metric and WoodPodcastPDFHTML

Apply provisions developed by the wood industry for use of the metric system as mandated by the federal government for all federal construction projects.

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MAT 210 - Engineered Wood Products

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Introduction to the ever-growing family of engineered wood products (EWP). Products covered are lumber, glued-laminated timber (glulam), structural composite lumber, wood I-joists, plywood, and oriented-strand board. The standards that form the basis for the manufacture and development of design stresses for each product are discussed. Unique characteristics for each product are highlighted and extensive examples of the use of these products in a wide range of building applications are presented.

Learning Outcomes:
On completion of this eCourse, you will be:

1. Familiar with the ever-growing family of engineered wood products (EWP’s) and their unique characteristics, including:

  • lumber
  • glued-laminated timber (glulam)
  • structural composite lumber
  • wood I-joists
  • plywood
  • oriented strand board

2. Familiar with the standards that form the basis for the manufacture and development of design stresses for each product.
3. Knowledgeable about the use of these products through examples of a wide range of building applications.

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