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Bridge and Culvert Basics

George E. Thomas, PE

Course Outline

This course will provide you with the basic terminology and elementary theory of bridge mechanics and materials and will present the terminology needed to properly identify and describe the individual elements that comprise a bridge. The major components of a bridge and the basic member shapes and connections of a bridge are discussed, ending with the purpose and function of culverts.

This course includes a multiple choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.

Learning Objective

At the conclusion of this course, the student will:

Intended Audience

Civil Engineers, Structural Engineers, and Architects

Benefit to Attendees

The course will provide an understanding of bridges and culverts used in road construction and will discuss the various types of structures and there use.

Course Introduction

This course is intended to improve your knowledge related to bridges and culverts.

Course Content

In this lesson, you are required to download and study the following course content in PDF format:

Bridge and Culvert Basics

Please click on the above underlined hypertext to view, download or print the document for your study. Because of the large file size, we recommend that you first save the file to your computer by right clicking the mouse and choosing "Save Target As ...", and then open the file in Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you still experience any difficulty in downloading or opening this file, you may need to close some applications or reboot your computer to free up some memory.

Course Summary

This course covers basic bridges and culverts, including all structures erected over a depression or an obstruction, such as water, highway, or railway, and having a track or passageway for carrying traffic or other moving loads, and having an opening measured along the center of the roadway of more than 20 feet; it also includes multiple pipe culverts, where the clear distance between openings is less than half of the smaller contiguous opening.


Once you finish studying the above course content, you need to take a quiz to obtain the PDH credits.

Take a Quiz

DISCLAIMER: The materials contained in the online course are not intended as a representation or warranty on the part of PDH Center or any other person/organization named herein. The materials are for general information only. They are not a substitute for competent professional advice. Application of this information to a specific project should be reviewed by a registered architect and/or professional engineer/surveyor. Anyone making use of the information set forth herein does so at their own risk and assumes any and all resulting liability arising therefrom.