TAM 210/11: Statics

General Info

Grades Formal Assessment Contact Info
Course description Grading Lectures Office hours
Big idea Final grades i-Clickers Online forum
Prerequisites   Discussions  
Reference text   Online tutorials  
Equity & Diversity   Online homeworks  
    Written assignments  


Website: The official class website is http://courses.engr.illinois.edu/tam210/

Description: In this course, we will cover fundamental concepts that are used in every engineering discipline. We will begin with forces, moments and move towards structural analyses of frames, devices, and machines.  By the end, you will be able to solve rigid body mechanics problems that will inform the design of everything from bridges to biomedical devices.  

Big Idea: Clear knowledge of external forces (boundary conditions) is required to determine what constraints are necessary for the safe (static equilibrium) development and design of any widget. Free body diagrams are an essential tool for understanding the forces and moments on a body.

Prerequisites: Required: PHYS 211; credit or concurrant registration in MATH 241. Preferred: CS 101 or experience programming in MATLAB.

Reference texts:

  • Engineering Mechanics: STATICS, 14th edition by Hibbeler.  (Not required, but would be VERY useful)
    • Available at bookstore (electronic or hard copy)
    • Available on reserve at Grainger
  • Also vailable on reserve at Grainger
    • Beer, Ferdinand P.;   Vector Mechanics for Engineers: Statics
    • Nelson, E.W. [et al.];   Engineering Mechanics: Statics
    • Nelson, E. W.;   Schaum’s Outlines Statics, 6th Edition [online electronic resource] (Great study guide resource with many worked examples)

Equity and diversity:

This is an equal opportunity classroom environment. We value the diversity represented by the participants in this course. Our diversity is a primary source of ideas and perspectives. As you work through the course, practice using this diversity to your advantage.


Grading: As noted under Polices (Gradebook), all assessment scores are stored on Compass2g. Note that we are only using this website for grade reporting.The total score for the course is computed with the following weights:

TAM 210

In-lecture iClickers 3% Written assignments 8%
Discussion group activity 8%

Bi-weekly quizzes

PrairieLearn homework 10% Exam 25%
Mastering Engineering Tutorials 6%    

TAM 211

In-lecture iClickers 3% Written assignments 8%
Discussion group activity 8%

Bi-weekly quizzes

PrairieLearn homework 10% Exam 25%
Mastering Engineering Tutorials 6%    

Final grades: The total score s corresponds to final grades as follows.

97% ≤ s < 100% A+ 92% ≤ s < 97% A 89% ≤ s < 92% A-
86% ≤ s < 89% B+ 82% ≤ s < 86% B 79% ≤ s < 82% B-
76% ≤ s < 79% C+ 72% ≤ s < 76% C 69% ≤ s < 72% C-
66% ≤ s < 69% D+ 59% ≤ s < 66% D 55% ≤ s < 59% D-
s < 55% F        

Lectures: Prompt and regular attendance at lectures is required to obtain credit for iClicker content.


iClickers: Short quizzes are conducted during lectures using iClickers (grade is based on participation and correctness). An iClicker remote can be purchased from any of the bookstores, and must be registered on Compass2g, under the tab "Register i>clicker". You need to register your iClicker by the end of Week 2, when the iClicker roster will be synced for the last time. The first iClicker use for credit will take place in Week 2 of the semester.


Discussion sections: Discussion sections are opportunities to practice the course material for the week using team-based worksheets.

  • Discussion sections start in Week 1 of semester, with the schedule below.  Check Banner for your assigned discussion section.
  • You will be working in groups throughout the semester.  Groups will be formed in week 2 of class using an online system called CATME.  Help for filling out the CATME survey is here.
  • Grade is based on attendance and participation. See Policies (Discussion Sections).
  • Discussion sections are always held in 252 Mechanical Engineering Building.


  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday


Vince, Linfeng



Vince, Ziran



Shiyao, Ziran



Sean, Cody



Sean, Cody


Timothy, Ahad



Cody, Ziran



Linfeng, Vince



Linfeng, Timothy



Shiyao, Ahad



Online Tutorials: To help provide exposure to the material before lecture and discussion section, weekly online tutorials of pre-reading and assessment exercises will be assigned in Mastering Engineering, a website offered by Pearson, the publisher of the course textbook (Engineering Mechanics: Statics by Hibbeler). 

  • First review the appropriate chapter in the Hibbeler textbook (hard copy or e-text).
  • Each student should then go through the online tutorial and questions to further learn the material. Copying answers from friends will NOT help you master the material! 
  • The schedule of due dates for completing the tutorials are on the Mastering Engineering website and the course schedule.
  • Tutorials must be completed by 11:59 pm Central Time of the due date (which will generally be Friday). 10:00 am Central Time on Monday.
  • Late submissions will be penalized: the maximum attainable score will be reduced by 20$\%$ for each day late. 
  • To encourage you to work through the problems and to obtain the correct solution, you may revise and resubmit your solutions numerous times until the due date.
  • You can rework completed items after the due date. This work will not be saved and will not affect your grades.
  • Solutions will not be posted. By reworking the question and resubmitting the answer, you should arrive at the correct solution.

Instructions for registration on the Mastering Engineering website are be found here (you need the instructor’s course ID from this form, and need to first register using the website provided in the document) . You MUST register your account username using your netID. Do NOT use your UIN. Failure to use the correct ID will result in no documented grade in Compass2g's Gradebook and will result in a zero for this part of your final grade, see Policies (Gradebook)

Trouble-shooting tips for Mastering Engineering website can be found here and here.

You should consider one of the following options to obtain access to Mastering Engineering:

Please follow the steps below to start using Mastering Engineering:

  • Purchase custom textbook from the bookstore: includes MasteringEngineering + eText + printed custom version of the textbook
  • Purchase MasteringEngineering + eText
  • Purchase MasteringEngineering only  - in this case, you may choose to use your lecture notes for text reference, borrow a book from a friend or library, or buy any other used textbook


Online homeworks: To help you learn and practice the procedures for analyzing a problem, weekly online homeworks will be assigned in PrairieLearn. Homework assignments are especially designed for learning from mistakes as students are allowed unlimited opportunities to submit solutions. By paying careful attention to working through homework assignments, students should be able to master or at least have a strong understanding of the concept, principle or general solution process for addressing the given problem. 

  • Each student should through the homework questions to help you learn the material. Copying answers from friends will NOT help you master the material! 
  • The schedule of Prairie Learn homework (PL HW) due dates in on  the course schedule.
  • Homework must be completed by 11:59 pm Central Time of the due date (which will generally be Tuesday).
  • Late submissions will be penalized: the max score achievable will drop by 20$\%$ over each day late. 
  • To encourage you to work through the problems and to obtain the correct solution, you may revise and resubmit your solutions numerous times until the due date.
  • Practice coding the solutions for homework questions in MATLAB as personal calculators are not allowed during the CBTF quizzes, and you do not want to waste your quiz time figuring out how to program MATLAB to solve the quiz question.
  • You can rework completed items after the due date. This work will not be saved and will not affect your grades.
  • Solutions will not be posted. By reworking the question and resubmitting the answer, you should arrive at the correct solution.

Written assignments: To help you to practice you how to prepare your analyses in a logical manner, you will be asked to submit INDIVIDUALwritten assignments during the semester.  These assignments are designed to practice communicating engineering concepts in writing. They will be graded based on content and presentation.

Assignments are to be submitted using Compass2g.

  • IN SUMMARY, WE WILL ONLY GRADE REPORTS UPLOADED AS A PDF FILE, SINGLE DOCUMENT, PORTRAIT FORMAT! NO EXCEPTIONS!! Submitted assignments that do not comply with these guidelines will automatically lose 50% of the grade for the assignment.
  • Details of how to complete a written assignment and expectations are given in the WA1 help file found on Compass2g.
  • Written assignment deadlines are available in the schedule page.
    • Written assignmetns must be completed by 11:59 pm Central Time on the due date (which will generally be alternating Thursdays).
    • You will have unlimited attempts to upload your written assignment; we will grade only your last attempt.
    • Your name and discussion session number must be printed legibly on the top of the first page.
    • Scan your assignment and save it in pdf format. Files in any other format will not be graded. 
    • While scanning, make sure that you captured all of the pages of your written assignment in ONE pdf file. We will only grade a single pdf file.
    • Submit a professional document. All text, symbols, diagrams, plots, lines, etc. in the submitted PDF document must be readable by the TA. Illegible documents will not be graded.
    • Your scanned work must be in portrait format.
    • When preparing your written assignment, you MUST assign symbols (to the utmost extent possible) to all the relevant lengths, forces, material properties, et cetera, and then solve the problem symbolically. If given, you should assign numerical values to your final result. Depending on the difficulty of the problem, you may assign numbers at intermediate steps.
    • Late written assignment will not be accepted (you will not be able to upload it on Compass2g). No exceptions. PLEASE DO NOT SEND YOUR LATE WRITTEN ASSIGNMENT BY EMAIL.

Quizzes: These quizzes are designed to assess your problem solving skills. Quizzes are only intended for ASSESSMENT, not learning. Quiz questions are formulated to be similar to the main concept, principle, or solution process being demonstrated in the homework questions. You will not be allowed to use notes, textbooks or any electronic devices (including calculators). If you practiced the course material in your PrairieLearn homework assignments, Written Assignments, and Discussion section worksheets, you should be able to easily address the quiz questions. You will need to be able to do calculations during quizzes. While working on PrairieLearn homework assignments, practice frequently using MATLAB, Mathematica, or other approved online computing resources (such as MATE Calculator software) so that you can use these tools efficiently during your CBTF quizzes. Solutions will not be posted. Quiz dates are listed in the schedule (generally Wednesday through Friday every two weeks). Your lowest Computer Based Test score will be dropped. This drop should be reserved for unexpected occurrences such as sickness or a family emergency.

  • You will have a set number of attempts to submit the correct answer to the quiz question. Only the final submission is graded. There is no partial credit.
  • During the entire time period of testing, students are strictly forbidden from discussing any aspect of the test/quiz whatsoever with other students. See  Policies (Computer-Based Testing Facility).
  • Information about the CBTF as well as access to the scheduler are available at https://cbtf.engr.illinois.edu.
Instructions for students to schedule a quiz:
1. Firefox and Chrome are both supported web browsers. Other browsers may not be supported yet.
2. Click “Add a course” and then click “TAM 210/211: Statics”
3. Click on “Quiz #1” (click anywhere in the large red box)
4. Click on the green button for the time-slot when you want to take Quiz #1
5. After you have signed up for a quiz, you can cancel or change your reservation by clicking on the green reservation area. You can make changes to your reservation up to 1 hour before your scheduled quiz time.
6. DRES students requiring extra time should sign up for a time-slot that has enough time remaining after it. For example, if you need 1.5X or 2X time, then don’t sign up for the last time-slot of the day, but any earlier time-slot is ok. If you need 3X time then don’t sign up for either of the last two time-slots of the day, but any of the early time-slots are ok. When you arrive at the CBTF, inform the proctor that you are a DRES student and you will be accommodated in a separate, reduced-distraction room.
The computer-based testing facility is in 57 Grainger Engineering Libarary; in the basement on the east side of the building.


A cumulative evening exam will be held for all students during week 12 after the completion of TAM 210 lecture materials. There will be no cumulative exam for the remaining TAM 211 students; they will take additional quizzes for the remaining topics. If a student needs a conflict exam, contact the instructor at the start of the semester and at least two weeks before the exam date with the legitimate reason for needing to schedule a conflict exam. Failure to contact the instructor at least two weeks before the exam date will likely result in the inability to accomodate requests for a conflict exam period.

Date: TBD

Time: 7-9 pm

Location: TBD


Office hours:

Professor Hsiao-Wecksler (154 Mechanical Engineering Building): 9:30-10:30 am in 154 Mechanical Engineering Building, or by appointment (contact Prof. H-W via Piazza)

Daily office hours are held in Grainger 429 according to the schedule below. Office hours start on Friday, January 19.

  Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
3-4 Shiyao, Ziran          
4-5 Shiyao, Ziran Kazem, Linfeng Kazem, Vincent     Nithin
5-6 Ahad, Timothy Kazem, Linfeng Kazem, Vincent     Nithin
6-7 Ahad, Timothy Vineeth, Cody Vineeth (Ahad, Linfeng)*   Siyuan
7-8   Nithin, Cody Vineeth, Sean (Ahad, Linfeng)*   Siyuan
8-9   Nithin Vineeth, Sean     Siyuan

*Note that these office hours will only be held on weeks that Written Assignments are due.

Online forum (Piazza): This class uses Piazza for ALL communications between the instructor, TAs, CAs, and students. Students should not communicate with instructors via email, unless there is an emergency.

Students are encouraged to post public messages on Piazza ("Post to Entire Class"). However, you can use the private feature by posting a message visible only to the Instructors. In this last case, you must type "Instructors", instead of sending a message to a specific TA or instructor.

TAs and CAs are scheduled to be checking Piazza on the following days:

  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday






Cody, Ahad











The use of Piazza should not replace the office hours time, since some questions cannot be fully addressed via an online forum.