Continuing Education

Night School Current Course

Night School is a curriculum of courses on structural steel design and construction topics. Each course consists of eight sessions presented as ninety minute webinars. There are two ways to register for Night School, either as an eight session package or as individual webinars.

Looking for Night School 12: Fundamentals of Bolting and Welding?  View Past Course Details for quiz and attendance information.

Night School 13: Design of Industrial Buildings

Written and Presented by James M. Fisher and Jules Van de Pas
Winter 2017 Course

This Night School consists of eight 90 minute lessons. Each lesson consists of approximately 75 minutes of discussion followed by a question and answer period. The lessons are split between the design of buildings without overhead cranes and those structures with light duty and heavy duty overhead cranes. Critical design issues and design approach techniques are discussed. Calculations are presented in a manner that serve as a teaching tool for engineers. A complete design example (anchor rods to roofing) of a 50-ton overhead crane building is illustrated. 

Registration Options


8-Session Package

Individual Sessions


Register Register
Sessions Included (8) 90 minute sessions   (1) 90 minute session
 PDH Credits

 Up to 12 PDHs (1.5 PDHs per attended session) 

1.5 PDHs per webinar
PDH Certificates Issued

Registrant only

Unlimited per connection
EEU credits1  1 EEU certificate upon passing 7 of 8 quizzes + final exam and attending all sessions  Not available 
 Attendance2 "Make up" (recorded) sessions available online for two weeks after air date  Live only 
 Recording Access Available online for two weeks after air date. Email with link sent two days after session.   Not available
Quiz Access  Available through My AISC account two days after session.   not available
Access to PDF file of presentation file prior to each session Included Included
Price Per Connection   
Member $500 $185 
 Non-member  $900  $285 
Student/Faculty   $250  $155 
Public Agency Employee   $500  $155 

1 EEU-Equivalent Education Unit. Eight session registrants who attend all sessions (live or recorded) and pass 7 of 8 quizzes and the final exam will be awarded 1.0 EEU. Earning an EEU is worth a maximum of 12 PDHs.

2 Registrants who watch the recorded version (available for 8-session package registrants only) must take and pass a quiz in order to receive PDHs.

Substitutions and Cancellations: Substitutions can be made at any time. Eight Session package registration cancellations received 1-3 days prior to Session 1 will be charged a $150 service charge. Cancellations and no shows the day of Session 1 and later will not receive a refund.  Individual session registration cancellations received 1-3 days prior to the webinar will be charged a $50 service charge. Cancellations and no shows the day of the webinar session will not receive a refund. 


Session 1: January 30 - Design Criteria

Presented by James M. Fisher

In Lesson 1, loads as required by IBC 2015 and ASCE 7-10 are discussed as well as owner established design criteria.  Advantages and disadvantages of various roof and wall systems are presented.  Serviceability issues and other design considerations are discussed in detail for roof and wall types.  Expansion joint requirements and details for expansion joints for both buildings without overhead cranes and those with overhead cranes are presented.  Member selection guidelines for optimum design are discussed.

Session 2: February 6 - Economic Considerations

Presented by James M. Fisher

Lesson 2 focuses on roof and bay optimization.  Design considerations for roof trusses are discussed.  Connection considerations, permanent, and erection bracing for roof trusses are presented.  Economic issues pertaining to: span-to-depth ratios, location of splice points, use of tee chords, the advantages of LRFD, use of high strength steels, web arrangements, and the value of repetition of member sizes are all discussed. Design considerations for: Block Shear and Shear Rupture, Orientation of Wide Flange Chords, Slip Critical Joints, Seat Connections, and Splices are discussed.  Additional information not covered in Lesson 1 on optimum member selection, and details for the support of hanging loads and roof top units are provided.  An interactive Spreadsheet tool is demonstrated for selecting optimum bay layout.  Roof diaphragm details and design requirements are also discussed.

Session 3: February 13 - Lateral Load Systems and Details

Presented by James M. Fisher

Lesson 3 deals with lateral load resisting systems which includes, roof horizontal bracing systems, braced frames, and rigid frames.  Economical choices for the lateral load system are discussed.  Moment connections details for connecting Joist Girders to columns are provided along with practical suggestions for the maximum moment resistance for each detail.  Three examples are given, these include a braced frame using LRFD and ASD, and a rigid frame using ASD.  The braced frame examples include the design of the roof diaphragm.  The rigid frame example includes a “hand calculation” of a moment connection as well as a demonstration of a Spreadsheet solution.

Session 4: February 27 - Preliminary Design Procedures

Presented by James M. Fisher

Lesson 4 sets the stage for a complete building design for a two bay 50-ton overhead crane building.  The project description and design criteria including all loads and serviceability requirements are discussed.  Preliminary design procedures and calculations are provided for the runway girders, columns, and roof members beginning with the determination of required eave height based upon the owner’s requirement for the crane hook height.  A discussion on the various choices for column types and the preliminary design hints for each is provided.  A weight comparison between 30 ft. and 40 bay spacing is also provided.

Session 5: March 6 - Crane Girder Design and Frame Analysis

Presented by Jules Van de Pas

Lesson 5 includes the design of a typical 30-foot-long crane runway girder and an analysis for a typical frame in the example building.  A crane girder design procedure is demonstrated, including the evaluation of strength and serviceability limit states.  Examples of proper details for minimizing fatigue effects for crane runway girders are presented.  Development of the frame loads, including seismic loads, and the selection of the seismic force resisting system are discussed.  Second order analysis methods and calculations for estimating second order effects are presented.

Session 6: March 13 - Frame Member and Connection Design

Presented by Jules Van de Pas

Lesson 6 incorporates the results of the frame analysis discussed in lesson 5 to demonstrate the design of the building columns, crane columns, and moment connections.  The AISC Manual beam column tables are used for the design of the beam columns to illustrate their use.  The design of the Ordinary Moment Frame connection of a Joist Girder to the building column is provided.  The development of the specification for the Joist Girders, for the example building, using the Steel Joist Institute’s Technical Digest 11 is also discussed.  The design of the column anchor rods is provided including evaluation of limit states according to ACI 318 Chapter 17.  Discussion of the recommendations of AISC Design Guide 1 are included in the example, as well as, the calculation for the thickness of the column base plate.

Session 7: March 27 - Transfer Crane Girder and Longitudinal Building Bracing Design

Presented by Jules Van de Pas

Lesson 7 begins with the design of a 60-foot-long crane runway girder, the backup girder, and the horizontal lacing which connects the backup beam to the runway girder.  The design of the longitudinal bracing system is then presented including the roof longitudinal bracing, and the building longitudinal bracing.  The loads and forces acting on the bracing members and struts are developed, the members selected, and typical details are discussed.  The crane bumper force calculation is provided and the crane longitudinal bracing design is shown.  The design of the end wall bracing is also provided.  Connection details for the braces are provided.

Session 8: April 3 - Building Envelope and Bracing Design

Presented by James M. Fisher

Lesson 8 is the final lesson and the final design of the 50-ton overhead crane building design example is presented.  The final roof and wall design is presented with a discussion relative to the design of standing seam roofs and to membrane roofs.  Advantages and disadvantages of standing seam roofs are presented.  Design concerns for metal roof deck and open web joists relative to mechanical membrane roofs subjected to wind uplift forces are presented.  Proper specifications for open web joists subjected to gravity, uplift and roof ponding are discussed.  Design procedures for cold-formed girts are presented along with wind column design.  Lateral bracing calculations for the Ordinary Moment Frame (OMF) columns and beams are performed and discussed.  The lesson concludes with suggested general notes for the installation of the runway beams.

Quiz and Attendance records

Quiz Answers

View answers to Night School 13 quizzes.

Quiz answers are posted here after the due date.

Attendance and Quiz Scores

View attendance and quiz records for 8-session package registrants of Night School 13.


James M. Fisher

James M. Fisher, PhD, PE

James M. Fisher, PhD, PE is Emeritus Vice President of CSD in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Jules Van de Pas

Jules Van de Pas, PE, SE

Jules Van de Pas is Vice President of CSD in Denver, Colorado.