Comprehensively introduces the finite element method as applied primarily to structural analysis. Presents the foundations of finite elements by addressing the theory of elasticity, calculus of variations, and variational principles of solid mechanics. Subsequently, applies the finite element methodology to trusses, beams, membrane elements, plates, torsion, and axisymmetry. Introduces students to computer programming aspects of the finite element method. Additional topics (time permitting) are dynamics, stability, fluid flow, heat transfer, Galerkin and Ritz methods.