Introduction to the Finite Element Method (ME 412)

2022 Spring
Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences
Güllü Kızıltaş Şendur,
Click here to view.
Formal lecture,Other
Interactive,Project based learning,Simulation
Click here to view.


The course emphasizes the fundamental concepts in finite element analysis, and practical implementation of a working program. The course is divided into two halves. The first half is concentrated on the basic theoretical of the finite element method. The second half will be focused on issues concerning the implementation. Advanced topics will be discussed if time permits. The methods studied in this course are practical procedures that are employed extensively in the mechanical, civil, ocean, aeronautical and electrical industries. Increasingly, the methods are used in computer-aided design.


The objective of the course is to teach the basic fundamentals of finite element method
with emphasis on the underlying theory, assumptions, and modeling issues as well as
providing hands on experience using finite element software to model, analyze and
design systems of relevance to engineers.


  • Students should understand, be able to explain, use and develop further the key elements of the numerical analysis of the Finite Element Method.
  • They should be able to derive the weak form from the strong form of PDEs.
  • They should demonstrate the solving ability of an engineering problem using discretization, the construction of finite elements, error analysis in appropriate function spaces, and implementation issues.
  • They should aquire knowledge of a range of applications including structures, heat transfer and fluid flow.


1. Understand the world, their country, their society, as well as themselves and have awareness of ethical problems, social rights, values and responsibility to the self and to others. 3

2. Understand different disciplines from natural and social sciences to mathematics and art, and develop interdisciplinary approaches in thinking and practice. 5

3. Think critically, follow innovations and developments in science and technology, demonstrate personal and organizational entrepreneurship and engage in life-long learning in various subjects; have the ability to continue to educate him/herself. 5

4. Communicate effectively in Turkish and English by oral, written, graphical and technological means. 5

5. Take individual and team responsibility, function effectively and respectively as an individual and a member or a leader of a team; and have the skills to work effectively in multi-disciplinary teams. 3

1. Possess sufficient knowledge of mathematics, science and program-specific engineering topics; use theoretical and applied knowledge of these areas in complex engineering problems. 5

2. Identify, define, formulate and solve complex engineering problems; choose and apply suitable analysis and modeling methods for this purpose. 5

3. Develop, choose and use modern techniques and tools that are needed for analysis and solution of complex problems faced in engineering applications; possess knowledge of standards used in engineering applications; use information technologies effectively. 5

4. Have the ability to design a complex system, process, instrument or a product under realistic constraints and conditions, with the goal of fulfilling specified needs; apply modern design techniques for this purpose. 4

5. Design and conduct experiments, collect data, analyze and interpret the results to investigate complex engineering problems or program-specific research areas. 3

6. Possess knowledge of business practices such as project management, risk management and change management; awareness on innovation; knowledge of sustainable development. 2

7. Possess knowledge of impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, health and societal context; knowledge of contemporary issues; awareness on legal outcomes of engineering solutions; knowledge of behavior according to ethical principles, understanding of professional and ethical responsibility. 2

8. Have the ability to write effective reports and comprehend written reports, prepare design and production reports, make effective presentations, and give and receive clear and intelligible instructions.

1. Use mathematics (including derivative and integral calculations, probability and statistics, differential equations, linear algebra, complex variables and discrete mathematics), basic sciences, computer and programming, and electronics engineering knowledge to (a) Design and analyze complex electronic circuits, instruments, software and electronics systems with hardware/software or (b) Design and analyze communication networks and systems, signal processing algorithms or software 3

1. Applying fundamental and advanced knowledge of natural sciences as well as engineering principles to develop and design new materials and establish the relation between internal structure and physical properties using experimental, computational and theoretical tools. 4

2. Merging the existing knowledge on physical properties, design limits and fabrication methods in materials selection for a particular application or to resolve material performance related problems. 3

3. Predicting and understanding the behavior of a material under use in a specific environment knowing the internal structure or vice versa. 3

1. Familiarity with concepts in statistics and optimization, knowledge in basic differential and integral calculus, linear algebra, differential equations, complex variables, multi-variable calculus, as well as physics and computer science, and ability to use this knowledge in modeling, design and analysis of complex dynamical systems containing hardware and software components. 5

2. Ability to work in design, implementation and integration of engineering applications, such as electronic, mechanical, electromechanical, control and computer systems that contain software and hardware components, including sensors, actuators and controllers. 5


  Percentage (%)
Quiz 45
Individual Project 25
Homework 30



1.Thomas J. R. Hughes,The Finite Element Method: Linear Static and Dynamic
Finite Element Analysis, 1987(Primary TextbookTA347.F5 H84 2000).
2. Klaus J. Bathe, Finite Element Procedures, Prentice-Hall, 1996(TA347.F5 B38
1996).In addition, classhandouts will be provided