Resources for Instructors

An Historical Perspective

During the period from 1967 through 1975 Helen Plants and I wrote a number of papers related to Programmed Instruction and teaching with programs. Most of those papers, as well as a few by others, may be found at

The original instructors' manual for the Statics text can be found at that link as A Teacher's Guide to A Programmed Introduction to Statics

The best way to assess learning outcomes for a prospective text, other than reviewing hundreds of pages of student work, is to look at the work the authors actually assign to their own students. Here are Samples of the Quizzes which we gave our students and which were included in A Teacher's Guide.

A Caution

Everything I have provided to you on this website is also accessible to students. That is not necessarily a bad thing. An important part of getting students to to meet your instructional objectives is to let them know what is expected of them.

Some of what we want them to know, definitions, rules, and basic equations for example, we DO actually want them to "memorize." (And isn't it a bit pathetic how many of them have forgotten the Law of Cosines when they start Statics!) The more times and ways we tell them "you will be tested on this" the more likely they are to learn an essential item.

I also want them to know "I expect everyone who wants to pass this course to be able to find the force in any member of a truss like these." I have reached the point where "all pin-jointed trusses look alike to me," but most students don't see things that way.

For a hundred years or more students have been sharing information about instructors, quizzes and exams with fraternity members and other close friends. Making more information public provides more equal opportunity for all.

It is up to you to change questions appropriately so that your students will encounter what they see as "new problems" on each test.

Ready-to-Use Resources

Vector Fonts

Here are links to two of the fonts I created for the book. They are sets of vector symbols using the bar notation. Right click the link to download them, then, at least in my versions of Windows, you can install them by dragging it to your Windows FONT folder.  ARIALVEC.TTF  is based on the standard Arial font,  Selectric_Vector.ttf is based on the IBM Selectric type font I created to duplicate material in the original book, and which I have used in problems in the text. You will need to install both if you wish to edit my sample quizzes and examinations.

First Day Handout

I found a copy of the first day of class handout which we used back in 1982. You can read it here in a somewhat revised .PDF document. I have not reproduced the front page, but it was a form on which student provided their names, majors, advisors, and information on related courses. They signed the form. This way we had written verification that they had attended class and claimed to have completed prerequisites. Today I would add "preferred email address" and rules forbidding any electronic communications during quizzes or exams.  1982 First Day Handout

Skill Inventories

When I taught Engineering Mechanics classes, on the first day of class I would, of course, introduce myself, and hand out the course syllabus. I would finish the class by having students take a "Skill Inventory" which asked them to solve a number problems covering prerequisite material. I would inform then that while I would be demonstrating the prerequisite methods in class, I would not be teaching them. In Statics I would tell they had a few days to get up to speed on algebra and trigonometry and a month to catch up on simple integration. In Dynamics and Mechanics of Materials I would tell them they had several weeks to learn or relearn moments of inertia.

The Skill Inventories are not a good predictive test of student performance. Most students catch up without problems. The information collected is, however, useful in beating instructors in earlier courses again. It may also be useful in defending your grading to a student who refuses to take responsibility for inadequate preparation.
Statics Skill Inventory
Dynamics Skill Inventory
Mechanics of Materials Skill Inventory


Statics Quizzes
Dynamics Quizzes
Mechanics of Materials Quizzes


Statics Exams
Dynamics Exams
Mechanics of Materials Exams

Graphics Collection

These pages contain various images from old exams, quizzes, etc. which may be useful in preparing material for class use. The files are in .JPG format.

Mechanics of Materials


In the Works

Eventually I expect this page to include links to such things as:

Miscellaneous Comments

In preparing these works I have made use of the following programs:

The text was prepared in Open Office Writer, a component of the free Open Office software package. Open Office will import from and export to most other office packages. It will also Export to .PDF for convenience in distribution.

I have generally used Micrographics Designer in the initial preparation of drawings which were then exported as .JPG files and further edited in Paint Shop Pro version 7.

Custom fonts were created with Type 2.2 by Alan Murray doing business as CR8 Software Solutions. I made a direct purchase from

I would suggest the following programs if you do not have software which meets your needs:
Open Office (freeware)
GIMP - The GNU Image Manipulation Program (freeware)