Introduction to Finite Element Analysis (FEA)

Course code: PD531241ON

Finite Element Analysis (FEA) is a computer-aided engineering (CAE) tool used to analyze how a design reacts under real-world conditions. Useful in structural, vibration, and thermal analysis, FEA has been widely implemented by automotive companies and is used by design engineers as a tool during the product development process. Design engineers analyze their own designs while they are still in the form of easily modifiable CAD models to allow for quick turnaround times and to ensure prompt implementation of analysis results in the design process. While FEA software is readily available, successful use of FEA as a design tool still requires an understanding of FEA basics.

This introduction to FEA will expose you to key concepts in FEA and give an overview of the FEA process, including the steps needed to conduct FEA, finite element types and orders, common assumptions that lead to serious errors in results, and areas you should be concerned with when discretizing a model. This SAE-produced course also includes an introduction to discretization error and convergence analysis and explains how they impact results in FEA projects.


By participating in this on-demand course, you\’ll be able to:

  • Identify the purpose of using FEA in the design process
  • Explain the differences between using different element orders
  • Explain the differences in the number of degrees of freedom between different element types
  • Recite commonly made assumptions in FEA projects and summarize effects of each assumption
  • Define convergence process and explain why it is used in the FEA process
  • Define discretization error and summarize its impact in the FEA process

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Course dates

Starting date: Upon request

Type: Intro Module

Course duration: 90 days

Language: en

Price without VAT: 90 EUR


Starting date: Upon request

Type: Core Modules

Course duration: 90 days

Language: en

Price without VAT: 595 EUR


Starting date: Upon request

Type: TOD

Course duration: 90 days

Language: en

Price without VAT: 670 EUR


Type Course
Language Price without VAT
Upon request Intro Module 90 days en 90 EUR Register
Upon request Core Modules 90 days en 595 EUR Register
Upon request TOD 90 days en 670 EUR Register
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Course structure

  • FEA Definition and Process
  • Discretizing and Characteristics of Finite Elements
  • Degrees of Freedom
  • Common FEA Assumptions
  • Mesh Concerns
  • Discretization Error and the Convergence Process
Materials Provided
  • 90 days of online single-user access (from date of purchase)
  • 50 minute presentation
  • A printable summary of the key takeaways from each lesson
  • Integrated knowledge checks to reinforce key concepts
  • Follow-up to your content questions
  • .1 CEUs*/Certificate of Achievement (upon completion of all course content and a score of 70% or higher on the learning assessment)

*SAE International is authorized by IACET to offer CEUs for this course.


This SAE-produced course addresses the needs of design engineers who are not specialized analysts but need to use the Finite Element Analysis to analyze a new product during the design process. Also non-specialist FEA users, R&D engineers and managers, project engineers, and product engineers can benefit from FEA concepts.

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