- In this paper a first-order shear/fourth-order transverse deformation theory of laminated composite plates is presented. A finite element model with a strain/stress recovery technique is developed in such a way that nonzero surface traction boundary conditions and interlaminar shear stress continuity conditions are all satisfied identically. The rotational degrees of freedom become layer-dependent quantities and the laminate possesses a transverse deformation capability. Numerical results are compared with analytical solutions and other finite element solutions to illustrate the effectiveness of the theory and the computational procedure developed herein. 1991.