Displacement field based on higher order shear deformation theory is implemented to study the static behavior of functionally graded metal-ceramic (FGM) beams under ambient temperature. FGM beams with variation of volume fraction of metal or ceramic based on power law exponent are considered. Using the principle of stationary potential energy, the finite element form of static equilibrium equation for FGM beam is presented. Two stiffness matrices are thus derived so that one among them will reflect the influence of rotation of the normal and the other shear rotation. Numerical results on the transverse deflection, axial and shear stresses in a moderately thick FGM beam under uniform distributed load for clamped-clamped and simply supported boundary conditions are discussed in depth. The effect of power law exponent for various combination of metal-ceramic FGM beam on the deflection and stresses are also commented. The studies reveal that, depending on whether the loading is on the ceramic rich face or metal rich face of the beam, the static deflection and the static stresses in the beam do not remain the same. © 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.