Concrete is strong in compression but weak and unreliable in tension.
Reinforcement is required to resist tension due to moment.
A beam when loads applied,
Concrete at the top resists compression and the steel resists tensionat bottom.
Design is based on the strength of the section calculated from thestress distribution at collapse.(at ultimate condition, not inserviceability conditions)
Therefore beam section design for the ultimate state.
An elastic section analysis is later carried out for checking theserviceability limit states.