Abstract: The bending analysis of symmetric laminated composite beams is carried out using stacking sequence optimization for various boundary conditions. Stacking sequences are optimized in order to obtain certain parameters such as minimum deflection, normal and shear stresses. A unified shear deformation theory and a genetic algorithm are used in the analytical method and optimization process respectively. Stacking sequences representing the individuals of each population are used as the optimization parameters. An elitist approach is applied to the algorithm in order to increase the convergency to optimum values.