Teaching Students the Value of BIM
Erin Green posted on January 11, 2016 |
Three universities team up to run seminars and competition for design and architecture students.

Students in the southern hemisphere have been busy learning what building information modeling (BIM) is all about.

Recently, 24 university students from three different universities in Singapore, Australia and Columbia had the opportunity to take part in a five-day 5D BIM Immersion and Competition. The immersion featured a number of hands-on training sessions on 4D and 5D BIM concepts using a variety of software such as ARCHICAD and Synchro.

Afterward, the students were encouraged to demonstrate their knowledge of understanding of the technology for practical planning and design applications.

A BIM Education

Following their immersion, students were asked to collaborate in order to understand and consider the big issues in BIM. This included barriers to BIM adoption.

Following their immersion, students were asked to collaborate in order to understand and consider the big issues in BIM. This included barriers to BIM adoption.

The event was designed to enhance the students’ understanding of various BIM concepts and scenarios. This included 4D and 5D projects, which respectively model schedule and cost boundaries in a project.

The future designers first spent three days in intensive BIM education and training, learning about the digital concepts and processes involved in BIM and how these can be applied to real-world projects and situations.

After this BIM crash course, the students were split into teams of four and tasked with developing presentations to showcase what they’d learned.

A Collaborative Effort

The immersion and competition focused on key aspects of BIM such as scheduling, simulations, quantity takeoff and estimation. It was intended to expose students to essential multidisciplinary skills relevant to their industries.

The teams worked to prepare and deliver presentations about 5D workflow—including their own suggestions for potential changes to cost management and scheduling practices driven by the rapidly increasing use of digital technology.

In doing so, they learned firsthand the challenges and benefits of model-based processes, cost estimation and analysis. This included the consideration of the barriers that stand in the way of BIM adoption and potential solutions to overcome them.

The Future Role of BIM

The competition, which was supported by GRAPHISOFT Australia, was organized as a joint effort between the University of Melbourne, the National University of Singapore School of Design and Environment and the University of Los Andes in Columbia. NUS in particular has an investment in BIM—the country is in the middle of generating a 3D map of the entire nation for use with the process.

This competition displayed a certain confidence in BIM as an established technology. As it becomes increasingly popular in the AEC community, it becomes a necessary part of education for these industries and to see a partnership of international universities coming together to support this speaks volumes.

For more information on the 5D BIM Immersion and Competition, visit the GRAPHISOFT website.

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