The AEC industry is witnessing a string of drastic changes, most of which are aimed at driving cost and time efficiencies, streamlining the project workflows and improving the degree of multidisciplinary collaboration. Whereas the shift from manual hand drafting to computer-aided drafting / design (CAD) placed immense pressure on professionals and firms to upgrade themselves to digital processes, the advent of parametric 3D representation methods and building information modeling (BIM) much later required practices to completely reinvent the project workflow and change their approach towards design, planning, coordination, construction, and maintenance.
Consequently, it is extremely important for firms operating in the AEC domain to plan strategies to effectively integrate these technological advances into their existing workflows; nevertheless, it is equally, if not more important for students pursuing courses in these areas to stay abreast with the BIM tools and gain a deeper understanding of software applications, such as AutoCAD, Revit and Navisworks. Another crucial aspect for students to stay relevant to the needs of the AEC industry is to find an appropriate balance between the theoretical knowledge gained in classrooms and the know-how of how these techniques and methods are employed in the real-world environment.
The core subjects that Architectural students learn during their rigorous course include architectural design, conceptual representation, environmental systems, structural systems, architectural history, building and construction technology, architectural analysis, legal, business and socio-cultural framework of professional practices. Besides, some of the crucial topics that their engineering counterparts absorb during their courses entail planning, design and construction technologies for developing physical structures, plumbing/irrigation systems, HVAC systems, plant room systems and electrical systems. They also learn about regional building and construction codes, urban planning methods and systems used for installation and maintenance of these integrated systems.
Whilst universities providing architecture, civil engineering and building services engineering courses do include CAD programs and BIM applications as a part of their curriculum, the hands-on knowledge of how these programs fit into the project workflows of several disciplines involved is either learned on the job or during an internship program. Alternatively, students can also benefit greatly by opting to enrol themselves in classroom-based or online Revit training courses designed and coordinated by professionals who have been directly involved on live AEC projects themselves.
As the building and construction industry is rapidly moving towards model-based design representation analysis and construction planning, the students will not only have to master their curriculum-based skills but also gain familiarity with BIM and Integrated Project Delivery methods. Owing to the increasing acceptance of parametric modeling methods and IPD practises, though in varying degrees, by the entire supply chain, including facility owners, architects, planners, MEP (M&E) engineers, construction managers, contractors, fabricators and installers, it is imperative for the students to learn these concepts in the early phases of their education.
A comprehensive understanding of BIM applications, such as Revit and Navisworks, combined with the know-how about IPD methodologies will help students gain an easy transition into the professional AEC industry. Considering the galloping pace at which the AEC industry is progressing and changing, this knowledge will empower students to stay relevant to the needs of the industry and also help close the skills gap.
Prabhat Singh is the Head of Recruitment and Training at XS CAD’s Autodesk Training Centre, one of the leading providers of Online Revit Training Courses and Autodesk AutoCAD Courses to students and professionals worldwide.
Industry-Oriented Revit Training Helps Students