ITcon Vol. 24, pg. 154-166,

Enhancing the non-technological skills required for effective building information modeling through problem-based learning

submitted:October 2018
revised:April 2019
published:April 2019
editor(s):Amor R.
authors:Rahimi A. Rahman
Faculty of Civil Engineering and Earth Resources, University Malaysia Pahang, Malaysia
E-mail: (corresponding author)

Steven K. Ayer
School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, Arizona State University, USA
summary:Building Information Modeling (BIM) is often associated with the use of new and emerging technologies, but prior research has indicated that non-technological, people- and process-related, issues can hinder the success of BIM even more than the technology itself. Previous work also suggests that analytical and problem-solving, communication, initiative, planning and organizational, and teamwork competencies among construction professionals can help to resolve the most common BIM issues in construction projects. This indicates a new and complementary set of BIM skills that may need to be targeted by educators when preparing students for successful future careers. Previous literature from non-BIM domains suggests that problem-based learning can enhance these types of skills, but there is not an understanding of the extent to which this mode of education can benefit BIM-specific applications. This study aims to analyze the impact of implementing a single-session problem-based learning module that targets the previously identified skills in BIM-relevant contexts. It was found that problem-based learning enabled students to generate better outputs related to solving common issues in BIM-based construction projects. Furthermore, students perceived improvements in their analytical and problem-solving, teamwork, and communications skills after completing the activity. This study adds to the body of knowledge by providing educators with empirical evidence to illustrate how problem-based learning can support BIM education. The lessons from this study could help educators target these same learning benefits in future studies.
keywords:Building Information Modeling (BIM), problem-based learning, skills, S.M.A.R.T.
full text: (PDF file, 0.783 MB)
citation:Rahman RA, Ayer SK (2019). Enhancing the non-technological skills required for effective building information modeling through problem-based learning, ITcon Vol. 24, pg. 154-166,