Opinion

BIM teachers, start your engines!

 

January 15, 2015

One of the biggest challenges for BIM all around is: the education of the industry community. To change mindsets, processes and methods and prepare the culture of the Integrated Project Delivery (IPD), BIM-based, seems to be a tough task. At the end, who is trying to finish the Tower of Babel?

The beauty of the construction industry is that on a (almost) worldwide scale, the site can have dozens of cultures, languages and backgrounds working with the same purpose. We can easily deal with several levels of construction knowledge and education (and sometimes with no knowledge). Therefore, BIM and its outputs can easily be the common language for the community. And the term community is strong enough to make us understand that the pillars of BIM education need deep piles under the heart of the education bodies, schools and colleges.

Sadly, there are nowadays mainly three types of BIM education: Advanced education, available only for specialized professionals with higher qualifications; Technical education that is mainly software-based, which leads to a bad start about Building Information Modeling; Hollywood education taking advantage of the momentum of the industry and selling good pictures and poor content in short courses.

Is this the way? It is not the ideal, but as with any other technology, we need a starting point. Although, if we really want to take advantage of what BIM can really represent to this industry, we need to start teaching the language as we teach the rules and techniques to draft. How to draw a line, and what can this represent if is dashed or continuous? Actually, this is about a new way of syntax and semantics, on top of the same old information. At least, who deals with development of contents for project or construction needs to know the rules to write and read BIM. How long does it take to learn a new language?

At the same time, the absence of the colleges from the market is also a problem. BIM is the kind of ‘science’ that if doesn’t come out of the books can be a real bluff. And is interesting enough to make you waste a lot of time and money without results. Special links between education and market are fundamental to lead the cause. It is true that we can find some references somewhere, but again is this enough for the scale of this problem?

Teachers from all the world, please start your engines!

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