School of Architecture and Built Environment’s Dr M. Reza Hosseini is playing a key role in a new academic forum that aims to advance the consistency and quality of Building Information Modelling (BIM) education in Australian universities.

Dr Hosseini is a lecturer in construction at Deakin’s School of Architecture and Built Environment and a member of the University’s Centre for Research in Assessment and Digital Learning (CRADLE).

Together with his colleague Professor Josua Pienaar from CQUniversity, Dr Hosseini announced the formation of the Australian BIM Academic Forum (ABAF) at the 42nd Australasian Universities Building Education Association Conference (AUBEA 2018) in Singapore in September 2018.

Dr Hosseini describes BIM as the digital modelling of buildings or infrastructure to provide an intelligent, data-rich system that connects everyone involved in the development, and can be used as a reliable basis for decisions during a building’s life-cycle – from construction all the way through to the end of life.

He says the basic ideas of the BIM concept emerged as early as the 1970s, but it has recently become popularised with the increasingly widespread use of high-tech software programs.

The idea for the ABAF was initially developed by Dr Hosseini and was submitted as an application to the Australasian BIM Advisory Board (ABAB), which acknowledged the need for an academic forum to support BIM education in Australia.

‘The ABAF is intended to address the growing need of the Australian construction industry for BIM-ready graduates, and build consensus on BIM education across Australian universities,’ Dr Hosseini explains.

A number of aims and objectives for ABAF were formulated in discussion with AUBEA 2018 delegates, including:

  • Exploring the challenges of BIM education across Australian universities and providing remedial solutions
  • Creating minimum standards for BIM-related curricula, with the objective of bridging the gap between tertiary BIM education outcomes and workplace performance requirements
  • Creating and standardising baseline performance measurement for BIM education accreditation at Australian universities.

Dr Hosseini says a meeting to form a Working Group for ABAF is arranged for 22 November, with participants from industry, professional organisations, major universities and TAFE invited. This is the first in a planned series of meetings, coordinated by Professor Pienaar and Dr Hosseini, to develop the BIM education standards.

An ABAF website is also being developed and will be released after finalising the arrangement of the Working Group and future meetings.