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Paper itaec-2004-2:
The learning of CAD for construction: technical abilities or visual?

Facilitated by the SciX project

Ahmed V, Mahdjoubi L, Feng X, Leach M

The learning of CAD for construction: technical abilities or visual?

Abstract: The increasing demands of the construction industry for individuals with good IT skills add continuous pressures on higher education to improve their methods of teaching. CAD training, as an important part of IT training for construction students, is becoming an essential part of the curriculum in most built environment schools. However, general CAD training is mostly concerned with providing students with technical skills rather than the initial ability of spatial visualisation. Indeed, existing training methods of CAD applications, do not take into consideration students? learning styles, and the differences in their spatial visualisation abilities. Considering that CAD students need to perform various activities within CAD applications to develop an understanding of building concepts and components, their spatial visualisation abilities and their learning style, remain the main barriers. This paper identifies the learning strategies required to assist with the learning of 3D modelling and describes a new approach adopted to examine students' Special Visualisation Skills. The paper also describes innovative e-learning approaches developed to reinforce students' learning of 3D CAD, tracking their progress and highlighting qualitative measures of their effectiveness.

Keywords: 3D modelling, e-learning in construction, CAL, CAA


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