This is a sample of past courses. Not all courses are offered every semester, but usually fit within a two year time frame.

Automation

Advanced CAD Procedures

Introduction to advanced CAD procedures and CAD systems, and their influence on building design and construction. Nine hours of lecture and laboratory a week for one semester.

Controls

Project Controls

Fundamentals of planning, scheduling, and cost management on projects. Topics include network scheduling, activity and resource management, cost loading and cost control, and computer tools used for project controls, such as schedule simulation and three-dimensional and four-dimensional CAD.

Project Production Systems

Students will be prepared to design and implement improved production systems on projects, including job-site activities and off-site production. Advanced topics in project controls, including supply chain management, procurement, interorganizational controls and incentives, process modeling, and simulation.

Information

Project Information Management Systems

Identify and differentiate information management systems in construction projects. Design and develop desktop database management applications. Recognize the design and implementation issues for information management systems.

Decision and Risk Analysis

This course will present the fundamentals of systematic decision and risk analyses in the context of capital project planning, engineering, construction, and operations. The emphasis of the course is on a broadly applicable analysis methodology rather than on any narrow technical domain. In addition, the topics of contractual risk allocation, project insurance, sureties/bonding, and international project risks will be addressed in this class.

Data Mining

Fundamentals of data mining and knowledge discovery in databases. Techniques for data classification, prediction, clustering, and association rules mining. Analyze, evaluate, and recommend data mining systems for engineers, construction owners, contractors, and/or project managers. Recognize the design, analysis, and implementation issues.

Quantitative Methods for Project Analysis

Practical methods of data analysis in the context of evaluating project performance metrics. Includes quantitative methods for solving everyday problems such as bid selection, capital budgeting, assignment of resources, equipment replacement analysis, and the optimization of capital structure. Techniques for developing models under conditions of risk using Microsoft Excel and add-ins such as At Risk.

Building Information Modeling for Capital Projects

This course focuses on the skills and information needed to effectively use an existing Building Information Model (BIM) in plan execution for a building construction project. This is a project-based course where students gain knowledge on the implementation of BIM concepts throughout the lifecycle of a building, from planning and design, to construction and operations.

Organization/People

Human Resources Project Management

Evaluation of individual, group, and organizational behavior in construction work. In-depth study of communication, decision making, and the relationship between controls and behavior.

Construction Productivity

Construction productivity improvement by group field studies. In-depth study of the way overtime, changes, weather, and staffing levels influence productivity. Industrial engineering techniques are applied to the construction environment to improve the use of equipment and human and material resources.

Project Management

Overall aspects of project and portfolio management from inception to successful operation: project selection and feasibility, contracting methods, project scheduling, cost control systems, project communications, project scope and quality management, human resource management, partner selection and management, project leadership, project closeout, and global project management.

Technology

Value Management Processes I

Maximize value for capital projects through selected Value Management Processes (VMP) and Engineering Strategies. Explore VMPs and Engineering Strategies that occur in early project phases, including: Modularization/ Preassembly, Design to Capacity, Constructability, Value Engineering, and Design Effectiveness, among others. Acquire an in-depth understanding of how to apply Modularization and Constructability, along with awareness of associated implementation challenges, opportunities, benefits, and processes/tools.

Value Management Processes II

In-depth focus on Value Management Processes (VMP), including sustainable design and construction, planning for startup, lean construction. Overview on another seven individual VMPs: mechanical reliability modeling, design for safety, predictive maintenance, design for maintainability, waste minimization and pollution prevention, post-occupancy evaluation, and knowledge management and lessons learned systems.

Urban Systems Engineering

Understanding, abstracting, modeling, and analyzing systems and system-of-systems (SoS) classes of problems in the context of civil infrastructure systems. These problems consist of multiple, heterogeneous, distributed systems embedded in networks at multiple levels that evolve over time, and are often large-scale and interdisciplinary, requiring solution concepts found in diverse fields such as engineering, computer science, mathematics, economics, policy, etc. Focus is on formulating methodologies for addressing these problems, applying analysis tools and approaches appropriately (emphasis placed on system dynamics, agent based modeling, complexity, and network theory), and communicating problems, methodologies, and solutions to a broad audience.

Business

Front End and Contractor Planning

Principles and applications of advanced project planning techniques for capital facility owners and contractors. Effective owner front-end planning of capital facilities, including team alignment, and preproject planning processes and tools. Contractor preconstruction planning, including team selection, scope and budget review, procurement, workface planning, productivity practices implementation, and planning assessment tools.

Advanced Legal Concepts

Contracts, documentation requirements, claims avoidance, and settlement of claims by alternative dispute resolution. Students conduct and present in-depth studies of the most frequent causes of claims (delay, disruption, acceleration, soil conditions, and changes) and consider the way the court establishes causation and determines damages.

Project Finance

Concepts of corporate capital budgeting and project finance are addressed. Aspects of financial planning and commercial financing are presented. These include financial and managerial accounting for capital projects, cash flow forecasting, and options and risk analysis. Consideration for all types of equity and debt financing are made including bonds, Real Estate Investment Trusts (REIT), and other financial vehicles. Consideration for delivery structures and security arrangements customized to project profiles. The course includes a significant semester group project designed to encapsulate much of the course material and allow detailed development of an investment plan for a downtown Austin project.

Construction Safety

Causes and effects of construction safety incidents, proactive preventative strategies, and tactics.

Seminar/Independent Study

Doctoral Research Methods Seminar

Construction research methods seminar, including concepts and practice of research in construction engineering and management. Research methodologies and steps in the research process, including proposal structure, dissertation structure, conducting literature reviews, typical research methods and approaches in construction, funding sources, and research presentations and reports.

Construction Industry Seminar

Construction industry issues and best practices, such as front-end planning and zero accident techniques, developed by the Construction Industry Institute (CII). Guest lecturers include CII management staff and visiting industry leaders. Emphasis on implementation of proven practices on projects.