I’ve been noticing a trend lately that I both think is very encouraging, and at the same time, very frightening. If you spend any time on sites like LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. and are researching BIM in Architecture you are very likely to happen upon some of the same cast of characters that I both admire and respect. Here is a few that I can think of just off the top of my head.
I know there are plenty that I am not mentioning here, but if you do a quick Google search, I’m sure you will find plenty of others on your own. These and others are constantly providing me with additional information (sometimes its just entertainment) on this exciting journey I call a career.
That’s the good side. Here’s the bad…..
I’ve noticed that most of the Architecture schools have begun to incorporate BIM into their curriculums. Ok, that’s not the bad part, I’m getting there. As a result of this I have noticed that most of the recent graduates are listing BIM or their favorite program as something that they now have experience in. Let me stop you right there recent graduate, simply making a cool model for your professor is hardly BIM experience.
Now, I’m not trying to bash these people, I simply want to say that there is a lot more involved in this paradigm shift then what you have been exposed to so far. I also think that the schools are doing a piss poor job of introducing this to the future generations of Architecture. Why aren’t schools using their typically awesome computer resources, close proximity of various AEC students, and the freedom to push these software packages to limits most professionals can’t, to better prepare students for what we actually do for a living?
Here’s my thought… Have a one year class/studio that is mirrored in the Architecture, Engineering, and Construction classes at a university. This group of professors can then decide on a building type that is to be designed and explored. Here’s the kicker. Part of the requirements for this class will be that you have to coordinate this design with the different students from other disciplines. Will it be as detailed as a professional set of construction documents? Who knows, maybe, but it will help students learn that their designs don’t exist in a bubble. Each professor can still push the ideas that they are individually trying to teach, but a lesson that will come about on its own is that of collaboration/teamwork.
Maybe it’s a pipe dream, but I think our education process should help teach real world processes along with the theories.