Inderscience Publishers

Use of failure case studies in a construction management course

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Reasons for including failure case studies within the undergraduate engineering curriculum have been made by various authors, which has led to the inclusion of structural failure cases into some analysis and design courses. However, there is also a need for Civil Engineers to understand project management issues. This paper deals with the integration of failure case studies into a construction management course. In addition to catastrophic failure case studies, such as the Hyatt Regency Walkway Collapse (Kansas City, Missouri) and the L'Ambiance Plaza Collapse (Bridgeport, Connecticut), the course makes extensive use of the Montreal Olympic Facility design and construction to demonstrate how deficiencies in the design and construction process can lead to extreme constructability problems and exorbitant cost overruns. The author also shows how the inclusion of the case studies addresses some of the more difficult areas to address in the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) evaluation criteria.

Keywords: failure case studies, structural failure, forensic engineering, construction management courses, Hyatt Regency walkway collapse, L', Ambiance Plaza collapse, Montreal Olympic facility, undergraduate engineering curriculum, ABET evaluation criteria, engineering education, project management, constructability problems, cost overruns

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