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SCHOOL OF ARCHITECTURE, BUILDING

AND DESIGN
Bachelor of Quantity Surveying (Honours)
RESEARCH PROPOSAL

IMPLEMENTATION OF BIM SOFTWARES


IN MALAYSIA: IMPACT ON THE
EDUCATION INDUSTRY

STUDENT NAME : LEE KIM THIAM

STUDENT ID NO : 0310710

SUPERVISOR : DR. MYZATUL AISHAH KAMARAZALY

DATE OF SUBMISSION : 24TH May 2016


TABLE OF CONTENTS

TITLE PAGE

ABSTRACT

DECLARATION

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

TABLE OF CONTENTS 2

LIST OF TABLES 3

LIST OF FIGURES -

LIST OF APPENDICES -

CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION 4

1.1 BACKGROUND 4

1.2 STATEMENT OF RESEARCH PROBLEM 9

1.3 PREVIOUS SIMILAR STUDIES 11

1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS 12

1.5 RESEARCH OBJECTIVES 13

1.6 SCOPE AND LIMITATIONS 14

1.7 IMPORTANCE OF RESEARCH FINDINGS 15

1.8 RESEARCH DESIGN 16 17

1.9 CHAPTER ORGANIZATIONS 18

1.10 RESEARCH PROGRAMME 19

1.11 REFERENCES 20 23

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LIST OF TABLES

TITLE PAGE

Table 1: BIM usage in construction stages 6

Table 2: Research Design of Proposal 16 17

Table 3: Programme Chart for Semester 5 19

Table 4: Programme Chart for Semester 6 19

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CHAPTER 1

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background

Building Information Modeling (BIM) applications are being rapidly


embraced by the construction industry to reduce cost, time, and enhance quality as
well as environmental sustainability. As a result many construction firms are gaining
experience with these new tools and processes and changing their expectations from
university graduates. As many construction programs strive to deliver curriculum and
research that is relevant to the industry, it is essential to accurately understand the
impact of BIM on the operations and practice of construction companies. These
applications continually present transformation opportunities and strengthening
collaboration within the construction industry. People, process and technology are
largely discussed factors affecting BIM adoption across the global construction
industry. The unsettling precedence envisaged by construction professionals with the
onset of BIM in Malaysia has garnered more research focus on these soft issues to
technology adoption.

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Implementation of BIM within Malaysia was officially introduced by the
Director of Public Works Department (PWD) in the year 2007. The Malaysian
government on its own well-being sorts out to encourage construction players to
apply BIM to construction projects because it can overcome typical construction
project problems such as delay and clashes in design by different professionals and
construction cost overrun. Autodesk tools have been suggested by the government as
a BIM tool platform. It is crucial for construction players to be aware of the
importance of BIM application in construction projects. This is because BIM can be
one of the conditions required of a company to qualify for government and private
projects, similar to what is practiced in some other countries.

BIM can be broken down into numerous applications; most which have been
deemed as outdated while a minority of them have claimed a more superior
entitlement. Examples of the more renowned applications include Autodesk, Revit
and AutoCAD, while the more trending ones include AtlesPro and Glodon. Through
all these applications, all of them have identical characteristics, which is to improve
overall productivity and cost reductions. In fact, this is actually the leading reason
why most companies embed the use of BIM softwares. A case study has shown that
63% believe BIM will help bring about a 33% reduction in the initial cost of
construction and whole life cost of built assets, while 57% believe BIM will help
bring about a 50% reduction in the time from inception to completion for new-build
and refurbished assets. (NBS, 2016)

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Table 1: BIM usage in construction stages (Latffi, Mohd, Kasim & Fathi, 2013, p. 3)

BIM can be applied to all construction project phases, which are pre-
construction phase, construction phase and post-construction phase. Table 1 shows
the application of BIM in a construction project for every phase, consisting of pre-
construction phase, construction phase and post-construction phase. It can be seen
that BIM application in a construction project helps in managing the project more
effectively. Latffi, Mohd, Kasim and Fathi (2013) all believe that the ability of BIM
to foster collaboration between construction players facilitates the design process
decision much more effectively. In addition to that, the detection of clash and clash
analysis during the design stage significantly reduces time and construction cost. As
quoted by Latffi, Mohd, Kasim and Fathi (2013), BIM also ensures completion of a
quality construction project because it assists in organizing activities and phasing
during planning stage of a project.

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Under observations made by Latffi, Mohd, Kasim & Fathi (2013), the
application of BIM in pre-construction phase is more evident than during the
construction and post-construction phases. This is because there are many activities
done in this phase such as design, scheduling and estimating; these activities
generally involve the use of BIM technology.

On 27 August 2007, PWD committee was established by the government to


choose the right BIM platform to ensure interoperability (JKR, 2013). The purpose
of establishing the committee was to identify construction project processes that
involved BIM implementation. Moreover, the committee also prepared a BIM
standard manual documentation for PWD as a guideline for construction players
reference. The committee also provides BIM training and advisory assistance to
project teams in using BIM tools (JKR, 2013). The first project in Malaysia that
involved the implementation of BIM is Multipurpose Hall of Universiti Tun Hussein
Onn Malaysia (UTHM) in the Southern region of Malaysia (CREAM, 2012). Other
BIM projects in Malaysia are National Cancer Institute of Malaysia, which is
expected to be completed on 31 August 2013, Educity Sports Complex in Nusajaya,
Johor and Ancasa Hotel in Pekan, Pahang.

In terms of usability, BIM tools such as RevitArchitectural and Revit


Structural are able to illustrate the entire construction processes through an advanced
4-Dimensional (4D) simulation and clash detection. Evidence has shown that BIM
has proven itself through successful projects that have been managed in other
countries such as the USA, the UK, Hong Kong and Australia (Fernaux & Kivvits,
2008, pp.10 31). Examples of the successful projects are One Island East in Hong
Kong, Hilton Aquarium Atlanta, Georgia, The Freedom Tower, New York and The
Sydney Opera House, Australia. Additionally, the reliability of data exchange
between any architect and structural engineer must be verified before proceeding to
develop a model that can facilitate other processes such as mechanical an electrical

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design, estimates and construction phase process. Based on the mentioned features,
the PWD acknowledged that BIM tools from Autodesk and Exactal Cost-X were
applicable to the industry. The tools serve as an application platform for Malaysian
government. This has been officially declared by the PWD on 25 February 2010.

However, through it all, the industries have been focussing the adaptation of
BIM applications by their employees. Educational industries however, show the lack
of embedment of BIM application skills within students entirely. Redirecting the
focus of implementation of BIM applications to the educational industry can allow
students to have a better grasp at the usage of these applications. The need to handle
all these information as an employee under numerous commitments can be very
stressful, thus better for the students to adapt these applications at a much more
efficient rate.

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1.2 Statement of Research Problem

The main problem that most companies face within the industry about BIM is
the adaptation level within employees. There is robust evidence to show that an
innovative and efficient construction industry contributes to a stable global economy.
Olatunji, Sher and Gu (2009) believes that the construction industry is notoriously
conservative and slow to adapt to change as illustrated by the fact that the
construction industry has remained one of the slowest adopters of innovative
technologies despite strong evidence of the correlation between investment in
Information Technology (IT) and improved performance and is, by and large,
ineffective in fostering harmonious work environments. Olatunji, Sher and Gu
(2009) also quotes that, one of the single largest determinants of project failure may
be that construction professionals expose themselves to conflicts of interest. For
example, a professional discipline may decide to protect their professional interest
rather than accept a duty of care to protect the industry. Interestingly, such failures
have increased the erosion of discipline boundaries, largely as a result of an
increasing demand for multi-skilled professionals. (Olatunji, Sher & Gu, 2009, p. 67).

Ruddock, L (1999) believes that due to the fact that construction demand is
closely linked to total demand for investment, the industrys future depends largely
on the success of national governments in stimulating economic growth. Ruddock,
L(1999) has constructed the experiment involving the relation between the GDP
levels for selected countries and the investment levels in sectors including Non-
residential construction, Civil Engineering, New residential construction as well as
Renovation and modernisation from the year 1991 to 1998. It was proven that the
more that a sector has been invested, the higher the GDP level is attained. While
Ruddock, L (1999) has believed that there has been a fear, in some countries, that
there might be a long-term drop in construction demand as population stabilises and
as major infrastructure and housing needs are satisfied. However, new industrial,

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commercial and social investment and the upgrading of environmental standards are
generating increasing construction needs. The problem will be to satisfy these needs.
(Ruddock, L, 1999)

There is no common interest shown between the employees and the


companies on their own. This simply shows portrays that the employees have
developed a mutual fear among one another, and that fear is the over
implementations of these software. They fear that humans will become far inferior in
the future and have chosen to not adapt to these applications, in the sore believe that
BIM will not take over these jobs if there is no adaptation in the first place. Despite
the prediction that the uptake of BIM in the AEC/FM will be slow but inevitable
(Goldberg, 2005), there are some real barriers which need to be addressed in order
for this adoption to occur. That is why it is important to allow students to grasp the
interest in new learning skills within the area of implementation of BIM. In the end,
if the students are able to portray a common interest in using BIM, then they will be
comfortable in securing jobs as graduates in the future. Therefore, this paper aims to
study the implementation of BIM and its impact on the prospects of graduates.

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1.3 Previous Similar Studies

A rather similar study Exploring the Barriers and Driving Factors in


Implementing Building Information Modelling (BIM) in the Malaysian Construction
Industry: A Preliminary Study conducted by Zahrizan, Nasly, Ahmad, Marshall-
Pointing & Zuhairi (2013) with the objective to determine the potential barriers and
driven factors of implementation of BIM by looking at three variants of the topic
which are the respondents profiles, possible barriers and the relative importance of
the driving factors in implementing BIM, all in their respective order. The data was
collected by categorizing the different types of variables, which in this case allowed
for 19 of those variables, into two categories classified as External Push and Internal
Push. Findings of the study highlighted possible factors to the hindrance or the drive
of the implementation of BIM. Early study is proposed to eliminate contradictory
factors such as the unawareness of the existence of BIM or its function. Convenience
sampling method was used although this approach has its potential for bias. However,
after considering that this is a preliminary study, convenience sampling was
considered appropriate (Frey, Botan, Friedman & Kreps, 1991). This study itself
shows the possible factors affecting the implementation of BIM.

In addition to that, a similar study Preliminary building information


modelling adoption model in Malaysia: A strategic information technology
perspective conducted by Enegbuma, Aliagha & Ali (2014) proposes that the
adoption of BIM has more relevance to the interaction of the human perspective with
the ever evolving ideals of technology and strategic IT. Enegbuma, Aliagha & Ali
(2014) believes that the main factors that impede an effective adoption rate included
people, process and technology. The findings were affected by several external
factors, mainly referring to the environment where BIM is utilised. The papers
further findings also represent the mediating effect of collaboration for new BIM
entrants.

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1.4 Research Questions

This research is expected to ascertain the following topics:

i) What is the implementation of various types (or a certain type) of BIM


Applications within several schools and its impact on the educational
industry?

ii) Why has BIM not been fully utilized and implemented within the students
in schools?

iii) What are the effects of implementing BIM within the students daily
learnings?

iv) What is the required skill cap that students must achieve to use BIM
efficiently and how will this affect their adaptation to BIM?

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1.5 Research Objectives

In particular, this study aims to achieve the following specific objectives:

i) To identify the implementation of various types of BIM Applications and


the primary BIM software, Glodon within several schools and its impact
on the educational industry.

ii) To determine and analyse the effects of implementing BIM within the
students daily learnings.

iii) To identify the students skill cap levels in the application of BIM and
how do they intend to use these applications in the future

iv) To determine why BIM has not been fully utilized within schools.

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1.6 Scope and Limitations

The study is executed under the specific parameter as described in the following:

i) Respondents to the questionnaire survey shall be limited to the views expressed by


any experience in the usage of BIM that they have gained within their years of
studying in college. Graduates that have been under employment over 2 years shall
be exempted. To fully show their adaptation skills as employees despite knowledge
of BIM prior to graduating and how have they adapted.

ii) These schools shall be registered within a range of area as classified within the
compounds of Petaling Jaya. The research shall include students from the education
backgrounds that will potentially lead to future prospects within the construction
industry.

iii) Limitations envisaged are the difficulties to generate effective responses and low
response rate within the few months period of questionnaires survey distribution. To
enhance the efficiency and reliability of the study, direct interview methodology is
expected to perform, targeted the students who have been in the education industry
within their line of choice for more than one year. Most students who are lesser than
one year of college experience are considered freshmen and will probably not have
the skill cap to adapt to BIM.

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1.7 Importance of Research Findings

It is marked that the world will experience the need to implement BIM into
the construction process which allows growth in efficiency in every aspect of the
construction industry. The implementation of BIM at an early stage prior to the stage
of employment can help develop graduates capabilities in using BIM efficiently.
Therefore, there is a need to study the possible benefits from implementation of BIM
in the education industry.

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1.8 Research Design

Table 2: Research Design of Proposal

OBJECTIVE TYPES OF DATA SOURCES OF METHOD OF


DATA COLLECTION

i) To identify the - Types of BIM - Articles Primary Data


implementation of Softwares
various types (or a implemented. - Books - Questionnaires
certain type) of BIM - Conference papers - Pilot Interviews
Applications within - Different schools
several schools and involved in using - Databases
its impact on the BIM.
- Dissertations Secondary Data
educational industry.
- Journals - Document analysis

- Online Resources - Reading

- Reports

ii) To determine and - Possible negative - Articles Primary Data


analyse the effects of or positive effects
implementing BIM upon - Books - Questionnaires
within the students implementation of - Conference papers - Pilot Interviews
daily learnings. BIM on students.
- Databases
- Perspective rate of
- Dissertations Secondary Data
adoption students
and lecturers - Journals - Document analysis
involved.
- Online Resources - Reading

- Reports

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1.8 Research Design (Contd)

OBJECTIVE TYPES OF DATA SOURCES OF DATA METHOD OF


COLLECTION

iii) To identify the - Expected level - Articles Primary Data


students skill cap information
levels in the needed to excel in - Books - Questionnaires
application of BIM BIM usage - Conference papers - Pilot Interviews
and how do they compared to the
intend to use these average level. - Databases
applications in the
- Dissertations Secondary Data
future. - Different types of
BIM applications - Journals - Document analysis
and which serves
to be the most - Online Resources - Reading
user-friendly.
- Reports

iv) To determine - Possible factors to - Articles Primary Data


why BIM has not why BIM is not
been fully utilized fully implemented - Books - Questionnaires
within schools. for the sake of - Conference papers - Pilot Interviews
students
development. - Databases

- Dissertations Secondary Data


- New and outdated
software that play - Journals - Document analysis
their roles of
factor. - Online Resources - Reading

- Reports

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1.9 Chapter Organizations

This thesis is comprising of five (5) chapters and organized in the following order:

Chapter 1 presents an introduction to the research, which highlights the background,


need of study, statement of research problems, research questions, research
objectives, scope and limitation, research design, structure of thesis and research
program.

Chapter 2 is dedicated to the literature reviews associated to the research, which


apply the previous relevant research findings as support and basis of an academic
context of the study. The chapter provided insights into the implementation of
container construction with the criteria, constrains and advantages underpinning in
this construction method.

Chapter 3 shows the methodological aspects of the study, which outline selected
research design, data resources, procedures utilized in the study, data gathering
method employed and lastly analytical techniques of data collection.

Chapter 4 discussed the analysis of data collected from the questionnaire. Based on
the formulated research objectives, it reports the results of the survey in relation to
congruence with or divergence from related literature. The analyzed data
accompanied with charts and tables to indicate the level of satisfactory.

Chapter 5 noted as the last chapter which summarizes the research findings with a
concrete conclusion with the recommendations for further studies.

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1.10 Research Programme

Table 3: Programme Chart for Semester 5

Week
Activity
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 S/B 9 10 11 12 13 14
Identification of Area
of Interest
Approval of Research
Title
Identification of
Research Objective
Submission of
Research Proposal
Submission of
Literature Review

Table 4: Programme Chart for Semester 6

Week
Activity
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 S/B 9 10 11 12 13 14
Finalization of
Theoritical Framework
Submission of
Research Methodology
Preparation of
Questionnaire
Distribution of
Questionnaire
Data Collection
and Analysis
Conclusion and
Recommendation
Final Submission of
Dissertation

References
Completed In Progress Outstanding

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