Integrating BIM in Higher Education Programs: Barriers and Remedial Solutions in Australia

Oskar Casasayas, M. Reza Hosseini, D. J. Edwards, Sarah Shuchi, Mahmuda Chowdhury

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Despite the increasingly widespread adoption of building information modeling (BIM) in Australia, a steady pipeline of BIM-ready graduates required to meet industry demand remains elusive. Anecdotal evidence suggests that universities in Australia have not been successful in delivering BIM-enabled graduates of the correct caliber, due to a plethora of barriers. This paper aims to identify, define, and delineate barriers to the integration of BIM education into programs in Australian higher education institutions (HEIs), and unearth the antecedents of these barriers. A postpositivist philosophical design will be implemented to undertake a cross-sectional and mixed methods approach to collecting and analyzing primary data. Data will be collected through qualitative methods, 18 structured and 7 semistructured interviews, with key BIM educators in Australia. Data will be analyzed using NVivo. The findings reveal that four thematic groups of barriers hinder effective BIM education integration in Australian HEIs. These are (1) change management challenges, (2) curriculum and content limitation, (3) educators' problems, and (4) disconnect with the industry. The research concludes that a major overhaul is needed to change the modus operandi via which the industry, accreditation bodies, and government policymakers engage with HEIs to define BIM education programs. However, given a notable lack of investment and collaboration from industry and government, HEIs cannot manage the change needed to run effective BIM training programs. Therefore, cross-government and industry collaboration and financial support is needed to stimulate a cultural shift in existing HEIs' provisions to generate future generations of highly skilled and competent BIM-enabled graduates. This paper, to the best of the authors' knowledge, represents the first attempt in Australia to contextualize HEIs' capacity to deliver advanced BIM training, given the wider and prevailing economic and political topology that currently fails to adequately support the supply of fully trained graduates.

Original languageEnglish
Article number05020010
JournalJournal of Architectural Engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Building information modeling training
  • Competency
  • Curricula
  • Digital engineering
  • Knowledge
  • Learning
  • Skills
  • University

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Architecture
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts


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