Build an Office Block

Commercial office blocks are often some of the most striking buildings on a city’s skyline. The design is often a balance between creating premium office space that can attract higher rents and maximising the available floor space. For the construction management company responsible for building the offices, the challenge they face is to build these buildings as fast as possible in order to maximise the investors’ return on investment. In this Student Studio project you will learn how to build a commercial office block.

In this Student Studio project, students piece together information which will give them an understanding of the entire construction process of an office block, no matter what stage the project is at on the host site. Student’s days are broken into two halves, the mornings spent work shadowing different members of staff and the afternoon spent gathering information about the project, the host company and careers in construction.

Day 1

Get to know your site

Students learn how to work shadow, write job profiles and begin to investigate the site.
Day 2

Foundations

Students will investigate how the foundations have been built.
Day 3

Superstructure

Students will learn about the construction sequences by looking at the superstructure.
Day 4

Building envelope

Students will learn about different building envelopes.
Day 5

Presentation

Students bring together a complete construction sequence into a presentation.

Curriculum

This project is aimed at 14 to 19-year-old students working at or equivalent to KS4/5.

Skills Development

Personal, Learning and Thinking Skills

Through independent enquiry – students can explore issues from different perspectives; analyse and evaluate information, judge its relevance and value; and support conclusions, using reasoned arguments and evidence.

Through self-management – students are required to show flexibility when priorities change; work towards goals, showing initiative and perseverance; organize their time; and manage their emotions.

Through reflective learning –by reviewing progress; inviting feedback; evaluating their experiences; and communicating their learning in relevant ways for different audiences.

Communication Skills

Through interviews, written and verbal communication.

Information, Advice and Guidance

This project is designed to help students explore the workplace, giving them the chance to build their confidence, skills and understanding of what is needed to be a civil engineer in a design office. As part of this project, students are specifically asked to interview a member of staff about what path they took to get the job they have now.

Delivery Requirements

This project is for a student doing work experience with a construction management company at an office construction site. The project is designed for students doing a one-week placement, but could be stretched to last two weeks if necessary.

Supervision

It is assumed that students will be based in a site office where they are the responsibility of a member of staff who will act as their supervisor. Over four days the student will shadow a different member of the company team: a quantity surveyor, a design manager, a site manager and an engineer. The individuals can be shadowed in any order.

Each day, the student will read a morning briefing that suggests things for them to find out during the day. They will then spend time shadowing a member of the project team. The theme of each day is based around a different stage in the construction.  Towards the end of each day, students will spend approximately 2 hours doing desk-based write-up activities.

Resources

Students carrying out this project will need access to drawings, site photos and construction documentation related to their host site.

Equipment

Students working on this project will need

Access to a computer with an Internet connection.
To be able to print documents they download from their Studio.
Access to PowerPoint, or similar presentation software.
Access to a camera (either their own or the company’s) and to be able to upload photos to their computer.

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Recommended For:

  • Construction Companies
  • Construction Management Companies

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