Integrating PDRI Tools into Introductory Construction Classrooms

Mohamed Elzomor, Kristen Parrish

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Engineering education tends to place extensive emphasis on theories with limited applications to real world problems. Research in the field of education confirms that this emphasis on theory, and relatively little emphasis on application, contributes to students' lack of knowledge about tools used in industry to solve interdisciplinary challenges. Construction courses may involve industry practitioners in classes through construction site visits, guest lectures, or even leverage practitioners as instructors. Some courses also focus on "tools" used in construction practice, e.g., a course in building information modeling (BIM) or front end planning. However, most introductory construction courses do not teach students about project management tools used in industry, e.g., scheduling software, front end planning, or site logistics planning. This paper presents first steps in discussing how to integrate one such project management tool, the project definition rating index (PDRI), into an introductory construction management course. The construction industry utilizes the PDRI to improve the predictability of project performance and define the scope of a project during front end planning. This paper shows initial results from a case study where the authors introduced the PDRI in a building construction materials, methods, and equipment course at Arizona State University. The results suggest that students felt that learning about the PDRI improved their understanding of course material. The paper closes with a discussion of lessons learned to support other instructors and educators integrate the PDRI, or another project management tool, into an introductory construction management course to enhance student engagement and learning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationConstruction Research Congress 2018
Subtitle of host publicationSustainable Design and Construction and Education - Selected Papers from the Construction Research Congress 2018
PublisherAmerican Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9780784481301
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018
EventConstruction Research Congress 2018: Sustainable Design and Construction and Education, CRC 2018 - New Orleans, United States
Duration: Apr 2 2018Apr 4 2018


OtherConstruction Research Congress 2018: Sustainable Design and Construction and Education, CRC 2018
CountryUnited States
CityNew Orleans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction

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