CON E 490: Project Management and Safety San Diego State University Spring 2014

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CON E 490: Project Management and Safety San Diego State University

Spring 2014

Instructor: Professor Mitropoulos Class Time: MW 4-515

Email: Room: P-146

Office: ED-100D Office Hours: MW 2-315

Phone: 619-594-0137

Course Description

The course discusses principles, methods and tools for the successful management of construction projects. The first part of the course focuses on the management and control functions required for successful projects. Topic areas: Front-end planning, alignment,

constructability, procurement, project controls, and change management. The second part of the course focuses on construction accident causes and prevention. The course provides students with the theoretical foundation and practical experience needed to understand the issues involved in managing and improving the workers’ safety in construction companies and projects. Topics: Accident causation, safety planning, site safety management practices.

Expected Outcomes

Each course in the CE&M program is designed as part of your career development in the construction industry. Program outcomes are intended to provide a broad base of knowledge to found your career. Each course in the curriculum emphasizes particular aspects of that overall body of knowledge. Although other outcomes may also be addressed, this course is intended to have a particular emphasis on the following program outcomes. For each program outcome, the course-specific interpretation is shown below as the indented lettered outcomes, which will be used for assessment.

Relation to Program outcomes

For each program outcome, the course-specific interpretation is shown below as the indented lettered outcomes, which will be used for assessment.

Outcome 3: Explain how contemporary issues affect the identification, formulation and solution

of engineering problems.

A. Describe contemporary issues that influence the engineering and construction industry.

B. Develop learning agendas to address individual career goals, industry trends and challenges and opportunities. Develop learning agendas to support the students achieve their engineering career goals.

Outcome 4: Design a complex system or process to meet desired needs within realistic

constraints such as economic, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability.

A. Analyze project management processes and evaluate their effectiveness. B. Analyze site safety programs and evaluate their effectiveness.



Outcome 6: Solve well defined engineering problems related to Construction Engineering.

A. Identify the types of controls and strategies to control hazards in construction operations.

Outcome 10: Analyze a complex situation involving multiple conflicting professional and

ethical interests to determine an appropriate course of action.

A. Analyze accidents, using different accident causation models and from different perspectives. Explain the role of the human, technical, organizational, production and situational factors. Identify actions necessary to prevent the accidents.

B. Analyze project situations, identify complexities and conflicting goals, and develop appropriate course of action.

Outcome 12: Explain key concepts and problem-solving processes used in management.

A. Describe process requirements for effective front-end planning and constructability. B. Describe and explain practices to reduce the frequency and severity of accidents. In addition to the program outcomes, the course will further develop the students’ ability to work effectively in cross functional teams.

Course topics

The course topics can be grouped in the following categories:

1. Project Management Processes and Practices  Front-end planning / project definition

 Project team alignment.

 Design and constructability.

 Procurement management.

 Project controls and change management.

2. Safety Management

 Importance of safety for organizational performance.

 Accident causation.

 Accident analysis.

 Factors affecting worker behaviors and human error.

 Critical components of effective site safety programs.

3. Learning agenda

 Identify contemporary issues and trends affecting the future of engineering and construction industry.

 Develop learning agenda to self-guide learning and career goals.


 Fred Gould and Nancy Joyce, Construction Project Management, Third Edition, Pearson Prentice Hall.

Additional readings will be assigned during the course. The course will make extensive use of resources on the web (e.g., documents from the Construction Industry Institute, safety agencies, publications in academic journals, news articles, etc.). Some readings will be posted on




Class activities will include lectures, class discussions, assignments, team projects, and development of an individual learning agenda.

Lectures, discussions and assignments

There will be reading assignments and case studies for homework and/or discussion in class. Critical thinking and discussion on the topics is essential part of the course. As part of the

assignments, the students may be required to investigate specific topics, collect data on a particular issue, etc. and report to their team and to class.

Constructability “competition”

Students will be assigned in teams of 4. Each student will identify an example of a constructability solution on a project, and prepare (1) a short report with a well-documented description of the technical issues and project benefits (500 – 1,000 words and photos as needed) and (2) a 3-4 minute ppt presentation. Your sources can be industry publications, the web, or your own project experience.

On the day the assignment is due, each student will submit a copy of the report to the instructor, and will present their case to their team. Each team will select their best case. The finalist from each team will make a 3-4 minute presentation of their case to the class. The class will select the best case. Every member of the team with the winning case will receive 15% bonus points on their assignment grade.

Guest lecture reports

Industry speakers will make presentations on various project management topics. For each guest lecture, the students will submit a short written report (300-500 words) with (1) the key lessons from the lecture, and (2) how these lessons relate to their own work experience. You MUST ATTEND the lecture to be eligible to submit a report. Guest lecture reports will be due at the beginning of the class following the guest lecture. Late reports will not be accepted.

Team projects

Most of the work in this course will be done in teams. The team size and composition will change for different assignments. The course will include three group projects:

1. Analyze project management processes and evaluate their effectiveness. 2. Analyze accidents using different perspectives accident causation theories. 3. Analyze site safety programs and evaluate their effectiveness.

The team projects will require your team to identify projects, and distributed the work so that each student will make individual contributions, as well as work with the team. The team will develop an agreement that defines and clarifies individual responsibility for the different topics. For each project, the teams will submit a report and make a presentation. Team presentations may be videotaped. The instructor will retain copies of certain projects for use in future classes.

Project 1: Project management practices

Your team has been hired by the owner to describe and evaluate the management practices on their project. Each team member will focus on a different project issue, and will describe and evaluate one of the following: (1) Front-end planning and project definition, (2) Alignment, (3) Design, (4) Procurement, (5) Change management.



Project 2: Accident analysis

Your team is assigned to analyze a construction accident where a worker was fatally injured during a construction activity. You are the legal team that will be appointed to argue the case for the Worker or the Employer. You will prepare a report and you will present your arguments to the jury of peers (the class). The team with the winning argument will receive

15% bonus on their grade. Project 3: Project safety program

Your team has been assigned to describe and evaluate the site safety practices on a project. Each team member will focus on a different site safety practice. The class will identify the most significant elements of a safety program and each team member will collect data and assess a different element.

More detailed information on the group projects will be provided when the group project is assigned.

Individual Learning Agendas

Contemporary professionals are expected to engage in lifelong learning related to rapidly changing aspects of construction management and engineering. After your graduation, most of your learning will take place in your work environment and in a team context and guided by the demands of your projects. One of the goals of this course is to develop your ability to identify opportunities for learning in a team environments and to practice setting and monitoring your own learning agendas suitable to such environments.

Because CON E 490 is designed primarily for seniors, this course offers opportunities for you to practice developing learning agendas describing professional capacities and competencies related to work within teams, projects, and organizations.

1. Learning on Teams. During the team projects, you will practice division of labor in researching topics and developing specific skills relevant to the problem at hand.

2. Individual Learning Agenda. Finally, in the last part of the semester, you will develop a more comprehensive, individual career-related “learning agenda” that can serve as a foundation a kind of “living” and changeable document that you can use to guide your professional development in both informal and formal learning environments. This learning agenda will help you assess your current strengths and interests related to construction management as well as areas for future growth.


Component Weight Grade

Project 1: Project management practices 30% A>=94%; A->=90%

Project 2: Accident analysis 20% B+>=87%; B>=84%; B->=80% Project 3: Site safety program 25% C+>=77%; C>=74%; C->=70% Assignments & Guest lecture reports 15% D+>=67%; D>=64%; D->=60%



Criteria for grading group projects

Your lab reports will be graded based on the following criteria:

Criterion Weight

Content 50%

Appearance & Organization 20%

Language 20%

Presentation 10%

1. Appearance and organization:

Professional appearance: Typed, not congested, not much empty space, use paragraphs.

Well organized/ easy to find things: TOC, LOF, page numbers, section titles, items discussed in correct order, attachments well organized.

Use of figures: Figures and tables are numbered, captioned, and referenced in the text, set in line with text (do not wrap with text).

2. Language: Use technical writing style, short and clear sentences, use correct spelling and grammar. 3. Content:

Answers: All sections are complete, correct, and answered in a thorough and thoughtful manner with sufficient depth and detail.

Figures: Project description with photos and maps as needed, provide photos for all items requested. Safety toolbox: Reference OSHA section numbers, answer all questions with sufficient detail, use appropriate figures.

4. Presentation: All team members participate, professional presentation (well organized and to

the point, good visuals, not reading the slides looked at the audience).

Each criterion will be graded on a score 1-5 using the following Report Assessment Rubric.

Score Appearance & Organization Content Language Presentation

5 Professional appearance. Accurate front matter (cover & table of contents). Well organized sections, find things easily. Back matter (appendices, attachments, references) is relevant, referenced, organized, and professionally presented.

All sections are answered in a complete, correct and

thoughtful manner with detail. Good use of figures (project description with photos and maps). Technical writing style. No errors-Spell checked At most one or two errors

All team members participated.

Professional presentation (Well organized and to the point, Good visuals, not reading the slides looked at the audience)

4 Mostly professional appearance.

Well organized sections. Find things easily. Front matter is accurate.

Back matter is mostly relevant, referenced, organized, and professionally presented.

Almost all are answered clearly and well. Good use of figures (project description with photos and maps).

Well written Very few errors

All team members participated. Mostly professional presentation

3 Semi- professional appearance. Possible to find things. Front matter is mostly accurate. Necessary supporting information is attached as back matter, not well organized

Did the minimum to answer the questions, some subparts not addressed. Length too short, figures as filler.

Writing is sometimes unclear. Few errors

Most team members participated. Semi- professional presentation

2 Somewhat sloppy appearance, different spacing,& font. Somewhat organized Front matter somewhat inaccurate Some necessary supporting information is attached as back matter , not well organized

Most guiding questions not addressed.

Writing is unclear Many errors

Most team members participated. Somewhat sloppy presentation

1 Unprofessional appearance. Poorly organized, hard to find things. Front matter is missing or inaccurate. Figures thrown in with no explanation or relevance.

Few addressed. Missing necessary information.

Poorly written So many errors it is difficult to understand

Only 1 team member presented




The schedule is tentative. The timing of the topics may change depending on class needs and guest speakers’ availability. Additional homework and class assignments TBD.

Wk Date Topic Major Activities

1 Jan 22W Course Introduction 2 Jan 27

Jan 29

Project phases and processes

Front-end planning, Project definition

3 Feb 3 Guest speaker: Project Definition (Dave)

Feb 5 --- Reno Competition --- 4 Feb 10

Feb 12

Teambuilding, Alignment, IPD Guest speaker: IPD (Southland) 5 Feb 17

Feb 19

Design: Constructability, scope, coordination Guest speaker: Constructability (Mike)

Constructability compet assigned 6 Feb 24

Feb 26

Constructability competition Project Procurement

Constructability due Group Project 1 assigned 7 Mar 3

Mar 5

Topic teams develop indicators Guest speaker: Procurement (Justin) 8 Mar 10

Mar 12

Change Mgt. and Cost control

Guest speaker : Managing change (Turner)

Review group project status 9 Mar 17

Mar 19

Proj mgt processes and Lean construction Safety system, Costs of accidents

10 Mar 24 Mar 26 Project 1 presentations NO CLASS Project 1 due 3/31-4/4 --- Springbreak --- 11 Apr 7 Apr 9

Accident Causation theories

Production system design & accidents

Project 2 assigned 12 Apr 14

Apr 16

Accident Root Cause analysis

Elements of project safety mgt program 13 Apr 21

Apr 23

Project 2 Case Presentations SP elements and indicators

Project 2 due

Final Project assigned 14 Apr 28

Apr 30

Guest speaker: Site safety programs

Learning agenda / Topic teams mtg Learning Agenda Assignment 15 May 5

May 7

Draft trends - discuss trends in group Course Review

Draft trends & learning agenda Learning Agendas due





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