Course Title: Read and interpret plans and specifications

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2015

Course Code: BUIL6239C

Course Title: Read and interpret plans and specifications

School: 130T Vocational Engineering

Campus: City Campus

Program: C4327 - Certificate IV in Tertiary Preparation

Course Contact: Program Manager

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4338

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Teacher: Ms. Janine Strachan


Phone: 9925 4504

Nominal Hours: 30

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

This unit of competency specifies the outcomes required to read and interpret plans and specifications applicable to low rise residential and commercial projects in order to inform estimation, planning and supervisory activities.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CPCCBC4012B Read and interpret plans and specifications


1. Identify types of drawings and their purposes

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Purpose and advantage of different types of drawings are identified.
1.2 Different aspects of drawings are identified.


2. Apply commonly used symbols and abbreviations

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Commonly used symbols and abbreviations on drawings are identified, understood and applied
2.2 Common building and construction terms used on drawings are identified, understood and applied


3. Locate and identify key features on a site plan

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Building site is identified from location drawings.
3.2 True north and building orientation are identified from details provided on site plan.
3.3 Key features of site plan are identified.


4. Identify and locate key features on drawings

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Key features of plans, elevations and sections are identified.
4.2 Client requested variations to standard plans are identified on drawings.


5. Correctly read and interpret specifications

Performance Criteria:

5.1 Provisional sum (PS) and prime cost (PC) values are identified and correctly applied.
5.2 Customer variations to standard specifications are identified.
5.3 Correct interpretations of essential elements are applied to estimation, planning and supervisory tasks and are communicated.
5.4 Building codes or standards affecting the work to be undertaken are identified, including references to Australian standards and the National Construction Code (NCC).


6. Identify non-structural aspects to the specification

Performance Criteria:

6.1 Key features of products included in the specification are identified, including the design, purpose, aesthetics and cost relationships.

Learning Outcomes

Refer to elements

Details of Learning Activities

Students will be taught through a number of planned in-class activities.
Activities in plan reading and completing industry specifications will be deliverable via Blackboard and face to face lectures.
Students will be observed through their planned activities.

Engineers Australia Mapping Information:

This course is mapped against stage 1 competencies for Engineering Associates developed by Engineers Australia as detailed below:

EA 1. Knowledge and Skill Base

EA1.1. Descriptive, formula-based understanding of the underpinning natural and physical sciences and the engineering fundamentals applicable to the practice area.
EA 1.2. Procedural-level understanding of the mathematics, numerical analysis, statistics, and computer and information sciences which underpin the practice area.
EA 1.3. In depth practical knowledge and skills within specialist sub-disciplines of the practice area.
EA 1.4. Discernment of engineering developments within the practice area.
EA 1.5. Knowledge of contextual factors impacting the practice area.
EA 1.6. Understanding of the scope, principles, norms, accountabilities and bounds of contemporary engineering practice in the area of practice.

EA 2. Engineering Application Ability

EA 2.1. Application of established technical and practical methods to the solution of well-defined engineering problems.
EA 2.2. Application of technical and practical techniques, tools and resources to well defined engineering problems.
EA 2.3. Application of systematic synthesis and design processes to well defined engineering problems.
EA 2.4. Application of systematic project management processes.

EA 3. Professional and Personal Attributes

EA 3.1. Ethical conduct and professional accountability.
EA 3.2. Effective oral and written communication in professional and lay domains.
EA 3.3. Creative, innovative and pro-active demeanour.
EA 3.4. Professional use and management of information.
EA 3.5. Orderly management of self, and professional conduct.
EA 3.6. Effective team membership and team leadership.

Engineers Australia Stage 1 Competencies are mapped with competency MEM22002A in the Assessment Matrix.

Teaching Schedule

WeekTopics DeliveredElement / Performance Criteria
 1-2Introduction to course materials
Initial sketches, concept plans, preliminary and final drawings, contour plans, site plans, 
1.1, 1.2, 3.1, 4.1
3-4Symbols and abbreviations, construction terms, sectional drawings, true north and building orientation land and feature plans2.1, 2.2, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 4.1 
5-6CAD drawings and services 1.1
7-8Isometric drawings1.1

Client variations and Project supervision  

4.2, 5.3
11-12Specifications Provisional sum and Prime cost 5.1, 5.2, 6.1
13-14Building Code of Australia 5.4
15Guest speaker1.1, 1.2, 3.1, 4.1
16Review Session
Assessment Tasks Reviewed

1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 2.2, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 4.1

17Test1.1 to 6.1
 18 Student feedback1.1 to 6.1

Student directed hours involve completing activities such as reading online resources, assignments, individual student-teacher course-related consultation. Students are required to self-study the learning materials and complete the assigned out of class activities for the scheduled non-teaching hours. The estimated time is minimum 12 hours outside the class time.

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

Learning Resources:
Full suite of working drawings Including:
• Floor Plans
• North, South, East and West Elevations
• Sectional Drawings
• Site Plans
• Notes
• 3D representations
Set of Specifications:
All Document’s available through Blackboard

Overview of Assessment

Assessment will incorporate a variety of methods including written, oral, practical tasks and activities. You will be asked to personally demonstrate to your teacher/assessor the practical skills gained during this course to the relevant industry standards. Assessment activities will occur throughout this course and feedback will be provided at regular intervals.

Assessment Tasks

Portfolio 1 - 10% - Due Week 5

Portfolio 2 - 20% - Due Week 8

Portfolio 3 - 20% - Due Week 12

Test - 50% - Week 17

Assessment Matrix

Portfolio 1xx  x  x      
Portfolio 2  xx          
Portfolio 3     xx x     
Test         xxxxx


Engineers Australia Stage 1 Competencies
AssessmentEA 1.1EA 1.2EA 1.3EA 1.4EA 1.5EA 1.6EA 2.1EA 2.2EA 2.3EA 2.4EA 3.1EA 3.2EA 3.3EA 3.4EA 3.5EA 3.6
Portfolio 1XX XXX          
Portfolio 2XX XXX          
Portfolio 3XX XXX          
Test  X   XX  XX X  
0 (Blank)Graduate attribute is not assessed
1Graduate attribute is assessed in at least one but less than one-third of the Element
2Graduate attribute is assessed in at least one third but less than two-thirds of the Element
3Graduate attribute is assessed in more than two-thirds of the Element

Other Information

Credit Transfer and/or Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL):

You may be eligible for credit towards courses in your program if you have already met the learning/competency outcomes through previous learning and/or industry experience. To be eligible for credit towards a course, you must demonstrate that you have already completed learning and/or gained industry experience that is:

• Relevant
• Current
• Satisfies the learning/competency outcomes of the course

Please refer to to find more information about credit transfer and RPL.

Study and Learning Support:

Study and Learning Centre (SLC) provides free learning and academic development advice to you. Services offered by SLC to support your numeracy and literacy skills are:

• Assignment writing, thesis writing and study skills advice
• Maths and science developmental support and advice
• English language development

Please refer to to find more information about Study and Learning Support.

Disability Liaison Unit:

If you are suffering from long-term medical condition or disability, you should contact Disability Liaison Unit to seek advice and support to complete your studies.

Please refer to to find more information about services offered by Disability Liaison Unit.

Late Submission:

If you require an Extension of Submittable Work (assignments, reports or project work etc.) for seven calendar days or less (from the original due date) and have valid reasons, you must complete an Application for Extension of Submittable Work (7 Calendar Days or less) form and lodge it with the Senior Educator/ Program Manager.

The application must be lodged no later than one working day before the official due date. You will be notified within no more than two working days of the date of lodgement as to whether the extension has been granted.

If you seek an Extension of Submittable Work for more than seven calendar days (from the original due date), you must lodge an Application for Special Consideration form under the provisions of the Special Consideration Policy, preferably prior to, but no later than two working days after the official due date.

Submittable Work (assignments, reports or project work etc.) submitted late without approval of an extension will not be accepted or marked.

Special Consideration:

Please refer to to find more information about special consideration.


Plagiarism is a form of cheating and it is very serious academic offence that may lead to expulsion from the university.

Please refer to to find more information about plagiarism.

Email Communication:

All email communications will be sent to your RMIT email address and you must regularly check your RMIT emails.

Course Overview: Access Course Overview