Course Title: Introduction to Modular Design and Construction

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Introduction to Modular Design and Construction

Credit Points: 12.00

Important Information:

Please note that this course may have compulsory in-person attendance requirements for some teaching activities. 

To participate in any RMIT course in-person activities or assessment, you will need to comply with RMIT vaccination requirements which are applicable during the duration of the course. This RMIT requirement includes being vaccinated against COVID-19 or holding a valid medical exemption. 

Please read this RMIT Enrolment Procedure as it has important information regarding COVID vaccination and your study at RMIT:

Please read the Student website for additional requirements of in-person attendance: 

Please check your Canvas course shell closer to when the course starts to see if this course requires mandatory in-person attendance. The delivery method of the course might have to change quickly in response to changes in the local state/national directive regarding in-person course attendance. 

Course Coordinator: Sathees Nava

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 2298

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 10.13.17A

Course Coordinator Availability: Monday and Wednesday at 2:30 to 4:30pm

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

Required prior study:

CIVE1179 - Steel Structures 1
CIVE1265 - Introduction to Civil & Infrastructure Engineering
CIVE1188 - Structural Analysis

Course Description

Modular construction is growing significantly as one of the most promising alternative construction methods to achieve sustainable construction. This course is designed to provide foundation knowledge and skills relevant to the modular design and construction. This course will introduce the systems of modular construction, structural systems and develop your capabilities in the design and manufacturing and on and off-site assembly. Topics that will be covered include:

  • Introduction to modular construction, systems and their advantages.
  • The modular building construction considerations and significant factors (modular types, transportation, common configuration, logistic).
  • Design considerations including architectural considerations and structural design considerations.
  • Modular structural design (beam, column, bracing and floor).
  • Modular production, transportation, lifting and assembly.


Please note that if you take this course for a bachelor honours program, your overall mark in this course will be one of the course marks that will be used to calculate the weighted average mark (WAM) in determining your award level. (This applies to students who commence enrolment in a bachelor honours program from 1 January 2016 onwards.

See the WAM information web page for more information.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes for BH077 Bachelor of Engineering (Civil & Infrastructure) (Honours)

  • PLO1: Demonstrate an in-depth understanding and knowledge of fundamental engineering and scientific theories, principles and concepts and apply advanced technical knowledge in specialist domain of engineering. 
  • PLO2: Utilise mathematics and engineering fundamentals, software, tools and techniques to design engineering systems for complex engineering challenges.    
  • PLO4: Apply systematic problem solving, design methods and information and project management to propose and implement creative and sustainable solutions with intellectual independence and cultural sensitivity. 
  • PLO6: Develop and demonstrate the capacity for autonomy, agility and reflection of own learning, career and professional development and conduct.  
  • PLO7: Collaborate and contribute as an effective team member in diverse, multi-level, multi-disciplinary teams, with commitment to First Nations peoples and globally inclusive perspectives and participation.   

On completion of this course, you may be able to:

  1. Identify the modular building system and their construction sequences.
  2. Analyse a structure to obtain actions such as bending moments, shear forces and deflections.
  3. Design the modular building using steel as a structural material.
  4. Apply your creative ideas to design and manufacturing modular.

Overview of Learning Activities

You will learn the concepts, design and construction of modular building through a series of pre-recorded lectures and tutorial classes. You will be involved in modular building design projects with group members. In the modular building design project, you will carry out structural designs of a low-rise residential modular building according to the requirements of relevant Australian Standards. This process will include the determination of critical loads, their combinations, design of typical and/or critical members, conceptual design of inter-modular connection, production of modular building, transportation, lifting and installation.

Overview of Learning Resources

You will be able to access course information and learning materials including design examples through Canvas ( and may be provided with additional materials in class. Lists of relevant reference books (Design in Modular Construction By Mark Lawson), Australian Standards, design handbooks and recommended textbooks will be given. Such resources are generally available at RMIT libraries.

For further information, please visit the Library page on the RMIT University website and the RMIT Student website.

Overview of Assessment

This course has no hurdle requirements.

Assessment tasks

Assessment Task 1:  Conceptual and architectural plan of modular building design and construction (group project)
Weighting: 30%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1-4

Assessment Task 2:  Structural design and assembly method of modular building (group project)
Weighting: 50%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1-4

Assessment Task 3:  Online quiz
Weighting: 20%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1-4