Extent of construction safety in the engineering curricula from the perspective of practitioners in the mena region

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

Abstract

The level of safety implied by the construction industry records world-wide is significantly low compared to other industries. The construction industry has the most dismal record of safety among all industrial segments, with a risk of fatality that is about five times higher than in any other industry. The higher rate of accidents and fatalities in the construction industry could be due to the nature of the work; however, several factors have been identified that could affect construction safety. Among these factors is the provision of construction safety education to engineering students. It is also believed that there is a greater ability to influence safety on a project earlier in the project?s life cycle and such ability diminishes as the schedule moves from conceptual design toward start-up. Thus, provision of construction safety education to engineering students will have benefits both for the project design and later in the procurement stage. Construction safety education for engineering students may involve two main aspects; construction site safety and design for construction safety (DfCS). Progress has been made in the developed countries to incorporate both aspects in the engineering curriculum. However, the extent to which engineering students in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region receive construction safety education during their undergraduate study is not known. To assess this extent, a survey was designed and distributed to engineering practitioners in some MENA countries. The survey was also utilized to assess the need for comprising construction safety education in the engineering curriculum. The study showed that about 70% of the surveyed practitioner engineers did not receive construction safety knowledge during their university education. Of those who did, almost half received such knowledge during internship. Meanwhile, about half of those who received some construction safety education ranked the received level as being "average". Initial results showed that the majority of the surveyed practitioners believe that there is a need for more construction safety education at the university level. The study also suggests some modifications to enhance the current level of construction safety education in the MENA region such as incorporating some topics of DfCS to be included in traditional design courses in order to address this crucial issue.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Event121st ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: 360 Degrees of Engineering Education - Indianapolis, IN, United States
Duration: Jun 15 2014Jun 18 2014

Other

Other121st ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: 360 Degrees of Engineering Education
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityIndianapolis, IN
Period6/15/146/18/14

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)

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