Building knowledge and connections

Continuing Education

Category: 32 00 00 - EXTERIOR IMPROVEMENTS

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  • Redwood Timbers are a safe, strong, and sustainable option for exterior and interior building projects where natural wood is desired. This course provides an overview of the properties of Redwood Timbers including insulation properties, grades, dimensions, fasteners, finishing options, and strength. It concludes with numerous case studies exploring the use of Redwood Timbers for post and beam construction, decorative elements, deck posts, and outdoor living structures.


  • Permeable interlocking concrete pavement (PICP) has the ability to create solid, strong surfaces for pedestrians and a range of vehicular uses, and can help maintain a site’s existing natural hydrologic function and reduce the overall impact of development. This course discusses the components of a PICP system and how they work together to manage stormwater in a variety of applications. Also addressed are hydrological and structural factors to consider when designing with PICP, and how PICP contributes to sustainable building goals and projects.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • The commercial space design trend toward open plans has had a major impact on interior electrical and digital infrastructure. Offices, hotels, retail spaces, and transit areas all utilize open spaces, each with their own specific issues and requirements. This course provides designers with the information required to provide code-compliant, user-friendly, and convenient power, data/communication, and AV access for a wide variety of spaces and end users, including facility managers, cleaning staff, and visitors.

    Prerequisites: No

    Course Level: Introductory


  • In applications where wood may be exposed to moisture, insects or fungal organisms, preservative-treated wood can ensure a project’s durability. This course reviews: the manufacturing process for pressure-treated wood; types of preservative treatments and the required levels of retention as dictated by the end-use application, desired service life and exposure conditions; American Wood Protection Association (AWPA) Use Category standards; current issues concerning preserved wood in residential and commercial construction; and Best Management Practices (BMPs) for aquatic uses.


  • Given the number of low-slope commercial roofs found in today’s metropolitan cities, it’s key that architects/designers have an understanding of the forces that affect the durability of a roof assembly and the high performance options that are available in order to choose the best solution for each project. This course provides a review of the types and performance characteristics of cover board materials used in commercial roofing assemblies, along with a discussion of the forces that threaten roof-system durability.


  • Low Impact Development (LID) has several advantages over traditional stormwater management approaches. Since impervious pavement is the main source of stormwater runoff, LID strategies recommend permeable paving for hard surfaces. The course discusses LID, its goals and principles and how they are achieved. It provides an overview of permeable pavements, and more particularly, plastic permeable grid paver systems and how they support LID goals.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • For the typical homeowner choosing exterior color can be a daunting task; however, there is guidance available to help choose color palettes that complement the exterior of the home. This course presents the FRESH approach: a strategic method used for the selection of colors for the exterior of buildings. The course focuses on both residential and commercial design considerations, and details the steps to follow in the color selection process to achieve a harmonious design.


  • Continuous insulation is part of building standards and state and energy codes, due to its ability to reduce thermal bridging and its associated heat loss and energy consumption. This course looks at the use of polyisocyanurate as a continuous insulation in Type V and residential construction, and its use as a multifunctional envelope component—air barrier, weather-resistive barrier and vapor retarder—by reviewing code requirements for the building envelope.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • The Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) is not just an idea about how to “grade the greenness” of products; it is a well-developed, globally recognized way, to make responsible comparisons and decisions regarding sustainable material design. This course discusses the concept of the EPD as applied to building materials and how to integrate EPDs into design and product selection decisions. Detailed information from different thermal insulation EPDs is used demonstrate how thermal insulation provides a unique and significant “pay-back” in terms of energy and environmental impacts.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • Segmented pavers have been successfully used for roads, courtyards and paths for hundreds of years. Durability of materials being one of the key reasons for their lasting popularity. These days modern pavers offer up a wide variety of newer performance capabilities and finishes. In this course, we’ll take a look at the unique technologies of segmental concrete paver systems, the types, finishes and their design considerations.


  • Over the past few decades, exterior building spaces and roofs have significantly transformed from utilitarian ballasted roof systems to roof systems with highly programmed, environmentally conscious, people-friendly amenities that promote healthier lifestyles. A variety of products and materials can be utilized in the design and construction of roof gardens and decks. This course will review the construction of basic types of roof systems, as well as the range of hardscaping products that are available to designers.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • Synthetic (artificial) grass, specifically designed for use with dogs, is a cost-effective solution that offers a clean, safe, and aesthetically pleasing environment for dogs. Presented here are the health, safety, performance, and cost benefits of installing synthetic grass specifically designed for dogs; its suitable applications; design considerations; installation factors; and maintenance guidelines.


  • Provides an overview of the types, features, and benefits of designing with cellular PVC trim, including a discussion on the installation guidelines and manufacturing processes.


  • Driven largely by public interest in minimizing the potential environmental impact of building products, architects and builders actively embrace “green” initiatives and are calling for building product transparency. The Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) was developed to address this need. This course examines the EPD and includes discussions on who wants EPDs and why, the EPD development process, the contents of an EPD, and the future of EPDs.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • Siding adds to the attractiveness of a residence while protecting the home from damage by the elements. Options for siding and trim encompass a variety of materials, including engineered wood, natural wood, fiber cement, and vinyl. This course reviews the features, performance characteristics, styles, and installation considerations of engineered wood siding and trim products.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • Rooftop decks create valuable living and recreational space for building owners, residents, and clients. Accommodating restaurants, hotels, healthcare facilities, and everything from residential to government buildings, rooftop deck systems offer the design flexibility to create versatile, unique outdoor spaces over any structural surface. This course explores the features, surface materials, and design options for rooftop deck systems and provides an overview of recommended planning and installation guidelines.


  • Clay bricks have been used for construction projects such as walls and pavement for thousands of years. Fired bricks are one of the strongest and longest-lasting building materials and offer many advantages. This course discusses the advantages of using clay permeable paving in a construction project and how a permeable pavement system mitigates the damaging effects of stormwater runoff, and presents an overview of the design process.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • Redwood offers warmth, character, durability, and strength in products from sustainably managed and harvested forests. This course provides insights into forestry practices and the environmental benefits of Redwood lumber, and compares Redwood with other common decking materials. Details are presented on how to differentiate and specify grades of Redwood; finishing options and methods are also discussed. The course concludes with examples of applications that showcase the unique beauty and attributes of Redwood.

    Prerequisites: No

    Course Level: Introductory


  • Provides an overview of gate and fencing systems which are both functional and decorative, and are designed to meet modern security and design requirements while harmonizing with the surrounding environment.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • Roofing is one of the most common renovation projects. Retrofit construction provides vast opportunities in terms of improving the energy efficiency of the built environment. This course reviews the code requirements pertaining to commercial reroofing, including a discussion of the impacts of retrofit construction on energy efficiency.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • Segmental retaining walls (SRWs) can strengthen steep slopes, hold back soil in grade changes, create useable land, and enhance the aesthetics of any landscape. This course looks at the site and application factors that determine whether a segmental retaining wall must be engineered and soil reinforced, and provides technical information about the components and construction of an SRW.


  • Selection of a material for a railing or fence project requires considering its long-term performance, maintenance, cost, and aesthetics. Regardless of the railing application (commercial, residential, or industrial), the coating process makes a difference to the life of the project. This course evaluates the different coating technologies available for steel railing and fence systems and discusses the factors to consider when selecting a coating for a steel railing and fence systems.


  • There are a multitude of building envelope products used, and a variety of methods taken, for achieving energy and building code requirements. Understanding the different roles a product plays in the envelope simplifies its design. In this course we’ll take a look at: the code requirements for buildings classified as IBC Type I-IV, paths to achieving compliance and the number of roles polyisocyanurate insulation plays in meeting these requirements.

     This course is part of one or more "Course Collections". Click here to view the details.


  • Stairs are often a prominent feature or even the focal point of an architectural design project and play a vital role in creating an aesthetically pleasing interior atmosphere, or an exterior welcoming point to a residential, commercial, or industrial building. This course provides an overview of the many benefits of installing precast concrete stair treads and landings, how to detail and specify them, and how to address related building code, design, and construction requirements.

    Prerequisites: No

    Course Level:Introductory


  • In multi-story, multi-family housing it is the area separation wall (firewall) which prevents fires from spreading to adjacent units. This course examines the advantages of using glass mat shaftliner panels for firewall assemblies in multi-story, multi-family housing, and covers the installation procedures and special conditions.

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