Building knowledge and connections

Continuing Education

Category: 32 00 00 - EXTERIOR IMPROVEMENTS

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  • 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.


  • Since ancient times, concrete mixes and carved natural stone have combined to create substance, beauty, and longevity in our architecture. Glass fiber reinforced concrete (GFRC) was created to ensure the attributes of concrete and stone continue to be enjoyed but with the efficiency in application that is expected in today’s world of design. This course covers the evolution of GFRC, its applications and how it is custom created, its advantages, and how GFRC compares to other types of architectural concrete


  • For centuries retaining walls have been built using the same methodology, a stacked block wall placed to hold back a load of earth. Technologies such as anchors and soil-stabilizers, allowed for higher and stronger walls. But difficult site conditions made the use of these methods problematic or impossible. The latest innovations in retaining wall construction offer solutions to these challenging site conditions. In this course , we will be discussing new solutions for using Segmental Retaining Walls (SRWs) and Mass Segmental Retaining Walls (MSRWs).


  • A highly efficient building envelope should meet the most demanding performance requirements and contribute to LEED® credits and net zero energy targets. Presented here are the features and performance benefits of insulated metal panels (IMPs). The course provides an in-depth look at a generic IMP EPD, discusses new LEED® v4 contributions, and outlines how IMPs meet the strict energy performance requirements of current codes and standards.

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


  • 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.


  • Waterproof roof and balcony membrane systems are designed to prevent building envelope failure and keep areas below the deck surface dry. Presented here are pedestrian (walkable) roof and balcony polyvinyl chloride (PVC) membrane systems, with discussions on their advantages and membrane construction, as well as waterproofing concepts and design considerations for integration into the building envelope.


  • Redwood—one of nature’s longest-lasting, strongest, most beautiful and environmentally-friendly building materials—is commonly used for decking, siding, and timbers because of its natural beauty and resistance to decay. This course covers the sustainable attributes of redwood building products, including a discussion of redwood lumber grades, characteristics, and applications. Also presented are the results of a recent Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) comparing redwood and plastic-composite decking options and information about redwood’s Environmental Product Declaration (EPD).

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


  • 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.


  • 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.


  • There are many factors to consider in the nurturing and maintaining of urban trees, including those relating to environment (soil, water, climate, etc.), tree rooting conditions, and protection above ground. This course provides a discussion of these factors, along with a review of the surface material options with a focus on stone composite tree grates.

     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.


  • 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.


  • This course examines the required considerations for successful green facade installations and projects and includes discussions on system selection, design, plant selection, maintenance, and client/owner education.

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


  • There are several options available for steep slope metal roofs, but how do you choose the best option for your building? This course is designed to answer exactly that question. Learn about the types and finishes of metal, and the systems available to meet your building’s needs. This course will also answer specific questions about oil canning, warranties, and the importance of proper attachment for metal flashings on low slope roofs.


  • Synthetic roofing materials have been available in the market for more than a decade, providing a cost-effective, viable alternative to traditional slate and shake roofing systems. This course provides an overview of the features and benefits of slate and shake synthetic roofing products, including a discussion on the testing methods used to rate specific performance characteristics.


  • 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.


  • There are several key elements that must be considered with a cavity wall system. Heat, air, and moisture — both vapor and liquid — have a definite impact on how a cavity wall system should be designed and constructed. Once these elements have been addressed, a cavity wall system will increase energy efficiency, meet the required energy and fire code standards, and will provide cost-savings over the life of the building.

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


  • The recent shift towards protecting the environment has also brought about a better understanding of our innate need to reconnect with our natural surroundings. This is known as biophilia. In this course, we will examine the elements of biophilic design and how to implement biophilic design strategies, known to improve physical and mental well-being of occupants. The use of resilient flooring in commercial applications offers an opportunity to implement biophilic design.

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


  • Window frames offer many important benefits for buildings, especially when it comes to energy and environmental performance, and frame material selection is a critical aspect of the design process. This course discusses pultruded fiberglass window systems and compares them with traditional wood, aluminum, and PVC window systems across a wide variety of performance attributes.


  • 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.


  • When it comes to railing infill, most people immediately think of vertical pickets, horizontal rails, or glass panels. However, today’s cable railing infill options offer many benefits. Stainless steel cable infill is strong, durable, and versatile and offers long-lasting beauty. This course provides an overview of horizontal cable infill and its advantages, and discusses frame design, prefabricated and custom assembly kits, installation specifications, and special safety requirements.


  • Architects and designers have many options for specifying site furniture products for their projects, and selecting materials and finishes is an integral part of this process; yet, making material selections has become more and more complex. The course examines conditions and constraints of outdoor environments; evaluates materials commonly used in outdoor applications; discusses using green building standards and rating systems, and the role of suppliers as resources for material selection; and provides examples of products that adhere to a higher environmental standard.

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


  • Metal has many benefits in the design of a building. It provides visual beauty, as well as being strong, lightweight, and durable. There are options for every budget, look, function, and scale, and it’s a great choice for sustainability. This course explains the four base metal types — steel, aluminum, natural metals, and stainless steel — and the unique attributes each brings to a building project. It also provides foundational knowledge on the two types of wall panel systems — barrier and rain screen — as well as the four metal wall panel options.


  • Low impact development (LID) includes a variety of practices that mimic or preserve natural drainage processes to manage stormwater. One of these practices is the use of permeable interlocking concrete pavement (PICP) systems. This presentation addresses environmental concerns related to impervious surfaces, PICP design for hydrological and structural requirements, and PICP installation and maintenance processes and considerations.

     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.

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Unilock Benjamin Moore