Building knowledge and connections

Continuing Education

Category: 09 00 00 - FINISHES

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  • (Canadian Version) It is well known that colour in the built environment has an impact on the perception of space and our behavior in a space. Designers must understand colour to create an ambiance or style and to influence spatial use and perception. In this course we will look at how colour is perceived and processed, its emotional impact, how it interacts with light and finally, provide tips for implementing colour in the built environment.


  • For generations, designers have turned to the beauty and functionality offered by terrazzo. In recent years, new technologies and materials mean terrazzo can respond to the needs of the most modern buildings. This course covers the evolution of terrazzo, terrazzo flooring systems, and the environmental advantages of terrazzo and how they apply to sustainable initiatives for indoor air quality, recycling, and resource efficiency.


  • Coatings are about more than a building’s appearance; they play a vital role in preserving the architectural elements of the façade. This course explains coating chemistries and manufacturing, as well as the role they play in sustainability. The course also offers a detailed look at industry standards and tests that result in coating performance metrics. Specifying the correct coating for a given application can dramatically improve a building’s appearance and its cradle-to-cradle environmental footprint.


  • Quartz surfacing is a man-made material consisting of up to 93% natural quartz crystal. In this course, you will discover the other components behind the beauty, durability, and flexibility of this surfacing material. You will see the composition, production, and quality assurance processes that go into making the material and the resultant attributes and capabilities, as well as the installation basics of quartz surfacing materials.


  • Leading aluminum extrusion manufacturers have established a variety of methods pertaining to material grade, surface protection, and component solutions to maximize the benefits of aluminum to suit a wide variety of applications. These advancements in technology have led to the development of sustainable wood-patterned aluminum products designed for exterior and interior applications. This course focuses on how these products can be used as a beautiful, high-performance, durable alternative for real wood in a range of applications, including screens, facades, decking, fencing, gates, cladding, and more.

    Prerequisites:No

    Course Level:Introductory

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


  • 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...


  • Today, architects and designers need to give special consideration to building acoustics when developing plans for new and newly renovated construction projects. Excessive noise in any environment is considered a serious problem that can negatively impact occupant comfort, leading to learning difficulties, sleep deprivation, delayed recovery from illness, and lack of privacy. Sound basics are discussed in this course, and STC, IIC, and sound attenuation (reduction) techniques are explained. Various case studies are examined to develop further understanding of the performance of common sound abatement assemblies that are essential for occupant well-being and comfort.


  • (Canadian Version) Provides an overview of the classification of paints, advantages and disadvantages of latex versus alkyd coatings, surface preparation and priming techniques, and causes and solutions for common paint problems.


  • A comprehensive lighting plan is critical to the success of any residential design project. Proper lighting is effective and efficient and contributes to the comfort and functionality of the home. This course explores lighting concepts, sources, and controls. It discusses using layers of light to achieve design goals, and how to incorporate energy efficiency into lighting designs.

    Prerequisites:No

    Course Level:Introductory


  • Commercial aluminum wall, window, and roof systems have undergone improvements in recent decades, making them technologically sufficient to meet contemporary standards of durability. In addition to being familiar with the systems' thermal and other ecological benefits, specifiers need to understand paint chemistry and the difference between powder and liquid coating application methods. It is also important to understand third-party specifications published by AAMA, which cover architectural coatings.

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


  • In today’s market, designers are always looking for innovative products that are beautiful, versatile, and sustainable. Glass-quartz surfacing encompasses all of these characteristics. This course describes the importance of recycled content surfaces and their environmental significance, including reducing the use of natural resources and improving indoor air quality. Traditional and recycled surfacing materials are compared, the sustainable manufacturing process is explained, and life cycle environmental impact and case study applications are discussed.

    Prerequisites: No

    Course Level: Introductory


  • Within building spaces, noise can be reduced by using materials or assemblies that mitigate the transmission or isolate the sound. To do this it is important to understand how sound moves through building materials and partitions and the impact of sound mitigation products. In this course we look at the basics of sound, techniques, and products to prevent sound transmission.


  • There is a growing realization that the buildings we live and work in play an important role in the health and wellbeing of building occupants. Green building rating systems are starting to incorporate health and wellbeing criteria and this course will look specifically at how products and materials can help meet the health and wellbeing requirements across these systems.

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


  • What are the macro trends and ideas directing us into the next decade? This course begins with a review of this topic, followed by discussions on movements in each area of color, and the materials, textures, design themes, and motifs that are at the forefront of today’s design trends.


  • Curved elements, such as walls, ceilings, columns and arches, have often been used to add interest to architectural designs. This course outlines conventional methods of framing curves in wood and steel, as well as new methods of framing using flexible track systems. Discussions include options for wall coverings and trims for curved surfaces.


  • Surface design and color impact people in one way or another. Why do some surroundings induce a sense of calm, happiness, or inspiration while others offer nothing but distraction, discomfort, chaos, doom, and gloom? Interior surfaces are the point of contact between users and their environment, as well as an important connection between the visual and physical worlds. This course examines the integral role that surface color and design play in interior spaces and how color and design can improve health, reduce stress, enhance safety, and promote well-being in building occupants. Key requirements in the selection and specification process are also discussed.

    Prerequisites: No

    Course Level: Introductory


  • Adhesion and long-term integrity of a high-performance floor system can be undermined by any number of factors. Although surface preparation is one of the most critical aspects of floor coating, there are a number of other steps that must be included. In this course we will review the necessary steps for a successful high performance floor coating application including preliminary inspection and surface preparation, selection of appropriate products and proper coating application tips.


  • Understanding a product’s life cycle impact is central to the selection of materials for any green building. High pressure decorative laminate (HPDL) manufacturers have initiatives in place to reduce waste, energy and virgin materials in its production. This course introduces HPDL, its performance characteristics, fabrication techniques, and manufacturing processes and the processes and ingredients that make it a sustainable decorative surfacing solution for commercial and residential applications.

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


  • Porcelain tile containing recycled content provides residential and commercial building projects with a durable, easy-to-maintain finish material for interior or exterior floors, walls, or other surfaces. This course highlights the eco-friendly production practices of porcelain tile and details its contributions to the design and performance of a building.

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


  • With the range of ever-evolving uses of cold-formed metal framing, it is important for the building professional to be current with the latest product developments and innovations. This course begins with an overview of steel specification, followed by a discussion of a new, preassembled, double-stud sound guard system designed for superior acoustical performance. Also included is a review of fire-rated assemblies, including the recent developments and the expansion of UL assembly inclusions for the three different shaftwall studs (CH-stud, CT-stud, and I-stud).

    Prerequisites: No

    Course Level: Introductory


  • While architects and designers have many choices for specifying dynamic architectural surfaces in their projects, the result of using photography in such applications has historically presented challenges. This course explores typical digital images used in glass installations, gigapixel photography, guidelines for glass transparency, and the impacts of luminosity and reflectivity. Finally, it looks at potential applications for gigapixel images in large- or small-scale architectural surfaces.


  • Provides an overview of the history of solid surface as a decorative material with a discussion on product characteristics and attributes, and a comparison of sustainability factors of three hard surface materials and their environmental impact.

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


  • It is well known that color in the built environment has an impact on the perception of space and our behavior in a space. Designers must understand color to create an ambiance or style and to influence spatial use and perception. In this course we will look at how color is perceived and processed, its emotional impact, how it interacts with light and finally, provide tips for implementing color in the built environment.


  • Provides an overview of the classification of paints, advantages and disadvantages of latex versus alkyd coatings, surface preparation and priming techniques, and causes and solutions for common paint problems.


  • Throughout history, human desire to communicate, tell stories, and to express cultural identity, gives us a glimpse at the need for early use and creation of pigments. Creating color was, and still is, an art. Its history is one of discovery, wealth, power, religion, trade, and science. This course discusses the origins and evolution of color pigments by looking at historical civilizations and time periods.

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Free