Program Structure

The Program is divided into two phases. Phase 1, which is entitled Individual Qualification, focusses on knowledge-based learning. Individual Qualification was developed based on the successful education program from buildingSMART Norway. In September 2017 the Program was officially launched by buildingSMART International and is now being adopted and implemented by Chapters around the world.

In Phase 2 a more comprehensive Program will be launched that addresses applied learning within the field. This second phase, simply labelled Professional Certification, is expected to be market-ready in 2021.

Tertiary education is the highest possible level of training. As buildingSMART is industry focused, tertiary education is not addressed directly within this Program. However tertiary institutions may choose to incorporate buildingSMART Individual Qualification or Professional Certification within their curricula.

The current focus of buildingSMART is on Phase 1: Individual Qualification.


The Program is two-tier:

Individual Qualification

Individual Qualification, or knowledge-based learning (Phase 1), has been designed to introduce the basic concepts and principles of openBIM. This focusses on theory-based learning that does not include software training or hands-on practice. Course providers are encouraged to give project examples and demonstrations to reinforce the core principles. The Individual Qualification is built around a single Basic module, that can be delivered in a two-day course.

Additional modules, to be determined, may be offered by training providers if they so choose. The Basic module is the prerequisite for all further modules.

Professional Certification

Professional Certification, or applied learning (will become Phase 2). This addresses the application of openBIM principles in the project environment. It is practice-driven, comprehensive training comprising of specific role-based modules, e.g. BIM Manager, BIM Coordinator, Information Manager. Each module will require 200+ hours of class learning in addition to live project work. Professional Qualification is in the development stage and is expected to be launched in 2021.

The Program does not address tertiary level trainings. However, buildingSMART engages with and supports universities in developing their BIM curriculum.

Learning Outcome Framework – Individual Qualification

Each training module is based on a Learning Outcome Framework (LOF): essentially a list of learning objectives. The LOFs are the basis from which training organisations can develop their course content. They are also the foundation for the assessment and qualification process. The official buildingSMART LOF is in working progress and will be published timely within the launch of the Program.

Assessment and Qualification – Individual Qualification

Assessment and qualification is managed via an online assessment platform. For each module there is a separate assessment derived from a database of questions. The questions correlate to the individual learning objectives defined in the learning outcome framework.The cost of the individual online assessment and qualification is to be decided by the individual buildingSMART Chapters. This may vary slightly from country to country depending on national requirements, however, it is not expected to exceed €125. This does not include the cost of the course training, which is decided independently by each training organisation.

Course Approval

The approval of course material (for commercial training organisations) will be managed by the local buildingSMART Chapters based on guidelines from buildingSMART. The fee for course approval is also to be decided by the individual buildingSMART Chapters. This may vary from country to country depending on national requirements, however is not expected to exceed €2,500 and will be valid for one year.

Program Timeline

The Program was launched to buildingSMART Chapters in July 2017. Each country or regional Chapter will announce their public launch date to their members. We anticipate a number of Chapters to go live in 2018.

The accreditation of learning organisations for the Program will start early 2018.


This Program refers to openBIM in the broadest and most inclusive sense. This includes all BIM processes that are independent of proprietary solutions and are based on open standards. The Program seeks to promote buildingSMART standards, however, is also inclusive of general processes, best practices and other non-proprietary standards that may not have originated from buildingSMART.

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