Authors: Brian Paulsen
Faculty Mentor: Madeline Polmear
College: Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering
Construction safety training and education are an important mechanism to provide a safe work environment for construction workers and limit the chances of occupational injury for workers and pedestrians. In order to provide the safest environment possible, it is paramount that construction safety training be made as efficient and as effective as possible. Through surveying the website of national safety training organization ARTBA and collecting data on the content and format of safety classes offered, it is clear that the vast majority of safety training is done traditionally: taught in classrooms with the use of physical materials such as pamphlets. As visualization technology such as virtual reality grows more advanced, the possibility of educators being able to incorporate this technology into the safety training and education process grows more and more likely. This research aims to clarify how visualization technology can be incorporated into safety training in such a way as to increase its effectiveness by examining the process by which safety education is currently administered nationwide.
What further steps need to be taken in order to continue to integrate VT into the workplace? Does more training need to occur or is it that the technology is up to par when it comes to real world technology?
In order to further integrate VT into the construction safety industry, we need to obtain a greater understanding of where VT can be most efficiently inserted into the training process. From there, we can begin designing programs that utilize VT. The technology is definitely up to par, however.
You mentioned “there many ways VT can be used in the training industry.” What are the specific ways VT is being used and specific ways in can be used in construction?
Some of the specific ways that VT is being used or can be used for construction include flagger training, the operation of specific types of tools and machinery, and gaining familiarity with the construction work zone in a safe environment.
Virtual reality is definitely a promising ground to develop construction workers’ safety awareness. I see you mention about effectiveness and efficiency of using virtual reality in safety training. You particularly focused on the effectiveness of VT in terms of cost and engagement. I wonder if you have found anything related to their improved performance of identifying hazards as another effectiveness measure.
Yes! In fact, we have found that VT has the added effect of increasing workers’ engagement in the training program. They tend to become engaged and stay engaged more than with traditional training materials. Increased engagement naturally leads to a higher retention of training information.
Good. Thanks for your response.
For Future Research, what methods would you use to include construction workers in your study and what information would you want to learn from them?
I would use surveys to collect responses from construction workers, and the goal of these surveys would be to learn how the workers themselves feel about VT in training as to create training programs that are accessible to the workers and designed with their perspectives in mind.
I really enjoyed the poster and think virtual training is a fantastic idea. You’ve stated that the cost of virtual training is currently too expensive. Is there an identified threshold the price must fall below for rapid adoption in target industries, and if so who are some of the major players in these industries?
At the moment, I don’t know of a specific target price threshold that would make mass production and adoption of virtual training more feasible. If I had to guess, I would say below $100,000 as that seems to be the case in other industries, such as the defense industry, however that would be something we would need to look into in the future.
At the moment, I don’t know if there’s an exact, specific threshold the price needs to fall beneath for mass production and adoption to become more feasible,. That would be something we would need to look into in the future. If I had to make an educated guess: based on the price of similar systems in other industries, such as the defense industry, I would say beneath $100,000
Good job with the poster, Brian.
Be sure you look at the video and poster of other researchers.
Thank you Dr, Simmons!
Nice project. Wondering if you are going to pursue it?
Thank you Dr. Donnelly!