All construction projects require a specification from the designer. Design students will one day need to write a building specification and would benefit from an introduction to what a specification is, its importance in getting the quality they want in their projects as well as its role in conforming to building regulations. The AACA National Competency Standard 2.1.3 for the registration of architects, requires architects to prepare architectural specifications.
The following NATSPEC resources are available to institutions and/or lecturers free of charge and include online access to SPECbuilder Live – a specification compilation program, a number of full commercial worksections in Word format for students to see and edit NATSPEC material and all the NATSPEC TECHnotes, TECHreports and Papers in PDF format. Also included is the professional version of NATSPEC BUILDING Domestic in Word format – fully editable and printable.
How to get a log in
Fill in the Resources for Design Students Form and email/fax/post it back to us and an email will be sent to you with login information. NATSPEC provides student access to resources via lecturers. If you are a student, check with your lecturer if you already have this available to you. If not, ask your lecturer to fill in the Resources for Design Students Form and send it back to us. Alternatively, you may provide us with contact details of your lecturer and we can contact them directly.
How you can use the material
A general login can be created for all students. Students can use the Create a Project section to select the worksections that may be required for a project. This section presents a list of all NATSPEC worksections with checkboxes and saves the selections. The full commercial worksections are useful for students to see the extent of specification worksections and the work necessary to write a specification. NATSPEC TECHnotes, TECHreportsand Papers would be very useful as an introduction to specification writing and production. They cover many technical construction and documentation topics, ESD specifying, using Standards and the BCA.
Trade Student Resources
TAFE Module CPCCCM2001A Read and interpret plans and specifications requires that students are able to read and interpret building specifications. NATSPEC offers teaching resources that are relevant to the delivery of this module free of charge to Institutions and/or Lecturers. NATSPEC is widely used as a building specification template and is regularly updated to reflect changes in the Building Code of Australia and current Australian Standards.
TAFE Module CPPBDN5013A Develop and collaborate on building information models for small scale building design projects supports building designers who create and use Building Information Models (BIM) to optimise productivity and enhance streamlining of the construction process through the collaborative working methods afforded by BIM. NATSPEC offers teaching resources that are relevant to the delivery of this module to Institutions and/or Lecturers. NATSPEC is at the forefront of developing BIM guidelines and standards, such as the NATSPEC National BIM Guide and Project BIM Brief, for the benefit of the construction industry. These documents and other BIM-related resources are available free of charge from the NATSPEC BIM Portal.
Check out the Worksection Classification, to find the trade(s) you’re interested in and fill out the Trade Student Resources form indicating which worksections you’d like emailed to you in a PDF format. Print them and use them as handouts to the students. It is the template designers use to write specifications and students will see the current standards and regulations that need to be complied with. This service is free of charge to Institutions and/or Lecturers and limited to 5 worksections.
NATSPEC’s STYLEguide lists symbols and abbreviations commonly used as stated in the module purpose - Recognition of commonly used symbols and abbreviations. NATSPEC’s relevant worksection, TECHnotesand Defined Terms are invaluable tools in the comprehension of written job specifications as stated in the module. Even if the module is not a requirement of your course, the information provided in the relevant worksections would be useful in highlighting the standards and regulatory requirements in your field.
Examples of use
If you are a lecturer in 19285 Concreting – Certificate II or 18745 Concreting – Certificate III, the above TAFE module is part of your course. You may be interested in using the following NATSPEC worksections: 0311 Concrete formwork Abstract: This worksection Template is applicable to supply, installation and removal of formwork for concrete work in buildings and associated structures. It includes formwork using profiled sheeting and ply wood. 0312 Concrete reinforcement 0313 Concrete post-tensioned 0314 Concrete in situ 0315 Concrete finishes 0316 Precast concrete 0317 Tilt-up concrete 0318 Shotcrete
See the 'Training Courses/ Professional Development' page for details of seminars and webinars available to students.
NATSPEC, producer of the national master specification, believes it is important that students understand the importance of good documentation, especially where specifications are concerned, and has therefore designed a number of packages for educational institutions.
The NATSPEC Library Package contains all the NATSPEC worksections. Provided on a CD, the documents are fully searchable and printable (low resolution print with Education Watermark) for deployment only within tertiary libraries (the library should take all necessary precautions that the documents are available only within the library). It contains the following Acrobat PDF documents:
- BUILDING Professional: For architects and building designers working on major and/or complex buildings. s definitive specification. It covers site, structural, architectural, interiors, landscaping work and mechanical, hydraulic and electrical services design and installation work. Demolition, tendering and contract preliminaries are also covered. The content is informed by Volume One of the Building Code of Australia and Volume Two, Housing provisions has also been taken into account.
- SERVICES Combined: For engineers working on projects of all complexities. It contains all material in each of the SERVICES Mechanical, Hydraulic and Electrical specification packages. Demolition, tendering and contract preliminaries are also covered. The content is informed by Volume One of the Building Code of Australia and Volume Two, Housing provisions has also been taken into account.
- Specifying Architecture: This book discusses contractual, technical and editorial issues in the planning, production and use of specifications. It sets out best-practice professional guidelines, putting modern specification writing into an historical and international context.
- SIMPLE Domestic: This specification is for those projects simple enough not to require the engagement of an architect or building designer by the owners. It defines what is deemed to be the minimum level of workmanship for satisfactory work.
- SIMPLE Office Fitout: This specification is a quality statement supplementing the drawings prepared by the contractor and has been designed to be a condition of contract between the client and the contractor.
- Other supporting documents.
The Library Package is available at a greatly reduced subscription cost of $495 per annum and is updated annually. To subscribe just fill out the Library Subscription Form and send it back to us.