CAB’s suite of 7 RIBA Approved CPD seminars ranging from ‘Aluminium Fabrication’ to ‘Design Considerations’ to ‘Economic and Environmental Concerns’ are proving increasingly popular with architects throughout the UK. There is a strong sustainability theme running through all the seminars with special focus on the end of life recycling benefits of using aluminium.
CAB Chief Executive, Justin Ratcliffe commented, ‘In the current tough trading climate that leading construction economists believe will exist until at least late 2013 education and training can easily be overlooked. As a trade association it is vital that CAB continues to provide a mix of communication channels, including CPD Seminars, to educate and inform the architectural sector about the material’s endless possibilities’.
In August 2011 the RIBA launched a new CPD Core Curriculum moving from 31 topics to be covered over 5 years to ten key topics. CAB’s CPD seminars have been re-categorised, but crucially still count for double points under Topic 2: ‘Climate: sustainable architecture’ and Topic 7: ‘Designing + building it: structural design, construction, technology and engineering’. RIBA members must undertake at least 2 hours CPD in each of the 10 topics every year and CAB members are able to deliver any of the 7 seminars after undergoing an in-house induction programme.
In recent years television programmes such as ‘Grand Designs’ have provided an excellent catalyst to the renewed interest in the benefits that aluminium provides. This has in turn influenced an increasing number of national and local fabricators into adding an aluminium option into their product portfolio. With the arrival of high durability powder coating and advances in anodised finishes, architectural aluminium systems and products can now offer an extensive life expectancy with the minimum of maintenance. Together with aluminium’s high strength to weight ratio and slim lines, one of its most redeeming properties today is that the material is virtually 100% recyclable and has a real value at the end of its useful life.
CAB’ generic CPD’s are offered by CAB members who have firsthand experience of the material and can demonstrate, using their own company products and services, innovative uses of aluminium in practice. Regular feedback from practices via RIBA, following CAB CPD’s, has always been extremely positive and often leads to further modules in the series being requested.
To ensure that the Approved CPD material is used correctly CAB undertakes spot visits to seminars being presented. The benefits of presenting a one hour slot may not be initially obvious. However, very often members of a Practice will take outline themes from the seminar at the end and turn them via the Q&A session into highly specific queries regarding a current or forthcoming project. Ideally a CPD presentation should have a presenter and an assistant, with the latter able to clearly gauge levels of understanding and therefore identify questions that may not be immediately forthcoming.
The CAB Seminars were carefully created to avoid the pitfall of a presenter providing a company sales pitch. Where relevant though to back up a particular material benefit or perhaps highlight the array of finishing colours available, company samples are both useful and valid.