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Paper Sessions 4 Session 21

90 minutes
Paper Session

Spatial Ability and Academic Performance Correlations in Construction Surveying
Kenneth Williamson III

This study examined the relationship between scores on a spatial test battery and multiple academic achievement measures in an upper-level undergraduate construction surveying course. The test battery was administered to 277 construction science students. The scores on all spatial battery tests and assessment measures were found to be significantly correlated. Further, significant correlations were discovered between all the spatial ability test battery scores and achievement points in exams. A significant negative correlation was discovered between the Mental Rotations Test (MRT) scores and laboratory points. Additionally, significant correlations were found between total grade points and the Hidden Patterns Test (HPT) scores, the Purdue visualization of Rotations Test (ROT) scores, and the Spatial Ability Battery Z-Scores. Based on these findings, educators and researchers in construction education would benefit from using these cognitive tests to assess student spatial abilities and to assist them in better understanding their students’ spatial visualization skills, which should encourage instructors to modify instructional strategies and curricula design to match or enhance their students’ cognitive abilities.

EarthCraft Homes Cost More than Conventional Homes
Gunjan Garg

The objective of this study was to identify the construction cost differential between EarthCraft and conventional homes within the Atlanta, GA region. The study included comparable projects completed by the EarthCraft home builders and conventional builders. The survey method included collecting data through a specially designed structured questionnaire and some face-to-face interviews. The respondents to the survey included EarthCraft home builders operating in the Atlanta region, and some were randomly selected for face-to-face interviews. The intent for the survey was to identify strategies and associated costs involved in EarthCraft homes. The intended audiences are potential home buyers and conventional home builders who might invest in EarthCraft homes. The result from the study provides a cost comparison of EarthCraft and conventional single-family homes of the same size. The projects analyzed in this study were similar in terms of type, use, and location attributes. The study concluded that most of the features of EarthCraft homes cost in a range of 1−5 percent more than conventional homes if all other factors are kept constant.

Analysis of Green Housing in Nonprofit Organizations in Indiana
Sandeep Langar

Poor housing quality can influence the physical, psychological, and emotional health of the occupants. Nonprofit Organizations (NPOs) contribute voluntary support aiming towards providing adequate habitable housing for underprivileged people. However, these efforts are hindered by multiple factors, such as a lack of affordability, increase in poverty, increased NPO operation costs, and more. The budgetary constraints for NPOs imply that green housing may not be perceived as critically important. However, miscalculating the benefits of green housing for such causes is a critical issue from an environmental perspective, as well as the life cycle cost to the occupant. Since many of the people owning and operating houses are poor, it is imperative that such families spend less on maintenance and operations. Therefore, the research investigates the adoption patterns of green housing in NPO within the state of Indiana. This state and the NPO Habitat for Humanity (HfH), were purposely selected for analysis. HfH was selected because it is a national organization with various affiliates across the United States and US territories. As part of the study, an online survey was created and distributed to all HfH affiliates. The survey was active for eight weeks after initial contact, and two reminders were emailed during the active period. Upon deactivation of the survey, all data was compiled and statistically analyzed. Green housing adoption patterns were identified and analyzed, and the study also provides a comprehensive list of accelerators and barriers to green housing. The study further identified the importance of champions within the affiliate to be a successful provider of green housing. The study results will help NPOs to create a strategy for providing green housing families in need, even in competitive markets.