Application of visualisation technology in construction safety training: A preliminary review

Rita P Zhang, Clara Cheung, Hou Lei

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


The construction industry is a hazardous industry and characterised by high number of workplace injuries and fatalities. Research evidence indicates that risk factors such as a lack of trade knowledge and skills, inadequate understanding of risk controls, and low level of safety awareness can contribute to workplace accidents. This highlights the importance of training in assuring that workers competently perform work tasks by adhering to health and safety requirements. The conventional way of developing safety knowledge and compliant skills is to attend classroom-based training on safety procedures and related codes of practice. However, such a training approach has long been questioned about its effectiveness due to low level of engagement and lack of opportunities to practice in a real site scenario. Emerging visualisation technologies such as virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and gaming environments seem
promising to overcome the limitations of traditional training approach. Researchers have attempted to develop various visualisation technology-enabled training systems or approaches to enhance training effectiveness. However, a systematic understanding of what and how visualisation technologies have been used to support safety training is missing. A study is being initiated to systematically review literature to examine the status of visualisation technology-enabled training approaches in construction. This paper reports the preliminary results from a pilot study. The results indicate that the application of visualisation technologies in safety training is still in the early stage. Existing applications primarily have focused on hazard identification and specific work tasks, but haven't considered broader contextual factors (e.g. construction types, training needs in project lifecycle), pedagogy (e.g. learning methods), learners' characteristics (e.g. experience, skills), etc. A four-dimensional framework is suggested in this study to provide directions for future research in applications of visualisation technologies in safety training.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 35th Annual ARCOM Conference
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2019


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