Cost Engineering

CVE30004, formerly HES5175 12.5 Credit Points Hawthorn, Sarawak


  • 1 Semester

Contact hours

  • 48 hours


175 credit points



Aims and objectives

This unit of study aims to introduce you to the principles and professional practices of Total Cost Management and its application for engineered projects.
After successfully completing this unit, you should be able to:
1. Describe the various steps in the life cycle of a project, from concept through evaluation, Go/No Go decisions, execution (engineering & construction), start up and commissioning, operation & maintenance, etc. to end of life activities. (K5, S2, S4, A2, A4)
2. Describe the basic project delivery systems used for project execution, the varying contractual and commercial relationships generally associated with each system, and their advantages and disadvantages. (K3, S4)
3. Select and apply basic aspects of engineering economics, including the various measures used to evaluate potential projects or compare financial alternatives, benefit-cost analysis, cash and investment flows, inflation and escalation, foreign exchange and hedging. (K3, K5, S1)
4. Quantify basic quantities using Australian Standard method of measurement of civil engineering works and associated building works, and prepare bills of quantities. (K2, A4)
5. Appreciate the basis for planning engineering construction projects and knowledge of setting such inputs into a construction schedule. (S2, S4, A3)
6. Construct bar (Gantt) charts and logic networks for project execution and analyse networks to determine critical paths using software. (S1, S4)
7. Quantify the various categories of costs which will be incurred during project execution, including quantity-proportional direct costs, time based and fixed indirect project costs, allowances, contingencies, mark ups for corporate overheads and profits. (K2, K3, S2, S4, A4)
8. Function effectively as an individual and as part of a team to apply risk assessment in project evaluation and decision making and develop techniques for formulating appropriate strategies for minimising or modifying potential risk outcomes (A7, S4, S1)
9. Apply the various levels of cost estimates prepared during the development of projects, the different methods of preparation used for each level, and the expected accuracy at each level. (K3, S1, S4)
10. Apply the key commercial terms of commonly used contract forms, particularly AS 2124 and the AS 4000 series, including tendering provisions (K6, S1)
11. Describe the difference between the 'permanent works' required for a project and the often extensive 'temporary works' required for its execution. (K3, S4)
12. Apply analytical techniques such as risk analysis, life cycle costing, value analysis, earned value, cost codes and work breakdown structures (K6, S1, S4, A7)
13. Use computer techniques and cost engineering tools to manage quantities of information for accurate estimating and reporting during project execution. (K2, S4, A4)
Swinburne Engineering Competencies for this Unit of Study
This Unit of Study will contribute to you attaining the following Swinburne Engineering Competencies:
K1 Basic Science: Proficiently applies concepts, theories and techniques of the relevant natural and physical sciences.
K2 Maths and IT as Tools: Proficiently uses relevant mathematics and computer and information science concepts as tools.
K3 Discipline Specific: Proficiently applies advanced technical knowledge of the specific discipline within that context.
K5 Practice Context: Discerns and appreciates the contextual factors affecting professional engineering practice.
K6 Professional Practice: Appreciates the principles of professional engineering practice in a sustainable context.
S1 Engineering Methods: Applies engineering methods in practical applications.
S2 Problem Solving: Systematically uses engineering methods in solving complex problems.
S4 Project Management: Systematically uses engineering methods in conducting and managing projects.
A3 Entrepreneurial: Appreciates entrepreneurial approaches to engineering practice.
A4 Information Management: Demonstrates seeking, using, assessing and managing information.
A7 Teamwork: Demonstrates effective team membership and team leadership.

Please note that unit codes have changed from 2014. Please ensure that you check the unit entry for the correct 2014 unit code.