Commercial Construction


This course is offered in partnership with MTCopeland.  Whether you’re considering a position in construction or already in the workforce, this course is designed to provide an overview of the industry, the tools needed to succeed on the job, and the importance of skill development to enhance productivity.  With over 100,000 satisfied students and a course catalog of over 1,000 classes, we are here to help you – Invest in Yourself.



Dr. Christine Fiori is the Program Director of the Construction Management Program at Drexel University where she teaches courses in Project Controls, Equipment Applications and Economics, Leadership, Safety and Strategic Management. Prior to joining the faculty at Drexel University, she was the Preston and Catharine White Fellow and Associate Director of the Myers-Lawson School of Construction at Virginia Tech. She received her PhD in Civil Engineering from Drexel University in 1997. She served as a Civil Engineering officer in the United States Air Force and taught at both the US Air Force Academy and Arizona State University. Her passion for building was stoked early in her life as both her father and grandfather were carpenters.

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Course Description

Learn about the various sectors of the commercial construction industry, the many different skill sets involved, and how the industry operates today.

Course Outline

Course Overview – Dr. Christine Fiori, Program Director for the Construction Management Program at Drexel University, welcomes you to the course and shares what you’ll learn: from the dynamic skills required by the construction industry to the technological innovations driving the industry into the future.

Sectors of the Industry – A number of different sectors comprise the construction industry: residential, commercial, heavy civil, and industrial. Learn about the ample opportunities for career growth and salary potentials for each.

People, Equipment, and Materials – Construction is a dynamic blend of people, equipment, and materials. Learn about the roles and responsibilities of various tradespeople who oversee the production, shipment, operation of equipment, and materials.

Commercial Construction: Types of Projects – The commercial sector encompasses office buildings, high-rises, data centers, schools, retail facilities, warehouses, and more. Dr. Fiori explains how commercial projects require creativity to work with many different kinds of financial models, project designs, and customer requirements.

Commercial Construction: Scale of Projects – Commercial projects typically fall into one of three sizes: small, which are typically low-budget remodelling projects; medium, which are usually 1-2 stories of renovation or new construction; and large, which are ground-up, new construction projects that take several years to complete.

Commercial Construction: Renovation Work – Renovation projects have unique potential to breathe new life into communities. Dr. Fiori shares her experience on a renovation project on a railway in Philadelphia, which called for preserving old structures while simultaneously improving upon them.

Building Relationships – Construction is built on relationships, with all kinds of personalities and skill sets involved. Dr. Fiori explains how forming positive, effective collaborations on a jobsite are paramount to a project’s success, as well as one’s own career growth.

 Technology on the Jobsite – Construction is a people-fueled industry, but technology is driving the industry forward. Dr. Fiori walks you through major developments in construction technology, such as using software to build models, performing surveys with drones, and even making concrete and steel production more sustainable with advanced machinery.

Find Meaning in Your Work – Each role on a construction project requires a very specific skill set, but attention to detail and sense of pride in one’s work are essential for everyone in the industry. Dr. Fiori shares how construction makes a lasting mark on the world, and how each industry member’s contribution not only adds to the project’s legacy, but his or her own, too.

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