This unit specifies the outcomes required to apply safe design principles to control occupational health and safety (OHS)/work health and safety (WHS) risk during the life of a building. It includes the ability to identify and comply with legal responsibilities and obligations and evaluate OHS/WHS hazards associated with the design, construction and use of a building during its life cycle. Applying safe design principles requires consultation with stakeholders and specialist advisors and the ability to make recommendations for alternative design solutions and incorporate risk controls into the building design and end use.

No licensing, legislative, regulatory or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of publication. However, this unit forms part of a minimum qualification requirement for registration with the Victorian Building Authority as a building designer (architectural).

Unit details

Study level:
Vocational and further education (TAFE)
Unit code:


Assessment tasks will be designed to reinforce and extend knowledge and skill competence within set and controlled parameters in accordance with each unit's learning outcomes and performance criteria requirements, including the setting of work based practical application tasks designed to provide evidence of competence outcomes, within periodic and scheduled timelines. Students will be expected to demonstrate the following required skills: - enable clear and direct communication, using questioning to identify and confirm requirements and share information with internal and external personnel; - read and interpret: the Building Code of Australia (BCA); relevant OHS/WHS legislation and Australian Standards; workplace documentation relating to the safe design of buildings; plans, drawing and specifications and use language and concepts appropriate to industry conventions; - produce workplace documentation; - record data and findings on historical and current information pertaining to OHS/WHS; - identify legal responsibilities and obligations regarding safe design; - analyse and evaluate data on OHS/WHS hazards, reports and compensation claims; - negotiate client expectations of OHS/WHS outcomes; - apply principles of safe design to the life cycle of a building; - planning and organisational skills to collect, organise and analyse information on safe design; - developing practical risk controls; - recommending alterations to design to improve safety; - teamwork skills when consulting specialist advisors and stakeholders; - self management skills in recognising limits of own expertise and seeking the advice of others, when required; - learning skills in maintaining up-to-date knowledge of safe design principles and changes to legislation; - technology skills to produce required documentation, and; - work safely in a design drafting working environment according to legislation and workplace policies and procedures. Students will also be expected to demonstrate the following knowledge: - legislative and regulatory requirements for OHS/WHS information, data and consultation; - principles and practices of a systematic approach to risk management; - basic principles of anthropometry; - direct and indirect influences that impact on OHS/WHS and the environment in the design and use of a building; - the hierarchy of control and considerations for deciding between different methods of control; - interdependent relationships between ergonomics and stressors, such as physiological factors, awkward posture, poor lighting and ventilation and thermal environment, and; - legislative responsibilities of building designers with regard to OHS/WHS at all stages of design, construction and end use of a building.

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

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