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Engineering Contracts and Procurement (ENGM90006)

Graduate courseworkPoints: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelGraduate coursework
Subject codeENGM90006
Semester 2
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date


In this subject students will learn how to structure and work with engineering contracts to deliver and procure engineering outcomes. Students will develop a working knowledge of contract administration and gain an understanding of commercial out workings of engineering. All engineers interface commercially with engineering contracts throughout their careers and thus the application of the subject content is broad. Those seeking to work as a contractor and as a contract administrator will find direct application of this subject’s content.


Commercial management of engineering projects including the role and responsibilities of corporate managers, market analysis, structuring of procurement options, development of contractual terms and conditions, and the pricing of work.

Estimating and tendering engineering works via work breakdown structures, work method statements, risk identification and tendering principles. Contract administration and project control functions and techniques including time and money negotiations and cash flow management are also covered through the use of detailed case study material.

Intended learning outcomes


On completion of this subject the student is expected to:

  1. Assess the commercial viability of engineering projects
  2. Select an appropriate procurement strategy for a particular project
  3. Be capable of interpreting the scope and meaning of contract documents for the delivery of engineering projects
  4. Identify and manage risks and opportunities inherent in engineering projects
  5. Understand the fundamentals of contract law
  6. Conduct first principles cost estimating and tendering processes from a Contractors perspective
  7. Be able to analyse and assess tenders
  8. Understand how to administer and manage contracts based on Australian General Conditions of Contract in respect to extensions of time, variations and quality
  9. Describe dispute resolution mechanisms and their relevance in Australian and International engineering practices and jurisdictions.

Generic skills

  • Ability to undertake problem identification, formulation, and solution
  • Ability to utilise a systems approach to complex problems and to design and operational performance
  • Ability to communicate effectively with the engineering team and with the community at large
  • Ability to manage information and documentation
  • Understanding of professional and ethical responsibilities, and commitment to them
  • Ability to function effectively as an individual and in multidisciplinary and multicultural teams, as a team leader or manager as well as an effective team member
  • Capacity for lifelong learning and professional development.

Eligibility and requirements





Non-allowed subjects


Recommended background knowledge

Knowledge from the following subject will assist with learning in this subject:

Code Name Teaching period Credit Points
CVEN90045 Engineering Project Implementation
Semester 2

Core participation requirements

The University of Melbourne is committed to providing students with reasonable adjustments to assessment and participation under the Disability Standards for Education (2005), and the Assessment and Results Policy (MPF1326). Students are expected to meet the core participation requirements for their course. These can be viewed under Entry and Participation Requirements for the course outlines in the Handbook.

Further details on how to seek academic adjustments can be found on the Student Equity and Disability Support website: http://services.unimelb.edu.au/student-equity/home


Additional details

  • One 2-hour written examination (50%) end of semester. Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) 1 to 9 are addressed in this examination
  • One assignment (45%) of up to 3000 words, progressively completed during the semester, requiring approximately 55 – 60 hours of work. ILOs 1, 2, 3, 4 and 6 are addressed in this assignment
  • Participation and performance in a computer simulation exercise of running and engineering business (5%) during the semester. ILOs 1, 3, 4, 5 and 6 are adddressed in this assessment.

Dates & times

  • Semester 2
    Principal coordinatorColin Duffield
    Mode of deliveryOn Campus — Parkville
    Contact hours36 hours (Lectures/Tutorials: 3 hours per week)
    Total time commitment200 hours
    Teaching period29 July 2019 to 27 October 2019
    Last self-enrol date 9 August 2019
    Census date31 August 2019
    Last date to withdraw without fail27 September 2019
    Assessment period ends22 November 2019

    Semester 2 contact information

    Prof Colin Duffield


Time commitment details

200 hours

Further information

  • Texts

    Prescribed texts

    There are no specifically prescribed or recommended texts for this subject.

  • Subject notes


    The subject is based principally on presentations by experienced industry and academic professionals who present the theory and practices of engineering procurement and contracts as illustrated by project case studies and example situations from real projects. A computer simulation game is undertaken whereby students compete by bidding for and managing projects as if they are the management team for a major contractor. This game is based on a UK company and provides key learning’s and feedback on the interface between engineering contracting and corporate management. Students also critique a real Australian request for tender via an assignment.


    Extensive course notes are provided on LMS.

    Australian Standard General Conditions of Contract provides a base document for the contract administrative section of the course and AS/NZS 4300 (the general conditions of contract for design and contract projects) is appropriate. This standard is available via the library using the database section of the library (search for SAI Global – Australian Standards and then follow prompt to 4300 via the standards search engine).


    Presenters from industry provide insights via the case studies presented. The computer simulation is based on real industry practice and is the same simulation game run internationally for consultants and contractors. The main case study dissected throughout the subject is a real and current project.

  • Available through the Community Access Program

    About the Community Access Program (CAP)

    This subject is available through the Community Access Program (also called Single Subject Studies) which allows you to enrol in single subjects offered by the University of Melbourne, without the commitment required to complete a whole degree.

    Entry requirements including prerequisites may apply. Please refer to the CAP applications page for further information.

  • Available to Study Abroad and/or Study Exchange Students

    This subject is available to students studying at the University from eligible overseas institutions on exchange and study abroad. Students are required to satisfy any listed requirements, such as pre- and co-requisites, for enrolment in the subject.

Last updated: 22 August 2019