Diploma of Building Design

This qualification applies to building designers who undertake building design projects covered by the Building Code of Australia (BCA), except Construction Type A buildings.

Building designers may specialise in residential projects, including new buildings, heritage restorations and additions or renovations; or they may also undertake commercial and industrial projects, such as factories, motels, offices, restaurants, retail or service outlets and warehouses.


To achieve this qualification, the candidate must demonstrate competency in:

17 units of competency:

7 core units

10 elective units.

The elective units are to be chosen as follows:

all 10 units from Group A


a choice of elective units making up the required 10, consisting of 6 or more units from Group A and:

between 1 and 4 units from Group B

up to 2 units from qualifications in add topic CPP07 or another current Training Package or accredited course, provided the integrity of the AQF alignment is ensured and they contribute to a valid, industry-supported vocational outcome

add topic CPPBDN8007A Manage the design of Type A constructions from add topic CPP80113 Graduate Certificate in Building Design, in order to accept projects in jurisdictions where there is no licensing limitation on the types of construction projects to which building designers may contribute.

Core units

add topic CPCCOHS2001A

Apply OHS requirements, policies and procedures in the construction industry

add topic CPPBDN5001A

Research construction materials and methods for small-scale residential building design projects

add topic CPPBDN5003A

Research compliance requirements for small-scale residential building design projects

add topic CPPBDN5005A

Recommend sustainability solutions for small-scale building design projects

add topic CPPBDN5008A

Develop concepts for small-scale building design projects and finalise solutions with clients

add topic CPPBDN5009A

Produce compliant client-approved designs for small-scale building design projects

add topic CPPBDN5011A

Produce compliant client-approved working drawings for small-scale residential buildings

Group A elective units

add topic CPCCBC4015A

Prepare specifications for all construction works

add topic CPCCSV5013A

Apply principles of energy efficient design to buildings

add topic CPPBDN5002A

Research construction materials and methods for small-scale non-residential building design projects

add topic CPPBDN5004A

Research compliance requirements for small-scale non-residential building design projects

add topic CPPBDN5006A

Consult with clients to produce approved small-scale building project design briefs

add topic CPPBDN5007A

Inspect and analyse sites and produce measured drawings for small-scale building design projects

add topic CPPBDN5010A

Negotiate and finalise planning approval for small-scale building design projects

add topic CPPBDN5012A

Produce and present 3-D models of small-scale building designs

add topic CPPBDN5013A

Develop and collaborate on building information models for small-scale building design projects

add topic CPPBDN5014A

Contribute to construction and building design project finalisation processes

add topic CPPBDN5015A

Produce compliant client-approved working drawings for non-residential buildings

add topic CPPBDN5016A

Produce and present rendered animations of 3-D models of small-scale building designs

add topic CPPBDN5017A

Produce 2-D drawings for building design projects using CAD software

Group B elective units

add topic BSBCUS501

Manage quality customer service

add topic BSBWHS503

Contribute to the systematic management of WHS risk

add topic BSBWRT401

Write complex documents

add topic CPCCBC4025A

Manage personal work priorities and professional development

add topic CPCCBC5005A

Select and manage building and construction contractors

add topic CPPACC5006A

Apply ergonomic principles to accessible building design and fitout

add topic CPPACC5011A

Prepare a concept design for accessible building work

add topic CPPACC5012A

Prepare a design brief for accessible building work

add topic CPPCMN4002B

Implement and monitor environmentally sustainable work practices

add topic HLTHIR403C

Work effectively with culturally diverse clients and co-workers

add topic MSFID5014

Use CAD applications to complete models and documentation for interior design projects


    Not applicable.

Entry Requirements

Not applicable.

Licensing Information

Check with relevant state and territory licensing and regulatory authorities. State and territory jurisdictions may have different regulatory requirements.

Employability Skills

Employability skill

Industry/enterprise requirements for this qualification include:


listen to and communicate clearly with colleagues, suppliers and contractors

participate in meetings with clients, contractors and other professionals

explain compliance requirements to clients

write letters and reports to formalise agreements or clarify project information

initiate and run meetings with lead contractor and other service contractors

use industry-specific definitions, language symbols and terminology

negotiate changes to designs with clients and planners


develop constructive and cooperative working relationships with project team members, colleagues, suppliers and clients

work with others to plan, coordinate and complete tasks

Problem solving

coordinate input of expert advice where appropriate

develop innovative and affordable sustainable design solutions

maintain effective relationships with industry professionals

Initiative and enterprise

conduct cost-benefit analysis of design options

negotiate solutions to design conflicts

propose creative design solutions to issues arising on site

Planning and organising

analyse and interpret complex technical compliance requirements and apply these to different projects

devise and negotiate solutions to planning and building permit issues

conduct cost-benefit analysis of design options

perform complex calculations, such as structural requirements and load effects of force and movement on structural elements of buildings

identify site risks and building constraints, and produce design solutions


produce aesthetic, cost-effective, compliant and buildable designs within given timeframes

develop personal methodologies for ensuring project quality and for incorporating process improvements

manage detailed input to concurrent design projects at different stages of the process and with diverse sets of regulatory requirements

integrate safe building practices into the design of a building

implement energy conservation strategies and cost-saving practices


apply structural principles and construction technology to the design of a built form

plan the building design

set up systems and checklists for ensuring a methodical approach to design projects

gather documentation required for design projects, including plans, specifications, drawings, legislation, codes and standards


read and interpret drawings, including architectural, structural, mechanical, hydraulic and electrical drawings

read manuals and marketing information about new technologies, products and systems

use computer software to produce building designs, manage project participation and conduct general personal business administration

use relevant tools and equipment, such as measuring and surveying tools and calculators

Due to the high proportion of electives required by this qualification, the industry/enterprise requirements described above for each employability skill are representative of the property services industry in general and may not reflect specific job roles. Learning and assessment strategies for this qualification should be based on the requirements of the units of competency for this qualification.

This table is a summary of employability skills that are typical of this qualification and should not be interpreted as definitive.