Project planning is an essential task of project management that is taught in most undergraduate and postgraduate programmes within universities. However unlike in engineering or other technological areas, students in the management of engineering projects will probably not have the opportunity during their study to test and employ the concepts they have learned about this subject.
Project planning is practical subject and previous research illustrates that traditional construction management instruction methods and techniques are insufficient to equip students with skills to solve problems in the real world. There is a belief that management games represent a viable alternative to solving this problem. This paper describes an experimental management game that allows players to choose their own planning activities to complete a construction project. The game then makes a judgement as to how good the set of activities are.
The work develops theories using tree-like structures to represent project plans. This theory enables a comparison of the players plan and a standard plan and a consequent judgement of its goodness. The theory is tested in an experimental computer game. The development and testing of this game are presented and discussed. Conclusions about the feasibility of such a game are presented.