Biography

Dr. Balqis Omar is a senior lecturer at the Faculty of Civil Engineering (FKA), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM). She is currently attached to the Department of Structure and Materials, whilst being seconded to the Information Technology Unit of Civil Engineering (ITUCE). She was appointed as a lecturer for the ITUCE in September 2001. Prior to changing her career and joining the academic elite of UTM, she worked as a structural/civil engineer for almost ten years with several different companies.

Dr. Balqis received her higher education in the United Kingdom. In 1991, she obtained her BEng (Hons) in Civil Engineering from the Polytechnic of Wales (later known as the University of Glamorgan and currently known as the University of South Wales after merger with the University of Wales, Newport in April 2013). She then obtained her MSc in Information Technology for Manufacture from the University of Warwick in 1992. She completed her PhD in Construction Management and Engineering at the University of Reading in 2012. Her thesis was titled “Context-aware services delivery in the construction supply chain”. This research explored the concept of Context-Aware services delivery in the construction industry supply chain. It demonstrated how a combination of Context-Awareness, (by enabling better understanding of the project or user context) and Web Services (by supporting resource discovery and integration in a Context-Aware environment) could be used to facilitate supply chain interactions, thereby improving the construction project delivery process. The scope of the research included case studies, questionnaires, interviews, scenario generation, context modelling and the development of a system framework and prototype demonstrator.

For about sixteen years, Dr. Balqis has been teaching Computer Programming course to FKA undergraduates. This course is designed to expose the students on the development of programming skill using a computer language, which is suitable for the current computer operating system. Previously Visual Basic was taught, but since 2012 onwards MATLAB has been used in the course since it is more suitable and versatile for solving civil engineering problems. At the end of the course, students are able to plan, analyse, and write computer programs for basic civil engineering applications. Dr Balqis also teaches other courses related to computers and IT; for example Engineering Drawing using AUTOCAD, and Civil Engineering Information Systems, which utilises Microsoft Access to create databases. Recently, since her move to the current department, Dr. Balqis has started to teach Construction Technology, which is a part of Construction Technology and Estimating course. This course emphasizes on the principles of construction in building and civil engineering works, which consists of site preparation and layout, earthwork activities, construction of various building elements such as foundations, floors, walls and roofs. It also covers other important aspects in construction like formworks and scaffoldings.

Dr. Balqis enjoys taking students on site visits. As part of the Construction Technology course, site visits are a must for every semester. She also has supervised Industrial Training students whenever she has the chance. She only recently started supervising undergraduate and postgraduate students. Five of her Final Year Project students have graduated to date. Currently, she supervises and co-supervises three PhD and Masters students. She is the project leader of two short term research grants.

Dr Balqis is interested in a lot of a research areas particularly in the field of Construction Management, therefore can be persuaded to investigate any research topics. Her current research interests include, but not limited to, Construction supply chain management, Construction communication and collaboration, Construction logistics, Context-aware computing, Mobile technologies, Web services, Semantic web, RFID and Wi-Fi Tagging, etc. She welcomes students who are motivated to join her in her quest to pursue excellence. If you are interested or have any queries, please feel free to contact her as below:

Dr. Balqis Omar
Department of Structure and Materials
University Teknologi Malaysia
81310 UTM Johor Bahru
Malaysia.
email: balqis@utm.my