Building Science Fundamentals

Interested in learning about the effects of heat, water, and air on building enclosures in cold climates, and adding to your company’s expertise?

Building Science 101 is a two half-days, intensive course that defines the functions of building enclosure elements and identifies the causes of many performance issues. Using real case scenarios, we review building materials and assemblies, installation considerations, and moisture risks. Cold climates are a focus, making this an excellent course for site supervisors, building managers and other building professionals in Ontario to upgrade their knowledge and skills. Upon the completion of this course, the participant will gain the basic knowledge of the science of building enclosure and of the effects of air, heat, and water on building envelopes in cold climates.

Learning outcomes:

  • Effects of Building Enclosures on Energy Use, indoor environments, embodied carbon
  • The Perfect Enclosure Concept
  • Thermal Control & Infrared Investigation
  • Air Control & Whole Building Air Tightness Testing
  • Water Control & Material Decay
  • Vapour Control & Psychrometrics


  • On day one, we together identify installation and performance issues, thermal insulation materials and air barrier strategies, and seeking solutions for moisture and thermal issues based on visual and infrared photos.
  • On day two, again in a hands-on, interactive format, we examine drawing details from real Canadian projects and partial building construction photographs to conduction functional analysis identify control layers and moisture impacts of design and construction issues.

Feb. 28 & Mar. 2, 2023 Tue. & Thu. 1pm - 4pm ET
OR May 24 & 26, 2023 Wed & Fri. 1pm - 4pm ET
OR July 11 & 13, 2023 Tue. & Thu. 1pm - 4pm ET
OR Sep. 19 & 21, 2023 Tue. & Thu. 1pm - 4pm ET
OR Nov. 21 & 23, 2023 Tue. & Thu. 1pm - 4pm ET
Live Webinar
Dr. Randy Van Straaten, President, Building Enclosure Labs Inc.
TCA member:
$450 + HST
$500 + HST
INSTRUCTORS: Dr. Randy Van Straaten, President, Building Enclosure Labs Inc.

Dr. Randy Van Straaten, is the President and a Building Science Specialist at Building Enclosure Labs Inc., where he supports building design teams, contractors, product manufacturers, and building owners. He previously worked with Building Science Corporation and later RDH Building Science with roles including managing new construction and existing building enclosure consulting projects as well conducting industry research.  He has taught building science at George Brown College, Fanshawe College, Toronto Metropolitan University, and the University of Waterloo.  He has also presented building science topics and research findings at numerous conferences and workshops.