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An Innovative Course On Elements Of Manufacturing Systems For Non Engineering Students

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1996 Annual Conference


Washington, District of Columbia

Publication Date

June 23, 1996

Start Date

June 23, 1996

End Date

June 26, 1996



Page Count


Page Numbers

1.68.1 - 1.68.5



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Paper Authors

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Mohamed I. Dessouky

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Murali Krishnamurthi

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1626

An Innovative Course on Elements of Manufacturing Systems for Non-Engineering Students

Murali Krishnamurthi, Mohamed I. Dessouky Northern Illinois University

1. INTRODUCTION The rapid changes in technology, the associated increase in skill requirements for technology-oriented jobs, and the shrinking population of people with the necessary skills are making it difficult for U.S. industries to compete in the international market. The knowledge of technology is essential for functioning effectively in today’s technological society, contribute to its growth, reap its benefits, and minimize its hazards, regardless of one’s career interests. A basic understanding of science and technology is crucial not only for applying the fi-uits of technology effectively, but also for making decisions on related issues that impact human existence in the present and in the future.

Traditionally, engineering schools have been the source of new graduates competent in the new technologies who can meet the needs of the industry and society. However, educators are often faced with more than the mere challenge of conveying technical information to their students. Students, on the other hand, find the information conveyed uninteresting, unrnotivating, and fail to recognize its value and career potential. These are also some of the reasons for the considerable student retention problems experienced among first and second year college students, and the increasing need for innovative curricula to counter these problems [1].

In this NSF funded effort, educating first and second year students on manufacturing systems is proposed as a solution for countering some of the mentioned problems. With the support provided by NSF, an innovative course is being designed, developed, and offered to non-engineering students at Northern Illinois University. In this poster session, the details of this course, its innovative design, its assessment procedure, and the preliminary results obtained are discussed.

2. THE NEED FOR EDUCATING NON-ENGINEERS ON MANUFACTURING Two obvious questions one may ask at this point are why educate non-engineering students on manufacturing and what special place manufacturing has in this regard. Manufacturing enjoys a unique position among the different applications technology. It touches the lives of people in modern society in almost every aspect: as producers, consumers, suppliers, and objects of its environmental and societal impact. Particularly, a significant section of the society provides a vital support to the manufacturing industry in the form of technical, informational, financial, legal, and artistic expertise, as well as services related to the development of human resources and the sale of products.

Manufacturing differs from the established engineering disciplines, such as mechanical and civil engineering, which are defined traditionally in terms of both educational degree and specialized expertise. Manufacturing is, in contrast, more defined by the functions performed and demands multidisciplinary

+iiiii’ ) 1996 ASEE Annual Conference Proceedings @lyR’:

Dessouky, M. I., & Krishnamurthi, M. (1996, June), An Innovative Course On Elements Of Manufacturing Systems For Non Engineering Students Paper presented at 1996 Annual Conference, Washington, District of Columbia. 10.18260/1-2--6111

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