June 24, 2007
June 24, 2007
June 27, 2007
12.325.1 - 12.325.10
Bringing New Topics into the IE Curriculum
The need to focus efforts on environmental concerns rings important to young people as well as to the National Academy of Engineers. The need to raise awareness about the environmental impact of decisions in manufacturing and product design should be at the forefront of curriculum enhancement efforts. Industrial Engineers are typically viewed as “systems thinkers” and need to analyze the larger eco-system when new designs are put in place. Thus, the systems-approach to environmentally responsible design and manufacturing has a natural place in the Industrial Engineering curriculum.
The challenge to engineering faculty may be found in bringing in a new course into an already packed curriculum. A new course, IME540 Environmentally Conscious Design and Manufacturing, will be offered for both undergraduates and graduate students as an engineering elective across all disciplines in the university and will reside within the Industrial & Manufacturing Engineering Department. In an attempt to reach as many students as possible, the course is being offered with minimal prerequisites and will be team-taught by faculty from various disciplines including Business, Liberal Studies, Mechanical Engineering and Chemistry.
The multidisciplinary faculty group will have completed two offerings of IME540 as a senior engineering elective course by the time this paper is presented at the ASEE 2007 conference. Preliminary assessment data will be available and plans for the next offering will be in place. Discussion will center on pedagogical methods and tools used within the class that enable students to incorporate environmental concerns into product and process designs. Emphasis will be placed on the economic impact of alternatives.
An overview of the topics contained in the class will be presented in detail. The course modules begin with a module exploring historical and ethical perspectives on the environmental impact of industrial processes. Technical content and engineering tools comprise the middle weeks of the course, as life cycle concepts and material choices are introduced. The course concludes with a module presenting business and management perspectives, and will include a case study that illustrates how environmental considerations can be incorporated in the design process.
In addition to the multi-disciplinary faculty component, an industrial advisory board made up of local industry professionals and university professors has been created to oversee the project. The advisory board meets annually to review technical progress by the group and also to provide guest speaker and plant trip opportunities. Ford Partnership for Advanced Studies has offered a set of modules for use in adaptation and implementation of the course.
Lynch-Caris, T., & Redekop, B. (2007, June), Bringing New Topics Into The Industrial Engineering (Ie) Curriculum Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. https://peer.asee.org/2486
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