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Curriculum Development On A "Sustainability" Major Using Quality Function Deployment (Qfd) Techniques

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2009 Annual Conference & Exposition


Austin, Texas

Publication Date

June 14, 2009

Start Date

June 14, 2009

End Date

June 17, 2009



Conference Session

Sustainability in Engineering Curricula

Tagged Division

Environmental Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

14.396.1 - 14.396.6



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Paper Authors


Anoop Desai Georgia Southern University

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Dr. Anoop Desai received his BS degree in Production Engineering from the University of Bombay in 1999, and MS and Ph.D. degrees in Industrial Engineering from The University of Cincinnati in 2002 and 2006. His main research interests are in Product Lifecycle Management, Design for the Environment, Total Quality Management including tools for Six Sigma and Ergonomics.

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Jean-Claude Thomassian State University of New York, Maritime College

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Dr. Jean-Claude Thomassian received his BS degrees in Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering from the University of Toledo in 1992 and 1993, respectively, and MS and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering from The University of Toledo in 1995 and 2002. His main professional interests are in mixed mode IC design and electrical engineering education; his recent research activity concentrates on symbolic analysis of circuits and MOS models.

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

Curriculum Development on a ‘Sustainability’ Minor Using Quality Function Deployment (QFD) Techniques


This paper presents a methodology for curriculum development for a proposed minor on ‘Sustainability’ at a public university in the southeast United States. The minor is intended to reach across different disciplines such as Biology, Chemistry, Geology, Business, Engineering and the Visual Arts. The case is made for a standalone minor in sustainability that encompasses factors such as carbon footprint, limited resources, renewable energy, and the business case for sustainability. It also stresses on the importance of a capstone course that emphasizes hands experience in designing sustainable systems (products or services).

Different aspects of a multifaceted issue such as sustainability are addressed using a QFD approach to ensure objectivity and quality of course material as well as instruction.


There has been considerable amount of interest in the general area of ‘sustainability’ of late. Given the government’s resolve to try and find a remedy for the ongoing financial crisis by investment in ‘green’ infrastructure, the time is opportune to delve deeper into environment consciousness at all levels.

In view of the aforementioned facts, it is becoming increasingly obvious that there will be quite a substantial number of employment opportunities for individuals that are trained in ‘green’ technologies. It is not surprising therefore that universities and colleges across the United States are increasingly trying to incorporate sustainability into their curricula. This has been somewhat of a new phenomenon in the United States unlike in Europe. In the case of the latter, this is nothing new. In Europe, government regulations mandate environment conscious decisions by individuals as well as corporations. The US is increasingly turning its attention to this expanding field of education.

There are two principal ways of introducing the topic of sustainability into a curriculum. It can be done by means of a singular course or a series of courses offered to students at the university or college. Students get credit for the courses, but only within their major. This appears of individual transcripts and any potential employer can observe the same. The other method is by introducing a minor and prospectively a major in sustainability at the university level. This way students are free to specialize in this field if they so wish.

There has been considerable interest expressed in just such a project being put into action at a public university in the southeast United States This paper strives to present a methodology by means of which a minor in sustainability will potentially be offered.

Desai, A., & Thomassian, J. (2009, June), Curriculum Development On A "Sustainability" Major Using Quality Function Deployment (Qfd) Techniques Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--5694

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