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Developing Practical Skills For Quality Assurance And Metrology Applications In Manufacturing

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Curriculum Development in MFG ET

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.416.1 - 9.416.9



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Paper Authors

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Shawn Strong

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Scott Amos

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Richard Callahan

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

Session 3247

Developing Practical Skills for Quality Assurance and Metrology Applications in Manufacturing

Richard N. Callahan, Scott J. Amos, Shawn D. Strong Southwest Missouri State University


Sound quality control practices can be critical to the success of a company in the highly competitive global environment. Implementing product changes quickly to meet accelerating customer demands and expectations can challenge both the quality system and the associated personnel. Companies strive to establish a strong quality management team and effective quality procedures, yet many employers find newly hired technical graduates unprepared to apply quality control concepts learned in the classroom. Skills and experiences beyond basic coursework are often necessary for meaningful and correct application of quality control concepts16. Most technical manufacturing programs require some level of quality control training including basic coverage of quality management concepts and statistical data analysis, but offer little insight into implementation issues and the practical problems faced by industry4. This approach can be quite effective in establishing a basic understanding of quality control theory, but may leave gaps in a student’s ability to successfully apply that understanding in the manufacturing environment. Quality control on the plant floor is practiced much differently than it is presented in the classroom with numerous opportunities for inaccurate data collection and unclear conclusions13. Experienced quality professionals often find that newly hired graduates have difficulty with issues such as gaging, data interpretation, and conforming to a production and cost oriented environment. While many of these issues are a matter of experience, both industry professionals and the related literature indicate that applied quality concepts should be added to basic quality control curricula at the college level. Every effort should be made to strengthen students’ skills by combining theoretical knowledge with practical situations10. This paper investigates the practical skills needed by entry level personnel in the quality control environment. The procedure used to gain this information includes:

• In-depth conversations with industry professionals to identify needed skills and specific gaps in entry-level abilities • Development and validation of a survey tool to determine practical industry requirements of entry-level quality control personnel • Administering the survey and drawing conclusions from the results

“Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright  2004, American Society for Engineering Education”

Strong, S., & Amos, S., & Callahan, R. (2004, June), Developing Practical Skills For Quality Assurance And Metrology Applications In Manufacturing Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--14069

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