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Enhancing Student Learning in a Graduate Course in Manufacturing Technology

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Teaching - Best Practices

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

23.536.1 - 23.536.11



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Paper Authors

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Bimal P. Nepal Texas A&M University

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Enhancing Student Learning in a Graduate Course in Manufacturing TechnologyIntroductionThe manufacturing enterprises are facing fierce competition due to globalized marketplace andchanging customer demands. In order to stay competitive, the companies are widely adoptingmodern manufacturing management principles such as lean and six-sigma. This has hadrepercussion in the academic curriculum as well. Therefore, more manufacturing engineeringand manufacturing technology programs alike have courses in lean manufacturing and six-sigmaquality management as a result. However, the actual impact of these efforts can be realized onlywhen an academic unit’s “product” (students) can deliver it at the workplace. In order to build apositive student learning in the 21st century world, one needs to follow different and moreinnovative approach in the classroom. This paper presents a case study of a quality andproductivity management course offered in the M.S. in Technology program. Unlike any othercourses offered in a typical M.S. program, in this course, the instructor has added real-worldindustry projects, critical review of past case studies, journal articles reviews, applicationfocused homework problems, and peer review evaluation techniques. A survey was conducted tounderstand the students’ feedback on the above mentioned components of the syllabus andcourse expectations. They were asked whether or not the team case study, project work, articlereview, and the nature of homework problems have been helpful in enhancing their learning. Theresults of the survey showed that student’s have learned more as a result of all these newadditions. While this technique may not be new in a larger university setting and largerprograms, this was a first effort of its kind in the case study program.In addition to students learning, the paper discuses impact of integration of applied research andteaching on faculty development, industry-university partnership, curriculum improvement, andlearning environment in the classroom. Based on the projects and case studies done in the class,two research paper manuscripts have been published in peer reviewed academic journals.Furthermore, this class along with the instructor’s other course in research had made successfulheadway towards university-industry partnership. The instructor had been able to receive anindustrial research grant from one local company. The complete results are presented in thepaper along with the major innovative components of the course syllabus.

Nepal, B. P. (2013, June), Enhancing Student Learning in a Graduate Course in Manufacturing Technology Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--19550

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