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Integrating Entrepreneurially Minded and Project-Based Learning into a Manufacturing Supply Chain Course

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2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Baltimore , Maryland

Publication Date

June 25, 2023

Start Date

June 25, 2023

End Date

June 28, 2023

Conference Session

Project-Based and Experiential Learning in Manufacturing

Tagged Division

Manufacturing Division (MFG)

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Paper Authors


Yalcin Ertekin Drexel University

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Yalcin Ertekin, Ph.D., CMfgE, CQE Yalcin Ertekin is a clinical professor in the College of Engineering, Department of Engineering Leadership and Society at Drexel University, Philadelphia, and serves as the Associate Department Head for Undergraduate Studies for the Engineering Technology program. He received his BS degree from Istanbul Technical University in Turkey, an MSc in Production Management from the University of Istanbul, an MS in Engineering Management, and an MS and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of MissouriRolla. Dr. Ertekin has also been a Certified Manufacturing Engineer (CMfgE), awarded by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) since 2001, and a Certified Quality Engineer (CQE) awarded by the American Society for Quality (ASQ) since 2004. In addition to positions in the automotive industry, Dr. Ertekin has held faculty positions at Western Kentucky University and Trine University. In 2010, he joined Drexel University's College of Engineering as an associate clinical professor. He has been instrumental in course development and the assessment and improvement of the Engineering Technology (ET) curriculum, including integrated laboratories, project-based learning, and practicum-based assessment. Dr. Ertekin serves as the faculty advisor for the student chapter of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (S058) and is a member of the College’s Undergraduate Curriculum Committee. Involved in research, Ertekin has received funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF), private foundations, and industry. His research has focused on the improvement of manufacturing laboratories and curricula and the adoption of process simulation into machining and additive manufacturing practices. His areas of expertise are in CAD/CAM, manufacturing processes, machine and process design with CAE methods, additive and subtractive manufacturing, quality control and lean manufacturing.

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Equipping engineering students with the skills and knowledge required to be successful global engineers in the 21st century is one of the primary objectives of undergraduate educators. Enabling students to practice self-directed learning, to find solutions to societal problems that are sustainable, and helping them recognize that they are part of a global community are just of few of our educational goals. Learning should be a journey through inquiry and discovery. Incorporating project-based education in engineering technology education has been for decades more and more stressed out and the reasons are obvious. Project based teaching fosters student centered learning, allowing to cater to alternative student learning styles and to accommodate heterogeneous student communities. However, less and less of the courses that we offer incorporate a term project as one of the main requirement for assessment and evaluation. Project-based learning and education in engineering technology programs is as much important as laboratory-based education, both being the foremost promoters of teamwork, creative and critical thinking and those that enables students with the hands-on skills they need for a successful career in engineering and technology. Since XX’s ET program is addressed both to young students and seasoned adult learners (transfer students from community colleges), project-led education may be an excellent alternative to traditional education, having the drive to motivate learning and improve problem solving skills to become a more T-shaped engineer and life-long learner. This investigation aims to evaluate from student learning perspective the benefits of incorporating interdisciplinary entrepreneurially minded and project-based learning into a required Manufacturing Information Management course in XX’s Engineering Technology curricula. The benefits are assessed based on Photovoice reflections as well as written and oral presentations during and at the end of the term and are based on evaluating the level of practical knowledge gained by the students during the development of such projects. Additional benefits will be assessed by having the project with multidisciplinary (EM + STEAM + Bio) character therefore providing real-world experiential learning to better prepare engineering students for entering workforce. Another particularity that will be described in this paper is the approach of involving students in evaluating the outcomes of fellow students’ projects, being required to provide meaningful comments and justification of their suggested solution improvements via tuning protocols during oral presentations. Comparisons will be made between earlier offerings of the course with the combinations of lecture and project approaches. These approaches have been studied by the author and is being implemented in Manufacturing Information Management course taught by the author in the Fall 2022 quarter. As a general outcome, students became more involved during class time and also, they shown interest in other research areas, being involved in extra course research activities. Several students also wanted to develop their own EM ideas during these projects and undertake projects of a wider scope. Details related to the intervention and lessons learned will be provided so other engineering instructors can easily re-create in the classroom. Overall, many different fields of engineering instructors can benefit from this project-based approach to combine theory and practice to prepare the students to become better problem solvers and obtain practical solutions to real life/simulated problems using a project-based approach.

Ertekin, Y. (2023, June), Integrating Entrepreneurially Minded and Project-Based Learning into a Manufacturing Supply Chain Course Paper presented at 2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Baltimore , Maryland. 10.18260/1-2--43766

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