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Integration Of "Six Sigma" Into The Undergraduate Engineering Curriculum

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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

Multimedia Engineering Education: Distance & Service Learning, Web-based Projects

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.776.1 - 9.776.9



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Paper Authors

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Mahbub Uddin

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

INTEGRATION OF “SIX SIGMA” INTO THE UNDERGRADUATE ENGINEERING CURRICULUM Mahbub Uddin, Department of Engineering Science, Trinity University


A. Raj Chowdhury, School of Technology, Kent State University


Quality Management using the “Six Sigma” approach is a fact based, decision making tool for many operations to improve quality, reliability and productivity in an organization. Six Sigma ensures that quality functions meet customers’ needs and that the chosen operation reduces waste and defects, while improving product, processes and services and increasing customer satisfaction. Six Sigma has become one of the most powerful emerging management tool used by the Fortune 500 companies today. In this paper we outline the basic tools and methodology used in Six Sigma. We discuss the development of an introductory Six Sigma course for sophomore/junior engineering/ technology students. We also discuss strategies to integrate Six Sigma into the engineering design courses.

I. Introduction

“Six Sigma” is a data-driven, fact based, decision making management tool used to improve the profitability of a business enterprise by reducing the waste and defects while improving product, processes and services and increasing the customer satisfaction. Six Sigma is widely used in industry to improve the efficiency of product design and development, manufacturing and marketing.

The Greek letter б (sigma) in the context of mathematical statistics represents standard deviation. However, in industry, б is used as a measure of performance variation. Industry’s performance is measured by the sigma level of their business performance. Traditionally industry operates on three sigma (3б) which translates into 670,000 defects per million opportunities. Six Sigma (6б) means 3.45 defects per million opportunities, which is near error free business performance.

Six Sigma has become one of the most powerful emerging management tool used by the Fortune 1000 companies today. Six Sigma continuous quality improvement concepts were pioneered by Motorola in the early 1980’s. Due to the profound success of Six Sigma by companies such as Allied Signal, Dow Chemicals, General Electric, Honda, Motorola, Caterpillar, Sony, Texas Instruments and others in recent years, increasing number of Fortune 500 companies are considering to adopt it. Globalization of business practices continues to intensify market competition worldwide. Since Six Sigma has proven to increase profitability, it is fair to assume

Uddin, M. (2004, June), Integration Of "Six Sigma" Into The Undergraduate Engineering Curriculum Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13676

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