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Pie In The Sky: Modeling Management In The Classroom

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2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

IE and EM Program Innovation

Tagged Division

Engineering Management

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.1154.1 - 12.1154.11



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Paper Authors


Patricia Jinkins University of Wisconsin-Platteville

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Patricia Jinkins, University of Wisconsin-Platteville
PAT JINKINS is an Associate Professor of Industrial Engineering at UW-Platteville. She graduated from the University of Tennessee and earned her Doctor of Engineering at Texas A&M so considers herself a “Volunteer Aggie.” She has worked in project and engineering management positions but has been at UW-Platteville since 2000. She currently serves as IE program coordinator.

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Jill Clough University of Wisconsin-Platteville

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Jill M. Clough, University of Wisconsin-Platteville
JILL CLOUGH is a Professor of Industrial Engineering at UW-Platteville. She earned degrees in industrial engineering from the University of Iowa (B.S. in 1983, M.S. in 1985, and Ph.D. in 1993). She has been at UW-Platteville since 1985 and served as Program Coordinator between 1994 and 2000. Currently, she teaches courses in work measurement, production analysis, fundamentals of industrial engineering, and introductory engineering courses.

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

PIE in the Sky: Modeling Management in the Classroom

Patricia Rummel Jinkins, D.E., P.E. Jill Clough, Ph.D. University of Wisconsin-Platteville


When faculty members throw conventional practice to the wind for an entirely unexpected pedagogy, it is not done lightly! Perhaps unadvisedly, but not lightly. Abandoning the comfort of usual classroom pedagogical customs is fraught with peril when student evaluation constitutes 40 – 60% of the professor’s annual assessment. However, in an effort to bring greater realism to the Engineering Management class and to make the class structure itself an instrument of instruction, the authors have taken active learning to the basics.

In Fall of 2001, the Engineering Management course went as planned and the students at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville covered the expected topics (management theory, management figures, current trends in management) in the expected manner (lectures, reports, assignments, exams). Fall of 2002, all that changed.

In fall semester of 2002, the class was totally reorganized in an attempt to bring more realism to the classroom. Something was missing from the real world skill set needed for success.

An analysis of topics currently covered in class, required for accreditation, for the curriculum, and for application to life was considered. The faculty team also looked for ways to increase student interest and commitment to the learning goals of the class. There are a number of pedagogical techniques that could be applied and were examined.

The faculty decided to try a new pedagogy for the class. The class was organized into a ‘company.’ All students were considered new-hires for the company, Pioneer Industrial Engineering or PIE.

Course Objectives

Defining the objectives of the course seemed the logical place to start to redesign the course and its presentation. Regardless of the presentation, certain course and curricular objectives were required of the course. As currently stated, the objectives were appropriately vague and left much to the imagination and discretion of the instructor to define on a semester by semester basis.

The course needed to address certain basic issues: Management functions Skills needed for today’s business climate Safety management

Jinkins, P., & Clough, J. (2007, June), Pie In The Sky: Modeling Management In The Classroom Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--2752

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