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Structuring A Project Management Course To Develop Team Skills

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Non-Technical Skills for ET Students

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.1148.1 - 10.1148.10



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Paper Authors

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Charlie Edmonson

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Donna Summers

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

Session 3549

Structuring a Project Management Course to Develop Team Skills Charlie P. Edmonson Donna C.S. Summers

University of Dayton


There’s no escaping it. Working in industry requires working in teams. The industries hiring our graduates recognize this. TAC of ABET Criterion 2e requires it, stating graduates need “an ability to function effectively on teams.” How do we, as teachers, go about ensuring that our students learn how to work effectively on teams? How do we go about teaching them team work and team management skills?

The traditional approach to developing team work and team management skills involves assigning students randomly to teams, giving them a project to work on, and expecting them to somehow magically learn to work effectively on teams. This ‘they’ll learn about teamwork if they work on teams’ approach fails to give students adequate preparation and insight into team work and team management skills. It doesn’t work. Surveys of students reveal that they do not feel they knew how to effectively work on teams or how to be a team leader. This sentiment was echoed by respondents to last year’s project management survey. To effectively prepare students to work on teams, coordinated teambuilding and leadership skills training is needed. Beginning with a discussion of necessary project management and team skills, this paper will describe how to structure a project course to include techniques and exercises specifically designed to develop teamwork and team management skills and the benefits they provide.

Project Management Skills Taught

The Project Management course is required for all Engineering Technology majors. The course is normally taken in either the Sophomore or Junior year and students are expected to use these Project Management skills to manage projects in subsequent courses.

The skills taught in the project management course are described by the course outcomes which state that upon successful completion of the course students should know the specific characteristics, techniques, and insights that are necessary to be an effective project manager:

• Know how to write a project proposal. • Know how to prepare a project plan.

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright  2005, American Society for Engineering Education

Edmonson, C., & Summers, D. (2005, June), Structuring A Project Management Course To Develop Team Skills Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--14848

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