June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
Engineering Management, Engineering Economy, and Industrial Engineering
23.1255.1 - 23.1255.10
Towards Improving Stochastic Awareness.It is possible for a student to pass a course on stochastic analysis without actually understandingthat W = 1/(μ - λ) is not the same sort of equation as F = ma. That is a student might grosslyunderestimate the role of variability in stochastic systems. Failure to grasp this concept earlyenough in a course can lead to a student to mischaracterize much of the presented information.This is especially an issue in distance courses because students do not interact as much as inresidence courses. To avoid this situation, I have developed a series of exercises intended tobuild a student’s stochastic awareness early in a course so that he or she will better appreciate therole of randomness and correlation in such systems.The exercises involve a number of computational problems, interactive discussions of key topics,and simulation in MatLab. They necessarily involve everyday situations and very little jargon sothat students can access them early. I have used and refined these exercises over several yearswhile teaching graduate-level online courses in queueing systems, stochastic processes, andstochastic simulation. I also use some in an undergraduate face-to-face first course in dataanalysis.Because I’ve used these exercises in several different courses over a number of years and, morecritically, because student’s previous experience with stochastic systems varies greatly,measurement is limited to an initial survey and a later survey of student’s understanding ofstochastic behavior.
Mullen, J. P. (2013, June), Towards Improving Stochastic Awareness Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. https://peer.asee.org/22640
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