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Using Informal Oral Presentations in Engineering Classes: Training Students for the “You Got a Minute” Moment

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Innovative IE Course Content

Tagged Divisions

Engineering Management, Engineering Economy, and Industrial Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.1319.1 - 23.1319.8



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Paper Authors


Justin W. Kile Quinnipiac University

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Dr. Kile is an associate professor of industrial engineering Quinnipiac University and is also serving as the interim chair of Quinnipiac University’s Department of Engineering. Prior to joining Quinnipiac in 2012, he was an associate professor and program coordinator for the Industrial Engineering program at the University of Wisconsin – Platteville. His research interests include material handling, facilities planning, and logistics. Additionally his education based research is in the areas of communication skills and lean curriculum development. He earned his Ph.D. and M.S. degrees from the Industrial and Operations Engineering department at the University of Michigan and a B.S. in Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology.

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Using Informal Oral Presentations in Engineering Classes: Training Students for the “You Got a Minute” MomentAbstractIn today’s workplace, employers expect their employees to communicate with supervisors, peers,and others in the organization through formal reports and presentations, as well as impromptumeetings and on the floor explanations. These impromptu meetings and on the floorexplanations often begin with the common phrase “you got a minute.” Through conversationswith employers, recent graduates, and returning co-op students, the author has learned that manygraduating students are not ready for these “you got a minute” moments, as they are often notaddressed in the curriculum. Either through tradition or to comply with ABET standards,Industrial Engineering programs include formal written reports and presentations as part of theircurriculum. Although these formal presentations and written reports are commonly used bypracticing Industrial Engineers, they do not prepare students for this other vital communicationskill.This paper will present examples of assignments that include these informal communicationtasks, rubrics for evaluating students, and discussion of using these assignments in fulfilling theABET standards. The examples come from three separate senior-level industrial engineeringcourses that incorporate this less formal type of communication into the curriculum. Examplesinclude surprise drop in meetings, by the client, concerning student group progress on semester-long projects in a facilities design course, explaining to operators how to operate a slightlyaltered manufacturing line in a manufacturing systems design course, and presenting a quickdemonstration of a new system to a supervisor in a material handling and warehousing course.

Kile, J. W. (2013, June), Using Informal Oral Presentations in Engineering Classes: Training Students for the “You Got a Minute” Moment Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--22704

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