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Experiential engineering management in collaborative graduate-undergraduate projects

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2 Author(s)
Middleton, N.T. ; Div. of Eng., Colorado Sch. of Mines, Golden, CO, USA ; Branch, L.R.

Undergraduate engineering students who work in teams on projects are inevitably confronted with issues in project management and leadership. This is typical in a senior design course, and it is customary to provide some specific instruction in project scheduling and accounting for students to facilitate their management functions. However, it is not usually customary to address some of the broader methods and attributes in management and leadership which we ultimately expect our engineering graduates to display. In our graduate program in Engineering Systems at the Colorado School of Mines, we are developing a required course in Modern Engineering Design and Project Management to fulfill the need for more mature abilities in engineering leadership. This course is part seminar in some of the contemporary issues and processes in engineering design, and part applied project management. In the project management segment, each graduate student is appointed to lead one undergraduate senior design project, and to be responsive as an engineering manager. Thus, in the seminar meetings of the graduate course, the graduate students are learning more about how to design and simultaneously how to lead project development. This provides more formality and introspection on leadership technique compared to the heuristics of the typical undergraduate experience. This paper will describe the context, content and our initial experiences in delivering this course and nurturing engineering leadership in this collaborative setting

Published in:

Frontiers in Education Conference, 1996. FIE '96. 26th Annual Conference., Proceedings of  (Volume:3 )

Date of Conference:

6-9 Nov 1996