ME402: Design Decisions in Engineering

Course Syllabus for "ME402: Design Decisions in Engineering"

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Engineering design is the process of creating solutions to satisfy certain requirements given all the constraints.   This course will focus on the decision-making process that affects various stages of design, including resource allocation, scheduling, facilities management, material procurement, inspection, and quality control.  You will be introduced to the basic theoretical framework and several practical tools you can use to support decision making in the future.  The first two units provide an overview of engineering design process and theories and methods for making decisions, including Analytic Hierarchy Process, Lean Six Sigma, and Quality Function Deployment.  In Unit 3, you will learn about the basic principles of computerized decision support systems.  Unit 4 discusses several advanced mathematical methods used for support decision making, including linear and dynamic programming, decision tree, and Bayesian inference.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • Make decisions given one or more design constraints.
  • Explain and use different techniques such as Pugh Method, Quality Function Deployment, Decision Matrix, and Analytic Hierarchy Processto obtain inputs from key stakeholders.
  • Explain the principles of and apply methods and tools such as Lean Six Sigma to address variability, quality, and uncertainty.
  • Use mathematical tools such as linear programming, dynamic programming, probability analysis, and decision tree in decision making.
  • Use decision support systems (DSS) in application to solve complex engineering design problems under conflicting objectives and uncertainty.
  • Evaluate the implications of economic considerations on design decisions.

Course Requirements

In order to take this course, you must:

√    Have access to a computer.

√    Have continuous broadband Internet access.

√    Have the ability/permission to install plug-ins or software (e.g., Adobe Reader or Flash).

√    Have the ability to download and save files and documents to a computer.

√    Have the ability to open Microsoft files and documents (.doc, .ppt, .xls, etc.).

√    Have competency in the English language.

    Have read the Saylor Student Handbook.

√    Have completed these courses: ME001/MA101, ME002/MA102, ME003/MA221, ME005/PHYS101, ME101, ME102, ME104, ME201, ME202, ME203, ME301, ME302, ME303, and ME304.

Course Information

Welcome to ME 402.  Below, please find some general information on the course and its requirements.

Course Designer: Thi Dang

Primary Resources:

Requirements for Completion: In order to complete this course, you will need to work through each unit and all of its assigned materials.  Pay special attention to Units 1 and 2, as these units lay the groundwork for understanding the more advanced, exploratory material presented in the later units.  You also will need to complete all the assignments, quizzes, and the final exam.

Note that you will only receive an official grade on your final exam.  However, in order to adequately prepare for this exam, you will need to work through the resources in each unit.

In order to “pass” this course, you will need to earn a 70% or higher on the final exam.  Your score on the exam will be tabulated as soon as you complete it.  If you do not pass the exam, you may take it again.

Time Commitment: The materials for this course will take approximately 108 hours to complete.  Each unit includes a “time advisory” that lists the amount of time you are expected to spend on each subunit.  These should help you plan your time accordingly.  In addition, each reading, lecture, or assignment also will provide you with an estimate of how long it will take to complete each item.  Feel free to spend more time on sections that you want to learn more about.
Table of Contents: You can find the course's units at the links below.