Existing academic activity in support of systems engineering
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Existing Academic Activity in Support of Systems Engineering. Dennis M. Buede Academic Forum 2001 INCOSE Symposium 2 July 2001. Education – What is it?. When asked what single event was most helpful in developing the Theory of Relativity, Albert Einstein replied,

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Existing academic activity in support of systems engineering

Existing Academic Activity in Support of Systems Engineering

Dennis M. Buede

Academic Forum

2001 INCOSE Symposium

2 July 2001


Education what is it

Education – What is it?

When asked what single event

was most helpful in developing

the Theory of Relativity,

Albert Einstein replied,

"Figuring out how to think

about the problem".- W. Edwards Deming

You can observe a lot by watching.- Yogi Berra

Education is that which remains when one has forgotten everything he learned in school.- Albert Einstein


Topics

Topics

  • Define the Problem

    • Concept of Operations for SE Practitioners

    • What Do Employers Want

      • SE Practitioners To Do

      • How Well

  • Describe the Current Situation

  • Outline an Improvement

    • Courses To Be Taught

    • Teaching Methods To Be Used

    • Testing Methods To Be Used

  • Summary


Concept of operations for se practitioners seps 1

designs and

operates

Soc

Standards

Suppliers

Academic

.

in situ

Prof

On-going SE

Non-

SE

work

produces

enters

may operate

System

Project

creates

staffs

funds

Employer

Sponsor

Candidate

SE Education Environment

SEP

Value Adder

Value

Value

Carrier

Realizer

Define Problem

after Ring & Wymore

Concept of Operations for SE Practitioners (SEPs) - 1


Concept of operations for se practitioners 2

designs and

operates

SEPCourseStage SEEE SEPSE Activity Project

MOE MOEMOE MOEs MOEs MOEs MOEs

Soc

Standards

Suppliers

Academic

.

in situ

SE Artifact System

MOEs MOEs

Prof

On-going SE

Non-

produces

SE

enters

work

may operate

Project

System

creates

staffs

funds

Candidate

SE Education Environment

SEP

Employer

Sponsor

Value Adder

Value

Value

Carrier

Realizer

Define Problem

after Ring & Wymore

Concept of Operations for SE Practitioners - 2


What do employers want what are the sep moes

What Do Employers Want:What Are the SEP MOEs?

  • SE Practitioners To Do

    • Many Sources and Data

      • Surveys

        • Might and Foster (NCOSE 1993)

        • Watts and Mar (INCOSE 1997)

        • ABET Survey of Industry (Lang et al., 1999)

      • Presentations –

        • Boeing Recommendation (1994)

        • WMA Chapter Meeting, May 2000

      • Historical Perspective (Krick, 1969)

  • How Well

    • No Sources and Data!!


Practitioner reports

Bob McCaig

Ability to define and solve problems

Ability to communicate

Ability to learn on one’s own

Ability to do trade studies

Ability to develop cost estimates

Jude Franklin

Ability to communicate (write and speak)

Ability to work on a team

Ability to learn on one’s own

Bob Tufts

Ability to solve problems

Ability to recognize problems

General understanding of SE

Detailed training in 1+ technical areas

Ability to do trade studies

Ability to write

Ability to speak to an audience

Understand the need for the big picture

Art Pyster

Ability to architect a system

Employer Wants

Practitioner Reports

Present in 2+ lists


Incose reported surveys

Might and Foster

Requirements development

General SE process

Requirements management

Technical writing

System design methods

System architecture methods

Risk assessment

Concurrent engineering

Project management

SE tools

Test and evaluation

Simulation

SW engineering

Optimization techniques

Ethics

Communication networks

Probability

Computer architecture

Statistics

Total quality management

Database management

Reliability

Costing methods

Maintainability

Safety

Logistics

Manufacturing processes

Quality assurance

Finance

Marketing

Contract administration

Watts and Mar

Basic problem solving

Development and management of requirements

Teamwork and communication

System optimization (trade studies and decision making)

System interface design

Mission analysis and design

System and component integration

Architecture development

Risk analysis and management

Systems engineering processes

Breadth of experience with different systems

System simulation and modeling skills

Design techniques

Test and verification design and management

Capture of the design data base

Commercial and military standards

Depth of knowledge in a specific system

Present and predicted technology

Project management processes

Engineering specialties (logistics, maintainability, safety, etc.)

Tools and automation

Engineering economics

Human to machine and human to human interface design

Employer Wants

INCOSE Reported Surveys


Abet survey

Employer Wants

ABET Survey

  • Ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering

  • Ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data

  • Ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs

  • Ability to function on multi-disciplinary teams

  • Ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems

  • Understanding of professional and ethical responsibility

  • Ability to communicate effectively

  • Broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global/societal context

  • Recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in life-long learning

  • Knowledge of contemporary issues

  • Ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice


Summary of what employers want

Summary of What Employers Want

  • Ability to define and solve problems

  • Ability to do trade studies

  • Ability to communicate

  • Ability to learn on one’s own


Thoughts on metrics for how well

Thoughts on Metrics for How Well

  • Quality of ability …

    • Theoretical constructs that must preserved

    • Approximations and when they make sense

    • Indicators of inappropriate approximations/application

  • Cycle time

    • Key characteristic for systems engineering

      • Recent industrial and academic recognition

    • Therefore key characteristic for SE practitioners

      • Relates to quality

      • Requires repetition in real world situations


Current situation

Current Situation

  • United States

    • 34 Graduate Programs

      • Part time and full time students

      • Varying Degree Titles

        • M.S.,M.E., Ph.D. Systems Engineering

        • M.S. Industrial and Systems Engineering – most common

        • M.S. Industrial Engineering with concentration in Systems Engineering

    • 22 Undergraduate Programs

      • Most accredited by ABET (Accreditation Board of Engineering Technology)

      • Varying Degree Titles

        • B.S. in Systems Engineering

        • B.S. in Industrial and Systems Engineering

        • B.S. in Systems Science and Engineering

  • Europe

    • 6 Graduate Programs; all in England

    • 2 Undergraduate Programs; all in England

  • Australia: 2 Graduate Programs

  • Asia/Mid-East: 3 Graduate Programs (Israel, South Korea, Viet Nam)

  • America (non-US): 2 Graduate Programs (Brazil & Canada)

  • SE Embedded in Other Engineering Programs (US – MIT; Europe – three)


34 u s se graduate programs

Current Situation

34 U.S. SE Graduate Programs

  • Air Force Institute of Technology

  • University of Alabama, Huntsville

  • University of Arizona

  • Auburn University

  • Case Western Reserve University

  • Cornell University

  • University of Florida

  • George Mason University

  • George Washington University

  • University of Idaho

  • Iowa State University

  • Johns Hopkins University

  • Louisiana Tech University

  • Univ. of Maryland, College Park

  • University of Memphis

  • University of Missouri-Rolla

  • National Technological University

  • New Jersey Inst. of Technology

  • Oakland University

  • Ohio State University

  • Ohio University

  • University of Pennsylvania

  • Portland State University

  • Rensselear Polytechnic University

  • University of Pittsburgh

  • Rutgers, The State University

  • San Jose State University

  • University of Southern California

  • University of Southern Colorado

  • Southern Methodist University

  • University of South Florida

  • Stevens Institute of Technology

  • University of Virginia

  • Virginia Polytechnic & State Univ.


Characterization of 34 u s programs

Current Situation

Characterization of 34 U.S. Programs

Are the right courses being taught?


Further characterization

Current Situation

Further Characterization

SE Design & Mgmt

SE Design & Mgmt +

OR

Methods

Manufac’g

& SE +

Man’g

Math

Avg = 3.1


Outline of an improvement

Outline of an Improvement

  • Courses To Be Taught

    • Core Courses

      • Key Systems Concepts

      • Design and Architecture

      • Management

      • Decision & Risk Analysis

    • Specialization Courses

    • Project/Thesis Course

  • Teaching Methods

    • Lecture/Test

    • Coached Project

    • On the Job Training (OJT)

    • Electronic-distance

  • Testing Methods

    • Project Solution

    • Problem Solution


Teaching methods

Lecture/Test

Good for simple concepts and methods

Not reasonable for teaching “how to” model

Coached Project

Reinforces key modeling concepts

Keeps students on main course

Puts burden for learning on students

Works great with groups

On the Job Training (OJT)

Experiential learning is best

But

Takes much longer

Few “educated” SEs to serve as coaches

Just-in-time; Just-enough => Too Shallow

Electronic-distance

Jury is still out

Face-to-face communication and feedback is critical

Improvement

Teaching Methods


Teaching systems thinking to college freshman it minors

Teaching Systems Thinkingto College Freshman & IT Minors

  • First year’s attempt was a failure

    • Unable to keep students motivated

    • Project attempt (build web page)

      • Succeeded in many great web pages

      • Failed to get concepts across

  • Wanted project that would excite 18-22 year olds

    • DSMC has had success with Lego Mindstorms

    • Mindstorms robots require

      • Use of hardware and software

      • Planning and experimentation/testing

      • Employment of SE concepts (whether good or bad)


Course concept

Course Concept

  • Teach key systems engineering concepts with Lego robots as design lab

    • Initial lectures and experimentation with Lego robot

      • Concepts: objectives, scenarios, inputs/outputs, architectures

      • 3 week experimentation with ungraded trial runs

      • None of the robots completed either course

    • Additional lectures and case studies

      • More on concepts

      • Case studies: Hubble failure, Black & Decker success

      • Morphological box developed of Lego robot alternatives

      • 3 page paper on 3 alternate Lego robot designs

    • 4 week design period with unlimited testing

      • More on concepts, especially objectives and architectures


Design project

% of distance on short course

Best: 100; Worst: 0%

Score: percent traveled [ 0 100 ]

3 minute time period.

If your robot gets stuck

distance will be measured

restart the obstacle course

repeated until end of 3 minutes

use the longest distance

% of distance on long course

Best: 100%; Worst: 0%

Score: percent traveled [ 0 100 ]

Note: same as for part 1.

Unit Cost of parts

Best: $0

Worst: $12,500

Score: 100 ($11,109 – Unit Cost) / $11,109

Relative weights of objectives:

% distance on long course: 0.4

% distance on short course: 0.4

Unit cost of parts: 0.2

No modifications allowed to design for 2 courses except change of software program

Design Project


Obstacle course

Short Course

2 Obstacles

Lights along outside offered

22 ft

9 ft

Course 2

Course

1

S

F

1 ft

3 ft

Barriers

1 ft

Lighted Path

Light

Drawing

not to scale

16.5 ft

Obstacle Course

  • Long Course

    • Two large turns

    • Light rope along center offered


Summary of results

Diverse set of designs

Tracks and Wheels (2 & 3)

Very limited use of sensors

2 of 10 groups used touch sensors

No other sensors used

Reliance on software to traverse courses open loop

Very cheap to moderate cost

Significant effort to reduce cost of designs

Dozen parts, $2278

Highest cost: $3839

Max Possible: $11,109

Great variation in testing

2 groups: none

2 groups: 1 time, 10-75 min.

3 groups: ~ 200 min.

2 groups: ~ 350 min.

1 group: 540 min.

Results

Short course

6 groups max

2 groups less than 95%

75%

80%

Long course

6 groups max

1 group less than 95% (30%)

Summary of Results


Alternate designs

Front

Wheel

Drive

3 Wheels

2 Wheels

Alternate Designs

Wheels

Tracks

Stabilizers

Bumpers


Testing methods

Project Solution

Critical for representing real world complexity

Builds tremendous confidence

Great for group learning

But one replication not sufficient for

Mastering concepts

Generalizing across diverse systems

Problem Solution

Works for basic concepts and methods

Provides quick, uniform feedback to build modeling skills

Useful less than 50% of the time

Improvement

Testing Methods


Why racing cars se

Why Racing Cars & SE?

  • Difficulty in Communicating What SE Is

    • Communication needs to be specific, not abstract

      • Few domains exist with wide understanding

      • Race cars

        • Too complex to be well understood

        • But all understand cars, or have access to someone who does

  • Difficulty in Learning about and Researching SE

    • “Success” of SE is difficult to define

      • Success has many, varied dimension in most domains

      • Success in racing is very clear cut

    • Definition of “good SE” is difficult

      • Long time constant between SE actions and success in general

      • Race cars provide a domain with a very short time constant


Key products desired

Key Products Desired

  • High Quality Video

    • Uses race cars as domain

    • Describes SE processes

    • Illustrates the value of SE

  • SE Education Laboratory

    • Part of research facility

    • Provide site for educational field trips (high school & college)

    • Provide case material for use in the classroom

  • SE Research Facility

    • Established in conjunction with a racing team

    • Conducts research to improve

      • SE knowledge across all domains using race car domain

      • Racing team knowledge using state-of-the-art SE knowledge


Education

Education

is not the filling of a pail,

but the lighting of a fire.

William Butler Yeats


Summary

Summary

  • Education Problem Defined

    • Concept of Operations for SE Practitioners

    • What Do Employers Want (small sample)

      • Ability to define and solve problems

      • Ability to communicate

      • Ability to learn on one’s own

      • Ability to do trade studies

  • Current Situation – Chaos but Improving

  • Outline of an Improvement

    • Courses To Be Taught – Focus on Engineering a System

    • Teaching Methods – Lecture/Test & Project/Coaching

    • Testing Methods To Be Used – Emphasis on Projects


References

References

  • Asbjornsen, O.A. and Hamann, R.J. (2000). “Toward a Unified Systems Engineering Education”, IEEE Transactions on SMC (Part C), Vol. 30, No. 2, pp. 175-182.

  • Bots, P.W.G. and Thissen, W.A.H. (2000). “Negotiating Knowledge in Systems Engineering Curriculum Design: Shaping the Present While Struggling with the Past”, IEEE Transactions on SMC (Part C), Vol. 30, No. 2, pp. 197-203.

  • Brown, D.E. and Scherer, W.T. (2000). “A Comparison of Systems Engineering Programs in the United States”, IEEE Transactions on SMC (Part C), Vol. 30, No. 2, pp. 204-212.

  • Franklin, J. (2000). “Systems Engineering Education Requirements” Presentation to INCOSE WMA Chapter.

  • Krick, E.V. (1965). Engineering and Engineering Design, Wiley, NY.

  • Lang, J.D., Cruse, S., McVey, F.D. and McMasters, J. (1999). “Industry Expectations of New Engineers: A Survey to Assist Curriculum Designers”, Journal of Engineering Education, January, pp. 43-51.

  • McCaig, R. (2000). “Engineering and Academia” Presentation to INCOSE WMA Chapter.

  • Might, R. and Foster, R. (1993). “Educating System Engineers: What Industry Needs and Expects Universities or Training Programs to Teach” in the 1993 NCOSE Symposium Proceedings, Arlington, VA, July, 1993.

  • Prados, J.W. (1996). “Educating Engineers for the 21st Century: New Challenges, New Models, New Partnerships”, Academic Forum at 1996 INCOSE Symposium.

  • Pyster, A. (2000). “Systems Engineering Education Requirements” Presentation to INCOSE WMA Chapter.

  • Ring, J. and Wymore, A.W. (2000). “Overview of a CONOPS for an SE Education Community”. in the 2000 INCOSE Symposium Proceedings, Minneapolis, July 2000.

  • Sage, A.P. (2000). “Systems Engineering Education”, IEEE Transactions on SMC (Part C), Vol. 30, No. 2, pp. 164-174.

  • Sage, A.P. and Armstrong, J.E. Jr. (2000). Introduction to Systems Engineering, Wiley, NY.

  • Tufts, R. (2000). “What Kind of Skills Is Industry Looking for from Academia?” Presentation to INCOSE WMA Chapter.

  • Van Peppen, A. and Ruijgh-van der Ploeg, M. (2000). “Practicing What We Teach: Quality Management of Systems-Engineering Education”, IEEE Transactions on SMC (Part C), Vol. 30, No. 2, pp. 189-196.

  • Watts, J.G. and Mar, B.W. (1997). “Important Skills and Knowledge to Include in Corporate Systems Engineering Training Programs”. in the 1997 INCOSE Symposium Proceedings, Los Angeles, CA, Aug. 1997.


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