Success in today’s competitive global economy depends substantially on a firm’s ability to define, develop, and introduce outstanding new products more efficiently and effectively than its competitors. This course introduces students to best practices and attributes of world-class product development leaders and organizations. Critical success factors and inhibitors to the commercialization of complex products and systems are discussed, along with state-of-the-art methodologies, processes, and tools. Emphasis is placed on the role of the product development manager in leading product strategy, high performing product development teams, and transformational initiatives essential to competitiveness (4 credits).
Systems and Project Management ensures progress toward objectives, proper deployment and conservation of human and financial resources, and achievement of cost and schedule targets. The focus of the course is on the utilization of a diverse set of project management methods and tools. Topics include strategic project management, project and organization learning, cost, schedule planning and control, structuring of performance measures and metrics, technical teams and project management, information technology support of teams, risk management, and process control. Course delivery consists of lectures, speakers, case studies, and experience sharing, and reinforces collaborative project-based learning and continuous improvement.) (4 credits) (W, S-MPD only)
The engineering of a system is an essential aspect of its development that focuses on the overall concept, performance requirements and behavioral aspects of the system. This course treats the creation of products, product platforms and product families as systems that create value for both the customer and the enterprise. Topics include value creation and strategy, product development processes, translating market requirements to system requirements, functional analysis, development of the system's architecture, development of platforms and modules, and concept selection. Students will learn several systems analysis techniques and apply them in a team-based project. (acceptance into the MPD program or permission of instructor) (8 credits)(W)
An introduction to accounting as an information system used by business entities to report their financial performance to interested outside parties. Demonstrates why accounting information is important, how accounting information is produced, and how it is used. The course will focus on financial statements that are generated under Generally Accepted Accounting Principles. Issues will include income determination, valuation of assets and liabilities, revenue and expense recognition, analysis of cash flows, and the analysis and interpretation of financial statements (4 credits).
This course examines the processes involved in the creation, distribution and sale of products and services. The objectives of the course are to introduce students to the tasks and decisions facing marketing managers and to the elements of marketing analysis including customer analysis, competitor analysis, and company analysis. The course is structured around the managerially controllable elements of product, price, promotion & distribution, plus the interrelationships of these elements, within the context of a changing business environment (4 credits).
This course examines why people behave as they do in organizations and what managers can do to improve organizational performance by influencing people's behavior. Students will be exposed to the ways in which organizations and their members affect one another and to different frameworks for diagnosing and dealing with problems in organizational settings. Topics include motivation, team building, conflict resolution, leadership, organizational change, and managing organizational cultures (4 credits).
This course introduces students to problems and analysis related to the design, planning, control, and improvement of manufacturing and service operations. Emphasis is placed on the principles of planning and designing modern manufacturing systems, consistent with corporate objectives and new product development strategies. The course utilizes case studies extensively and analytical problem sets. Topics include: enterprise and manufacturing strategies, operations strategy, architecting manufacturing systems, systems thinking, process and project analysis, materials management, production planning and scheduling, quality management computer-aided manufacturing, and process management options. The course equips students with the basic tools and techniques used in analyzing operations and manufacturing systems, as well as the strategic context for making decisions. (Requires acceptance into MPD program) (4 credits).
This course addresses decision making in the face of risk and uncertainty. Various methodologies will be introduced that are useful in describing and making decisions about risks, with particular emphasis on those associated with the design of products. Students will be exposed to issues related to balancing risks and benefits in situations involving human safety, product liability, environmental impact, and financial uncertainty. Presentations will be made of risk assessment studies, public decision processes, and methods for describing and making decisions about the societal risks associated with engineering projects. Topics include probabilistic risk assessment, cost-benefit analysis, reliability and hazard analysis, decision analysis, portfolio analysis, and project risk management (4 credits).
This course is an application-oriented introduction to optimization, focused on the understanding of system tradeoffs. It introduces modeling methodology (linear, integer and nonlinear programming), modeling tools (sensitivity and post-optimality analysis), optimization software, applications in production planning and scheduling, inventory planning, personnel scheduling, project scheduling, distribution systems planning, facility sizing and capacity expansion, communication systems design, and product development. (Requires acceptance into the MPD program or permission of instructor) (4 credits) (F)
A few examples of electives that have been offered on Fridays are provided below. Students may select from a much broader list of other courses approved by the program. Descriptions are available upon request.
This course deals with the management of innovation in the context, primarily, of high technology firms. The course emphasizes a resource-based approach to strategy and innovation by examining how firms exploit core capabilities to create sustainable competitive advantage. The course also examines the concept of disruptive innovations and their impact on the firms overall strategy and its product innovation processes. In addition, the course examines the impact of the Internet on strategy, structure, and product innovation. A case study approach is used in the course (4 credits).
Advanced Topics in Product Development
This modular course is designed to complement previous coursework in the MPD program, with an emphasis on engineering concepts and tools needed by technical leaders of product development projects. Topics to be covered in this edition of the course include: impact of the Internet on product realization, the product development process within the extended enterprise, intellectual property management and implications for product and platform architecture, and information technology and supply chain management. Prerequisite: successful completion of all coursework in the MPD program (4 credits).
Systems dynamics deals with the time-based behavior and control of nonlinear systems. This course will introduce the concepts of systemic thinking, nonlinear dynamics, and control principles as they apply to enterprise issues such as the product development process, innovation diffusion, product differentiation, supply chain dynamics, and organizational learning. Topics include causal models, system archetypes, feedback and feed forward loops, exponential growth, goal seeking behavior, instability and sensitivity analysis. A continuous time simulation tool, such as I Think, Stella or Vensim, will be utilized to model and analyze the behavior of a variety of enterprise systems (4 credits).
Seminar in Management: New Venture Creation
The purpose of this course is to learn how to use the entrepreneurial perspective to make better business decisions. We will learn how entrepreneurs create and recognize opportunity, and how they form new enterprises and build them. The primary outcome is the development of a plan for a new business. As a team, you will select the one idea that you believe will make a successful business. You will make an oral presentation and prepare a final business plan that would be of a quality acceptable to a venture capitalist, bank loan officer, or sophisticated private investor. The course will cover the entrepreneurial process from conception to implementation of a new venture. Topics include: opportunity search and evaluation, critical driving forces in new venture success, identifying financial resources, venture opportunity screening techniques, and harvesting the venture (4 credits).