Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Subject: LCSH

Engineering--Study and teaching (Higher education), Experiential learning


Engineering Education | Operations Research, Systems Engineering and Industrial Engineering


In this study, application of experiential learning into graduate and undergraduate curricula of a industrial system simulation course is presented. Simulation has been among the courses against which students feel uncomfortable or frightened due to heavy software use, prerequisite of probability, and statistics knowledge, and its application requirements. To minimize this fear and improve student’s understanding about the subject matters and have them develop ample skills to build complex models, a project-based learning approach is proposed and used in undergraduate and graduate teaching settings. To achieve the project-based learning goals, a 15-week curriculum is designed to have a balanced lecture and lab sessions, which are specifically designed to address the needs of the term project as the semester continues. In the term project, groups of 2-3 students were asked to form a group, where each group was expected to work on a real system to 1) understand, conceptualize, and model the existing system as a mental, then software-model; 2) validate the existing system model statistically; 3) identify areas for improvement (in addition to the ones given by the supervisor); 4) complete the project with testing out system improvement scenarios and conducting cost/benefit analysis. The effectiveness of project-based learning is surveyed and studied based on the course learning outcomes. The results indicated that the proposed project-based learning approach was found to be effective in students’ learning experience and critically supportive on reaching the learning outcomes, and it was found that students’ learning and skills of simulation modeling and application are improved regardless of their grade.


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industrial system simulation, engineering education, experiential learning

Publisher Citation

Egilmez, G., & Sormaz, D., & Gedik, R. (2018, June), A Project-based Learning Approach in Teaching Simulation to Undergraduate and Graduate Students. Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Salt Lake City, Utah.