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n South African Journal of Industrial Engineering - A survey of the practices of the approaches taught in an industrial engineering undergraduate programme

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Abstract

The Saudi labour market has recently witnessed intense competition between locally-graduated Industrial Engineers and those graduating from international universities. This has compelled local IE departments to find ways to improve the quality of their educational programmes and to ensure their alignment with the labour market's needs. To this end, insightful information can be obtained by contacting alumni and soliciting their perceptions of their education. However, empirical investigations based on this approach are rarely reported in the literature. To fill this gap, this study reports the results of a survey that was conducted to examine the gap between what is practised and what is taught in the Industrial Engineering (IE) programme at King Abdulaziz University (KAU). Apart from discussing the main characteristics of the alumni's employers, the study revealed that 'Engineering Economy' involves the most applied techniques in practice, whereas 'Engineering Management' incorporates the most applicable approaches. The limited use of IE techniques was mainly attributed to poor cooperation between practitioners and academics, and the simplistic nature of the problems addressed in the university curriculum compared with complex real-life ones. To deal with some of the identified problems, this paper argues for advisory board members to engage with industry when designing the curriculum, and for the adoption of problem-based learning.

Die Saoedi arbeidsmark ervaar deesdae intense kompetisie tussen plaaslike gegradueerde bedryfsingenieurs en bedryfsingenieurs van buitelandse universiteite. Dit het die plaaslike bedryfsingenieurswese departemente gedwing om van hul akademiese programme se standaarde te verbeter. Insiggewende inligting kan ingewin word deur alumni te kontak en na hul persepsies oor hulle akademiese opvoeding te vra. Empiriese ondersoeke op hierdie benadering gegrond word egter selde gepubliseer. Hierdie studie doen egter verslag oor die resultate van 'n peiling, wat bedoel is om die verskil tussen dit wat toegepas word in die industrie en dit wat onderrig word by die Koning Abdulaziz Universiteit, te bepaal. Die studie bespreek nie net die hoofeienskappe van die alumni se werkgewers nie, maar toon ook dat ingenieursekonomie die mees toegepaste tegnieke behels, terwyl ingenieursbestuur die mees toegepaste benaderings behels. Die beperkte gebruik van bedryfsingenieurswese tegnieke word hoofsaaklik toegeskryf aan swak samewerking van akademici en praktisyns en die eenvoudige aard van die probleme op universiteit aangeraak teenoor die ingewikkelde probleme in die industrie. Om sekere van hierdie geïdentifiseerde probleme aan te spreek word die adviesraadslede aangemoedig om meer in oorleg met die industrie die kurrikulum te ontwerp en om 'n probleem georiënteerde leerplan aan te neem.

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/content/indeng/25/2/EJC165143
2014-08-01
2016-12-03
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