Continuous Improvement with Lean Principles

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Course Number: ENGRG 7860
Course Name: Continuous Improvement with Lean Principles (Online)
Course Description:    Development and applications of lean techniques including an overview of the Toyota Production System. Lean principles including stability, standardization, just-in-time, jidoka and involvement. Examples from manufacturing, service and office settings. Specific techniques which support continuous improvement including five S, standardized work, production leveling, kanban systems, value stream mapping, poka-yoke, and A3 reporting. Methods for creating and sustaining a culture of continuous improvement.
Prerequisites:    None
Level: Graduate
Credits: 3
Format:

Online

Registration Instructions

NOTE: The information below is representative of the course and is subject to change.  The specific details of the course will be available in the Desire2Learn course instance for the course in which a student registers.

Additional Information

Learning Outcomes

We will review the development of lean systems with special focus on the Toyota Production System and discuss continuous improvement in manufacturing, service, and office settings. Upon completion of this course, you will be able to 

1. Describe each of the major aspects of lean systems:

  • Stability
  • Standardization
  • Just-in-time
  • Jidoka
  • Involvement

2. Explain specific techniques related to establishing and maintaining a lean system:

  • five S
  • total productive maintenance
  • standardized work
  • production leveling
  • kanban systems
  • poka-yoke
  • value stream mapping
  • kaizen
  • A3 reporting
3. Identify applications of lean techniques in manufacturing, service, and office settings.
4. Recognize the challenges and methods for managing and planning in a lean organization.
5. Discuss the organizational requirements to successfully sustain continuous improvement.

Unit Descriptions

Unit 1
This unit covers three basic production systems: craft, mass, and lean. Characteristics of each type of system are described in historical and technological context. Benefits and limitations of each typed are discussed. Lean production is presented as evolving from mass production.

You will be introduced to the Toyota Production System and the House of Lean analogy for lean systems. Continuous improvement and how it requires a steady influx of ideas from members of an organization will be discussed, as well as basic consideration of the difficulties encountered when an organization transitions to becoming a lean system.

Unit 2
Lean systems and techniques are often depicted as a house. As shown below, the House of Lean shows the major areas within lean systems. The areas of stability and standardization are explored in this unit. These areas are the foundation of lean systems. Specific techniques associated with this foundation are introduced. You will explore each area further by completing an individual assignment and project. There is an exam at the end of the unit.

Unit 3
The pillars of lean systems: just-in-time and jidoka, are explored in this unit. Specific techniques examined with these pillars are kanban, heijunka, value stream mapping, and poka-yoke. You will explore each area further by completing individual assignments and project.

Unit 4
Involvement is the heart of lean systems. Students explore each area further by completing an individual assignment and a discussion.

Unit 5
Sustaining a culture of continuous improvement is often reported as one of the most challenging aspects of becoming lean. Old methods and thought processes easily slip back into an organization and undermine the progress toward lean. Corporate culture must be conducive to lean practices and continuous improvement to sustain a lean system.

Grading Information

40 %    Individual Assignments (5 @ 8%)
20 %    Projects (2 @ 10%)
30 %    Exams (2 @ 15%)
10%     Discussions (5 @ 2%)
100%   Total

90 - 100 %       A
80 - 89.9 %      B
70 - 79.9 %      C
60 - 69.9 %      D
below 60 %     F

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