ASQ - Education Division

Curriculum-Evolving Case Study: Using Zombie Theme for Introduction to Operations Research Course

Abstract: This Quality Approaches in Higher Education article is authored by Ivan G. Guardiola of the Missouri University of Science and Technology. Increasing student engagement and participation as well as improving knowledge retention are important to student success/achievement in any mathematically rigorous course.This paper presents the development of a curriculum-evolving project that seeks to achieve higher levels of student engagement, learning, and critical thinking skills. Specifically, the pop-culture topic of “zombies” was used for the purpose of increasing student development with regard to operations research tools and methods. The goal was to develop a semester long project that was highly correlated to topics covered in the course in an effort for students to demonstrate the implementation of the tools and methods in a systematic way to increase knowledge attainment. A student survey was utilized to quantify the students’ perception of the project and the results are presented.

Keywords: Best Practices - Quality Approaches in Higher Education - Teaching Quality - Learning Outcomes - Critical Thinking - Student Retention

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