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  • Faculty perspective on Academic Equivalency: John Shortle

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 10, 2022

    Here is an interview with John Shortle of George Mason University which talks about his experience and perspective as faculty of the academic equivalency program. Happy SEPtember! 

    John Shortle
     
    This interview was done in 2022.


    Q1. What is your role related to INCOSE’s Academic Equivalency?

    »  I helped to coordinate our department's submission to obtain academic equivalency.

    Q2. What is one of your proudest professional achievements?

    » Co-authoring the textbook Fundamentals of Queueing Theory has been one of my most satisfying professional accomplishments. The book is widely read and I get a lot of feedback and questions. I’m most proud when people comment that a particular part of the book was presented in a clear way and really helped them to understand the material.

    Q3. What skills do you think a systems engineer should develop during their education?

    » The ABET engineering student outcomes are all excellent skills that undergraduate systems engineering students should develop (solving complex problems that meet diverse needs, communicating effectively, conducting experiments, functioning on teams, understanding ethical responsibilities, acquiring new knowledge, etc.). One other skill that systems engineers should develop is the ability to think probabilistically. What elements of a system/model are random? What quantities or assumptions are uncertain? What happens when components take on values in the tails of the distribution? Thinking in terms of the probabilistic nature of the system is critical to evaluating the system’s risks.

    Q4. What was your university’s motivation behind joining the academic equivalency program?

    » We wanted to make our degree more valuable to students in the workplace and to market this aspect of our program to incoming students. Our curriculum was already strongly aligned with the ASEP material, so it was just a matter of documenting how it was covered.

    Q5. What do you see as the benefits of the academic equivalency program for a university and a student?

    » Students have a strong interest in the certification. When we announced our academic equivalency on LinkedIn, we got a huge response from alumni asking about it. Though it only applies to current and incoming students, there is clearly interest.

    Q6. What methods do you use to teach SE courses effectively?

    » Almost all courses in our undergraduate curriculum have team projects. From early in the program, students gain substantial experience working in diverse teams, presenting results in both written and oral formats. The project-based approach helps students gain consistent experience working on complex problems involving diverse stakeholders with multiple objectives and constraints.

    Q7. How do your SE courses help students to deepen their understanding of systems engineering?

    » We incorporate the systems engineering V in every part of the undergraduate curriculum. We map each course to where it sits on the V and communicate this to the students. Through examples that span multiple courses, students see how the techniques and skills fit within the overall design process. They see that these are not just independent courses, but that they fit together in an integrated way. When they get to the capstone experience, they are ready to apply the whole V to an industry-sponsored problem.

    Q8. How do your SE courses differ from those at other universities?

    » One unique aspect of our undergraduate program is that we have introductory computing courses that teach elements of SysML, model-based systems engineering, and object-oriented design, in addition to programming techniques. Students learn to take a systems perspective and model the structure and behavior of a system in SysML, and to implement the system model in a programming language. MBSE techniques continue to be emphasized throughout the curriculum, from introductory computing courses to the final capstone design experience. Our program also has a strong focus on stochastic modeling with multiple courses covering topics in probability, statistics, simulation, risk, stochastic modeling, and digital twins.

    Q9. What is your advice for universities or institutes considering applying for academic equivalency?
    » It was a valuable experience to go through our program and see where the courses mapped to the INCOSE Handbook, where there were gaps, what elements were covered in more detail, and what areas we emphasized outside the handbook. Filling out the mapping was not too difficult, the main work was to identify where topics were assessed in the courses.

    Q10. How can we reach out to you?

    » You can reach me at : https://www.linkedin.com/in/john-shortle-33a11532/ 

    Here is the link to Systems Engineering / Operations Research Dept. George Mason University LinkedIn page:  https://www.linkedin.com/in/systems-engineering-operations-research-dept-george-mason-university-304581213/ 

    Know more about Academic Equivalency from here
  • Faculty perspective on Academic Equivalency: Beth Wilson, ESEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 10, 2022

    Here is an interview with Beth Wilson of Worcester Polytechnic Institute which talks about her experience and perspective as a faculty of the academic equivalency program. Happy SEPtember! 

     Beth Wilson


    This interview was done in 2022.


    Q1. What is your role related to INCOSE’s Academic Equivalency?

    » I am a course instructor for Academic Equivalency program of Worcester Polytechnic Institute.


    Q2. What is one of your proudest professional achievements?
    » When I retired from my corporate role as a systems engineer, I reported that I had 3 career highlights:
    1) Personal -- when I became a principal engineering fellow.
    2) Technical Contribution -- the day my team successfully activated the radar we had installed and integrated when I was the Test Director at the site.
    3) Next Generation -- sitting on the stage for the Master of Science in Systems Engineering commencement ceremony when a cohort I taught graduated.

    Q3. What skills do you think a systems engineer should develop during their education?

    » A systems engineer needs to learn that there are effective systems engineering processes, methods, and tools to enable effective system design. A systems engineer needs to understand all aspects of the system lifecycle and design disciplines in order to know when to engage subject matter experts and how to effectively engage them.

    Q4. What was your university’s motivation behind joining the academic equivalency program?

    » We are very supportive of the certification program and feel that our Principles of Systems Engineering class is an effective way for students to learn the knowledge in the INCOSE SE handbook.

    Q5.What do you see as the benefits of the academic equivalency program for a university and a student?» For our systems engineering students, it removes a barrier to certification because they can pursue an ASEP immediately and a CSEP when they have systems engineering experience. For our other engineering students that take our class as an elective, they can pursue an ASEP to declare "I speak SE" to show that they understand the systems engineering process and know how to interact with systems engineers.
    Q6. What methods do you use to teach SE courses effectively?

    » We use individual quizzes as knowledge checks for the systems engineering content we deliver. We also use team projects to explore topics in more depth and apply the techniques we teach.

    Q7. How do your SE courses help students to deepen their understanding of systems engineering?

    » At WPI, we use a strategy of putting theory into practice. We provide content that describes what systems engineering is and why it is important. We provide assessment opportunities to apply that knowledge.

    Q8. How do your SE courses differ from those at other universities?
     

    » In talking with other universities, I think our courses are similar in the content that is provided. I think what is unique about our offering is the application of concepts, the emphasis on systems thinking, and the use of real-world examples.

    Q9. What is your advice for universities or institutes considering applying for academic equivalency?

    » If you have an introduction to systems engineering course, perform a gap analysis to the learning objectives to see where you stand. You may be closer than you think. Our university made some minor changes only to include content that was in other courses in the master's program in the introductory course so that we could satisfy the academic equivalency with one course.

    Know more about Academic Equivalency from here.

  • Trainer perspective on the SEP Certification: Jan von Tongelen, CSEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 09, 2022
    Here is an interview with Jan von Tongelen of Rücker + Schindele B. I. GmbH which talks about his experience and perspective as a trainer on the SEP Certification. Happy SEPtember!

    Jan Von Tongelen


     This interview was done in 2022.

    Q1. What is your current role/position?

    » I am the Managing Director at Rücker + Schindele B. I. GmbH, Lead Trainer and Consultant (https://www.runds.de/).

    Q2. What is one of your proudest professional achievements?

    »  My proudest professional achievement in the Systems Engineering community is that I organized and moderated INCOSE EMEA Workshop in Manheim Germany. As Technical Director of Gfse (2017-2021), I led the German Working Groups in further development of SE.

    Q3. What skills do you think a systems engineer best learns through training?
    » Responsibility and Mindset of SE and Interrelation between SE Processes and Methods are the skills that a systems engineer can best learn through training.  

    Q4. What guidance/training do you provide students regarding systems engineering and SEP certification?
    » We provide several trainings that vary from awareness sessions (0.5 – 1 day) for manager and interfaces and deep dive sessions (up to 15 days) to earn practical experience.

    Q5. What motivated you to provide these trainings?
    » Our motivation for providing these trainings is to motivate and qualify people, spread the Systems Engineering mindset and understanding. Systems Engineering is one of the enablers for the future.

    Q6. What methods do you use to provide these trainings effectively?
    » Our training method is a mix of: producing awareness and responsibility, frontline teaching, practical experience, digital content, easy examples, and many more.

    Q7. How do you continue to learn about Systems engineering? What developmental activities do you do?
    » I continue to learn about Systems Engineering by: being a part of the SE Community, discussing it on national and international level, and challenging my understanding in real world problems.

    Q8. How can we reach out to you?
    » You can reach me at : https://www.linkedin.com/in/jan-vontongelen/

     Know more about training providers from here
     
  • Unique perspective on Academic Equivalency: Corina White, CSEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 08, 2022
    Here is an interview with Corina White of Naval Postgraduate School which talks about her experience and perspective as a systems engineering professor who chose to use the academic equivalency program to get INCOSE certified. Happy SEPtember!

    Corina White

    This interview was conducted in 2022. 

    Q1. What is your current role/position?

    » I am a Systems Engineering Professor.

    Q2. What are your next career goals?

    » I would like to become a lead subject matter expert in competency model development and competency assessment tools. These efforts can promote, retain and develop the workforce. I would also like to develop or join a platform that connects with graduate/undergraduate HBCU programs to incorporate these tools to create learning objectives and assessment tools for students to start developing these competencies. I plan to also contribute significantly to teaching and research efforts focused on using a model based systems engineering approach to digital engineering.

    Q3. What have you learned about systems engineering in school?

    » Systems Engineering is summarized as taking a holistic view of the system of interest. It is making an effort to understand the big picture including the mission, customer's needs and requirements in the beginning. It is trying to understand all the different parts of the system and how they interact with each other to perform a specific function.

    Q4. What motivated you to get SEP certification?

    » We motivate our students to apply for SEP certification through the academic equivalency program if they qualify and never considered applying for it myself. Through encouraging them I also encouraged myself.

    Q5. How did the academic equivalency program benefit you?

    » I am a mother of three, active duty military spouse, leadership program participant, teaching fellows’ participant and I contribute significantly to several research projects. I am balancing quite as most working professionals are, and adding studying for an exam, taking and exam and submitting an application for a certification was not on the top of the priority list. The academic equivalency program helped me make the decision to go for it because I was able to complete the course and apply for my certification at the same time, which made it an easier decision for me to apply.

    Q6. How did taking courses under the academic equivalency program help you deepen your understanding of SE?

    » As an instructor, taking the course under the academic equivalency program helped me see the SE learning experience from a different lens. I was able to see how the learning objectives for the course aligned to the INCOSE SE Handbook. The content in the Handbook was put into a context that was applicable for the course and the project was easily relatable and provided an opportunity to both use the knowledge obtained and allowed for a deeper understanding of the concepts presented as well.

    Q7. What is your advice for students and research professionals pursuing SEP certification?

    » If you have already put in the time and effort and have the experience and SE based knowledge take the extra steps to get certified. INCOSE is a National organization and the certifications recognizes practitioners that demonstrate SE knowledge and experience. Do it! Join the network of professionals and let's see what we can do together going forward leading the way.

    Know more about Academic Equivalency from here
  • Advisor perspective on Academic Equivalency: Heidi Ann Hahn, ESEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 08, 2022

    Here is an interview with Heidi Ann Hahn which talks about her experience and perspective advising universities regarding the academic equivalency program. Happy SEPtember! 
     
       
    This interview was done in 2022.


    Q1. What is your role related to INCOSE’s Academic Equivalency?

    » I was a CAG member and have served as an Academic Equivalency mentor/liaison and reviewer.

    Q2. What is one of your proudest professional achievements?

    » My proudest professional achievement is developing a successful Labor Relations organization using SE.

    Q3. What skills do you think a systems engineer should develop during their education?

    » A Systems Engineer should develop active listening, technical and facilitative leadership, negotiation -- basically all of the professional competencies during their education.

    Q4. What do you see as the benefits of the academic equivalency program for a university and a student?

    » For a university, academic equivalency program might help attract students. For students, academic equivalency program will be a plus on a resume when seeking a job. 

    Q5. What methods do you use to teach SE courses effectively?

    » I use a combination of SE and Project Management in the course I teach because I think that their lifecycles operate in parallel.

    Q6. What is your advice for universities or institutes considering applying for academic equivalency?

    » If you do get academic equivalency, you need to provide incentives to the students to actually pursue it. Several universities who have it have never had a student apply for ASEP because they hadn't been informed of the benefits or otherwise incentivized (i.e., by having the school pay the fee).

    Know more on academic equivalency from here.
  • Trainer perspective on the SEP Certification: David Endler, CSEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 07, 2022
    Here is an interview with David Endler, a Systems Engineering consultant and trainer, which talks about his experience and perspective as a trainer on the SEP Certification. Happy SEPtember!

    David Endler

     This interview was done in 2022.

    Q1. What is your current role/position?

    » I am a systems engineering consultant, trainer, and coach.

    Q2. What is one of your proudest professional achievements?

    » In one of my projects, I was acting on behalf of the Director Flight Safety of the Swiss Air Force. In this project, it was my responsibility to define the system safety process for the acquisition of three air traffic management systems.

    Q3. What skills do you think a systems engineer best learns through training?
    » In my courses, students typically work on a sample project that everyone can understand, but that is outside of their professional day-to-day experience. Typical project situations are then re-enacted during the training to address important principles. By not being focused on the technical details, this sample project makes it easier for the participants to get involved in the core competencies (e.g., systems thinking, capability engineering, critical thinking, etc.).

    Q4. What guidance/training do you provide students regarding systems engineering and SEP certification?
    » I'm offering quite a range of system engineering trainings. From half a day (mainly for executives) to 12 days SE-ZERT trainings and everything in between.

    Q5. What motivated you to provide these trainings?
    » For me, there are two rewarding situations about trainings. The first one is when students pass their exam and are extremely happy. The second one is even more rewarding, this is when I meet students after a couple of weeks or even months and they tell me that they successfully applied one of the methods they learned in the training.

    Q6. What methods do you use to provide these trainings effectively?
    » There are three main methods that I'm applying: 1) The trainings typically include some time buffers so that all questions the students may have can be discussed. So the overall format is quite open and the students are requested to participate actively. 2) Where ever possible, I'm trying to create the link to the real world by elaborating on situations I've been exposed to. 3) The trainings typically include short exercises to reinforce the learning.

    Q7. How do you continue to learn about Systems engineering? What developmental activities do you do?
    » To keep up with emerging topics, I'm volunteering within INCOSE (working groups, Technical Director, Systems Engineering Handbook v5) and ISO. At this point, I'm the project editor for ISO/IEC/IEEE 15288 and ISO/IEC/IEEE 24748-2 (guide to 15288) next revisions.

    Q8. How can we reach out to you?
    » You can reach me at : https://www.linkedin.com/in/dr-david-endler-72b7712/

    Know more about training providers from here.
  • Trainer perspective on the SEP Certification: David D. (Dave) Walden, ESEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 06, 2022
    Here is an interview with David D. (Dave) Walden of Synovation which talks about his experience and perspective as a trainer on the SEP Certification. Happy SEPtember!

    David Walden

     This interview was done in 2022.

    Q1. What is your current role/position?

    » I am the Principal Trainer and Consultant for Sysnovation. In addition, I was the Lead Editor for the INCOSE SE Handbook Fourth Edition and am the Editor-in-Chief of the upcoming Fifth Edition.

    Q2. What is one of your proudest professional achievements?

    » There are so many that it is hard to choose just one. From a personal perspective I am most proud of the three engineers my wife and I brought into the world, our two daughters and one son (one is even an ASEP!). From a work perspective, it was the part I played at the turn of the century in the integration of four $250 million legacy divisions into the new General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems. From a volunteer perspective, it was my editorial role in reorganizing and harmonizing the INCOSE SE Handbook Version 3.2.

    Q3. What skills do you think a systems engineer best learns through training?
    » Skills that are best learnt through training are the core systems engineering discipline skills. Skills that are not learnt through training are the domain and organization knowledge needed to be an effective systems engineering practitioner, those must be earned through experience.

    Q4. What guidance/training do you provide students regarding systems engineering and SEP certification?
    » Our training provides coverage of the knowledge portion of certification by covering the key aspects of the INCOSE SE Handbook. In addition, we focus on what it takes to submit a high-quality application and set of references. These are just as important as the exam for the CSEP application. My hope is that participants leave the course understanding systems engineering, not just learning rote points to pass the exam.

    Q5. What motivated you to provide these trainings?
    » I started Sysnovation to provide training and consulting for systems engineering practitioners. Providing certification preparation training was a natural extension of my other training offerings. As Editor-in-Chief of the INCOSE SE Handbook and former INCOSE Certification Program Manager (for six years), I feel I bring a unique perspective to this training.

    Q6. What methods do you use to provide these trainings effectively?
    » The Sysnovation SEP prep course is instructor led. We offer it both on-site and virtual formats. The standard course is four days on-site (and intense three-day “boot camp” is also available). For the virtual offerings, it is given over six virtual days using the Zoom platform. The virtual days are shorter in duration to avoid “Zoom Burnout.” All courses cover exactly the same material: SE knowledge per the handbook; a sample CSEP application; and a realistic “half-exam.”

    Q7. How do you continue to learn about Systems engineering? What developmental activities do you do?
    » As with every SEP, I engage in several forms of on-going professional development. In addition to editing the INCOSE SE Handbook, I attend regional and local chapter events and tutorials, participate in the INCOSE IW and IS, and am an INCOSE liaison to ISO. In addition, I read articles and textbooks related to systems engineering.

    Q8. How can we reach out to you?
    » You can reach me at : https://www.linkedin.com/in/david-walden-a749982/

    Know more about training providers from here.
  • Student Perspective to SEP Certification: Keshav Sharma, ASEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 05, 2022
    Here is an interview with Keshav Sharma, a student at ISAE SUPAERO, which talks about his experience and perspective towards SEP certification as a certified student. Happy SEPtember!

    This interview was conducted in 2022. 

    Q1. What is your current role/position?

    » I am a Systems Engineering Intern. 

    Q2. What are your next career goals?

    » My next career goal is to work as a systems engineer in the technical field for a few years and then switch to technical management processes and attain the CSEP certification. 

    Q3. What have you learned about systems engineering in school?

    » I learnt several topics ranging from Requirements, V and V, Design and Architecture at school. The course covered many topics of the V cycle and how systems engineering makes the product lifecycle efficient and quicker.

    Q4. What interests you about systems engineering?

    » Systems Engineer covers different domains across different methods, processes and engineering perspective, this interests me.

    Q5. What motivated you to get SEP certification?

    » Preparing for Certification helps to understand the product lifecycle better and get more insight into Technical Management and Agreement processes that weren't taught at school.

    Q6. How did preparing for the knowledge exam help you deepen your understanding of systems engineering?» At school I did not learn a lot in detail about the different processes that a product goes through. The certification drew a clear picture of how the process works step by step. It also introduced new topics such as lean and agile systems engineering.
    Q7. What is your advice for students and research professionals pursuing SEP certification?

    » Treat the INCOSE Handbook as the Bible and read it time and again to understand clearly the concepts.

    Q8. How can we reach out to you?

    » You can reach out to me at: https://www.linkedin.com/in/keshav-sharma-499385146/

    Know more about INCOSE SEP Certification from here.
  • Graduate perspective on Academic Equivalency: Diego Custódio Rangel, ASEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 04, 2022
    Here is an interview with Diego Custódio Rangel, a graduate from Naval Postgraduate School, which talks about his experience and perspective as a graduate from the academic equivalency program. Happy SEPtember!

    Diego

    This interview was conducted in 2022. 

    Q1. What is your current role/position?

    » I am a Systems Engineer.

    Q2. What are your next career goals?

    » My next career goals are to obtain the CSEP certification level, improve my modeling skills using SysML and the MBSE approach, and pursue a Ph.D. degree.

    Q3. What have you learned about systems engineering in school?

    » I learned about SE fundamentals, how to develop the system architecture, the system integration process, and verification and validation techniques.

    Q4. What interests you about systems engineering?

    » System architecture and design, systems integration and requirements writing interests me.

    Q5. What motivated you to get SEP certification?

    » I understood that it is essential to certify your knowledge, especially at the beginning of your career. The SEP certification is an excellent way to demonstrate your qualification standard since it is internationally recognized. This motivated me to get SEP Certification.

    Q6. How did the academic equivalency program benefit you?

    » I learned about the SEP certification at NPS. When I was offered the opportunity to apply for the academic equivalency, I did not doubt that this was the best way to obtain the ASEP certification. There was a person to guide me through the process, making it quick and easy compared to friends that received the certification in the traditional way.

    Q7. How did taking courses under the academic equivalency program help you deepen your understanding of SE?

    » Teamworking is a crucial part of the SE job, and each one of the courses that I took reinforced this soft skill. Besides, the classes were a hands-on opportunity to apply the SE approach to designing and tools. Also, the examples provided during these courses were essential for correctly understanding the concepts provided by the INCOSE Systems Engineering Handbook.

    Q8. What is your advice for students and research professionals pursuing SEP certification?

    »  If you are enrolled in a SE program and have the opportunity to obtain the SEP certification by the academic equivalency program, do not miss this! For those preparing themselves for the exam, I suggest you do not skip any chapter in your study of the INCOSE Systems Engineering Handbook; there will be questions for all of them, so it is an excellent strategy to get some knowledge of all of them.

    Q9. How can we reach out to you?

    » You can reach me at: https://www.linkedin.com/in/diego-rangel-msc-asep-6b6575194/

    Know more about academic equivalency from here.
  • Faculty Perspective of Academic Equivalency: Robert F. Bordley , ESEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 03, 2022

    Here is an interview with Robert F. Bordley from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor which talks about his experience and perspective as a Program Director of the academic equivalency program. Happy SEPtember! 

    RB2_page-0001

    This interview was done in 2022.


    Q1. What is your role related to INCOSE’s Academic Equivalency?

    » I am the Program Director of University of Michigan's Systems Engineering and Design Degree Program. Program achieved equivalency last year.

    Q2. What is one of your proudest professional achievements?

    » My proudest professional achievement is that I received chairman's award for developing systems model which identified more than $250 Million of cost savings for General Motors, all of which were realized in one year. I crafted the key elements of a revenue management system which saved the company more than a billion.

    Q3. What skills do you think a systems engineer should develop during their education?

    » The skills that a systems engineer best learns through training are:
    1) Developing requirements using state of the art marketing and design sciences approaches.
    2) Decision trees and risk Management, Volatile requirements management
    3) How to select the most cost-effective verification procedure.
    4) How to develop quantitative systems models.


    Q4. What was your university’s motivation behind joining the academic equivalency program?

    » Our motivation behind obtaining an academic equivalency was increasing employability of students.

    Q5. What do you see as the benefits of the academic equivalency program for a university and a student?

    » Academic equivalency benefits students by increasing employability of the students.

    Q6. What methods do you use to teach SE courses effectively?

    »  Method used by us to teach SE courses effectively is : integration of practical applications in teaching new methods

    Q7. How do your SE courses help students to deepen their understanding of systems engineering?

    » To remove some of the mystery associated with the systems process, we developed a visual M with zigzag design blueprint to show the skeleton of the systems process. The first course goes through the process with associated methods. The second course focuses on software, both MBSE and statistical software, important in the process. The third course focuses on student teams using the process to solve real problems. The students can then specialize depending upon their area of interest.

    Q8. How do your SE courses differ from those at other universities?

    » Since I have been very successful both as a practitioner and academic, my courses integrate both academic rigor with practical relevance.

    Q9. What is your advice for universities or institutes considering applying for academic equivalency?

    » Don't create a single course, taught by an adjunct, to satisfy the academic equivalency. Students are less likely to invest the time to take your academic program. Instead fully integrate the elements of the handbook into all of the core courses.

    Q10. How can we reach out to you?

    » You can reach me at: https://www.linkedin.com/in/robert-bordley-3036b7b/

    Know more about academic equivalency from here


     
  • Trainer perspective on the SEP Certification: René King, ASEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 02, 2022
    Here is an interview with René King of Certification Training International (CTI) which talks about her experience and perspective as a trainer on the SEP Certification. Happy SEPtember!

    Rene King

     This interview was done in 2022.

    Q1. What is your current role/position?

    » I am the Managing Director of Certification Training International (CTI).

    Q2. What is one of your proudest professional achievements?

    » My proudest achievement is working with Robert Halligan (PPI), John Nallon (INCOSE), and Stephane Lacrampe (Obeo) on the INCOSE-PPI Systems Engineering Tools Database since 2018 and bringing the SETDB to an initial operational capability in 2021.

    Q3. What skills do you think a systems engineer best learns through training?
    » Context analysis, transforming needs into requirements, writing low-risk requirements, effective decision-making based on stakeholder-valued outcomes, engineering specialty integration, and modeling techniques in the problem definition and solution space are the skills a systems engineer best learns through training. 

    Q4. What guidance/training do you provide students regarding systems engineering and SEP certification?
    » CTI is a subsidiary of PPI - a leader in SE training and consulting for 30 years. Leveraging on PPI's experience with training, CTI uses established adult-learning principles and techniques to help students place their practical experience in the context of the INCOSE Systems Engineering Handbook. We aim to support our clients in acquiring and maximizing the value of their SE certification. We offer an intensive Five-Day INCOSE SEP Exam Prep training that not focuses on how to pass the INCOSE Knowledge Exam, how to prepare a CSEP application, and how to maintain SEP certification status over time.

    Q5. What motivated you to provide these trainings?
    » We wanted to encourage our clients to develop a healthy appetite for continuous improvement and found the SEP certification program an excellent tool to achieve this. CTI also recognized that memorizing a 300-page handbook is not easy, so we leveraged the 30 years of SE and consulting experience within PPI to develop a course that would make learning and understanding the INCOSE SE Handbook and its value as simple and effective as possible within five days. CTI also realized the importance of our clients placing their practical experience in the context of the language of the INCOSE SEH for maximum learning and retention for the INCOSE Knowledge Exam and beyond. We developed our INCOSE SEP Exam Prep course with this in mind.

    Q6. What methods do you use to provide these trainings effectively?

    » Following are the method used by us to provide these trainings:
    1) Extensive practice in writing and answering questions akin to the INCOSE Knowledge Exam
    2) Frequent Q&A segments throughout the training
    3) Many practical workshops to fuse practical experience and case studies with the vocabulary and concepts described in the INCOSE SEH
    4) A strong focus on capturing and reviewing client-valued learning outcomes
    5) Daily reflections and feedback to improve on the training throughout the week to maximize achievement of the client-valued learning outcomes
    6) Other adult learning techniques including pattern finding, case-study analysis, use of aide-memoirs, and role-playing 

    Q7. How do you continue to learn about Systems engineering? What developmental activities do you do?
    » I attend systems engineering conferences, read articles, and attend webinars related to SE frequently. I am continuously discussing how to make SE more accessible with my colleagues. l also work with my colleague John Fitch on the monthly PPI Systems Engineering News journal to bring fresh SE-related articles, news, and resources to the engineering community.

    Q8. How can we reach out to you?
    » You can reach me at : https://www.linkedin.com/in/rene-king/

    Find out more about training providers here.
  • Faculty Perspective on Academic Equivalency: Dale Thomas, ESEP

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Sep 01, 2022

    Here is an interview with Dale Thomas from University of Alabama in Huntsville which talks about his experience and perspective as a point of contact of the academic equivalency program. Happy SEPtember! 

     
    Dale Thomas        

    This interview was done in 2022.


    Q1. What is your role related to INCOSE’s Academic Equivalency?

    » I am the point of contact for academic equivalency at University of Alabama in Huntsville.


    Q2. What is one of your proudest professional achievements?

    » I led systems engineering & integration for the International Space Station.


    Q3. What skills do you think a systems engineer should develop during their education?

    » General systems skills (Systems Thinking, requirements elicitation & development, test & verification) complimented by discipline engineering skills relevant to the systems domain (aerospace, IT, etc.) in which the engineer works need to be developed by system engineers during their education.


    Q4. What was your university’s motivation behind joining the academic equivalency program?

    » Student ASEP certification are viewed very positively by area employers, this motivated University of Alabama in Huntsville to start an academic equivalency program.


    Q5. What do you see as the benefits of the academic equivalency program for a university and a student?

    » Academic Equivalency establishes a common benchmark of Systems Engineering skills for students and aids the university in curricular development.


    Q6. What methods do you use to teach SE courses effectively?

    » I illustrate SE principles with actual examples from my own experience and from the literature. It requires SE case studies of graduates and group project to write a SEMP for undergraduates.


    Q7. How do your SE courses help students to deepen their understanding of systems engineering?

    » Our SE courses help students deepen their understanding of Systems Engineering by requiring the students to think about principles of systems engineering in application for the case studies (graduates) or group projects (undergraduates).


    Q8. What is your advice for universities or institutes considering applying for academic equivalency?

    » It's a lot of work. Be diligent and deliberate in preparing the application.


    Q9. How can we reach out to you?

    » You can reach me at : https://www.linkedin.com/in/dale-thomas-5a0a40108/


    Know more on academic equivalency here.

     

  • Attention training providers!

    by Mrunmayi Joshi | Aug 31, 2022
    SEPtember is coming soon, and we have a series of blog posts lined up which are interviews with training providers, faculty of Academic Equivalency programs, graduates from Academic Equivalency programs, and certified students. The focus of these blog posts is on promoting Systems Engineering education.

    The training providers list on the INCOSE Certification Website helped us contact the training providers for the interviews. Being a part of this list would open up such opportunities for training providers in the future. 

    Would you like to be a part of this list?
    Here is the link to the survey that you can fill if you wish to be a part of the training providers list: https://app.smartsheet.com/b/form/b8d430ec78684515bc93dd9179229d8e
    This survey helps us update the training providers list with information about your training that supports the preparation for the knowledge exam, and certification application. 

    For any query/comments/feedback on the survey please contact: mrunmayi.joshi@incose.net 
  • It's Almost SEPtember

    by Courtney Wright | Aug 26, 2022
    Get it? SEPtember? As in Systems Engineering Professionals!

    Every day in SEPtember, the CertBlog will include one or two interviews with individuals involved with INCOSE Certification. Our theme for 2022's blog posts is training and education. We'll have professors who have set up Academic Equivalency programs, students who have participated in those programs, training providers, and INCOSE chapter advocates for certification. 

    If you aren't certified, read these blog posts to learn about the different paths that led people to certification for themselves and to encourage it in others. If you are already certified, consider if there's a way you can help others on their journey.SEP_wardrobe_smaller
  • SE Handbook Transition Impacts on Knowledge Exam

    by Courtney Wright | Aug 19, 2022
    INCOSE intern, Mrunmayi Joshi, ASEP, anticipated the questions that many will have related to the INCOSE SE Handbook Fifth Edition.

    What is different about the Fifth Edition of the Handbook?

    When will the Fifth Edition be released?

    When can we start testing on it?

    When do we have to stop testing on the Fourth Edition of the Handbook?

    Will the test format change?

    She assembled and delivered an outstanding presentation on the topic during the 17 August INCOSE Tech Ops Webinar. Many requested the slides she used. Here they are. 
  • Using the INCOSE Learning Objectives to prepare to take the knowledge exam

    by Courtney Wright | Aug 12, 2022
    INCOSE's Certification Program generates the knowledge exam based on a blueprint generated with the help of our psychometric consultants. The blueprint is a list of topics we will test on (the learning objectives) and the number of questions each exam will have on those topics. All candidates take exams that are equivalently distributed across the learning objectives. We don't publish that distribution, but we do publish the learning objectives. 

    If you are studying for the INCOSE knowledge exam, it is a good idea to review the list of learning objectives. They can help guide your review of the INCOSE Systems Engineering Handbook (the sole source of content for the exam) to focus on the topics that will be tested.

    You can find the learning objectives posted here
  • The INCOSE Store

    by Courtney Wright | Aug 05, 2022
    Are you an INCOSE member or CAB Associate interested in reading the INCOSE Systems Engineering Handbook? Great news - you get free access to the electronic version! It is one of many free downloads from the INCOSE Store. 

    The INCOSE Store can be a little tricky to use. The main thing to know is that you'll have to load things into your cart, and provide your mailing address, before you get your access via email. 

    As described on this page, you should first log in to incose.org, then navigate to the INCOSE Store. Add the items you want to your cart and check out. Some items have costs while many are free. 

    You can also get a discount on buying a printed copy of the handbook. That discount code is also available in the INCOSE Store. 
  • Talking About INCOSE Certification

    by Courtney Wright | Jul 29, 2022
    Earlier this year, two ESEPs in France gave a great summary of INCOSE's Certification Program. You can see it here (with subtitles).
  • Which fictional character would make the best systems engineer?

    by Courtney Wright | Jul 22, 2022
    During several zooms in the past year, I've asked the question: which fictional character would make the best systems engineer? I think most have interpreted this as, "Who is the smartest fictional character you have seen?" or, "If you were a superhero, which would you be?" The most popular responses - coming independently from multiple sessions - were Iron Man and Sherlock Holmes.

    These characters are smart, just like us! More significantly, they look at more than just one subsystem or perspective. Whether they are building hardware or breaking apart a web of deceit, they are considering more than just the question at hand. 

    What other fictional characters exhibit the characteristics of good systems engineers? Consider using this as part of introductions at your next INCOSE gathering. Or, stay tuned for our next icebreaker question. 
  • How is INCOSE Certification different?

    by Courtney Wright | Jul 15, 2022
    INCOSE's first and primary certification level, Certified Systems Engineering Professional (CSEP), is the right fit for most systems engineers. Those who can work independently to tailor and implement systems engineering activities are probably qualified to be CSEPs. 

    How do we check that probably? We have a team of dozens of volunteer reviewers. They look through individuals' reports on their systems engineering activities and they compare those to what the references state. This thorough review is unlike what some other certification programs do. We have human eyes on every application package. This takes some time, both to perform that review and because of the logistics of assigning reviews and filling in gaps, but it's worth it. INCOSE CSEPs are reliably good.