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Operations Research and Engineering

Undergrad Degree: BS

The Operations Research and Engineering (OR&E, in the School of Operations Research and Information Engineering-OR&IE) is designed to provide a broad and basic education in the techniques and modeling concepts needed to analyze and design complex systems. It also provides an introduction to the technical and professional areas with which researchers are concerned.

Modern business managers make many decisions involving the interplay of time, money, energy, and materials. Since most business systems are complex, sophisticated decision making methods that will increase efficiency are needed. The allocation of resources, like the description of physical processes, can be represented and analyzed mathematically. Specialists in operations research and engineering can use their knowledge of mathematical concepts to develop and apply the appropriate techniques.

An automobile manufacturer, for example, might be able to save millions of dollars a year by identifying and eliminating bottlenecks in an assembly line. An airline would improve its ability to forecast passenger demand and adjust its schedules accordingly-filtering more seats and producing greater revenues. A hospital could more efficiently schedule the use of its operating rooms, lowering costs and improving the quality of patient care. These are the kinds of problems that can be solved by experts in operations research and engineering. As work becomes more complex, and the demands of the economy require a more efficient use of resources, a growing number of specialists in this field will be needed.

The behavioral-science requirement is satisfied by taking one of a variety of courses offered by the School of Industrial and Labor Relations or the Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management. A list of such courses may be obtained from Room 202, Rhodes Hall.

Field-approved electives are courses with technical content, numbered 200 or above. A list of acceptable, field-approved electives is included in the OR&IE Undergraduate Handbook, which may be obtained from 202 Rhodes Hall.

At least one of the courses taken must satisfy the technical writing requirement of the College of Engineering.

Scholastic requirements for the field are a passing grade in every course; an overall average of at least 2.0 for each term the student is enrolled in the school; an average of 2.0 or better for OR&E field courses; a grade of C- or above in ENGRD 211, ENGRD 270, and all required OR&E field courses except OR&IE 581 and 582; and satisfactory progress toward the completion of the degree requirements. The student's performance is reviewed at the conclusion of each term.