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Application of Process Re-Engineering Methods to Enhance the Teaching–Learning Process in a Mechanical Engineering Department

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This paper aims to demonstrate the feasibility of using systematic process re-engineering methods, which are in general use in the industrial and service sectors, in the university environment. By using these methods it is possible to make an in-depth analysis of the processes used, compare the results with those that are required for the organisation where the processes are run to achieve its goals and, depending on this comparison, set up a series of proposals for improvement, so that activities that do not lead to achieving the goals can be eliminated and thus make more effective those that do lead to success. In order to demonstrate the feasibility of this, a process to improve operations has been completed at the Mechanical Engineering Department at Madrid Technical University. The aim is to optimise performance regarding the achievement of the goals, which are to maximise the learning of its students, both with regard to learning and attitude—curiosity, entrepreneurship and a firmness of character oriented towards continuous improvement and individual responsibility. In particular, the methodologies of KJ, Ishikawa were used as well as those of Relevant Actions, and concepts from the Toyota Production System. Improving the teaching–learning processes is extremely necessary today, taking into account the paradigm change involved due to the Bologna declaration and the European Higher Education Area. Given the reduced scale of the work, the results are very encouraging and show the potential for improvement that may be obtained on a large scale. Above all, this paper aims to provide a list of the causes of typical problems that arise in the university that will be of use to the reader and puts forward ideas for possible ways to improve the everyday running of the university.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2009

More about this publication?
  • This journal serves as an international interdisciplinary forum of reference for engineering education.
    A balance between papers on developments in educational methods technology, case studies, laboratory applications, new theoretical approaches, educational policy and survey papers is aimed for.
    Comprehensive coverage of new education schemes and techniques makes the journal a unique source of ideas for engineering educators who are keen to keep abreast of latest developments in educational applications in all fields of engineering.
    Some of the areas covered more extensively in recent issues are: CAD, CAE, computer applications in teaching thermodynamics, material science, electrical engineering, new courses and curricula, engineering management, control engineering, mechanical engineering, engineering design, student evaluation and institutional accreditation.

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