In keeping with the Polytechnic School guidelines, the Production Engineering course assumes those who take it will be full-time students. It is designed to take five years to complete. The disciplines last one half-year term, and the top number of class hours a week (whether practical or theoretical) is 28 hours per term.
In accordance with its curriculum directives, the Polytechnic School aims to educated engineers with:
- Solid scientific and technical training in Engineering;
- Critical analysis and organizational transformation capabilities;
- The ability to face up to new situation creatively and with initiative;
- The ability to upgrade and produce new technical, scientific and methodological knowledge;
- The awareness of being an agent of economic and social change; and
- Professional conduct guided by the principles of ethics and citizenship.
Regarding common skills and competences, the following are expected from its graduates;
- Competence to design and analyze products and processes;
- The creation, operation and improvement of systems and processes;
- Engineering project management;
- Leadership, initiative, creativity and teamwork;
- A clear understanding of economic and social systems; and
- Communication capabilities and being fully conversant with information technology.
Besides the principles, skills and competences above, a Production Engineering graduate should also have:
- The ability to design and manage production systems;
- The competencies required to work for both the manufacturing and the services industries; and
- The capacity to undertake new businesses.
Part of the Production Engineering curriculum is dedicated to the humanities and the environmental sciences, with a view to achieving a more humanities-oriented education, as opposed to a purely technical one. Besides reducing the number of class hours, the new curriculum structure requires that the student take at least eight credits in optional disciplines from other fields of Engineering or other USP schools.
In the development of the aforementioned skills, the fifth year supervised internship stands out. Unlike most degrees that have more than one laboratory for pedagogical teaching activities, in Production Engineering, these activities are carried out within organizations themselves, outside the university campus. Thus, in addition to the fifth year supervised internship, the students are encouraged, as from their third year, to engage in practical work and teamwork, under the guidance of the professors in charge of the disciplines of the different areas (organization, logistics, information technology, etc.), addressing real corporate problems. Thus, the content addressed in the lectures is illustrated and consolidated in seminars presented by teams of students, based on the collection and analysis of data obtained from companies.
One of the highlights of the Production Engineering course is undoubtedly the individual graduation research paper, which every last-year student must develop and present. It consists of identifying a real problem of the firm or organization where the student is doing his or her internship, under the supervision of the Production Engineering Department faculty, and of analyzing and implementing viable solutions using the competencies acquired in the undergraduate course. The result of this work becomes a publication with approximately 100 pages that comply with previously determined rules of writing. When approved by a board of examiners consisting of three professors, this becomes part of the collection of the Production Engineering Library.
Another student activity that the course provides for and that merits highlighting is the possibility of the student taking part in the scientific initiation program, which provides a grant from research promotion institutions. This type of work is also supervised by the faculty and generally covers subjects linked to the line of research of the professor or of the group that is in charge of these themes.