Supporting Senior Projects
All programs at MSOE culminate with a senior project and/or industry experience that is designed to have students apply what they have learned to date to address a real world challenge. MSOE depends on a large number of corporate and non-profit partners to make this experience as purposeful and meaningful as possible. We hope this information is helpful to find a fit for the way(s) in which you might like to engage further.
Senior engineering students work in teams on senior design projects, which most students begin planning in the spring of their junior year. Unless otherwise noted, coordinators begin discussing project ideas as early as October for the following school year with the objective of having all of the details worked out by March/April so students can select and, in some cases, start working on their projects.
What Makes a Good Project/Experience?
- Solves a problem
- Is relevant to the work students will do after graduation
- Results in meaningful value to the project sponsor/mentor
- Is scoped appropriately for the size of the team (10 hours/week per student)
- Has a design element
- Allows students to demonstrate skills in leadership, project management, technical writing, ethical thinking, safety and time management
What Makes a Good Sponsor/Mentor?
- Sets realistic expectations (teams will be able to carry a limited feature set from inception to delivery)
- Challenges team to act professionally and do their best work
- Provides timely and meaningful feedback to the team
- Is demonstrably interested in the success of the project
- Provides any additional materials/equipment, technical assistance, and financial support to ensure project success
Senior design projects typically run through the Fall, Winter and Spring Quarters. Student teams define a design problem, identify several alternative solutions and develop a project plan for evaluating the possible solutions and solving the problem. Students develop a thorough project proposal, often working with the MSOE Institutional Review Board. They draw additional expertise from their specialty courses. At the end of the design project, students are expected to have produced complete project documentation and written reports, and oral presentations are required.
Note: The following programs have slight variations in their timeline/expectations:
Civil, Architectural Engineering and Construction Management: Project ideas are submitted in June, major requirements are showcased at a separate event in February, specialization requirements are completed in spring term
Computer Science Projects
MSOE's undergraduate computer science program is differentiated by required courses in Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Data Science, and Deep Learning. Seniors choose between an undergraduate research project or a senior design project. The proposals for these projects follow the same general timeline as those listed for engineering projects.
User Experience (UX) Projects
Actuarial Science Projects
Nursing students complete a professional practice project that requires them to use evidence-based practice and a quality improvement framework, change theory or model to address a current clinical problem. Collaborating and consulting with staff nurses, nurse administrators, health care providers, or other health care partners, students work to implement a change in some aspect of the health care process. Project ideas are reviewed on a rolling basis so there is no specific deadline.
Technische Hochschule Lübeck (THL)/MSOE Exchange Student Projects
Exchange students from the Technical University of Applied Sciences Lübeck are expected to complete a thesis. The work on their thesis takes the form of one of the project categories already listed depending on the student’s major.
Interdisciplinary project ideas originate with the predominant program area. Industry project sponsors identify what knowledge, skills and experience are needed to meet project objectives. MSOE project coordinators are then able to evaluate interdisciplinary ideas and engage other academic areas as needed to ensure project teams have the right mix of expertise to complete the project.