UCLA Extension

Essential Systems Engineering: Designing and Developing Responsive Systems

A 3-Day Short Course

Systems engineering is an interdisciplinary approach to designing and developing complex systems. It applies engineering practices to the development of systems and integrates the engineering efforts of all the disciplines necessary to build the system. It is the best technique to produce a system meeting customer expectations in the most cost-effective and timely manner.

Complete Details

This course is designed to help subsystem engineers who need to better understand what systems engineers do; newly assigned systems engineers who need an overview of their roles and responsibilities; practicing systems engineers desiring a refresher in the basic tools and practices of systems engineering; and program managers.

In this highly interactive course, participants learn the essential tools and techniques to:

  • Thoroughly understand customer and system requirements
  • Perform trade-off studies and make excellent design choices
  • Create the system architecture and define feasible subsystem requirements
  • Coordinate the design, development, and integration of components and subsystems
  • Verify and validate that the system is fully responsive to customer needs and expectations
  • Manage risks associated with system development and implementation
  • Estimate and manage life cycle costs
  • Integrate the systems engineering “specialties,” including reliability and logistics

Course Materials

The text, Systems Engineering Principles and Practice, A. Kossiakoff and W.N. Sweet (John Wiley and Sons, Inc., 2003), and lecture notes are distributed on the first day of the course. The notes are for participants only and are not for sale.

Coordinators and Lecturers

Carol C. Jacoby, PhD, Principal, Jacoby Consulting, Long Beach, California. Dr. Jacoby brings 28 years of experience as a systems engineer and manager in various industries to her teaching. She has built a reputation as an expert in developing complex information-intensive systems. She was one of the first to apply system engineering techniques to highway transportation systems during the early days of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS). Dr. Jacoby recently co-authored the Systems Engineering Guidebook for ITS for Caltrans and the Federal Highway Administration. Earlier, she was the manager of the Hughes Mission Analysis Center of Excellence, and system architect for both defense and transportation programs.

Dr. Jacoby has taught systems engineering courses throughout the country. She is the author of numerous technical papers and a forthcoming book, Simple Spreadsheets for Hard Decisions, which teaches planning for the future by modeling likely outcomes.

Chris Christensen, MS, MBA, President, Christensen Associates, Inc., a management consulting firm, Playa del Rey, California. For three decades, Mr. Christensen served as the lead systems engineer on numerous projects, including air defense, intelligence data fusion, digital data imaging, military command and control, and commercial communications satellite system development projects.

In 1992 Mr. Christensen launched Christensen Associates, Inc. to coach and train executives, managers, and senior staff in effective business management. He assesses the systems engineering capabilities maturity levels of organizations, facilitates on-site workshops in systems engineering, and coaches managers and systems engineers. Mr. Christensen teaches courses in systems engineering and project management at UCLA and Loyola Marymount University.

Daily Schedule

Day 1

  • Introduction and Overview (Jacoby)
  • Build Strong Teams to Perform Systems Engineering (Christensen)
  • Customer Requirements (Jacoby)
  • Systems Requirements and Functional Analyses (Jacoby)
  • Enhancing Corporate Creativity and Developing Innovative Designs (Christensen)
  • Trade Study Techniques, Tools, and Practices (Jacoby)

Day 2

  • Creating the System Architecture (Christensen)
  • Allocating Requirements to the Subsystems (Christensen)
  • Coordinating the Design and Development of the Subsystems and Components (Christensen)
  • The Systems Engineer’s Role in Developing the System (Jacoby)
  • Managing Risks (Jacoby)

Day 3

  • Systems Engineering for a Large Application (Guest lecturer to be announced)
  • Verification and Validation (Christensen)
  • System Configuration Management (Christensen)
  • Systems Engineering Specialties (Christensen)
  • Estimating and Managing Costs (Jacoby)
  • Systems Engineering Tools (Christensen)
  • Student Team Presentations and Concluding Discussion

For more information contact the Short Course Program Office:
shortcourses@uclaextension.edu | (310) 825-3344 | fax (310) 206-2815