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Faculty of mechanical engineering
Work System Design I and II

Practical Preparation for the Activities of the Classical Industrial Engineer

The work system design (WSD) series of events deals with the basic disciplines of industrial engineering and qualifies students to solve realistic tasks from the everyday life of an industrial engineer both in a self-organised manner and collaboratively in project teams. WSD 1 takes place in the summer semester and WSD 2 in the following winter semester.

The Work System Design (WSD) event series

Both courses take place as block courses. In the block course WSD I, which takes place in the summer semester, the theoretical learning content of industrial engineering is developed interactively within the framework of lectures and group exercises. In the subsequent case study, the theoretical teaching content is transferred to an application example and the students are trained in the simulation of digital human models. WSD 1 is completed by the independent simulation of a workplace and the presentation of the results. The examination takes the form of a written exam.

In the course WSD II, which takes place in the winter semester, the contents known from WSD I are deepened and applied using a case study. A one-week project on assembly system design is carried out in group work. This project includes the implementation of the organisational-technical conception of an assembly system for the production of a defined product as well as the practical implementation of this concept in the Industrial Engineering Training Centre. Among other things, tasks of performance coordination, layout design as well as remuneration design have to be fulfilled. WSD II is completed by the presentation of the conceived and implemented work system. This is followed by the examination performance in the form of an oral examination.

Arbeitssytemgestaltung II (ASG II)


Students sit in a lecture hall in the seminar building at the Campus North. © Felix Schmale​/​TU Dortmund

Didactic Conception

The aim of work system design is to promote the development of technical-methodical competence in the field of work system design in the students. Through group work with 6-8 students, social-communicative competence and problem-solving competence are also further developed.

The cognitive and affective learning objectives convey that mistakes and deviations from the target state represent learning potentials and opportunities for improvement. Thus, the practical week offers the opportunity to apply theoretical knowledge and methods and thus to gain practice-relevant experiential knowledge already during the studies.

A special feature of the event series is the guarantee of a large degree of freedom in the design of work systems. Since there is no predetermined best solution, various design options can and should be tested. The learners carry out a complete action, from the procurement of information, the framework conditions of the planning scenario, the planning, the implementation of the work system design, the associated coordination and decision-making processes to the control and reflection. The learners act as far as possible in a self-determined way. They plan the course of the project, set goals and take responsibility for their decisions. The challenge for the teachers is not to prescribe solutions, but to accompany the learners in their own process of gaining knowledge.

Teachers take on the role of facilitators and coaches. Depending on the support needs of the group, there are about 3-6 coaching sessions in which the teacher asks Socratic questions to find out the learners' level of knowledge and, if necessary, to influence the learning process.

At the end of the course, the teacher is also a feedback provider and evaluator. The success of the learning process is monitored by the group's self-assessment, by the teacher's assessment and by observing the learners during the coaching sessions. 


The course WSD I and WSD II are subject to compulsory attendance. Attendance at the specified dates is therefore compulsory.


WSD II starts with a compulsory introductory course. This is followed by group allocation and assignment of the practical week at the end of which the examination is taken.


The conclusion of WSD I is a written exam.
At the end of the practical week of WSD 2, there is a group presentation of the developed contents, which is supplemented by an oral examination. This forms the grade.

Industrial Data Science is principally aimed at all students of the faculties of Mechanical Engineering, Statistics and Computer Science. Prerequisites for participation are a completed Bachelor's degree and a high interest in the field of data analysis. In addition, basic programming skills should be available.


Registration is via the form linked above. There is a limited number of participants of 12 for the module "Work System Design". Places are allocated in accordance with the "Regulations for Admission to Courses with Limited Attendance at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering".


As a member of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, it is not necessary to have successfully participated in WSD I before WSD II can be taken.