Systems Engineering (SYST)
Systems Engineering and Operations Research
101 Understanding Systems Engineering (3:3:0) Introduces students to systems engineering and the curriculum for a BS in systems engineering at Mason. Introduces large and small systems, and explains these systems through the provision of some hands-on experiences. Key concepts l include understanding requirements for a system and translation of system-level requirements to component-level requirements. Several different kinds of example systems presented and discussed: objectives, major components, how system works, and major design issues. Each student gives similar presentation on system of studentÕs choice. Students working in groups design, develop and test a system, and give an oral presentation. Students responsible for writing several short papers on curriculum and the presentations that they have heard. s
201 Discrete Dynamic Systems Modeling (3:3:0) Prerequisite: MATH 114. I introduction to the modeling of dynamic systems with examples from many fields in engineering, science, and social sciences: mechanical, computer, biological, economic, urban, and social systems. Linear and nonlinear systems and linearization of such systems. Discrete time system formulation used to study the properties and behavior of such systems. f
202 Continuous Dynamic Systems Modeling (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 201; corequisites: MATH 203, 214, and PHYS 260. Continuation of SYST 201. Systems with many variables. Vector-matrix representation and state variables. Continuous time systems. Block diagrams and signal flow graphs. Systems behavior. Discretization and computational methods. s
203 Systems Modeling Laboratory (1:0:3) Corequisite: SYST 202. Introduction to computer modeling using an engineering modeling environment such as MATLAB. Solution to systems of linear equations, numerical integration and differentiation, interpolation and curve fitting, solution of ordinary differential equations. Simulation and numerical solution of continuous dynamic systems. Discretization of continuous time systems. Use of built-in functions and construction of macros. Graphical presentation of results. s
301 Systems Design (3:3:0) Prerequisite: junior standing; corequisite: SYST 201. Systems engineering design and integration process, the development of functional, physical, and operational architectures. Emphasis is on requirements engineering, functional modeling for design, and formulation and analysis of physical design alternatives. Methods and software tools for systems engineering design are introduced. f
302 Systems Methods (3:3:0) Corequisites: CS 112, STAT 344, and SYST 202. Prerequisites: MATH 114. Analysis methods of system engineering design and management. Decision analysis, economic models and evaluation, optimization in design and operations, probability and statistical methods, queuing theory and analysis, management control techniques, reliability and maintainability analysis, and economic and life-cycle cost analysis. Laboratory exercise with different software programs included. s
335/OR 335 Discrete Systems Modeling and Simulation (3:3:0) Corequisites: CS 112, STAT 344, SYST 202 or CS 310 or permission of instructor. An introduction to the basic concepts of modeling complex discrete systems by computer simulation. Topics include Monte-Carlo methods, discrete-event modeling, specialized simulation software, and the statistics of input and output analysis. s
371 Systems Engineering Management (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 301; corequisite: SYST 302. Study of the basics of systems engineering management. This includes engineering economics, planning, organizing, staffing, monitoring, and controlling the process of designing, developing, and producing a system that will meet a stated need in an effective and efficient manner. Management tools, processes, and procedures will be discussed, including various engineering documentation templates, managerial processes, and dealing with personnel issues. f
420 Network Analysis (3:3:0) Prerequisite: OR 441 and MATH 213. Network nomenclature. Elementary graph theory. Linear and nonlinear network models: multicommodity flow, mathematical games and equilibria on networks, network design and control; dynamic network models; applications to transportation, telecommunications, data communications, and water resource systems. f
421/ECE 421 Classical Systems and Control Theory (3:3:0) Prerequisite: grade of C or better in ECE 220. Introduction to analysis and synthesis of feedback systems. Functional description of linear and nonlinear systems. Block diagrams and signal flow graphs. State-space representation of dynamical systems. Frequency response methods: Root Locus, Nyquist, and other stability criteria. Application to mechanical and electromechanical control systems. f,s,sum
465/ECON 496/Math 493 Pricing in Optimization and Game Theory (3:3:0) Prerequisites: Math 203 or 216, and OR 441, or permission of instructor. Allocation of limited resources among competing activities to maximize the outcome or minimization of expenses required to produce a given assortment of goods and services are two typical problems faced by any economic institution. Mathematical modeling of such problems and finding efficient mathematical tools for solving them are two main goals of modern optimization theory. Pricing limited resources, goods, and services is the key instrument for theoretical analysis of complex economical systems. Pricing theory can also give rise to numerical methods for finding optimal solutions and economic equilibrium. Fundamental tools in pricing theory are the classical Lagrangian and Lagrange multipliers for constrained optimization. In this course we will cover the basic ideas and methods of linear programming and matrix games. Particular emphasis to pricing for both theoretical analysis and numerical methods.
469 Human Computer Interaction (3:3:0) Prerequisite: IT/STAT 250, IT 108, Covers principles of human-computer interaction, including information processing design, cognitive models, ergonomics, and design metaphors. Students learn to evaluate interface design in terms of effectiveness, efficiency, and cost. Students who receive credit for SYST 470 may not receive credit for this course.
470 Human Factors Engineering (3:3:0) Prerequisites: SYST 301, STAT 344. Human information processing, inferential analysis, biases and heuristics in human information processing, support systems to aid in human information processing, human-system interaction, and software systems engineering considerations. f
473 Decision and Risk Analysis (3:3:0) Prerequisite: STAT 344. Study analytic techniques for rational decision making that address uncertainty, conflicting objectives, and risk attitudes. The course covers modeling uncertainty; rational decision-making principles; representing decision problems with value trees, decision trees, and influence diagrams; solving value hierarchies, decision trees and influence diagrams; defining and calculating the value of information; incorporating risk attitudes into the analysis; and conducting sensitivity analyses.
480/ECON 440 Economic Systems Design I: Principles and Experiments (3:3:0) Corequisite: SYST 465. Prerequisite: OR 441. Introduces students to design principles used in developing systems used to allocate resources. Students required to participate in experiment demonstrations of different allocation mechanisms. In addition, students exposed to experimental methods in economics and market design.
481/ECON 441 Economic Systems Design II: Case Studies and Analysis (3:3:0) Students design specific allocation mechanisms for specific problems. Students required to design and develop a mechanism to a specific allocation problem. Students must develop analytical and working engineering models of their mechanism.
489 Senior Seminar (3:3:0) Corequisite: SYST 490. Introduces several important topics in systems engineering, providing additional experience in writing and giving presentations, and obtaining feedback on curriculum for BS in systems engineering. Several lectures devoted to ethics; writing and making presentations also covered. Students attend technical lectures and write a paper. Students also required to write long paper on new technology. Instructor and guest lecturers present material not part of required course load to expand horizons. Examples are Òknowledge-basedÓ design, enterprise-wide reengineering, electronic commerce, and optimization by Ònatural analogyÓ (simulated annealing, neural networks, genetic algorithms). In addition, students work in teams to critique and redesign curriculum. Each group delivers written product and provides at least one briefing to class. Best critique and redesign presented to faculty.
490 Senior Design Project I (3:2:1) Prerequisites: SYST 335, 371 and senior status in the systems engineering program; corequisites: SYST 470, and OR 441. First part of capstone course in the systems engineering program. Students apply knowledge they have gained to group project. During the first semester of the senior design course, students perform concept definition and requirements analysis. Plan for carrying out the project is developed, culminating in a proposal presented to faculty at the end of semester.
491 Industrial Project (1-3:0:3-9)Prerequisite: 75 credits, SYST 302; must be arranged with an instructor and approved by the department faculty chair before registering. Semester-long work experience in systems engineering in an industrial or governmental organization. The work is supervised jointly by a systems engineer from the sponsoring organization and a faculty member of the department. The project and the arrangements for supervision must be approved by the studentÕs faculty advisor. Periodic reports, a written final report, and a presentation are required.
495 Senior Design Project II (3:1:2) Prerequisite: SYST 490. Second part of capstone course. Design project plans formulated in SYST 490 are reviewed and modified. Additional instruction on documentation and project management is given. Design project is completed, and a formal report is prepared, presented, and evaluated. s
498 Independent Study in Systems Engineering (13:0:0) Prerequisites: 60 credits and GPA of at least 3.00; must be arranged with an instructor and approved by the department chair before registering. Directed self-study of special topics of current interest in systems engineering. May be repeated for maximum 6 credits if topics are substantially different. f,s,sum
499 Special Topics in Systems Engineering (3:3:0) Prerequisites: 60 credits; specific prerequisites vary with nature of topic. Topics of special interest to undergraduates. May be repeated for maximum 6 credits if the topics are substantially different.
500/CSI 600 Quantitative Foundations for Systems Engineering (3:3:0) Prerequisite:203, Math 213. Provides quantitative foundations necessary for core courses in systems engineering and operations research masterÕs program, and certificate program in C3I. Topics include vectors and matrices, infinite series, partial differentiation, multiple integrals, differential and difference equations; linear systems; Laplace and Ztransforms, and probability theory. Students receive graduate credit for this course which, when used on plan of study, extend minimum credit requirements for the degree. f
510 Systems Definition and Cost Modeling (3:3:0) Prerequisite: graduate standing. Comprehensive examination of the methods and processes for the identification and representation of system requirements. Investigation of the systems acquisition life cycle with emphasis on requirements definition, including functional problem analysis. Examination of the systems engineering definition phase including requirements, problem analysis, definition, and functional economics. Specification of functional and nonfunctional requirements, and associated requirements proto-typing. Functional economic analysis, including the use of prevailing cost estimation models and planning and control of common operating environments. Lecture and group project including creation of requirements and use of cost estimation model. f
512 Systems Engineering for Design and Development (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 510 or equivalent. Intensive study of the design and development portion of the systems engineering life cycle for information technology and software intensive systems. Analysis and design processes for information system engineering. Entity-relationship models, object-oriented modeling and analysis, structured analysis and design. Life cycle models for the development of systems. Technical direction and systems management of organizational processes. Systems engineering and information technology standards. s
513 Total Systems Engineering, Reengineering and Enterprise Integration (3:3:0) Prerequisites: SYST 510 or SYST 520. Principles of strategic quality, including TQM. Quality standards including ISO9000 and 14000. Organizational leadership, cultures, and process maturity, reengi-neering. Quality, organization learning and reengineering approaches to enable information integration and management and environment and framework integration in the systems engineering of knowledge intensive systems. Emphasis is placed on the role of integrated product and process design teams, standard and commercial off-the-shelf products in enterprise integration. Architecture driven system characteristics are studied, as is transition management of legacy systems.
520 System Design and Integration (3:3:0) Prerequisite: graduate standing. System design and integration methods are studied and practiced, including both structured analysis and object-oriented based techniques. Includes the development process of functional, physical, and operational architectures for the allocation and derivation of component-level requirements for the purpose of specification production; examination of interfaces and development of interface architectures. Life cycle of systems is addressed; generation and analysis of life cycle requirements. Software tools are introduced and used for portions of the systems engineering cycle. Students are expected to develop a system design for a system of their choice using both the structured analysis and object-oriented techniques presented in class, and they will make presentations on these designs. s
521/OR 643 Network Analysis (3:3:0) Prerequisites: MATH 213 and MATH 203 or equivalent; OR 441 or OR 541. Network nomenclature. Elementary graph theory. Linear and nonlinear network models: multi-commodity flow, mathematical games and equilibria on networks, network design and control. Dynamic network models. Applications to transportation, telecommunications, data communications, and water resource systems. f
530 System Management and Evaluation (3:3:0) Prerequisite: graduate standing. Provides the necessary techniques for evaluating the cost and operational effectiveness of system designs and systems management strategies. Performance measurement, work breakdown structures, cost estimating, and quality management are discussed. Configuration management, standards, and case studies of systems from different application areas are discussed. f,s
542/EEP 602 Decision Support Systems Engineering (3:3:0)Prerequisite: SYST 301 or graduate standing. Studies design of computerized systems to support individual or organizational decisions. The course teaches a systems engineering approach to decision support system (DSS) development. A DSS is the end product of a development process, and it is this process that is key to successfully integrating a DSS into an organization. Any DSS is built on a theory (usually implicit) of what makes for successful decision support in the given context. Empirical evaluation of the specific DSS and the underlying theory should be carried on throughout the development process. The course examines some prevailing theories of decision support, considers the issues involved in obtaining empirical validation for a theory, and discusses what, if any, empirical support exists for the theories considered. Students design a decision support system for a semester project. f
560 Introduction to Air Traffic Control (3:3:0) Prerequisite: graduate standing. Intended as an introduction to Air Traffic Control (ATC) for those who plan professions in the aviation industry. It is a necessary introduction for students who will later specialize and take more in-depth courses. The course will survey the entire field, presenting the history of ATC and how it came to be as it is, the technology on which the system is based, the procedures used by controllers to meet the safety and efficiency goals of the system, the organizational structure of the FAA, challenges facing system and means under investigation to meet these challenges. Involves some field work for data collection and analysis. Class project requiring system simulation required. f
563 Research Methods in Systems Engineering and Information Technology (3:3:0) Prerequisite: STAT 344 and 354 or equivalent. Provides foundation for one of the most important activities in systems engineering: information gathering to support drawing conclusions and making decisions about design options and process improvements. Develops understanding of the scientific process, the use of empirical evidence to support and refute scientific hypotheses, and the use of scientific information in decision-making. Covers different sources of scientific evidence: designed experiments, quasi-experiments, field studies, surveys, and case studies. The process of formulating testable hypotheses is discussed. Methods of measurement are discussed, including approaches to measuring soft, hard-to-quantify factors. Presentation of results is discussed. Students do a project involving empirical research. f
571 Systems Engineering Management (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 471 or SYST 530. Study of more advanced topics in systems engineering management. Seminar style; students expected to read a number of selections from the current literature as well as make presentations and produce papers on engineering management topics. Examines issues such as multiproject management, quality programs, and the impacts of process change on the organization. Focuses strongly on the practical impacts of various system engineering management techniques and practices on projects, organizations, and personnel. f
573 Decision and Risk Analysis (3:3:0) Prerequisite: STAT 344 or equivalent. Study of analytic techniques for rational decision making that address uncertainty, conflicting objectives, and risk attitudes. Covers modeling uncertainty; rational decision-making principles; representing decision problems with value trees, decision trees, and influence diagrams; solving value hierarchies, decision trees, and influence diagrams; defining and calculating the value of information; incorporating risk attitudes into the analysis; and conducting sensitivity analysis. (Offered concurrently with SYST 473. Students may not receive credit for both SYST 473 and SYST 573.) f,s
611 System Methodology and Modeling (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 500 or equivalent. Provides broad yet rigorous introduction to methodologies. Emphasizes systems modeling and per-formance. Topics include system model and behavior anal-ysis, linear and nonlinear systems, discretization and linearization, optimization, dynamic programming and optimal control. Methodologies address system performance issues, and assist in the evaluation of alternative system designs. Resource allocation for planning and control introduced. f
619/ECE 672 Introduction to Architecture Based Systems Engineering. (3:3:0) Prerequisites: SYST 510 or 520 or permission of instructor. Lifecycles in systems engineering and the role of systems integration and architecting in these. Conceptual frameworks for systems architecting. Structure, function, and purpose of systems architecting and integration. Risk management and systems architecting and integration. User requirements and functional specifications in systems architecting. f
620/ECE 673 Discrete Event Systems (3:3:0) Prerequisites: SYST 611 or ECE 521 or equivalent. Introduction to modeling and analysis of discrete event dynamical systems. Course covers elements of discrete mathematics and then focuses on Petri Net models and their basic properties. Relation to other discrete event models of dynamical systems. f
621/ECE 674 Systems Architecture Design (3:3:0) Prerequisites: SYST 619/ECE 672 and SYST 620/ ECE 673. An intensive study of the relationships between different types of architecture representations and the methodologies used to obtain them. Approaches based on systems engineering constructs, such as structured analysis and software engineering constructs, including object orientation, are used to develop architecture representations or views and to derive an executable model of the information architecture. The executable model is then used for behavior analysis and performance evaluation. The roles of the systems architect and the systems engineer are discussed. Examples from current practice including the C4ISR architectures are used. s
622/ECE 675 System Integration and Architecture Evaluation. (3:3:0) Prerequisites: SYST 620/ECE 673 and SYST 621/ECE 675. Covers the system integration problem, the role of architectures in systems integration, integration in a system of systems and a federation of systems. Evaluation of architectures, measures performance and effectiveness. Assessment of system capabilities. Analysis of alternatives. s
659 Topics in Systems Engineering (3:3:0) Prerequisite: permission of instructor. Topics not covered in the departmentÕs regular systems engineering offerings. Course content may vary each semester depending on instructor and the perception of studentsÕ needs. Course may be repeated once for credit. f,s
660/OR 660 Air Transportation Systems Modeling (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 460/560 or permission of instructor. The student will be introduced to a wide range of current issues in air transportation. The issues include: public policy toward the industry, industry economics, system capacity, current system modeling capability, human factors considerations, safety analysis and surveillance systems, and new technological developments. The student is expected to develop a broad understanding of the contemporary and future issues. The studentÕs knowledge will be evaluated through class discussions, a take-home midterm exam and a term project to be completed by the end of the semester. s
664/STAT 664 Bayesian Inference and Decision Theory (3:3:0) Prerequisite: STAT 544 or STAT 554 or equivalent. Introduces students to decision theory and its relationship to Bayesian statistical inference. Students learn the commonalities and differences between the Bayesian and frequentist approaches to statistical inference, how to approach a statistics problem from the Bayesian perspective, and how to combine data with informed expert judgment in a sound way to derive useful and policy relevant conclusions. Students learn the necessary theory to develop a firm understanding of when and how to apply Bayesian and frequentist methods, and will also learn practical procedures for inference, hypothesis testing, and developing statistical models for phenomena. Specifically, students will learn the fundamentals of the Bayesian theory of inference, including probability as a representation for degrees of belief, the likelihood principle, the use of Bayes Rule to revise beliefs based on evidence, conjugate prior distributions for common statistical models, and methods for approximating the posterior distribution. Graphical models are introduced for constructing complex probability and decision models from modular components. s
671/OR 671 Judgment and Choice Processing and Decision Making (3:3:0) Prerequisite: STAT 510 or equivalent, or permission of instructor. How do people make judgments and decisions? Course presents an initial review of the scientific literature directed toward answering this question and emphasizes its importance when performing decision analysis and designing systems to support judgment and decision processes. f
677/OR 677/STAT 677 Statistical Process Control (3:3:0) Prerequisites: STAT 510, STAT 554, or STAT 544 or equivalent. Introduction to concepts of quality control and reliability. Acceptance sampling, control charts, and economic design of quality control systems are discussed, as are system reliability, fault-free analysis, life testing, repairable systems, and role of reliability, quality control, and maintainability in life-cycle costing. Role of MIL and ANSI standards in reliability and quality programs considered.
680/ECE 670/OR 683 Principles of Command, Control, Communications, and Intelligence (C3I) (3:3:0) Prerequisite: ECE 528 or SYST 611 or OR 542 or equivalent. Broad introduction to fundamental principles of Command, Control, Communication, and Intelligence (C3I) The principles and techniques are applicable to a wide range of civilian and military situations. Modeling and simulation of combat operations are discussed. The sensing, fusion, and situation assessment processes are studied in detail. Optimal decision-making rules are derived. The concepts of C3 architectures are discussed. Tools to evaluate and design C3 systems such as queuing theory are also developed. f
683 Modeling, Simulation, and Gaming (3:3:0) Prerequisites: MATH 213, SYST 500 or equivalent, and graduate standing. Develops methods for designing combat models and games. Existing combat models are critical to the C3I process. Exercises and games are used to demonstrate the value of properly developed C3I modules in a combat simulation.
684 Sensor Data Fusion (3:3:0) Prerequisites: SYST 680 or ECE 670. Examines design issues in multisensor fusion systems. Studies the use of probability, evidence, and possibility theories for object identification. Studies Bayesian networks, blackboard architectures, and spatial and temporal reasoning for situation assessment.
685 Estimation and Tracking: Principles and Techniques (3:3:0) Prerequisite: ECE 528 or OR 542 or STAT 544 or equivalent. Principles and estimation techniques for static and dynamic systems, linear and nonlinear, discrete and continuous time. Estimation for kinematic models, track initiation, bearing-only tracking, tracking maneuvering targets with adaptive filtering, MM (Multiple Model) and interactive MM algorithms. Tracking single target in clutter, nearest neighbor algorithm, tracking and data association, Multiple hypothesis tracking. Tracking performance evaluation.
691/PUBP 771 Introduction to Enterprise Engineering: Engineering and Policy (4:3:1) Prerequisite: INFS 614, or equivalent. Provides overview of Extended Enterprise Integration. Lectures focus on the SAP architecture and the R/3 standard software solution. Laboratory requires students to complete an end-to-end implementation project with the Great Plains Software midrange ERP solution, Dynamics C/S +. For modeling, students must demonstrate complete proficiency in the Architecture of Information Systems (ARIS) methodology, and the supporting ARIS Toolset.
692/PUBP 772 Decision Support for Enterprise Integration (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 542 and SYST 691. Focuses on use of Òbusiness intelligenceÓ to enhance competitive advantage; developing an information driven set of controls to improve profitability; and emphasizing the creation of a balanced business with aligned corporate direction and strategic intent. Solutions provided within ERP systems examined.
693/PUBP 773 Supply Chain Integration and Management (Business-to-Business Electronic Commerce)(3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 691. Lectures focus on two issues: Supply chain integration from an information technology perspective, and supply chain management from a decision support perspective. The motivation for the course is the merging of enterprise computing with operations research, primarily through customer/supply chain management systems. Topics include ERP/web integration, advanced planning, and customer relationship management.
694/PUBP 774 E-Commerce Architectures (Business-to-Consumer Electronic Commerce) (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 691. Introduction to network and system architectures that support high volume business to consumer web sites and portals. Course provides insight into the structure of the modern web enabled storefront. Critical business and technology issues include Storage Area Networks (SANs), server clustering, load balancing techniques at the server and network level, fault tolerance, and recovery of database and application servers.
695/PUBP 775 Economics of Electronic Commerce (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 691. Focuses on gaining competitive advantage through electronic commerce implementation; the identification and growing of new market opportunities, as well as the electronic enabling of existing business relationships; business-to-consumer relationships, as well as the economics of strategic procurement, ERP hosting, customer relationship management, catalog hosting, portal operations, and supplier management.
696/PUBP 776 Customer Relationship Management (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 691. Focuses on the Òfront officeÓ and its integration with the Òback office.Ó The modern world of e-commerce extends intra-enterprise integration as implemented in Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems to include external constituents, such as customers, partners, and suppliers. This course is focused on modern system support for the demand chain and the value creation process that results from integrating the front office systems with the back office systems.
697/PUBP 777 Critical Information Technology Infrastructures (3:3:0) Prerequisite: SYST 694. Design and implementation of high-speed network and application services in support of modern Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems. Critical technologies include high-speed data communication, switched vs. routed data flow, workflow engines, business rule and web application servers, and load balancing technologies. A large-scale web-enabled ERP system architecture examined in detail.
698 Independent Study and Research (3:3:0) Prerequisites: graduate standing, completion of at least two core courses, permission of instructor. Study of a selected area in systems engineering or C3I under the supervision of a faculty member. Written report required. f,s,sum
760 Special Topics in Command, Control, Communications, and Intelligence Systems Engineering (3:3:0)Prerequisite: SYST 680. Special topics in the C3I area, with different content in different terms. Representative areas include quantitative evaluation of C3 systems, applications of artificial intelligence in C3 systems, and military communications systems.
781/INFS 781/STAT 781: Data Mining and Knowledge Discovery (3:3:0) Prerequisites: SYST/STAT644 or CS 650 or INFS 623 or equivalent. Concerned with methods and systems for deriving user-oriented knowledge from large databases and other information sources, and applying this knowledge to support decision making. Information sources can be in numerical, textual, visual, or multimedia forms. Covers theoretical and practical aspects of current methods and selected systems for data mining, knowledge discovery, and knowledge management, including those for text mining, multimedia mining, and web mining.
798 Systems Engineering Project (3:0:0) Prerequisite: 21 graduate credits, including SYST 611. Capstone project course for the MS/SE program. Key activity is completion of a major applied team project resulting in an acceptable technical report, and oral briefing. Students should plan to take this course in their last semester of studies.
799 MasterÕs Thesis (1-6:0:0) Prerequisites: 21 graduate credits and permission of instructor. Research project chosen and completed under the guidance of a graduate faculty member, which results in a technical report acceptable to a three-member faculty committee, and an oral defense.