Course Descriptions

SELP Course Descriptions

The program designator "SELP" is used for all courses and all study options offered by the Systems Engineering graduate program, as listed below in this section. The MBA course descriptions can be found in the MBA section of the LMU Bulletin. All courses are three (3) semester hours unless otherwise noted. HSE = Healthcare Systems Engineering.

SELP 500 Systems Engineering
3 semester hours
Fundamentals of modern Systems Engineering throughout the program lifecycle; focus on mission success, system, and system-of-systems; broad integrative adoptable and flexible thinking; initiation of a SE activity, feasibility studies, mission engineering, pre-proposal and proposal activities; risk in performance, cost, schedule and deployment aspects of a project; requirement definition and development, system design, interface and configuration control, verification and validation; introduction to critical aspects of the DoD, NASA, and INCOSE guides on SE; class projects in Integrated Product Development Teams. All students receive 20% of the grade for taking the INCOSE Associate Systems Engineering Professional (ASEP) Certification Examination.

SELP 505 Systems Engineering for Healthcare
3 semester hours
Fundamentals of modern Systems Engineering focused on Healthcare applications. Focus on project success, broad integrative adoptable and flexible thinking. Initiation of a SE activity: capture of goals, regulations, and constrains; stakeholders; and team development. Fundamentals of systems architecting. Feasibility studies and trade studies, capture of interfaces and top level requirements; requirement development, baseline management, interface and configuration control, verification/validation. Risk management. Life cycle activities. Class project. Enrollment limited to Healthcare Systems Engineering students.

SELP 510 Project Management
3 semester hours
Aspects of management and leadership of complex technical endeavors. Project management principles and interaction of the manager with the team. Architecting teams and organizational structures. Planning a project and managing financial, schedule and technical challenges and constraints during its lifecycle. Tools for planning, controlling, and monitoring a project. Subcontract management. Configuration management. Federal acquisition process lifecycle. Microsoft Project.

SELP 515 Healthcare Delivery Systems
3 semester hours
Mandatory entry-level course for 4+1 students and other students transitioning from non-healthcare fields. History and operations of U.S. private, non-profit, hybrid and government healthcare delivery systems. Costs and payment systems. Successes and challenges in modern healthcare. Introduction to: electronic records and their portability; Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act; healthcare informatics and electronic records, patient safety, medical devices and integrated systems. Review of quality, safety and regulatory systems. Non-U.S. healthcare delivery systems. Medical and healthcare jargon.This course is available only to Healthcare Systems Engineering students.

SELP 520 Engineering Ethics and Communications
3 semester hours
Ethical implications of engineers' work, both domestic and international. Introduction to ethical reasoning, liability, obligations and rights of engineers and managers, case studies, and current global issues. Constructive critique and guidance on written and oral presentations.

SELP 530 Lean Thinking
3 semester hours
History of Lean, Lean fundamentals: principles, value and waste. Lean Manufacturing with detailed coverage of JIT/Lean Tools; Kaizen, Gemba, Hoshin Kanry. Lean in different domains: Office, Supply Chain, Accounting, Labor relations. NUMMI Case Study; Time permitting: Theory of constraints and critical chain. Project.

SELP 535 Lean Healthcare (online, synchronous delivery)
3 semester hours
The U.S. healthcare system is in a crisis. While costs continue to rise to unsustainable levels, the average quality of care lags that of other industrialized nations. The professionals delivering health care are overworked and frustrated. Lean has been extraordinarily effective in increasing the efficiency of manufacturing processes. However, health care is not a simple manufacturing-like operation—it is a highly complex enterprise, with many stakeholders, very complex processes, non-standardized patients and medical problems, and great variability in processes and demand. These factors challenge the application of "traditional" lean techniques derived from manufacturing. This class will bridge the gap between traditional lean practices and the needs of healthcare enterprises. The class will begin with a review of basic lean concepts, with examples of how they can be applied to health care processes. Next, issues that complicate the application of lean to complex, high variability processes (such as many healthcare processes) will be covered, including handling variation, people and corporate culture issues, and the modifications required to make lean tools effective. Finally, implementation and sustainment issues will be covered. The class will mix traditional lecture-based instruction with a variety of active learning exercises, including a day-long clinic simulation exercise. Online course delivered by WebEx (3 hours per week). This course is available only to Healthcare Systems Engineering students.

SELP 540 Systems Thinking
3 semester hours
Systems Thinking is a course in which both students and faculty of two LMU Colleges work together: the Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts and the Frank R. Seaver College of Science and Engineering (the Systems Engineering and Healthcare Systems Engineering graduate programs). We look at complex systems that combine both technological and societal aspects of our civilization, seeking to understand how things influence one another within a large context, and how we can influence them for common good. The concepts of common good and public interest are discussed and serve as the ethical baseline for the discourse. Students work in teams addressing the big questions of our time such as: healthcare, diagnostic error, energy and transportation, public health, K-12 education, end-of-life health management, defense and homeland security, and others. After five lectures on introductory topics and methodology, students will study approximately four such complex systems during the semester. At least two systems are healthcare related. Systems engineering and liberal arts students will complement each other's thinking. The work includes intensive interactive in-class brainstorming and simple modeling, as well as homework research and presentations of results. Note: we welcome students who are not solely ideological, open to seek optimum solutions to the societal challenges in which the free market is not interested in participating, or fails to deliver.

SELP 550 Systems Architecting
3 semester hours
This course will enable students to create, develop, and integrate complex system architectures. Specific goals include 1) improve the student's understanding of the role of system architects and their relationship to systems engineering and integration, 2) applying the system architecture concepts to define an enterprise baseline, 3) creating an architectural blueprint for transforming the enterprise, 4) identifying capability gaps as well as redundancies, and 5) facilitating effective systems integration. Course objectives will be met through lectures, discussions, readings, in-class team exercises, and applied case studies.

SELP 560 Integration of Hybrid Hardware and Software Systems
3 semester hours
Increasingly, today's complex systems have significant software and hardware elements. This course provides systems engineers with the basic foundation of concepts, methods, and practical intuitions necessary to understand and manage the integration of hardware and software in a large system. Life cycle models. Overview of management processes and approaches important for success. Examples of tools and methods for real-world hybrid systems. Legacy systems, commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) components, and business process integration. Lectures, classroom group discussion based on assigned readings and case studies. No programming experience required.

SELP 598 Special Studies
1 TO 3 semester hours

SELP 599 Independent Studies
1 TO 3 semester hours

SELP 600 Advanced Systems Engineering
3 semester hours
Application and management and monitoring of the SE process and logistics; leadership of integrated teams; management for uncertainty, decision making, risk and opportunity; design for "ilities" (e.g., manufacturability, testability, sustainability, maintainability, etc.); technology management and assessment; identifying options and bounding the trade space; software systems management; verification process; different roles of testing; modeling techniques and SE tools; design. Prerequisite: SELP 500.

SELP 610 Advanced Program Leadership
3 semester hours
This course will be conducted in three segments: individual leadership (one's own motivations and leadership style, drive, risk, fear, power, passion, and attitude), project leadership (manager's role in leading a project and strategies for successful execution), and company leadership (elements of a successful business and the role of management). Each student will develop a case study of a significant program or development effort using the elements discussed in the class.

SELP 620 Quality
3 semester hours
History and philosophy of quality; quality as complement to lean; quality versus features; continuous improvement: PDCA cycle, bottom-up suggestions, Kaizen, Six Sigma, Theory of Constraints, benchmarking, brainstorming, re-engineering, strategic plan; Deming's profound knowledge and 14 points; Quantitative Methods: charts, Design of Experiments (optimization of processes, robustness, full factorials, fractional factorials, folding, Plackett-Burnam, introduction to nonlinear designs), Statistical Process Control; Quality systems: ISO 9001:2000, CMMI, Malcolm Baldridge Award. Project.

Note: the DOE portion is offered time permitting.

SELP 625 Patient Safety and Quality Systems
3 semester hours
Patient safety as critical component of healthcare quality. Death and injury due to errors in healthcare. Reasons for errors. Error reporting systems and legal considerations. Leadership and knowledge for patient safety. Performance standards and expectations. Creating safety systems. Key design concepts. Medication safety. Safety activities. Systems thinking in patient systems. This course is available only to Healthcare Systems Engineering students.

SELP 630 Advanced Lean Management of Engineering Programs
3 semester hours
The course introduces the latest knowledge in the fields of Lean Product Development, Lean Programs Management, LPDF Method, Lean Systems Engineering, and Lean Final Engineering, including the Lean Enablers for Systems Engineering (honored with the INCOSE Best Product Award and with the Shingo Prize Award for Best Publication and Research) and Lean Enablers for Managing Engineering Programs, a set of 326 practices for Product Development and Systems Engineering, awarded with another Shingo Prize. Project.

Prerequisite: SELP 530 (waived for students of the Certificate in Program Leadership).

SELP 635 Advanced Lean Management of Healthcare
3 semester hours
Review of Lean basics: Principles: Value, Waste; Selected JIT/TPS tools; NUMMI Labor-Management Relations Case Study. Lean Project Management (LPDF Method) and Lean Office.  Leaning Emergency Departments, Clinical Laboratories, Radiology Laboratories, Clinics, Operating Rooms, in-patient Hospitals, and Supply Chain. Selected Lean Enablers for Healthcare. Project and exam. This course is available only to the students of Lean Healthcare Certificate and Healthcare Systems Engineering MS Program. Prerequisite: SELP 535.

SELP 640 Model Based Systems Engineering
3 semester hours
This course is an introduction to Model Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) with an additional focus area on the Object Management Group's standard system modeling language (SysML). Topics include the history of and influences on MBSE; the role of Ontologies and Meta Models in MBSE; model usage for requirements analysis, specialty engineering, systems architecting, functional analysis, trade space analysis, performance analysis and costing; MBSE in the context of Model Based Engineering (MBE) across disciplines (Systems, Software, Mechanical, Electrical, etc.); and examples of MBSE including System of Systems, Mission Analysis, Operational/Business analysis, and platform-specific system trades space analysis. The SysML focus area will concentrate on development of SysML and physics-based model examples using modeling tool suites to facilitate understanding of the four pillars of SysML: Structure, Behavior, Requirements, and Parametrics, and translate those models into practical solutions. Students will learn to plan the use of MBSE processes and methods in the Systems Engineering lifecycle; leverage the systems architecture context for systems models and specify the boundary conditions for subsequent analytic and simulation studies; select the appropriate level of granularity for modeling various systems engineering trades; use standards-based tools to create, update, and deploy system models; and conduct engineering trade study analyses based on system Quality Attributes.

Prerequisites: SELP 500.

SELP 650 IT and Software Project Management for Systems Engineers
3 semester hours
The principles and techniques to manage projects, programs, or organizations that incorporate IT and computing infrastructure as a critical component. The life cycle of IT projects within the context of a complex organization—from development or procurement of a new solution to successful deployment and integration into business processes. In-depth coverage of both traditional life cycle models, and modern methods such as Agile and Lean software development. Deploying software developed in-house or by procuring commercial software presents significant challenges in terms of adoption by the people in the organization, classified into "machine/machine," "man/machine," or "man/man" categories. Phases of an IT project lifecycle, with emphasis on the impacted business processes, and the impact of those changes on people, the organization, and the bottom line. Key success factors and risks. The student will be taught how to apply systems engineering principles in tackling IT or software project management. Project planning, getting stakeholder buy-in, project life-cycle phases, creating budgets, schedules, identifying potential adoption problems, identifying training needs, and utilizing proven management methods to propel the IT or software related project forward to success. Case studies. Undergraduate degree in Computer Science required.

SELP 655 Medical Devices and Integrated Systems
3 semester hours
The medical device development process should follow system engineering principles, but some tailoring and translation is needed to understand their application outside of the more traditional defense and aerospace fields. This course will provide the student an understanding of the regulated medical device development process, and how systems engineering is applied in this domain. Topics include design and development planning, design inputs, design outputs, design reviews, verification, validation, design transfer, design change control, design history files, human factors, and risk management. Each of these is covered in detail to provide and understanding of systems engineering in the medical domain. Of note, this domain does not include formal RFP processes applied in government contracting. General principles for applying systems engineering in commercial development applications will be covered and contrasted with the more traditional approaches. This course is available only to Healthcare Systems Engineering students.  Prerequisite: SELP 505.

SELP 660 Introduction to Cybersecurity Concepts, Principles, & Practices
3 semester hours
This course provides a general introduction to cybersecurity concepts and principes as relevant to the computing systems of today.  This includes an architectural overview of all the components of a networked computer system as we use them today at work and play.  The course details the different kinds of threats and vulnerabilities of individuals and organizations at varying levels of the computing architecture such as the host, the network, and Internet infrastucture.  Also included will be the counter-measures and best practices (such as AV, malware protection, firewalls, intrusion detection, 2 factor authentication, VPNs, secure communication, encryption) to address the threats at different levels, how these measures work, and their limitations.  We will cover how the move to mobile and cloud computing affects cybersecurity.  Several practical exercises and case studies will augment lecture materials on key concepts and principles.

SELP 661: Cybersecurity Management and Governance for Enterprises
3 semester hours
This course is based on NIST's formal framework of terms, concepts, and methods in cybersecurity.  Creation of realistic threat models and vulnerability assessments for enterprises of different types.  We will examine the impact of new trends like cloud computing.  Viewing cybersecurity solutions as a specific kind of risk management.  Optimal combination of management procedures and controls with key technologies.  Creation of disaster recovery and business continuity plan after potential disruptions.  The role of cybersecurity as part of Information Assurance and regulatory compliance.   "Best practices" frameworks for security such as OWASP Top 10 and Security Technical Implementation GuideS (STIGS), and resources available from institutions such as CERT, NIST, and SANS. 

Prerequisite: SELP 660. 

SELP 662: Principles and Practices for Secure Software Development
3 semester hours
Security is one of the requirements of a system that must be baked into the design of any system (including software products) from the outset.  Every decision to select system architecture, component and algorithm design, coding practices, and testing methods -- all can impact the security of the final product.  In this course we describe the concepts of secure software development, and how these principles are embodied in practice.  The software development process should itself be secure and transparent with peer inspections throughout.  We will cover in detail security frameworks such as OWASP Top 10, Secutiry Technical Implementation GuideS (STIGS), NIST, CFR, CERT, SANS and other organizations that play a role in getting software certified.
Undergraduate degree in Computer Science required. 

Prerequisite: SELP 660. 

SELP 665 Population Medicine and Big Data Analytics (online course)
3 semester hours
The Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s (IHI) Triple Aim calls for the best care for the whole population at the lowest cost.  The challenge is to bring classic health services research and population health research together in a meaningful way.  The Affordable Care Act and creation of Accountable Care Organizations have shifted reimbursement from a fee-based to a value-based model. The incentives are changing from the treatment of the sick to the promotion of health and management of chronic conditions.  Big data analytics and the emergence of the data science profession are allowing purchasers and providers of care to examine large data sets to uncover hidden patterns, unknown correlations, market trends, customer preferences and other useful business information.   The course explores the opportunities for healthcare analytics and clinical treatment developments. The course will cover the research lifecycle from formulation of clinical questions, to big data access and extraction, statistical analysis, evidence formulation, and clinical implementation methods. Statistical topics will include:  Hadoop clustering, structured vs. unstructured data, data quality and consistency, extrapolation, scaling, dimensionality, supervised and unsupervised learning, decision trees, handling uncertainty, Bayesian methods, Hidden Markov models, model selection, validation, data visualization, and support vector machines. The role of Healthcare Systems Engineers and data scientists in such projects will be explored.  This course is taught online.

SELP 668 Modeling and Analysis

3 semester hours

This course emphasizes the development of analytic modeling skills and the effective applications of operations research methods in policy, management, and planning settings. A set of widely used models including linear programming, decision analysis, queuing, and forecasting is introduced. We explore how to effectively use these models, as well as their strengths and limitations in different problem and organizational contexts. The goal of this course is to teach systems engineers, policy makers, and managers to gain analytical skills and apply them to complex problems. To this end, students will learn: 1) to structure problems so they can be effectively addressed, 2) to formulate models that are useful in different decision situations, 3) to use spreadsheet software to solve these models, and 4) to effectively present quantitative analysis to clients. Prerequisite: undergraduate-level statistics.

SELP 670 Spacecraft Design
3 semester hours
Fundamental knowledge of spacecraft design: configuration, design and inter-dependencies of subsystems, launch vehicle, and trade-offs between performance, cost, and reliability. Students will be exposed to a wide range of considerations including design, manufacture, test and operation, cost, performance, manufacturability. At the end of this course, the student will have a fundamental understanding of the factors influencing spacecraft design and will be able to evaluate the impact of trade-offs between subsystem requirements on the performance and cost at the system level. The course will be fast-paced and include both individual and team projects.

SELP 673 New Product Design and Development
3 semester hours
Principles of design: problem recognition and formulation. Business background for design: marketing and entrepreneurship. Synthesis (creativity, group dynamics, etc.); analysis and iteration; specifications; cost analysis; scheduling; probability; reliability; optimization; decision theory. 

SELP 675 Healthcare Enterprise Informatics and Electronic Records
3 semester hours
Long term needs and connections: Vision for Value Driven Healthcare and Learning Healthcare System; mapping innovation opportunities, information to knowledge value chain.  Understanding Knowledge Capital for Learning Health System: People, Process, Technology, and Relationships. Design Thinking: Understanding systems design framework of balancing desirability, feasibility and viability; understanding how this can lead to improving the patient and clinician experience and enhance underlying value.  Enterprise informatics architecture – People, Processes, Technology-- to support stakeholders: Case study of systems approach of DoD Health IT architecture; Mapping patient experience and information to value chain; provider workflow across patient experience; where standards fit in context of architectural components. This example shows architecture for high availability, highly transactional, multiple geographically dispersed simultaneous users.  Enterprise informatics relationships: Understanding ecosystem relationships as they overlay on the architecture (professional societies, government agencies). We will also discuss tension between desire for increased granularity by researchers, regulatory bodies, actuaries and the increased work to enter this discrete data into the EMR. Framing ethical issues especially as they relate to the governance of health IT.  Enterprise informatics architecture and analytics: clinician computer aided diagnostics (CADs); payer, policy and other stakeholder needs for computer aided diagnostics. Potential for accelerated pace of quality improvement.  Enterprise informatics challenges (particularly the present hugely unsatisfactory EMR system): Challenges along the whole information to value chain (usability, productivity, computer aided diagnostics, changing the nature of the patient clinician interaction, ease of documenting that increases content but perversely decreases density of the most critical information – the Health IT tail wagging the dog. We will also discuss data integrity, Inter-operability with multiple legacy and new systems.  Opportunities for Innovation and Applying Design Thinking: New models of health and fitness; human factors engineering; ubiquitous connectivity of mobile devices.  Laptop computer or equivalent required. This course is available only to Healthcare Systems Engineering students.

SELP 691 Systems Engineering Case Studies
3 semester hours
Case studies to examine notable successes and failures in major technology-driven government, commercial and defense programs where systems engineering played a significant role. Lessons learned and ethics. Students perform intensive reading of the cases and present them using the Harvard Law School model.

SELP 692 Systems Engineering Seminar
3 semester hours
12-14 invited prominent experts present guest lectures with significant systems engineering component. Students write memos after each lecture and are instructed on perfect text formulation and English. Student project on a selected topic of systems engineering.

SELP 695 Systems Engineering Integrative Project/Thesis
3 TO 6 semester hours
Capstone course in which each student working individually applies and demonstrates the mastery of the systems engineering process to a complex technical and/or social endeavor. The deliverables include a formal project proposal with a rationale for the selected project, problem statement and solution goals, list of deliverables, timeline and methodology. The project must be carried out by the student in the semester of the registration. Once approved, the student executes the project in own time, submitting weekly progress reports by email (briefly describing the work completed and the work planned for next week), and meets with the Advisor at least once a month. The final deliverables include a PowerPoint presentation of 30-50 slides and its verbal presentation of 45 minutes in front of a review committee, and a written report of 30-50 pages. The deliverables must include a problem statement, solution goals, literature review, top level (and possibly lower level) requirements, architecting views, trade studies on the relevant issues, requirements verification plan, validation plan, risk management, and a description of the ethical issues involved. Optionally (highly desired but not mandatory): lean, project management, modeling/simulations, MBSE, quality. Both the PowerPoint and written report must be submitted in perfect English (a TA is available to help with the language).

This course should be taken in the last semester of the study program.

SELP 696 Project in Healthcare
3 semester hours
Capstone course in which each student working individually demonstrates the mastery of the systems engineering process applied to a healthcare problem of interest. The proposal should include with a rationale for the selected project, problem statement and solution goals, list of deliverables, timeline and methodology. Once approved, the student executes the project in own time, submitting weekly progress reports by email (briefly describing the work completed and the work planned for next week), and meets with the Advisor at least once a month. The final deliverables include a PowerPoint presentation of 30-50 slides and its verbal presentation of 45 minutes in front of a review committee. The deliverables must include fundamentals of the systems engineering process applied to a given healthcare problem.  Te solution to the problem must demonstrate high level of professionalism.  The PowerPoint must be submitted in perfect English (a TA is available to help with the language), and elegantly delivered.  Mandatory dry run in front of the Advisor.  Selected projects are available from healthcare institutions in Southern California.  Some projects may offer pay to the student.  Industry sponsored projects must complete a legal form to be obtained from the Advisor.

This course should be taken in the last semester of the study program.  The project must be carried out by the student in the semester of the registration. This course is available only to Healthcare Systems Engineering students, and the students of the Certificate in Lean Healthcare.

SELP 698 Special Studies
1 TO 3 semester hours

SELP 699 Independent Studies
1 to 3 semester hours