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Engineering the German Way
Munich, Germany
Program Terms: Summer
This program is currently not accepting applications.
Fact Sheet:
Program Type: Panther Program Housing Options: Hostel
Language Prerequisite: No prerequisite Number of Credits: 4
Internship/Research?: None Open to Non-Pitt Students: Yes
Language of Instruction: English Program Length: 3 weeks
Courses of Study: Engineering Minimum GPA: 2.50 (for engineering students only)
Pitt Campus: All Pitt students
Program Description:

engineering the german way: munich

Program Overview 

This three-week intensive program through the University of Applied Sciences in Munich, Germany allows students to gain insight on the German approach to engineering and management.  Students are able to experience various engineering perspectives and methods by combining technical classes with factory tours. The technical topics will focus on important engineering issues including overcoming challenges in the international market. Students are given the opportunity to explore cultural aspects of southern Germany by taking a tour of an authentic brewery, visiting the famous gardens and exploring the historic city. This course is designed for engineering students from the US. 

Location Information 
2Munich is the capital and largest city of the German state of Bavaria. It is the third largest city in Germany, with about 1.4 million people within the city limits. Munich was officially granted city status in 1175, but did not become the capital until Bavaria was reunited in 1506. During the 16th Century, Munich was the center of German counter reformation and renaissance arts.
Modern-day Munich is a financial, social and industrial hub of Europe; it is frequently recognized for its innovation in such areas. It is a green city, having numerous parks dating back to the 16th century. One park in particular, Englischer Garten (The English Garden), is larger than Central Park in New York and houses four of the most famous beer gardens in Munich. The state of Bavaria has a vast number of breweries and is very proud of brewing the "best beer in the world." The combination of rich cultural history and engineering innovation make Munich the ideal location to study and explore.


3By participating in the program, students will receive 4-credits (one course). The course will cover several technical topics, each being supplemented by a factory tour. The lectures are conducted in English by a professor in the department of Engineering and Management at the Munich University of Applied Sciences. The class topics include:
R&D Management: 

This class topic provides an overview of the development process for complex products like automobiles or machines. Topics include a general introduction to requirements and factors for successful product development. This course will allow students to understand the product development process and teach the fundamental concepts and techniques used for product development.


Production and Manufacturing Systems:

 This class topic provides an overview of production systems with an emphasis on operations and collaboration with international suppliers. Topics include an introduction to manufacturing technologies and their consequence on quality, cost and make-or-buy decisions. Students will understand the meaning of quality and cost of manufacturing technologies and the fundamental concepts and techniques for an international production.


Digital Factory Layout and Factory Simulation:

This class topic provides an overview of digital factory planning (processes and layout), factory simulation as well as methods and principles of lean production.   Students will be asked to run their own production shop and learn how to improve productivity through lean methods and principles.


Product-Ergonomics and Ergonomic Aspects in Manufacturing: This class topic begins with an overview to basics of ergonomics with respect to legal and social demands and provides necessary core competences of an ergonomist. The students will understand the interaction of human and work as well as the fundamental concepts and techniques used in analyzing work situations with respect to main stress factors.


In addition to these class topics, students will choose from one of the following Profession Skill Options:


Professional skill 1: Technology Law and Technical Harmonization in Europe

This option provides an overview on the impacts of laws concerning machinery and other technical products.


Professional skill 2:  Industrial work-force dynamics  in Germany

This option provides an overview of the specific way of cooperation and co-determination in German industry.



Recommended Courses

The following fulfill the engineering humanities and social science requirement and will prepare you for a broader understanding of the culture before you embark.

  • GER 0001- Elementary German 1 (or any other level of German language)
  • GER 1052 - The Major Cultural Periods
  • GER 1522 - German Today


Program Dates 
Arrive in Munich:  May 16, 2014
Program Completion: June 7, 2014

Pitt Student In-State Program Fee: 2014 - $3,600.00
Pitt Student Out-of-State Program Fee: 2014 - $3,800.00
Non-Pitt Student Fee: 2014 - $3,800.00
Included: tuition for 4 Pitt credits, on-site orientation (including a group arrival dinner), housing in youth hostel, some other meals, airport transfer and ground transportation in Munich (3-week subway, bus and tramway ticket), health insurance, and admission to all scheduled tours and excursions (including reimbursement for museum visits), and group departure ceremony and dinner at the conclusion of the program. 
Additional Expenses: Pitt administrative fee ($300.00), Airfare (round trip to Munich) (~$1,300.00 - $1,600.00), Meals ($450.00), Books (TBA), Personal expenses (depends on personal spending habits*). 
*Students planning to extend their stay or travel extensively in Europe on the weekends should budget more for personal expenses.

Round Trip from Pittsburgh to Munich: around $1,300.00 - $1,600.00

Housing Information 
Students will be placed in a centrally located youth hostel that is fully accomodated for their three-week stay in Munich.

Admissions Requirements 
  • Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors in all disciplines of the Swanson School of Engineering are encouraged to apply. Additionally, students in the Dietrich School of Arts & Sciences with a strong interest in the subject matter and who have a solid background in physics and math are also welcome to apply. 
  • A minimum 2.5 GPA for engineering students and 2.75 GPA for all other students is required. Students who do not meet the GPA requirements must obtain Special Dean's Permission. Please see the section for Material Submissions for more information. 
  • If you would like to spend any of your last 24 credits abroad, you must also obtain special approval. Applicants are not required to have German language experience, though some exposure or basic German skills will be helpful. All engineering lectures are conducted in English.

Contact Information

Peer Advising Walk-in hours in 152 Benedum Hall:
M: 11am-5pm
Tu: 11am-5pm
W: 9am-5pm

Dr. Diane Hardy Saran
Associate Director, International Engineering Initiatives
Swanson School of Engineering

Dates / Deadlines:
There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
This program is currently not accepting applications.