This program was created by Prof. Athula Kulatunga with the support of industry and faculty of the Department of engineering Technology at Purdue University Northwest in Fall 2018. Discipline Specific Skill Acquisition (DSSA) program is offered for freshman students in mechanical, electrical, and mechatronics engineering technology programs. It is called discipline specific because the skill set is derived from a Comprehensive Skill Analysis (CSA) related to a specific engineering or technology program. The entry level skills are then introduced to freshmen students in a workshop like environment using guided hands-on activities. A set of hands-on activities, called a skill module (SM), are grouped to develop specific entry level skills under the direct supervision of a skill expert from an industry background. When mastered, students can earn skill badges for certain skills. This approach will help to customize the needs of a specific region or industry with a solid foundation and allow learners to acquire advanced theoretical and practical skills in a chosen post-secondary degree later on.

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