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A rational method of project selection by post-graduate students

Vassalos, D. and Lee, B.S. and Sayer, P.G. (2003) A rational method of project selection by post-graduate students. International Journal of Engineering Education, 19 (6). pp. 847-854. ISSN 0949-149X

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Abstract

A critical part, and sometimes the whole, of any postgraduate programme is the undertaking by the students of a project. One of the most crucial phases in this undertaking is the project selection. It is also this phase where students, invariably, receive no formal training and this could delay the whole undertaking substantially; in some cases leading to premature abandonment of the project or the degree programme altogether. This paper attempts to fill this gap by providing a framework and a methodology that would enable the student to develop a greater comprehension of the problem and to make a rational choice. The framework is based on decision analysis and comprises a two-stage procedure: (a) technical uncertainty and dominance screening and (b) the application of SMART (Simple Multi-Attribute Rating Technique). A hypothetical case is considered to illustrate the methodology and the results are discussed.