16.660 / 16.853 / ESD.62J Introduction to Lean Six Sigma Methods

January (IAP) 2008

A photo of students working together at a table.
Students working together on an implementation exercise. (Photograph by Hugh McManus.)

Course Description

This course introduces the fundamental Lean Six Sigma principles that underlay modern continuous improvement approaches for industry, government and other organizations. Lean emerged from the Japanese automotive industry, particularly Toyota, and is focused on the creation of value through the relentless elimination of waste. Six Sigma is a quality system developed at Motorola which focuses on elimination of variation from all processes. The basic principles have been applied to a wide range of organizations and sectors to improve quality, productivity, customer satisfaction, employee satisfaction, time-to-market and financial performance.

This course is offered during the Independent Activities Period (IAP), which is a special 4-week term at MIT that runs from the first week of January until the end of the month.

Special Features

Technical Requirements

Special software is required to use some of the files in this course: .xls.

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Prof. Earll Murman
Prof. Annalisa Weigel
Al Haggerty
Hugh McManus

Course Meeting Times

1 session / day for 3 days
8 hours / session


Undergraduate / Graduate