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Why ENCE 624

Experience has shown that excellent project managers function at a level well beyond the classic linear mindset of traditional project management. “Simultaneous managers” subscribe to the rational and scientific approach but also adopt a new mindset of flexibility, one of expecting goals and means to be resolved simultaneously and interactively rather than sequentially. This course examines the 9 principles simultaneous managers use interdependently, and presents a theory of project management that is intellectually rigorous and consistent with pragmatic knowledge.

ProfessorJohn Cable, R.A.John Cable, R.A.Stats Credits 3 Offered Next* Spring Online Prequisite Permission



Advanced principles of planning dealing with uncertainty, isolation, absorption, integrative and systematic concepts.

Critical chain

Critical chain concept, theory of constraints

Leadership & Integration

Internal and external leadership, teams and nonlinear phasing.


Simple procedures, intensive communication, and systematic monitoring.



Offered Next: Spring Online*
Week 1Course Overview and IntroductionWeek 2Systematic & Integrative Planning
  • Set project objectives
  • Employ multiphase planning
  • Start planning as early as possible
  • Adopt diverging/converging process
  • Prepare integrated functional plans
Week 3Timely Decision Adjusted to Uncertainty
  • Postpone details of uncertain tasks
  • Implement acceleration techniques for fast feedback
  • Plan for multiple time horizons
Week 4Isolation & Absorption
  • Isolate highly uncertain tasks
  • Loosen connections between uncertain tasks
  • Divide the project according to uncertainty
Week 5Discussion of Critical Chain book
  • Removing safety
  • Assigning resources
  • Progress management
  • Theory of constraints
Week 6Study Week - Critical Chain Paper DueWeek 7Inward & Outward Leadership
  • Scan and influence external environment
  • Manage decision making process
  • Intervene when necessary
Week 8Teamwork
  • Develop multi-functional teams
  • Sustain teamwork throughout
Week 9Overlapping Phases
  • Involve representatives of downstream phases as early as possible
  • Execute phases in parallel
Week 10Simple Procedures
  • Develop standard & ad hoc procedures
  • Document & share success stories
Week 11Intensive Communication
  • Promote face to face communication
  • Employ multiple mediums
Week 12Systematic Monitoring
  • Monitor critical planning assumptions
  • Provide timely feedback for continuous planning
Week 13Summarize Semester and Present FindingsWeek 14Final Project Paper Due

*All course content, including schedule, topics, and books are subject to change semester-to-semester. Course costs are dependent on students' individual situations, including but not limited to, online vs on-campus enrollment, in-state vs out-of-state enrollment, and scholarships. Not all books on this page may be required readings and additional readings may be assigned. Please check the UMD Schedule of Classes for most up to date semester offerings. Instructors give students specific semester details once they are enrolled.