Teaching how to calibrate a process using experimental design and analysis: the Ballistat

Peter P. Howley*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


As part of the University of Newcastle's Total Quality Management (TQM) course, students study Experimental Design (ED) and Statistical Process Control (SPC) within the framework of the scientific approach to process improvement. A sufficient balance of theory and application is required to keep Business and Management students, most with a largely non-quantitative background, interested and aware of the need and method to correctly implement ED and SPC in industry. Tools to facilitate a basic understanding of the importance of the 3Rs, namely, Randomization, Replication, and Blocking, as well as highlighting the potential for mistakes or inefficient calibration techniques are essential in the learning process. This paper describes the use of a particular tool, called the "Ballistat," to illustrate TQM concepts, which enables students to obtain the hands-on experience needed to control processes in industry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Statistics Education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Blocking
  • Linear regression
  • Randomization
  • Replication
  • Statistical process control
  • Total quality management


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