Industrial Supervision A.S. Degree Details

Penn Foster's Industrial Supervision Associate Degree Program consists of 61-credits that are designed for those looking to advance their careers or join the workforce in supervisory roles. Your lessons will cover principals of management, supervision and leadership, industrial safety, and more.

Program Goal and Outcomes

Program Goal

To prepare students for the opportunity to seek employment or advance their careers in supervisory roles in the Industrial space, specifically related to positions that require college-level training.

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to...
  • Identify key skills for the supervision and leadership of employees and successful work relationships
  • Demonstrate effective written and interpersonal communication skills
  • Demonstrate effective quantitative skills
  • Describe total quality management (TQM), materials and inventory management, inspection plans, measuring tools that collect quality data, and various statistical process control methods
  • Discover the principles of materials management and inventory control to maximize the use of resources for the required level of customer service
  • Recognize important safety facts and practices associated with electrical, chemical, fire, material-handling, and machine hazards
  • Discuss the steps of the accounting cycle and utilize financial document information as a management tool to plan, and track the financial status of a business
  • Define the basics of lean manufacturing and the key lean and continuous improvement (CI) fundamental principles in conjunction with continuous-improvement methods and tools
  • Demonstrate computer and information literacy
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the principles and processes involved in the functional areas and the need for collaboration among the different functions
  • Discuss the steps of the accounting cycle and utilize financial document information as a management tool to plan, and track the financial status of a business
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the liberal arts, natural sciences, and social sciences
  • Discover other topics in supervision and leadership that may apply also in the Industrial Workplace

Semester 1

Basic Skills Assessment

All degree applicants are required to complete two Basic Skills Assessments, one in reading and one in math, to determine the level of readiness for beginning their selected program. Additional studies may be required.

This course provides an overview of the many skills for supervisors to master. You'll discover how effective communication skills, strong interpersonal skills, and problem-solving skills help in finding success as a leader and necessary for building relationships with team members.


  • Communicate effectively in a supervisory role
  • Develop effective leadership and interpersonal skills to succeed in a supervisory position
  • Develop the skills required to successfully hire, manage, and terminate employees
  • Discuss how to create successful working relationships among team members
  • Define the significance of a supervisor, including key opportunities available in the industrial sectors
  • Practice problem-solving steps to help overcome obstacles and ensure your team’s success
This course provides an overview of writing styles for technology applications. Students will review basic grammar, including parts of speech, active and passive voices, sentence structure, and paragraph construction. The course also includes practical information on writing memos and emails and organizing material.


  • Describe the process of writing, as well as the parts of speech and how to use them
  • Explain various types of punctuation, rules for capitalization and spelling, and documenting sources for research
  • Construct complete, correct sentences and well-organized, coherent paragraphs
  • Recognize how to plan, develop, revise, and present your work
  • Prepare for the various kinds of writing most likely needed for a job
This course provides students with an overview of essential math skills necessary for future success in an AS technology program. The course of study includes a review of basic math functions, including trades-based examples, the metric system, formulas, introductory algebra, applied geometry, and some practical applications of trigonometry.


  • Define basic math skills to solve real-world skilled trades related problems
  • Illustrate your ability to effectively use the metric system
  • Identify your knowledge of formulas to solve problems
  • Identify algebraic concepts to solve problems
  • Solve perimeter, area, and volume for a variety of geometrical shapes
  • Define basic trigonometry functions such as sine and cosine to perform trades related calculations
This course provides students with an overview of principles that define and govern the physical universe as we know it; chemistry; physics, earth and space sciences.


  • Explain mechanics and properties of matter
  • Describe heat and its effects on matter
  • Analyze sound
  • Apply the principles of chemistry
  • Describe light
  • Determine what scientific principles apply to electricity and electronics
This course introduces students to PC applications in word processing, spreadsheets, and presentation software, as well as create documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. Students will also discover how to integrate the applications.


  • Identify how to create various Microsoft Word documents=
  • Write a sound Microsoft Word 2016 letter
  • Identify how to create various Microsoft Excel documents
  • Produce a thorough Microsoft Excel 2016 spreadsheet
  • Identify the basic skills needed to use Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Create a well-constructed memo, spreadsheet, and presentation
This course is designed to help industrial workers to know why safety is so important as well as to alert them of probable hazards and dangers associated with their workplaces. In this course, you'll be familiarized with accident prevention techniques, fire safety methods, and the use of personal protective equipment.


  • Analyze the structure of workplace safety and the methods to curb them
  • Point out the types of chemical hazards, their safety measures and prevention processes
  • Distinguish between the various catastrophes caused by fire and the methods used for stopping them
  • Categorize the safety measures and equipment associated with welding and cutting systems
  • Report the various safety measures involved in working with electricity
  • Show the various safety measures required in the handling of materials
  • Point out the various hazards associated with machines and the importance of control equipment
  • Categorize the importance of using quality electrical equipment and its related safety measures
This course is designed to help students with what it means to formulate correct and effective research questions. Students will also discover how to go about conducting and refining that research for any given project.


  • Identify how to formulate focused and specific research questions and the need for information
  • Explain the different types of research tools, how they're used to conduct different searches, and how to evaluate the quality and usefulness of the information found
  • Explain how to cite sources properly using various citation styles in consideration of academic integrity, plagiarism, and ethical use of resources
Proctored Examination

You will be required to complete a proctored exam on selected courses each semester. These assessments will evaluate the knowledge and skills that you learned during the semester. You choose the time, the location, and the qualified exam supervisor.

Semester 2

This course will provide an overview of Production scheduling, planning, and MRP; capacity management (CRP); production activity control; demand forecasting; inventory processes; warehousing and materials handling; just-in-time planning; product-quality control; total-quality management (TQM).


  • Analyze the stages of production scheduling with emphasis on material management, production, MPS, and MRP
  • Recognize the importance of CRP and PAC in relation to MRP
  • Categorize the uses and applications of an inventory management system
  • Show the functions of advanced processes in inventory with importance to distribution, production, and JIT
  • Analyze the importance of quality management and product control in determining the success of businesses

Textbook: Introduction to Materials Management

This course teaches the skills and techniques of effectively developing, drafting, and revising college-level essays toward a specific purpose and audience: active reading, prewriting strategies, sentence and paragraph structure, thesis statements, varied patterns of development (such as illustration, comparison and contrast, and classification), critical reading toward revision of structure and organization, editing for standard written conventions, and use and documentation of outside sources. Students submit two prewriting assignments and three essays (process analysis, comparison and contrast, and argumentation).


  • Use writing skills to construct well-written sentences and active reading skills to understand and analyze text.
  • Develop paragraphs using topic sentences, adequate detail, supporting evidence, and transitions.
  • Contrast the revising and editing steps of the writing process.
  • Distinguish between different patterns of development.
  • Write a process analysis essay using prewriting, drafting, revising, and editing skills.
  • Recognize how to determine the reliability of secondary sources and to give proper credit to sources referenced in an essay.
  • Write a comparison and contrast essay by using persuasive writing techniques to defend a claim.
  • Create a sound written argument using techniques of drafting and evaluating sources.
This course provides a basic introduction to the study of finance, including financial institutions, investments, and corporate finance.


  • Solve important accounting principles and concepts by creating four types of financial statements: balance sheet, income statement, statement of retained earnings, and statement of cash flows
  • Explain inventory systems, the inventory process, and the role of ethics in accounting
  • Explain cash and receivables, assets, current liabilities, and debt
  • Analyze stocks and the statement of cash flows and financial statements that are used to assess the value of a business
  • Solve accounting problems using knowledge of accounting forms and functions

Textbook: Financial Accounting

Choose one ...

BUS121 Economics 1

This course will provide an overview of macroeconomics and the modern market economy. Law of supply and demand, cost of living, monetary systems, international factors, and short run economic fluctuations will be examined and discussed.


  • Explain the economic systems and the economic perspective
  • Identify the key factors in macroeconomics and how economists study the economy as a whole
  • Explain the macroeconomic models and fiscal policies
  • Explain money, banking, and financial policy
  • Explain extending analysis of aggregate supply, current issues in theory and policy, and international economics
  • Analyze foreign exchange and investment and the effects each nation’s economy has on another nation’s economy

Textbook: Macroeconomics


SSC130 Essentials of Psychology

This course will introduce you to the relationship between biology and behavior. You will learn about human development throughout the life span.


  • Identify major psychological theories.
  • Discuss consciousness, memory, thought, and language.
  • Define intelligence, personality, and stress.
  • Analyze the role of gender in psychology.
  • Explain how community influences behavior.

Textbook: Psychology and Your Life


SSC105 World Civilizations

This course serves as an introduction to many of the major events of the fifteenth through twenty-first centuries and examines the causal relationships between events and trends.


  • Summarize the various causes and consequences of global trade and its conflicting worldwide impact
  • Report the impact of social and industrial revolutions, fifteenth century onward, on various nations
  • Analyze the conditions that led to the World Wars, decolonization, and the Cold War
  • Analyze post–World War II effects on the economic and political structures around the world
  • Summarize an event that occurred after the fifteenth century and had an impact on a world civilization
  • Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of World War II and its effects on the world population

Textbook: A History of World Societies, Volume 2


SSC125 Introduction to Sociology

This course is designed to introduce you to social structure and social interaction through groups, networks, and organizations. Study politics, the economy, population, social movements, technology, and social change.


  • Describe deviance, crime, and social control.
  • Discuss the effects of stratification, racial and ethnic inequality, sex, gender, and sexuality.
  • Examine the role of health, family, education, and religion in human behavior.

Textbook: Experience Sociology

This course covers establishing quality systems; interpreting conventional and GD&T system drawings; setting up and using inspection tools and equipment; developing part acceptance procedures; statistical process control (SPC) fundamentals and practical applications.


  • Analyze the methods used by technicians to manage, maintain, and inspect total quality
  • Categorize the elements of engineering drawings and the methods involved in them
  • Point out the basic measuring tools used in the industry
  • Categorize the basic measuring methods used in the industry
  • Differentiate between the ways in which the various advanced methods and tools help the industry
  • Point out the ways in which a sampling plan benefits an industry
  • Analyze the ways in which technicians use SPC to control the output of a process

Textbook: The Quality Technician's Handbook

Proctored Examination

You will be required to complete a proctored exam on selected courses each semester. These assessments will evaluate the knowledge and skills that you learned during the semester. You choose the time, the location, and the qualified exam supervisor.

Semester 3

This course familiarizes the student with both the business environment and the manager’s role within it. It covers decision making, planning, organizing, leading, and controlling, as well as developing an ethical perspective. 


  • Summarize the functions of management and the basic steps in various planning processes.
  • Explain how to make effective decisions as a manager and a leader.
  • Describe the fundamental elements of an organization’s structure and the components of an organization’s competitive environment.
  • Explain principles for setting goals that motivate employees, why companies develop control systems, and why teamwork is beneficial.
  • Analyze why diversity is a critical organizational and managerial issue, and describe the criteria for technology decisions and managing change.

Additional Course Material:
Textbook: M: Management, 6th Edition

This course provides an introduction to managerial accounting; analysis: C-V-P and management; budgeting and performance evaluation; decentralized operations; differential analysis and product pricing; capital investment analysis, and cost activities.


  • Analyze the various concepts related to managerial accounting and the cost accounting
  • Show the different tools of management used for the decision-making process
  • Point out the various budget analysis processes and the performance measurements for decision making
  • Analyze the various components of capital budgeting, cash flow statements, and the ratio analysis
  • Solve examples of real-world accounting problems using knowledge of accounting forms and equations

Textbook: Managerial Accounting

This course provides an introduction to the various methods of organizing material for a professional setting. Students will compose business documents using the ABC method. These include: memos, emails, outlines, reports and proposals, descriptions, and organizing materials. Students also work on honing their grammar skills.


  • Recognize how to use words correctly and effectively
  • Produce a well-constructed interoffice memo, workplace email, and business letter
  • Produce a brief business report based on findings obtained using research techniques and methods of documentation
  • Produce an informal report that lists findings of an investigation and provides recommendation for issues raised in the findings
  • Describe procedures for creating proposals, descriptions, instructions, and manuals for the workplace
  • Create a detailed proposal designed to solve an internal human resource issue
This course will introduce you to key lean components of lean manufacturing. You’ll learn about the history of lean and continuous improvement, as well as the principles, methods, and tools used in lean manufacturing.


  • Define the basics of lean manufacturing
  • Describe a history of lean and continuous improvement (CI) based upon the Toyota Production System
  • Define the key lean and continuous improvement (CI) fundamental principles and philosophies and why it's critical to get everyone aligned
  • Identify continuous-improvement methods and tools and when to use them
Choose one ...

HUM102 Art Appreciation

In this course, you will gain an understanding of artistic media, historical periods and artistic movements, the roles of the artist and the viewer, and the principles of art criticism.


  • Define the language, visual elements, and principles of design of art
  • Identify two-dimensional media
  • Identify three-dimensional media
  • Explain the evolution of art from ancient Mediterranean cultures through eighteenth century Europe
  • Identify features and popular examples of art throughout the history of African, Asian, Pacific, and American cultures
  • Compare the genres of the Modern and Postmodern eras of art from around the world

Textbook: Living with Art, 11th Edition


HUM104 Music Appreciation

In this course, you'll understand how to appreciate music by learning about the roles of the composer and the listener, the principles of music theory and instrumentation, musically significant historical periods, and varying styles of music.


  • Identify the building blocks of music a composer can use to create a piece, such as rhythm, melody, harmony, texture, form, and timbre
  • Explain the evolution of Western music through history, from the Middle Ages to the twenty-first century
  • Differentiate between the music of the baroque era and the musical styles of previous time periods
  • Recognize the major characteristics of classical music, including form, melody, and instrumentation
  • Discuss the musical trends and innovations that occurred during the romantic era
  • Trace the evolution of American popular music in the twentieth century
  • Recognize the influence of world music on modern Western composition

Textbook: Experience Music, Fourth Edition


ENG115 - Introduction to Literature 

This course will allow you to develop your critical thinking skills and broaden your knowledge of the main genres of literature — fiction, poetry, and drama.


  • Explain how to effectively read fiction for both knowledge and enjoyment.
  • Identify different styles and forms of poetry.
  • Use what you've learned in this course to discuss, write about, and understand literature.
  • Prepare a critical interpretation of fiction or poetry based on what you've learned in this course.
  • Discuss how literary dramas differ from fiction and poetry.
  • Identify different strategies of critical literary analysis.
This course will introduce you to what customer service encompasses and why it is essential, recognizing, understanding and meeting customer’s needs, and communicating with customers, including verbal and nonverbal messages, active listening skills, dealing with hostility and necessary skills in various mediums such as Internet and telephone.


  • Explain why customer service matters and best practices for customer service
  • Describe how customer feedback and expectations can help with customer service

Textbook: Customer Service: Career Success Through Customer Loyalty

Proctored Examination

You will be required to complete a proctored exam on selected courses each semester. These assessments will evaluate the knowledge and skills that you learned during the semester. You choose the time, the location, and the qualified exam supervisor.

Semester 4

In this course, you will gain an overview of Human Resources Management (HRM), as it’s understood today. This course illustrates the dynamic interaction of the personnel functions with each other and with the objectives of an organization.


  • Demonstrate job-specific technical and professional skills
  • Describe the elements of human resource management, including labor considerations, regulation, and management of workflow
  • Explain how companies should prepare for and implement HRM to hire new employees and create training programs
  • Identify the aspects of employee, career, and turnover management
  • Summarize how employees are paid, including legal requirements, performance-based pay, commissions, salaries, and benefits
  • Describe other HRM functions including collective bargaining, labor relations, global HRM, and building a high-performance organization

Textbook: Fundamentals of Human Resource Management

This course provides students with a foundation in the basic concepts of public speaking. Students will learn how to research, organize, and write effective speeches; incorporate presentation aids; and rehearse and deliver speeches effectively. Students will prepare, rehearse, record, and submit speeches in a number of rhetorical styles to be graded.


  • Analyze the different methods and principles required for effective public speaking
  • Point out the principles, methods, and skills required to rehearse and deliver effective public speaking
  • Prepare and record a narrative or speech on personal experience
  • Prepare and record an informative podcast for a website
  • Create and record an infomercial by using one of the mentioned methods
  • Prepare and present a motivational or reasoning speech to persuade your audience
  • Develop a speech by using key information delivery of a speech

Textbook: The Essential Elements of Public Speaking

Students will learn supervisory leadership perspectives and practices as well as the knowledge and skills needed to apply them in contemporary organizations. The course provides perspective on the challenges of guiding and leading a workforce in today’s complex society.


  • Analyze the fundamentals of four major approaches to leadership
  • Point out the intricacies of path-goal theory, leader-member theory, and transformational leadership theory
  • Categorize various principles of advanced leadership as well as the importance of moral and ethics in leadership
  • Analyze the role of leadership involving with gender, culture, and globalization
  • Prepare responses to the essay questions about your results from the Leadership Behavior Questionnaire

Textbook: Leadership: Theory and Practice

This course covers management approaches; human decision making; conflict management; communication in groups; power and influence; organizational environment, structure and design; and fundamental forces of change.


  • Analyze the fundamentals of organizational behavior, culture, and individuality
  • Differentiate between the stages of perception, attribution, stress management, motivation, and engagement
  • Point out the methods of fostering creativity, innovation, and decision making
  • Distinguish between the concepts of effective communication, group making, and team development
  • Categorize the elements of conflict, negotiation, and leadership
  • Analyze the structure of organizational working and its associated elements
  • Prepare a report on emotional labor perspectives at various workplaces by utilizing your findings

Textbook: Customer Service: Organizational Behavior

Choose one ...

HRM350 Labor Relations

This course provides a study of labor relations examines the interactions between organized labor unions and company management. These interactions between unions and management include rights and responsibilities, negotiations, and collective bargaining.


  • Analyze the role played by labor unions and the impact of labor laws
  • Explain the features of the American labor law, AFL-CIO, and unions
  • Distinguish between the various steps related to collective bargaining
  • Point out the economic benefits of collective bargaining and the other issues faced by them
  • Prepare a research paper on the organizational structure of the Teamsters and the union benefits

Textbook: Customer Service: Labor Relations


BUS220 Supply Chain Management

This course covers the skills and techniques needed to become a supply chain manager and gives you the tools needed to succeed. As global markets have increased in size and competition, firms are paying more attention to how they create and deliver their goods and services. Therefore, firms are investing time and resources into making their supply chains more efficient.


  • Identify the foundations and design of a supply chain
  • Describe the quality management and control functions of the supply chain
  • Define integrated business planning and its role in considering the financial impact of supply chain decisions
  • Respond to case studies concerning supply chain management issues

Textbook: Operations Management in the Supply Chain


MKT301 Marketing

This course covers the principles of marketing. Topics covered include assessing, analyzing, understanding, and targeting the marketplace, as well as the creation, capture, delivery, and communication of value. Students will learn how to develop a marketing plan, use social and mobile marketing effectively, integrate ethics into marketing strategies, influence the consumer decision process, perform market research, perform SWOT and STP analyses, make decisions concerning branding, packaging, and developing new products, price products and services fairly, set advertising objectives, and more.


  • Analyze marketing plans, strategies and the aids needed to catalyze it
  • Analyze the foundation of the marketing model and its emergence
  • Point out the targeted strategies and plans in marketing and globalization
  • Formulate a plan of valuing production, innovation, and product marketing
  • Develop the valuing strategies for products and services in marketing
  • Categorize the strategies for supply chain management and retailing
  • Distinguish between the various domains under IMC strategies
  • Design a marketing plan for an existing business

Textbook: Marketing

Proctored Examination

You will be required to complete a proctored exam on selected courses each semester. These assessments will evaluate the knowledge and skills that you learned during the semester. You choose the time, the location, and the qualified exam supervisor.

Additional Details

Associate Degrees from Penn Foster College are awarded under licensing from the Arizona State Board for Private Postsecondary Education.

Penn Foster College Accreditation & Licensing Details

Penn Foster College has been nationally accredited for over 40 years, and has met the high standards of integrity and performance set by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC) in Washington, D.C. Penn Foster College has been thoroughly reviewed and has earned several important accreditations and licensing. We also participate in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements.

Surround Sound Support

A Committed Support System

While you can study independently, you’re not alone! With a dedicated Student Services department, the Student Community, and instructors just a call away, you’ll have access to the support you need.

Progress Tracking and Goal Setting Tools

Our customizable goal-setting tools will help you create a schedule and stick to it. Need some extra time to complete a lesson? Not a problem — you can adjust your study plan at any time to set a pace that works for you.
Progress Tracking and Goal Setting Tools
Penn Foster Student Community

Student Community

Looking to connect with other Penn Foster students? Our Student Community is the perfect place for you to interact with your peers — as well as Penn Foster faculty and staff — to discuss your online learning experience, congratulate fellow students, and share your Penn Foster experience.

Sample Industrial Supervision Lesson

Penn Foster courses are written in a way that is easy to understand, and materials are broken down into manageable lessons. Take a look at what a Industrial Supervision A.S. Degree course would look like.
Penn Foster Sample Lesson
Computer Specifications
As you know this is an online academic program. This means you will need access to high-speed internet to begin your program. In addition, you will need access to a Microsoft® Windows® based computer running Windows 10® or later or an Apple® Mac® computer running macOS® or later, Microsoft® Office 2019 or Microsoft 365®, and an email account to complete this program.
We reserve the right to change program content and materials when it becomes necessary.
Microsoft and Windows are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.
Apple, Mac, and macOS are trademarks of Apple, Inc. registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.
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