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LahoreUniversityofManagementSciences

DISC112ComputersandProblemSolving
FallSemester2015

Instructors
OfficeHours
Email
Telephone
Secretary/TA
TAOfficeHours
CourseURL(ifany)

AhmedKhan(AK)
Byappointment
Ahmed.khan@lums.edu.pk
TBA
TBA
TBA
Suraj.lums.edu.pk

COURSEBASICS
CreditHours
Lecture(s)
Recitation/Lab(perweek)
Tutorial(perweek)

3
NbrofLec(s)PerWeek
NbrofLec(s)PerWeek
NbrofLec(s)PerWeek

Duration
Duration
Duration

75minutes

COURSEDISTRIBUTION
Core
Elective
OpenforStudentCategory
CloseforStudentCategory

Yes

COURSEDESCRIPTION

Problem solving is an essential skill that managers use in their daily task of decisionmaking on behalf of their departments,
divisions and organizations. The contemporary manager must be aware of the computerbased tools and techniques that can
make his/her work more efficient and effective. Computers support problem solving in two essential ways: (1) handling heavy
datadrivendecisions;and(2)solvingproblemswherethenumberofcomponentissuesistoomanyforthehumanmindtohandle
mathematically.
Built around the spreadsheet software, Microsoft Excel, this course is an introduction to problemsolving using computers.
However the course is not merely about the skills involved in spreadsheet modeling, but also the craft of modeling, which
includesabstractingtheessentialfeaturesofasituationintoamodelandtranslatingmodelresultsintomanagerialinsights.

COURSEPREREQUISITE(S)

None

COURSEOBJECTIVES
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

Tointroducestudentstotheconceptofmodelingastheprocessofbuilding,refiningandanalyzingtherepresentationof
dataforgreaterinsightsandimproveddecisionmaking
Toequipstudentswithtechnicalskillsofworkingwiththespreadsheetsoftware,Excel.
Todevelopthestudentsanalyticalandcraftskillstomodelmanagerialproblemsusingcomputersoftware.
Todevelopskillsthatenableeffectivedatarepresentation
Tointroducestudentstodatabasesandexplainhowdatacanbeextractedfromtheseintodecisionmodels

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LahoreUniversityofManagementSciences
LEARNINGOUTCOMES

Aftercompletingthiscoursestudentwillbeableto
o Understand basic concept of modeling and how this approach can help in using computers to solve
problems
o Usecomputerbasedtoolstomodelbusinessproblemseffectively
o Extractessentialanalysisfromaspreadsheetofdata,orevenexternaldata
o Representdatausingcharts
o Automateverybasicrepetitivetasksofanalysisanduserinputandoutput
o Understand,ingeneralterms,keyelementsofITinfrastructure(e.g.databasesandnetworkprotocols)and
howtheysupportdistributedproblemsolving.

UNDERGRADUATEPROGRAMLEARNINGGOALS&OBJECTIVES

GeneralLearningGoals&Objectives
Goal1EffectiveWrittenandOralCommunication
Objective:Studentswilldemonstrateeffectivewritingandoralcommunicationskills
Goal2EthicalUnderstandingandReasoning
Objective:Studentswilldemonstratethattheyareabletoidentifyandaddressethicalissuesinanorganizational
context.
Goal3AnalyticalThinkingandProblemSolvingSkills
Objective:Studentswilldemonstratethattheyareabletoidentifykeyproblemsandgenerateviablesolutions.
Goal4ApplicationofInformationTechnology
Objective:Studentswilldemonstratethattheyareabletousecurrenttechnologiesinbusinessandmanagement
context.
Goal5TeamworkinDiverseandMulticulturalEnvironments
Objective:Studentswilldemonstratethattheyareabletoworkeffectivelyindiverseenvironments.
Goal6UnderstandingOrganizationalEcosystems
Objective:StudentswilldemonstratethattheyhaveanunderstandingofEconomic,Political,Regulatory,Legal,
Technological,andSocialenvironmentoforganizations.

MajorSpecificLearningGoals&Objectives
Goal7(a)DisciplineSpecificKnowledgeandUnderstanding
Objective:Studentswilldemonstrateknowledgeofkeybusinessdisciplinesandhowtheyinteractincluding
applicationtorealworldsituations(Includingsubjectknowledge).
Goal7(b)Understandingthesciencebehindthedecisionmakingprocess(forMGSMajors)
Objective:Studentswilldemonstrateabilitytoanalyzeabusinessproblem,designandapplyappropriate
decisionsupporttools,interpretresultsandmakemeaningfulrecommendationstosupportthedecisionmaker

Indicatebelowhowthecourselearningobjectivesspecificallyrelatetoanyprogramlearninggoalsandobjectives.

PROGRAMLEARNINGGOALSAND
OBJECTIVES

COURSELEARNINGOBJECTIVES

COURSEASSESSMENTITEM

Goal1EffectiveWrittenandOral
Communication
Goal2EthicalUnderstandingand
Reasoning
Goal3AnalyticalThinkingandProblem
SolvingSkills
Goal4ApplicationofInformation
Technology

Objective4

Midterm,Final

Objectives1,3

Final,Quizzes,Exercises

Objectives1,2,3,4and5

Midterm,Final,Quizzes,Exercises

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LahoreUniversityofManagementSciences
Goal5TeamworkinDiverseand
MulticulturalEnvironments
Goal6UnderstandingOrganizational
Ecosystems
Goal7(a)DisciplineSpecificKnowledge
andUnderstanding
Goal7(b)Understandingthescience
behindthedecisionmakingprocess

Objectives1,2,3,4and5

Midterm,Final,Quizzes,Exercises

Objectives1,2and3

Midterm,Final

GRADINGBREAKUPANDPOLICY

Quizzes:..................................................................................................................30%(total11quizzes,n2applies)
Exercises:...............................................................................................................10%
MidtermExamination:...........................................................................................30%
FinalExamination:..................................................................................................30%(Postmidonly)

EXAMINATIONDETAIL

Midterm
Exam

FinalExam

Yes/No:Yes
CombineSeparate:Combine
Duration:3hours
PreferredDate:Saturday,February22nd
ExamSpecifications:PreMidSyllabus,CalculatorandFormulaHelpsheetAllowed.CloseBookandNotes

Yes/No:Yes
CombineSeparate:
Duration:3hours
ExamSpecifications:PostMidSyllabus,CalculatorandFormulaHelpsheetAllowed.CloseBookandNotes

TEXTBOOK(S)/SUPPLEMENTARYREADINGS

Frye,CurtisD.(2010)StepbyStep:MicrosoftExcel2010,MicrosoftPress.
Powell,S.G.andBaker,K.R.(2009)ManagementScience:theArtofModelingwithSpreadsheets,3/e,Wiley.
Fairhurst,D.S.(2012)UsingExcelforbusinessanalysisaguidetofinancialmodelingfundamentals.Wiley.
Harvey,G.(2010)Excel2010fordummies.Hoboken,NJ,WileyPub.

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LahoreUniversityofManagementSciences
Attendance,QuizzesandClassPolicy

Yourclasspresenceisrequired.Thereforebymissingaclassyouforfeitanopportunitytoparticipateinclassactivities.Maximum
four(4)absencesaretolerated.Anyfurtherabsencesshallcounttowardsdeductionfromyouroverallgrade.Petitionsshouldbe
submitted along with proper documentation (e.g. a medical certificate certifying illnesses or OSA certifying participation in OSA
activity)andshallbeapprovedoncasebycasebasis.

Youarealsoexpectedtoarriveinclassexactlyattheprescribedtime.Therewillbenograceforlatearrivalsandyouwillbemarked
absent.Onceallfourabsenceshavebeenusedup,1%deductionfromthegradewillmadeforeveryextraabsence.Cellphoneusage
willnotbetolerated.Thereforemakesuretheyareswitchedoffwhenyouarriveinclass.

Youarerequiredtoattendwithyourdesignatedsection.Neitherquiznorattendancecanbetransferredtoanyothersection.

Atotalofeleven(11)announcedquizzesshallbegiventhroughoutthecourse,usuallyatthebeginningoftheclass.Thebestnine
quizzes (for each student) shall count towards quiz component of overall grade. A missed (without petition approval) quiz will
automaticallybegradedzero(0).
CourseOutline*

SESSION
NO.
1

3,4

TOPICS
CourseIntroduction,File
Management,Assignmentsubmission
@LUMS,Basicframeworkofmodel
building
ProblemSolvingbyComputer
Modeling
IntroductiontoSpreadsheets:Cells,
Ranges,Worksheets&Workbooks,
FormattingandEnteringData,
PerformingCalculationsofData

TEXTTOREAD

AUDITORIUM/ SESSIONOBJECTIVES
LAB

Auditorium

FairhurstChapter1&2

Auditorium

CurtisFrye:Chapter1&
2;
CurtisFrye:Chapter3&4

Lab

FilteringSpecificData,SortingData,
CreatingCharts

CurtisFrye:Chapter5,6,
10

Lab

AdvanceExcelFunctions(logical,
statisticalandlookupfunctions)

Lab

InfluenceDiagramIntroduction

Powell&BakerChapter2

Lab

10

InfluenceDiagramsExerciseIceberg
forKuwait

11

ModelingIcebergsforKuwait

5,6,7

12

Powell&BakerChapter
2,Case:IceBergfor
Lab
Kuwait
PowellandBakerChapter
5,Case:IceBergfor
Lab
Kuwait

AnalysingAlternativeData(GoalSeek,
ScenarioManagerandDescriptive
CurtisFrye:Chapter8
Statistics)

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Lab

Tointroducethestudents
tomodelbuilding
Asabove
Tofamiliarizethestudents
withthebasicskills
requiredforusingMSExcel
TodevelopMSExcelskills
suchaslimitingdata,
manipulatingworksheet
data,sortingworksheet
data,organizingdatainto
levelsandcreatingcharts
Topresentsome advanced
functionsinexcel
Tointroducestudentsto
InfluenceDiagrams
Tounderstandtheuse of
InfluenceDiagramsinareal
context
Tolearnmodelbuilding
usingacase
Todefineanalternative
dataset;tovarydatatoget
adesiredresultbyusing
GoalSeekandScenario
Manager;andto
Analyzedatabyusing
descriptivestatistics

LahoreUniversityofManagementSciences
13

IcebergforKuwait(WhatifAnalysis)

Case:IceBergforKuwait

Lab

14

MidTermExam

15

CombiningDatafromMultiple
Sources

CurtisFrye:Chapter7

Lab

16

Databases,DBMS&Networks

Lab

DeveloperRibbon,Automating
RepetitiveTaskbyusingMacrosand
VBA

Chapter12CurtisFrye;
Chapters4,5,7,8,9
HarveyG

Lab

21

Solver,AdvanceArrayFunctions

SolverPartfromChapter
8CurtisFrye
ArrayFunctions,
Chapters7HarveyG

Lab

22

ReidRasin(SpreadsheetEngineering)

PowellandBakerChapter
Lab
5,Case:ReidRasin

23

ReidRasin(WhatifAnalysisand
Solver)

PowellandBakerChapter
Lab
6Case:ReidRasin

24,25

CreatingDynamicWorksheetsby
usingPivotTables

CurtisFrye:Chapter9

Lab

26,27

CaseStudyonSpreadApplication
Design

Tobeannounced

Lab

Review

Lab

17,18,
19,20

28

TolearnWhatIfAnalysis
usingacase

Tolinktodatainother
worksheetsandworkbooks
andconsolidatemultiple
setsofdataintoasingle
workbook
Tointroducetheuseof
databases
Todevelopan
understandingoffurther
conceptsincludingtheuse
ofadeveloperribbon,
MacrosandVisualBasic
TointroduceSolverand
AdvancedArrayFunctions

Toexplaintheuseof
spreadsheetengineering
usingacase
Tobuildupontheprevious
knowledgeofWhatIf
AnalysisandSolverusinga
case
Toteachtheeffectiveuse
ofPivottables
Tointegrateallthe
conceptsandskillslearnt
duringthecoursetocreate
anMSExcelbased
application

*NOTE

Theinstructorreservestherighttomakechangestothegradingsystemandthesyllabusasappropriateduringthesemester.

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