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BUS 461 Entire Course Decision Modeling and Analysis


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Week 1 Complete

The Management Science Process. The Management Science Process consists of 1) understanding the problem, 2) building a representative model, 3) solving the mathematical model and, lastly, 4) monitoring/communicating the outcome. Discuss this process and the importance of each. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.

Defining the Problem. When is management science generally applied? What kinds of problems do management scientists face? Provide an example of a “problem” an organization you have been involved with has faced that did, or could have benefited from a management science analysis. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.

Week One Problems. Complete Problems 11 through 25 at the end of Chapter 1 using the Greeting Card Sales.xls Excel file on the CD-ROM accompanying the text. Submit to your instructor.

Week 2 Complete

Agriculture Problem. Review problem 12 at the end of Chapter 2 in the text: Frank Hurley is a farmer with 250 acres on which he wishes to plant wheat and corn to maximize his expected return for the season. For crop rotation purposes he must plant at least 50 acres of each crop. He can participate in a federal program that will require him to produce at least as much wheat as corn. Under this program, he is guaranteed to earn $150 per acre of wheat planted and $200 per acre of corn planted. Alternatively, he can opt not to participate in the program, in which case he projects he would make only $125 per acre of wheat planted and $184 per acre of corn planted. What would you recommend to Frank?

Based on the output, what key points would you recommend to Frank? In 250 words, sequentially list and explain each activity along with the tools needed to develop your response. (This question is not about the bottom line answer but rather, the solution process, question formulation, data development, output, output explanation, etc.). Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.

Writing a Business Report/Memo. Complete Problem 7 in Chapter 3 in the text. Develop a two to three-page business memorandum (not including the title and reference pages, and formatted as outlined on pages 30 through 32) to detail your answers and recommendations. To receive full credit for this assignment you must address the following: (a through d):

Determine the optimal weekly production schedule for MVC. What is the optimal weekly profit?

What is the minimum price that would justify producing the Plus Model? Explain.

If MVC could purchase additional 17 inch monitors for $15 more than what they are currently paying for

them, should they do this? Explain.

Suppose an additional worker could be hired for $1000 per week over the existing weekly worker salary.

(Recall that workers average 30 hours per week.) Analyze why MVC should do this.

Submit to your instructor your two- to three-page paper (not including title and reference pages). Your paper should be formatted according to APA style as outlined in the approved APA style guide, and should cite at least three to four scholarly sources in addition to the textbook

Week 3 Complete

PERT/CPM. You have been asked to fill-in for your boss this week. Your boss’s assistant informs you that he had scheduled an engagement to teach a group of students at the local University about PERT/CPM approach to project scheduling and has asked that you do it instead. In an initial write-up for the presentation, discuss the key elements of PERT/CPM to include (but not limited to) assumptions, how it works, and expected outcomes. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.

Project Scheduling Techniques. Ajax is about to embark on a project involving the design, manufacture and introduction of a new microwave oven. The first three activities and the immediate predecessors are:

Prototype Design none

Acquisition of Materials A Prototype Construction B




However, it has not yet been decided whether the prototype materials will be purchased from a vendor (taking two weeks) or produced in another Ajax division (four weeks). What are the implications of this regarding usage of any standard project scheduling technique? Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.

Week 4 Complete

Decision Analysis. Many real-world decision problems consist of a sequence of dependent decisions. Develop a scenario that has a series/sequence of activities applicable to a “Decision Tree” type analysis. Explain why the scenario you selected is applicable. Also identify and explain critical factors that should be consider. Are there any risks in your scenario? Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.

Forecasting Approaches. Compare and contrast the stationary forecasting model approach with that of a time series forecasting approach. Identify and explain key factors that are relevant in the selection of a specific approach. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.

Week 5 Complete

Queuing Systems. In today’s fast-paced environment, individuals are continually trying to do more with the same limited time constraints. In a retail store like Wal-Mart, explain how components of queuing systems can influence customer satisfaction or dissatisfaction. How might the queuing process positively or negatively impact customer loyalty? Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.

Simulation Models. Under what conditions would you choose to use a simulation model? What is the simulation process? Explain the pros and cons of using simulation modeling. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings.

Final Paper

Submit a six to eight-page paper (not including the title and reference pages) on one of the major topics listed below. Incorporate at least two related scholarly sources:

Linear and integer programming modeling

Network modeling

Project scheduling modeling

Time series forecasting


Queuing modeling

Simulation modeling

The paper must (a) identify the main issues in the chosen area, (b) apply and reference new learning to the chosen area, (c) build upon class activities or incidents that facilitated learning and understanding, and (d) present specific current and/or future applications and relevance to the workplace. The emphasis of the paper should be on modeling application, outcomes, and new learning.

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