B6015: Decision ModelsProfessor Ceria 

Sample final problem solutions are here
dec_fin.xls
proj_fin.xls
Homework problem solutions are here:
ajax.xls
pension.xls
devcor.xls
devcor_b.xls
option_a.xls
option_c.xls
bond.xls
Review session problem solutions are here
solution1.xls
solution2.xls. There are two "styles" for doing this problem, both solutions are included.
To input a seed in Crystal Ball, go into Run PreferencesSampling, and input the seed.
There is a typo in the case. In page 3, It should say "the allocation of regular seats Q". Q is the number of protected seats for the REGULAR class fare.
Login to the bulletin board for this course: Decision Models Bulletin Board
Professor Sebastian Ceria 
417 Uris 
x45685 
sebas@cumparsita.gsb.columbia.edu 
Office hours: Mon and Wed 4:005:00 
TA Bin Yu  TA Joern Meissner 
Cubicle 4L  Cubicle 4W 
by32@columbia.edu  jm531@columbia.edu 
Office hours: Tues 2:004:00  Office hours: Th 10:0012:00 


















This course provides an introduction to computerbased models for decision making. The emphasis is on models that are widely used in diverse industries and functional areas, including finance, accounting, operations, and marketing. Applications will include production planning, supply chain management, foreign exchange and commodity trading, assetliability management, portfolio optimization, corporate risk management, and yield management, among others.
The aim of the course is to help students become intelligent consumers of these methods. To this end, the course will cover the basic elements of modeling  how to formulate a model and how to use and interpret the information a model produces. The course will attempt to instill a critical viewpoint towards decision models, recognizing that they are powerful but limited tools.
The applicability and usage of computerbased
models have increased dramatically in recent years, due to the extraordinary
improvements in computer, information and communication technologies, including
not just hardware but also modelsolution techniques and user interfaces.
Twenty years ago working with a model meant using an expensive mainframe
computer, learning a complex programming language, and struggling to compile
data by hand; the entire process was clearly marked "experts only." The
rise of personal computers, friendly interfaces (such as spreadsheets),
and large data bases has made modeling far more accessible to managers.
Information has come to be recognized as a critical resource, and models
play a key role in deploying this resource, in organizing and structuring
information so that it can be used productively.
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Crystal Ball: Forecasting & Risk Analysis for Spreadsheet Users (an addin for Excel for creating simulations in a spreadsheet).
We will use spreadsheets fairly extensively throughout
the course. In the lectures we will refer to the Excel spreadsheet
package for Windows 95. This spreadsheet has extensive optimization capabilities
built in. Crystal Ball is an addin for Excel which makes it much easier
to run simulations in a spreadsheet.
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There will be three homework problems that will be assigned during the course (in Lectures 4, 8 and 10), to be handedin the following class. The homeworks are an individual assignment, and are designed as practice for the final exam. The main case is Morombian Airlines. This case can be done in groups of five or less and it due Friday, August 14th by 1:00 p.m. In addition for many of the class sessions, you will be asked to prepare a case for discussion in class.
The readings book has a set of practice
problems. Many of these practice problems were based on past midterm
and final examination questions. Some spreadsheets (in Excel .XLS format)
related to these problems can be downloaded. The TA will go over the
solutions to selected problems during the Friday review sessions or
during office hours. Additional practice problems can be found
throughout the W&A text.
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The final exam will be given on Thursday, August 20 at 2PM.
There will be four hours for the final exam, although most
students should be able to finish in three hours or less. The exam
will be open book and open notes. A common final exam will be used
for all sections of the course. Notebook computers will be needed in
the final exam. Think of the computer as a fancy calculator: it is
useful for checking one's work and for some questions the computer
will be needed to get final answers. However, the majority of the
points on the exam will be given for correct methods and analysis;
correct numbers will only count for a small portion of the points.
Printing will not be allowed in the final exam. Any answers from the
computer must be transcribed into the answer book.
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The course grade will be based on a weighted average
of the homeworks, main case, and the final exam. The weights will be 20% for
the homeworks, 30% for the main case, and 50% for the final.
All sections of the course will be graded on a common scale.
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Notebook PCs will be used in this course. It is recommended
that students bring their notebook PCs to the Friday review sessions for
softwarerelated questions. Students should bring their notebook PCs to
class on Lecture 8. Also, notebook computers will be
needed for the final exam.
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Date  Topic  For next class  Download  
Lecture 1  7/6 



Lecture 2  7/8 



Lecture 3  7/13 



Lecture 4  7/15 



Lecture 5  7/20 


plant0.xls
plant.xls
plant_if.xls lake0.xls lake.xls 
Lecture 6  7/22 


investlp0.xls
investlp.xls
gold.xls
gold0.xls
inv_mv.xls 
Lecture 7  7/27 



Lecture 8  7/29 


ret_lp0.xls ret_lp.xls 
Lecture 9  8/3 


asianoil0.xls asianoil.xls 
Lecture 10  8/5 


ski0.xls ski.xls 
Lecture 11  8/10 

merck_u0.xls
merck_u.xls
merck0.xls merck.xls 

Lecture 12  8/12 

putnam.xls
premier.xls option.xls betting.xls 

Final Exam  8/20 2:006:00 
#  Name  Excel Files 
1  ABC Manufacturing  abc.xls 
2  B. Hall Real Estate Investment  hall_inv.xls 
3  Joe's Delicatessen  deli.xls and deli2.xls 
4  Bland Brewery Graphical Solution  bland2.xls 
5  Advertising Mix  advr.xls 
6  Power Plant  pplant.xls 
7  Police Scheduling  sched.xls and sched_b.xls 
10  Tax Planning  taxlp.xls 
13  Veggie Soup  veggie.xls 
14  Calico Cassette  ccc.xls and ccc_b.xls 
15  Dale Distribution System  dale.xls 
16  Hackensack Blended Whiskey  whiskey.xls 
#  Name  Excel Files 
1  Express Mail Staffing  mail.xls 
2  Bakery Department Simulation  bakery.xls 