Course Number: 90-722
This course focuses on the application of quantitative models and methods to management decision making and policy analysis. Topics covered include: forecasting, decision analysis, linear programming,and other forms of optimization, queuing, and simulation. Examples of application areas include: finance, criminal justice, urban service delivery, personnel planning, and health care services. Excel will be used extensively to teach and illustrate concepts.
This course, along with its companion (90-760 Management Science II: Decision
and Risk Modeling) survey a variety of management science methods useful to managers
and analysts in the public, healthcare, and non-profit domains. Management Science I is
not a prerequisite for Management Science II; you can take either one or both and in any
These courses have four objectives, listed in order from least to most important.
First, you should become as comfortable working with spreadsheets as you already
should be with word processors. By the end of the course, firing up Excel to model and
solve a simple quantitative problem should be second nature. The ability to do so will be a
significant asset for you on the job market and in your career.
Second, you should learn about a variety of techniques, what they are capable of,
and what their limitations are so that you can intelligently call upon management science
specialists and consultants when the occasion arises in your professional life.
Third, you should acquire sufficient proficiency with some of the techniques that
you can use them as an “end user modeler”.
Fourth, you should learn how to approach, abstract, and analyze messy problems
from a quantitative, analytical perspective. In short, you should be able to use the
language and perspective of mathematical modeling.