Course Information Undergraduate prospectus

Creativity and Decision Making in Business

Course summary

Course code: BUSI1550
Level: 5
Credits: 30
School: Business Faculty
Department: Systems Management and Strategy
Course Coordinator(s): Tom Lawson



This course aims to lead the student into all levels of business decision-making, from strategic to operational, and provide them with broad financial understanding so that decisions and their consequences for business can be evaluated introduce some of the technical tools that inform the decision-making, including further data reduction and statistical models introduce the strategies and concepts of individual and group creativity and apply them in common sense examples from business examine and evaluate decision-making as a human activity in organizations.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this course a student will be able to:

1 Understand summary of financial statements and undertake ratio analysis
2 Be able to compile, manipulate and interpret numerical data for decision support including risk and quality control.
3 Be able to analyse and interpret summary financial statements, and undertake investment appraisal and critically report the results.
4 Be able to evaluate a decision-making process and quantify risks in a decision-making context.
5 Identify the crucial role information management played in decision-making, and use simple decision support software
6 Be able to formulate a problem and present a case/solution from a business situation, and have effective report writing and presentation skills.

Indicative content

Decision context: Nature of decisions - reactive proactive - levels of decision-making - planning. Decision and information. Good information. Critical approach to decision making - data gathering, analysis and interpretation - data reduction and decision support. Decision politics - groups - persuasion Top down - bottom up. Financial aspects of decision-making: Financial information - familiarization with balance sheet and profit and loss account. Financial information - Ratio analysis and interpretation. Implications for different sectors and comparison. Impact on business planning. Capital and gearing. Time value of money - Investment/project appraisal - opportunity cost. Payback NPV IRR. Comparison of appraisal methods. Creative aspects of decision-making: Context of creativity. Aspects of creativity - individual - improving creativity. Group creativity - brainstorming - six hats. Technical tools supporting decision-making: Market research - questionnaires - a critical approach. Preparing for negotiation - lateral thinking - Win-lose, win-win. Critical approach to decisions revisited. Incomplete data - assumption. Risk and probability. Risk and decision-making. Quality decisions - SPC charts and Normal Variation. Sampling and hypothesis testing. (Time constraints. Business scheduling and elements of network analysis.) Decision-making strategies.

Teaching and learning activity

Lectures; Online materials via Moodle; Supported Simulation Game; Database creation via Microsoft excel; Participation in tutorial discussions; Library and on-line searches; Guest lectures from practitioners; Preparation for assessments; Analysis and synthesis of course and other materials. Learning Time (1 credit = 10 hours) Contact Hours: Lectures 24 seminars 8 practical sessions 24 Tutorials 24 Other Private Study Assignments: course work and other forms of assessment: Coursework 140 laboratory work Examinations Other /Simulation 80


Method of assessment: Presentation
Weighting %: 30
Pass Mark: 40
Word Length: 2500
Outline Details: n/a

Method of assessment: Coursework
Weighting %: 30
Pass Mark: 40
Word Length: 2500
Outline Details: The course work is based on a practical case, and students are requested to work in pair solve the problem using spreadsheet.

Method of assessment: Exam
Weighting %: 40
Word Length: n/a
Outline Details: A two hour closed-book exam where students will be able to choose from amongst equally weighted questions.

Nature of FORMATIVE assessment supporting student learning:Descriptive feedback and Self and Peer Assessment.

Must all elements of summative assessment be passed to pass the course? Yes