Business Mathematics (BK/IBA) / Quantitative Research Methods I (EBE) 2015/16

Overview

Codes like "A1", "B1", etc. indicate the session at which these topics will be discussed during the lectures: A refers to the first day (Monday), B to the second day (Wednesday), while 1 refers to the first hour and 2 to the second hour.

The numbers like "3.1-3.3" refer to the book; see below for details.

Mind that all downloadable content is subject to minor changes (e.g., correcting typos) without notice.

 Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 and beyond General A1 Introduction course manual IBA/BK/EBE instructions slides IBA/BK/EBE tweetalige woordenlijst Response class on demand video IBA/BK/EBE Basics A1 Summation 3.1-3.3 slides A1 Functions and equations 1.6, 2.1-2.5, 4.1-4.10 theory slides A1 Implicit functions 7.1-7.7, 12.3 slides A2 Numbers and units B1 Mathematical modeling B2 Miscellaneous topics Calculus A2 Derivatives 6.1-6.4, 6.6-6.11 slides A2 Extreme values 8.1-8.7 slides A1 Partial derivatives 11.1-11.2 slides A2 Indefinite integrals 9.1 slides B1 Definite integrals 9.2-9.3 slides A1 Extreme values in two dimensions 13.1-13.3 slides B1 Constrained optimization 14.1-14.2 slides A1 Multiple constrained optimization 14.6 slides Matrices B1 Indexing B2 Vectors 15.7-15.8 slides B2 Matrices 15.2-15.6 slides A2 Systems of linear equations 15.1, 16.6 slides B2 Gaussian elimination 16.7 slides Application B2 Descriptive statistics B1 Elasticities and approximations 7.4-7.5, 7.7 slides B1 Curve fitting B2 Applications of integrals 9.4 slides A2 Linear programming 17.1 slides Tutorials Computer tutorials Digital tests Sample test Real test test IBA/BK/EBE Word file Excel file answers IBA/BK/EBE Sample test Real test test IBA/BK/EBE Word file answers IBA/BK/EBE Retake test 1 Retake test 2 Written exam Sample exams Trial sample exam: exam - answers 22 October 2014: exam - answers 10 December 2014: exam - answers 27 March 2015: exam - answers 23 April 2015: exam - answers Real exams 21 October 2015: exam - answers 9 December 2015: exam - answers 24 March 2016: exam - answers

Book and online texts

Book

We use the book Essential Mathematics for Economic Analysis, 4th Edition, by Knut Sydsæter and Peter Hammond.

You can order it anywhere. However, we have arrangements with the VU Boekhandel and Aureus to supply copies with an extended access of the digital learning environment MyMathLab (see below).

Our errata contains an ongoing effort to correct mistakes in the book. Please send us if find you new ones.

MyMathLab (digital edition and learning website)

The publisher offers an integrated learning website with e-text, questions, etc. You can freely access if you purchased a book with a valid access code. If you don't have an access code, you can purchase access online at http://www.mymathlab.com/global.

In order to join this course, you will need to:

1. Register for MyMathLab Global

a. Go to the MyMathLab Global home page at http://www.mymathlab.com/global and click the Student button, in the Register section.

b. Enter your Course ID XL00-M1VS-201Z-9T24. Mind the difference between 0 (zero) and O (oh) and between 1 (one), I (capital eye) and l (lowercase el). It is best to copy and paste the code.)

c. Choose to register an access code (came with your new book) or purchase access if you don’t have an access code. The code looks something like SIMPLE-FRILL-TONLE-WEIRS-CHOIR-FLEES.

d. Click the button to proceed to registration.

2. Enrol in your instructor's course

Note that technical difficulties in accessing the website cannot solved by us. You should contact the publisher for this.

Digital tests

What is tested?

Because the course's emphases are theory and practice, and the practice in quantitative thinking nowadays includes digital work, we test your practical skills in two intermediate digital tests. We will test your skills in using the equation editor of Microsoft Word for typesetting mathematical expressions, and in using Microsoft Excel for modelling quantitative problems.

How will the tests take place?

The digital tests will take place in the "TenT", VU's digital exam room. This room contains several hundred of well-controlled computers. During the tests, you will not be able to use internet, USB memory sticks, etc.

The results of these tests play a role in the final grade. That means the usual rules for exams apply to these tests. Check the time table, be on time, bring your ID and VU card with student number, do not put your book, notes, phone, etc. on your desk.

The TenT opens 15 minutes before the start time. Make sure you are in time: after the start no more students will be admitted. Digital tests take 1:30 hour. Students who have have been granted extra time by the faculty should bring the letter in which this is stated. They will get 30 minutes extra.

If you show up at a digital test, fill in your name and student number, and save your file, you will get a 1. If you do more, your grade in these tests can go up to 10.

At the desks of the TenT, you will receive instructions for doing the test.

More on using software

We help you in learning how to use Word's equation editor and Excel for mathematical modelling by providing documents and organizing tutorial sessions. But we don't teach you the elementary digital skills (how to save a file, how to use ctrl-c/ctrl-v, etc.). Rather, we assume you already can deal with such tasks. It is indeed essential that you do: you must be able to properly work with the computers at the university.

In the computer rooms that we use for the tutorial sessions and in the TenT, the computer configuration may differ from what you are used to. For instance, you may have a Mac, or a different Windows version, or Word in a different language, or the decimal separator of your computer may be different, or you may have a left-handed mouse. We assume that you nevertheless are clever enough to work your way around with the configuration at VU. You may bring your own computer to the tutorial sessions, but not to the digital tests, so we recommend you to use VU's computers at the tutorial sessions as well.

Rules at the digital tests

Please take note of all rules and regulations for taking exams.

During the digital tests, you are allowed to use:

• pen, pencil, ruler, etc.

You are not allowed to use:

• another computer, a laptop, cell phone or any other electronic device
• your book, the slides, your notes, a dictionary, or any other document

Each digital test will be graded between 1.0 and 10.0, with one decimal (so like 7.2 or 3.4). It will count for 15% in the final grade.

Inspection

The inspection of the first written exam is the moment at which you can also review your digital tests. For those persons that have a retake of the digital tests, please contact the course coordinator if you want to review your retake test.

Written exam

What is tested?

At the written exam, we will test your theoretical mathematical knowledge and skills. Together with the computer skills that have been tested at the digital tests, this will be the basis of the final grade.

We will test your ability to solve equations, differentiate and integrate functions, use matrix algrabra, find extreme points with or without constraints, calculated elasticities, use and interpret descriptive statistics, etc. The table below lists the chapters and extra documents that need to be studied.

 Book Separate PDFs 1.6 2.1-2.5 3.1-3.5 4.1-4.10 6.1-6.4, 6.6-6.11 7.1-7.7 8.1-8.7 9.1-9.4 11.1-11.2 12.3 13.1-13.3 14.1-14.2, 14.6 15.1-15.8 16.6-16.7 17.1 Data reduction and descriptive statistics Curve fitting and least-squares regression The Greek alphabet An economist's guide to visualizing data

The schedule contains a few sample exams. Notice that each exam is a random sample of subjects. This means that when a certain topic hasn't been in for two years, it may suddenly be in.

How do we test?

The exam takes two hours and has three questions.

Question 1 consists of 14 short subquestions, such as "Integrate the following function". There is a special exam sheet for answering this question. For question 1, only the final answer should be given. Everything you write in addition will be ignored.

Questions 2 and 3 will be longer questions, having more context, about companies, employment, markets, etc. They consist of a number of subquestions (typically around 4). For questions 2 and 3 it is essential that you provide an answer that contains the full path to the solution, using clear and correct notation. We will not only assess the final answer, but also all intermediate steps and the arguments leading to the answer. A correct answer without motivation will be ignored.

Rules at the written exam

Please take note of all rules and regulations for taking exams, including the rules for registration in advance.

During the written exam, you are allowed to use:

You are not allowed to use:

• a computer, laptop, cell phone or any other electronic device
• your book, the slides, your notes, a dictionary, or any other document