Information Systems
College of Business Administration
University of Missouri - St. Louis

IS 3843: Decision Support Systems for Business Intelligence
Spring, 2018

General Information

Computing Information:
Computer Lab Information:
Advanced MIS Lab Information:
Library Information:
Acceptable Usage Policy
Student Technology Guide
Student Conduct Code
UMSL Home Page
IS Home Page
Counseling Services
Canvas Resources
Canvas Overview

V.L. Sauter, Decision Support Systems For Business Intelligence, New York: John Wiley & Sons, 2011. (The book is available in both paperback and Kindle versions.)

Online Materials

Class Web Site
DSS Current Page
Student Information Form
Group Evaluation Form
Networking Events

Prerequisites: SCA 3300: Business Statistics

Semester Goals: Decision Support Systems are tools decision makers use to gain a better understanding of their business and customers. They make it possible to connect with a data warehouse, and a modeling warehouse, along with tools to help the user get more out of their data and models to help decision makers see avenues through which to gain competitive advantage. As the name suggests, a DSS focuses how models, data, and other analytical tools, decision makers might use in the reasoned consideration of the options available to them. In the current environment in most businesses, DSS are being implemented as intranets and so require web-based technologies. This semester, we will consider general topics of DSS design.

Assignments: See assignments page.

Exams: There will be a midterm and a final exam.

Midterm exam: Distributed on February 28; Due on March 7
Final exam: Distributed on April 25; Due on May 7 at 6:30 pm

Make-up exams will be provided only if Dr. Sauter has been notified prior to the exam and if you have an acceptable reason for missing the exam. Under all other circumstances, a grade of zero (0) will be assigned. NO late exams (if it is a take home exam) will be accepted.

Grading Policy: The following proportions will be used for grading.

Networking Activities 10%
Visualization Assignment 15%
Analytics Assignment 15%
Midterm 25%
Final Exam 35%

Approximate letter grades will be assigned when exams and projects are returned. Students should remember, however, that the term average is a weighted average of the numerical grades, not an average of the approximate letter grades.

Drop Policy: For the purposes of this policy, the "effective drop date" is the date which I am informed of the drop or the actual date of the drop, which ever is later. Students can and may inform me by leaving me a note in my mailbox, leaving me a message (on voice mail or email) or by speaking to me in person or over the telephone. A student may drop this class until March 16 with a passing grade. (Note the University policy states that you may drop until February 12 without receiving a grade; this policy is simply an extension of the University policy.) Between March 17 and April 17, a student will receive either a passing grade (excused) or a failing grade (F) depending upon his or her performance (current grade) in the course. A student may withdraw after April 16 only with and solely with the approval of the dean of his or her division. If you want to withdraw after this date, go directly to your dean; do not ask for my signature -- my signature is not needed and I will not provide it. Under no circumstance may a student drop this class after May 5, 2018.

Academic Honesty: According to the University Standard of Conduct, Section 6.0101,

The Board of Curators recognizes that academic honesty is essential for the intellectual life of the University. Faculty members have a special obligation to expect high standards of academic honesty in all student work.

Students have a special obligation to adhere to such standards.

Furthermore, note that the University’s Collected Rules 200.010 B.1 REQUIRE faculty to notify Academic Affairs of suspected cases of dishonesty. It states, “In all cases of academic dishonesty, the instructor shall make an academic judgment about the student’s grade on that work and in that course. The instructor shall report the alleged academic dishonesty to the Primary Administrative Officer.”

For the purposes of this class, cheating will include: plagiarism (using the writings of another without proper citation), copying of another (either current or past student's work), working with another on individually assigned work or exams, unauthorized marking on a graded paper or exam, or in any other way presenting as one's own work that which is not entirely one's own work. It is unacceptable to seek the help of another (whether in the class or not) for help on an exam; this is considered academic dishonesty.

Any student who is caught cheating on any assignment or exam will receive a grade of zero (0) for that assignment or exam. Further, a recommendation will be made to the appropriate university officials that additional disciplinary action be taken.

If you are unsure what plagiarism is, perhaps the image below can help you. Original discussion was on, July 19, 2016.

My Expectations:
• I assume you are here to learn about DSS in preparation for your ultimate career. To accomplish that:
     • You must come to class prepared; you must read and think about the material before you get here.
     • You must demonstrate critical thinking skills.
     • You must participate in class discussions and class activities.
     • You must participate fully in the class project. This means that you will think about your project, go to group meetings, participate in the data collection and analysis. Each person must accept the responsibility for the project.
• It is your responsibility to ask questions in class or office hours when you are confused.
• I expect you to be courteous and respectful to me and your classmates, and professional to class visitors and to your clients.
• While I will not monitor your use of the computers during class, I expect you to be respectful in your use of the computer and I expect you to pay attention regardless of what you are doing with the computer.
Your success in this course is important to me. When I believe that the programs offered by Student Retention Services (SRS) will help you academically, I will send a referral via MyConnect, the campus Academic Alert System. The SRS offers assistance tailored to specific instructional needs. Learn about the MyConnect system in the online Student Planner.

Classroom Courtesy: I realize that I should not have to tell you these things, and I apologize to those of you for whom this is unnecessary, but in the past few years I have noticed a significant increase in bad classroom manners and inconsiderate behavior. So please adhere to the following rules. Repeated violations of these will be grounds for reducing your course grade, and you will be reported to the Office of Homeland Security as a threat to national learning.
• Turn off your phones and other devices before entering class; do not talk on the phone in class.
• Come to class on time. In those cases where being late is unavoidable, please enter the classroom quietly and take a seat as close to the door as possible. If the class period is more than half done, don't bother to come to the class. Once in class, do not get up and leave unless it is truly an emergency.
• Open beverage cans and bottles and snack bags before class starts. If you eat during class, please do so quietly.
• Keep talking with your neighbor to a minimum. If you are confused about something in class, please ask me - that is my job.
• When you the computers, do so quietly. Recently the typing by students has gotten so loud that it is very distracting both to me and the members of the class.
• Bring a handkerchief or tissue to class to blow your nose in case you get the sniffles.
• I am not going to supervise your use of the computer in class. However, you are responsible for all the material covered in class -- if you do not pay attention and miss important material, I am not going to go over it again.

Title IX Requirements: Under Title IX, all UMSL faculty, staff, and administrators (with limited exception) are obligated to report any incidents of sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, sexual assault, or gender discrimination to the Student Affairs office and/or other University officials. This ensures that all parties are protected from further abuses and that victim(s) are supported by trained counselors and professionals. Note: There are several offices at UMSL (e.g., Counseling Services, Health Services, Community Psychological Service, Center for Trauma Recovery, and Student Social Services) whose staff are exempt from Title IX mandated reporting, when the information is learned in the course of a confidential communication.

Disabilities: Please inform me of any disabilities that could affect your learning. I am happy to make reasonable accommodations to improve the learning environment, but I need to know about them in order to help. If, during the semester, you are experiencing a serious emotional trauma, please inform me of this before taking an exam; once an exam is taken the grade must be counted and no "retake" is possible.

Religious Observance: I am committed to creating an inclusive campus community that values and respects all its members, and achieves educational excellence through diversity and nondiscrimination. This includes supporting students regardless of their religious affiliation or non-affiliation. I will make a good faith effort to accommodate your religious practice or belief, unless such accommodation would create undue hardship. Accommodations for makeup assignments, presentations, homework, quizzes, or exams should be arranged with me early in the semester and well in advance of the anticipated class absence and requested accommodation. To request an accommodation for a religious observance, submit the form to me as the semester begins and no later than two weeks prior to the religious observance. Submit a separate form for each observance.

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