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This subject introduces the essential features of Operations Research methods, and also introduces the area of Discrete Mathematics with a focus on applications. Operations Research topics include mathematical modelling, linear programming, simplex methods, and duality theory. Discrete Mathematics topics include scheduling, graph theory, assignments and matchings, and fair division. The subject material has a common theme of applications of mathematics in realistic settings encountered in the business world, industry and day-to-day life.
Intended learning outcomes
On completion of this subject, students should:
- Comprehend the essential features of problems encountered in Operations Research investigations, as well as those encountered in applied Discrete Mathematics;
- Develop basic skills required to construct formal mathematical models for practical optimisation problems, and those required to analyse settings from real-world applications;
- Appreciate the extent and limitations of a number of Operations Research and Discrete Mathematics techniques for solving real-world problems.
In addition to learning specific skills that will assist students in their future careers in science, they will have the opportunity to develop generic skills that will assist them in any future career path. These include
- problem-solving skills: the ability to engage with unfamiliar problems and identify relevant solution strategies;
- analytical skills: the ability to construct and express logical arguments and to work in abstract or general terms to increase the clarity and efficiency of analysis;
- collaborative skills: the ability to work in a team;
- time management skills: the ability to meet regular deadlines while balancing competing commitments.
Last updated: 15 January 2020