ENGR 460 - Engineering Economy
2023 Fall Syllabus, Section 01, CRN 1603
You are responsible for knowing this material, so please read carefully. Any changes will be announced in a Blackboard Announcement. You will be responsible for any changes. Your continued enrollment in this course is your implicit agreement to abide by the requirements of this class.
Times and Location
Stacy Bjorgaard, Ph.D.
Office: Collaborative Energy Complex Room 113F
2023 Fall Office Hours:
Mondays: 6-8 pm (in Zoom only); Tuesdays: 9-10:30 am; Wednesdays: 1-4 pm; Thursdays: 9-10:30 am; Fridays: 1-4 pm; or by appointment (all times US Central)
Office Phone: 701.777.1126
About the Professor
For information about your lecturer, view the "Introductions" discussion board in Learning Module 0 in Learning Modules. While there, introduce yourself by replying to the discussion board.
After successfully completing this course, you should be able to:
- Estimate costs and benefits of projects, especially using the cost index model and power sizing model
- Define time value of money and use interest in equivalent calculations
- Find equivalence for single receipt/payment, uniform series, arithmetic gradient, and geometric gradient cash flows
- Perform present worth analysis, equivalent annual worth analysis, rate of return analysis, benefit-cost ratio analysis, and sensitivity and breakeven analysis
- Apply probability to risk calculations
- Apply depreciation and taxation to economic analysis
- Apply inflation effects to economic analysis
- Differentiate between public and private sector analysis methods
Engineering Economic Analysis, Newnan et al., 14th edition (ISBN 0190931914)
You will not need Dashboard for this course - just a copy of the book. Be sure to get the 14th edition as problems vary between editions.
For most assigned problems, you will write out your work by hand. I do not mandate engineering paper, but you may find it helpful to keep your work organized and are certainly welcome to use it. You will then scan in your assignments, save them as single .pdf files, and submit the .pdfs in assignment links in Blackboard.
Some assigned problems will be worked in Excel. For these problems, you will do your work in Excel, save your work as an .xlsx file, and upload this file in the same assignment link in Blackboard.
For most assignments, you will upload two files in a single assignment link: a .pdf containing your work done by hand, and a .xlsx containing your work done in Excel.
Students are expected to use their official UND email in the course. Visit the Office 365 Email webpage for information on your UND email and how to download/install a free version of Microsoft Office. For technical assistance, please contact UND Technical Support at 701.777.2222. Visit the University Information Technologies (UIT) website for their hours, help documents and other resources.
Minimum Technical Skills Needed
In order to succeed in this course, at a minimum, you should be able to:
- Navigate in and use basic Blackboard functions
- Download and open electronic documents
- Create, save, and upload/attach electronic documents
- Send, receive, and manage email
Access and Log in Information
This course was developed and will be facilitated utilizing Blackboard. To get started with the course, please go to: http://blackboard.UND.edu and log in with your NDUS.Identifier, Username and Password. If you do not know your NDUS Identifier or have forgotten your password, please visit Your NDUS Account page on the UIT website.
This course is organized into a series of Learning Modules. There are 16 modules in the course, including Learning Module 0. Each Learning Module will open on the first class day the module will be covered (as per the schedule) at 12:00 am US Central Time, and information will be made available throughout the day. These modules include assignment links, reflection paper links (when assigned), class recordings, case studies, and discussion boards designed to enhance the learning experience and support the various topics. Information on your midterm exams and final exam will be in the "Exams" content area. Homework, papers, and exams will be used to assess your comprehension and application of the materials.
What Should Students Do First?
Before the first class date, you should have read the syllabus, completed the syllabus assignment, completed your Introductions discussion board posts, and completed your First Thoughts discussion board post. These activities will be available in Learning Module 0.
How Students Should Proceed for Class Activities
On the left side course menu in Blackboard there is a “Learning Modules” tab. Inside Learning Modules you will find all the required readings, videos, and assignments/activities. A schedule with all applicable dates can be found later in this syllabus.
Many services are available to UND students such as writing assistance from the UND Writing Center, free online tutoring from Brainfuse, and more. Visit the Student Resources page for more information. Students also have access to the UND Student Resource Site via Blackboard. It is recommended that you become familiar with the tools and tutorials within the site to better equip you in navigating the course.
This is not a work-at-your-own-pace course. You are expected to attend class, log in to Blackboard regularly to submit assignments and papers, and take exams. You should expect to spend at least 3 hours per week in class/viewing the video content, and 5-6 hours per week on reading and homework. Exams will be given on a specific date and will not be available at any other time.
- The student will review the syllabus and course schedule posted in Blackboard.
- The student will access and follow all course instructions found in the Learning Module area of the Blackboard course.
- The student will participate in all lecture or discussion sessions on campus as part of this course.
- The student will complete and submit assignments, papers, and exams by the dates noted and in the manner described in Blackboard and/or on the course schedule. We will use US Central Time for due dates and times - be sure to watch for Daylight Savings Time ending in November.
- The student will participate fully and in a timely manner to get the benefit of learning from instructor and/or peers.
Instructor Responsibilities and Feedback
- The instructor will provide feedback on homework within one week of the due date.
- The instructor will provide feedback on reflection papers within one week of the due date.
- The instructor will provide feedback on term papers within 10 days of the due date.
- The instructor will provide feedback on exams within 10 days of the exam date.
- The instructor will be available during appointed Office Hours to answer questions, provide feedback, and offer advice.
This course is made up of a series of assignments, papers, and exams to assist you in achieving the course learning objectives.
In this course, your learning will be assessed in the following ways:
Homework assignments are given at the beginning of a chapter. All assigned problem sets will be made available through assignment links in Blackboard within the Learning Modules. It will be clear on each assignment which problems are to be worked by hand and which are to be worked using Excel. All assignments are due at 11:59 pm US Central Time on the dates indicated on the schedule. Each assignment will be worth 15 points. Typically, three problems per assignment will be graded, and each problem will be worth 5 points.
Homework submissions that appear to be nothing more than copies of someone else's work or plagiarized from an online source will not be graded. Work copied from solutions manuals, online sources, Chegg, etc. will not be tolerated and will have serious consequences. This is academic dishonesty. Multiple offenses will result in the student being referred to the Dean of the College of Engineering and Mines and the Dean of Students office. I will no longer grade your work.
There are two types of papers in this class: reflection papers and a term paper.
Reflection papers will be assigned throughout the semester at random. This will allow you to reflect on your recent learning and the lecturer to assess student learning and answer questions.
A term paper will be assigned later in the semester and will be due at 11:59 pm US Central Time on the date indicated on the schedule.
The exams will cover previous reading/lecture material and will be problem-based. Each exam is comprehensive (topics from Chapter 1 through the last chapter covered are fair game). Midterm exams will be written to be completed in 75 minutes, and the final exam will be written to be completed in 120 minutes. Exam dates may be found on the provided schedule below.
The midterm and final exams will be closed book and closed notes except for the following resources:
- A scientific calculator. Graphing calculators are prohibited on exams. If you use a prohibited calculator, your exam may be given a score of 0 at the instructor's discretion.
- The inside front cover and Appendix C of the textbook. This will be posted as a pdf on Blackboard that you may print if you do not have a physical copy of the book.
- A formula sheet (8.5"x11", one side, handwritten, no worked problems, must be submitted with the exam)
All cell phones and portable electronic devices (for example, smart watches) are prohibited during exams.
Announcements will be posted in Blackboard on a regular basis. Be sure to check the class announcements regularly as they will contain important information about class assignments and other class matters.
You are encouraged to post your questions about the course in the FAQs discussion board forum in the Blackboard site or raise them in class. The Blackboard discussion board is an open forum in which you and your classmates are encouraged to answer each other’s questions about course concepts or examples - not about homework. If you need to contact me directly, check the Faculty tab in Blackboard or the syllabus for my contact information. My email response hours are 7 am-7 pm US Central Time each day classes are in session. If you email me between these times, I will do my best to get back to you the same day. Outside these times, I will respond typically within 24 to 48 hours. If you email me, please include "Engr 460" in the subject line to ensure it receives the proper attention.
Discussion boards are an excellent way for you to engage with the course material and with your peers. Each week we will have at least one discussion board for you to participate in. You are expected to read all assigned discussion boards and provide thoughtful contributions. You should read the optional FAQ discussion boards and provide thoughtful contributions, but you are not required to.
When participating in class (online or in person) it is important to interact with your peers in an appropriate manner. Always use professional language (no netspeak) in your postings and emails. Please be respectful of your classmates at all times even if you disagree with their ideas.
Exam 1 (15%)
Exam 2 (15%)
Exam 3 (15%)
Final Exam (30%)
Final Grade Scale
A: 90% to 100%
B: 80% to 89.9%
C: 70% to 79.9%
D: 60% to 69.9%
F: 0% to 59.9%
The above grading scale is your guaranteed grade. Any adjustments ("curving") are considered a bonus and will be made at the discretion of your instructor, to the entire class, based on class performance and course expectations. This will not be done until final grades are due.
Schedule of Topics and Assignments
|Tue||8/22||Chapter 1, pgs. 2-25||Syllabus
Learning Module 1: Making Economic Decisions
|Introductions: due September 1
First Thoughts: due September 1
Syllabus assignment: due September 1
Chapter 1 problems: due September 1
|Thu||8/24||Chapter 2, pgs. 34-57 (Example 2-8), 61-62||Learning Module 2: Estimating Engineering Costs & Benefits||Chapter 2 problems: due September 1|
|Tue||8/29||Learning Module 2: Estimating Engineering Costs & Benefits|
|Thu||8/31||Chapter 3, pgs. 78-102||Learning Module 3: Interest & Equivalence||Chapter 3 problems: due September 8|
|Tue||9/5||Learning Module 3: Interest & Equivalence|
|Thu||9/7||Chapter 4, pgs. 108-123, 125-143||Learning Module 4: Equivalence for Repeated Cash Flows||Chapter 4 problems: due September 15|
|Tue||9/12||Learning Module 4: Equivalence for Repeated Cash Flows|
|Thu||9/14||Chapter 5, pgs. 156-181||Learning Module 5: Present Worth Analysis||Chapter 5 problems: due September 22|
|Tue||9/19||Learning Module 5: Present Worth Analysis|
|Thu||9/21||Exam 1: Learning Modules 1-4|
|Tue||9/26||Chapter 6, pgs. 196-217||Learning Module 6: Annual Cash Flow Analysis||Chapter 6 problems: due October 6|
|Thu||9/28||Learning Module 6: Annual Cash Flow Analysis|
|Tue||10/3||Chapter 7, pgs. 228-256||Learning Module 7: Rate of Return Analysis||Chapter 7 problems: due October 13|
|Thu||10/5||Learning Module 7: Rate of Return Analysis|
|Tue||10/10||Learning Module 7: Rate of Return Analysis|
|Thu||10/12||Chapter 8, pgs. 291-293||Learning Module 8: Choosing the Best Alternative
|Chapter 8 problems: due October 20
Term Paper: due November 17
|Tue||10/17||Chapter 9, pgs. 302-327||Learning Module 9: Other Analysis Techniques||Chapter 9 problems: due October 27|
|Thu||10/19||Exam 2: Learning Modules 5-8|
|Tue||10/24||Learning Module 9: Other Analysis Techniques|
|Thu||10/26||Chapter 10, pgs. 346-358||Learning Module 10: Uncertainty in Future Events||Chapter 10 problems: due November 3|
|Tue||10/31||Learning Module 10: Uncertainty in Future Events|
|Thu||11/2||Chapter 11, pgs. 390-413, 417-418||Learning Module 11: Depreciation||Chapter 11 problems: due November 9|
|Tue||11/7||Learning Module 11: Depreciation|
|Thu||11/9||Chapter 12, pgs. 426-441||Learning Module 12: Income Taxes for Corporations||Chapter 12 problems: due November 17|
|Tue||11/14||Learning Module 12: Income Taxes for Corporations|
|Thu||11/16||Chapter 14, pgs. 499-520, 525-526||Learning Module 13: Inflation & Price Change||Chapter 14 problems: due December 1|
|Tue||11/21||Exam 3: Learning Modules 9-12|
|Tue||11/28||Learning Module 13: Inflation & Price Change|
|Thu||11/30||Chapter 16, pgs. 562-584||Learning Module 14: Economic Analysis in the Public Sector||Chapter 16 problems: due December 7|
|Tue||12/5||Chapter 17, pgs. 592-605||Learning Module 15: Accounting & Engineering Economy|
|Thu||12/7||Learning Module 15: Accounting & Engineering Economy
Final Exam Review
|Thu||12/14||Final Exam - 5:30-7:30 pm, Leonard 109|
This is a place to add things like resources, rubrics, etc.
All assignments must be submitted through assignment links in Blackboard and will be due at the dates and times noted on the schedule and in Blackboard. Each assignment will be worth 15 points.
Any work submitted by you in this course for academic credit must be your own work. You are encouraged to study together and to discuss information and concepts covered in the videos with other students. You can give "consulting" help to or receive "consulting" help from other students. However, this permissible cooperation should never involve one student having possession of a copy of all or part of the work done by someone else, in the form of email, an email attachment file, or any other physical or electronic form.
The term paper must be submitted through Blackboard and will be due at the date and time noted in the schedule and/or in Blackboard. Term papers will be submitted through SafeAssign to check for plagiarism.
Additional summary/reflection papers will be assigned at random throughout the semester and will be completed in class. If you will be absent, notify the instructor in advance and you will be given an opportunity to make up any in-class papers you may miss.
You will take your exams with the class unless you have made prior arrangements with Dr. Bjorgaard. Midterm exams will be held during the regularly scheduled class periods.
During exams, you must do your own work. Talking or discussion is not permitted during the exams, nor may you compare papers, copy from others, or collaborate in any way. Any collaborative behavior during the exams will result in failure of the exam and may lead to failure of the course and University disciplinary action.
All late work must be submitted by the due dates posted in the schedule/on Blackboard. No late submissions will be accepted without a valid reason. Late work will be given 50% credit with instructor permission. No credit will be given on work submitted late if that work has been graded and returned to the rest of the class. The acceptance of late assignments is at the discretion of the instructor, provided that you contact the instructor before the due date and ask for an extension. If you have a conflict with the schedule, please contact your instructor as soon as possible.
It is UND's policy that students notify their instructors when ill so appropriate actions may be taken (e.g., develop alternate time schedules, assignments, and exams as needed).
In the event of extenuating circumstances, such as severe illness (doctor's note is required) or a family emergency (death, child illness, etc. - documentation must be provided), it is your responsibility to communicate with the instructor at least two days before the exam or due date.
You may earn 5 points of extra credit in homework if you complete the Introductions discussion board posts at the beginning of the semester. You may also earn 5 points of extra credit in homework if you complete the SELFI evaluation at the end of the semester. You will need to upload a screenshot showing you have completed it to Blackboard. No other extra credit opportunities will be available.
You are expected to attend all classes. You are required to log in regularly to the class Blackboard site. You are also encouraged to participate in all class activities.
It is expected that students will complete all requirements for a course during the time frame of the course. For reasons beyond a student’s control, and upon request by the student or on behalf of the student, an incomplete grade may be assigned by the instructor when there is reasonable certainty the student will successfully complete the course without retaking it. The mark “I,” Incomplete, will be assigned only to the student who has been in attendance and has done satisfactory work up to a time within four weeks of the close of the semester, including the examination period, and whose work is incomplete for reasons satisfactory to his or her instructor. More information regarding UND’s Incomplete policy can be found on The Grading System webpage.
Resolution of Problems
Should a problem occur, you should speak to your instructor first. If the problem is not resolved, meet with Dr. Joel Ness. If the problem continues to be unresolved, go to the department chair (Dr. Will Semke), and next to the college dean (Dr. Brian Tande). Should the problem persist, you have the right to go to the provost next, and then to the president.
University of North Dakota Policies & Resources
Academic integrity is a serious matter, and any deviations from appropriate behavior will be dealt with strongly. At the discretion of the professor, situations of concern may be dealt with as a scholastic matter or a disciplinary matter.
As a scholastic matter, the professor has the discretion to determine appropriate penalties for the student’s workload or grade, but the situation may be resolved without involving many individuals. An alternative is to treat the situation as a disciplinary matter, which can result in suspension from the University, or have lesser penalties. Be aware that I view this as a very serious matter and will have little tolerance and/or sympathy for questionable practices. A student who attempts to obtain credit for work that is not their own (whether that be on a paper, quiz, homework assignment, exam, etc.) will likely receive a failing grade for that item of work, and at the professor’s discretion, may also receive a failing grade in the course. For more information read the Code of Student Life.
Access and Opportunity, Disability Support, & Medical Services
The University of North Dakota is committed to providing equal access to students with documented disabilities. To ensure access to this class and your program, please contact Disability Services for Students (DSS) to engage in a confidential discussion about accommodations for the classroom and clinical settings. Accommodations are not provided retroactively. Students are encouraged to register with DSS at the start of their program. More information can be obtained by email UND.dss@UND.edu or by phone at 701.777.2664.
UND is committed to maintaining a safe learning environment while providing quality learning experiences for our students. COVID-19’s continued presence within our UND community may necessitate changes in classroom management as the academic year progresses. As such, UND asks students and instructors to be flexible when necessary to promote a safe environment for learning. Please do not attend an in-person class or lab if you are feeling ill, particularly if you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, or if you have been directed by health professionals to quarantine or isolate. If you are not able to attend class or lab, please notify your instructor as soon as possible and discuss options for making up any missed work in order to ensure your ability to succeed in the course. If you will have an extended absence due to serious illness or other uncontrollable circumstances, you may request an absence notification through the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities. Similarly, if your instructor is ill they may need to cancel class or temporarily move your course to online delivery to ensure that you are able to complete the course successfully. Instructors may require students to wear masks in the classroom or in the laboratory as a preventative measure designed to facilitate uninterrupted classroom engagement and to facilitate health and safety in the classroom. If your instructor does require masks in class or in a laboratory, you are expected to comply with that request.
UND also strongly encourages all members of the University community, including students, to get vaccinated, seek out testing when needed, and model positive behavior both on- and off-campus to foster a healthy and safe learning environment for all students. Individuals who would like to discuss disability accommodations regarding masks should contact the Disability Services for Students (DSS) office at 701.777.2664 or UND.dss@UND.edu. Individuals who are unable to wear a mask due to a sincerely held religious belief should contact the UND Equal Opportunity and Title IX Office at 701.777.4171 or UND.EO.TitleIX@UND.edu.
UND offers religious accommodations, which are reasonable changes in the academic environment that enable a student to practice or observe a sincerely held religious belief without undue hardship on the University. Examples include time for prayer or the ability to attend religious events or observe a religious holiday. To request an accommodation, complete the student religious accommodation request form. If you have any questions, you may contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX Office.
Students who need assistance with academic adjustments related to pregnancy or childbirth may contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX Office or Academic Affairs to learn about your options. Additional information and services may be found at Pregnancy Resources.
Notice of Nondiscrimination
It is the policy of the University of North Dakota that no person shall be discriminated against because of race, religion, age, color, gender, disability, national origin, creed, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, veteran’s status, or political belief or affiliation and the equal opportunity and access to facilities shall be available to all. Concerns regarding Title IX, Title VI, Title VII, ADA, and Section 504 may be addressed to Donna Smith, Assistant Vice President for Equal Opportunity & Title IX and Title IX/ADA Coordinator, 102 Twamley Hall, 701.777.4171, UND.EO.TitleIX@UND.edu or the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Dept. of Education, 230 S. Dearborn St., 37th Floor, Chicago, IL 60604 or any other federal agency.
Reporting of Discrimination, Harassment, or Sexual Misconduct
If you or a friend has experienced sexual misconduct, such as sexual harassment, sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking, please contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX Office or UND’s Title IX Coordinator, Donna Smith, for assistance: 701.777.4171; donna.smith@UND.edu; or visit the Title IX webpage. You may also contact the Equal Opportunity & Title IX office if you or a friend has experienced discrimination or harassment based on a protected class, such as race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, pregnancy, marital or parental status, veteran's status, or political belief or affiliation.
Faculty Reporting Obligations Regarding Discrimination, Harassment, or Sexual Misconduct
It is important for students to understand that faculty are required to share with UND’s Title IX Coordinator any incidents of sexual misconduct or of discrimination or harassment based on a protected class that they become aware of, even if those incidents occurred in the past or are disclosed as part of a class assignment. This does not mean an investigation will occur if the student does not want that, but it does allow UND to provide resources to help the student continue to be successful at UND. If you have been impacted by discrimination, harassment, or sexual misconduct, you can find information about confidential support services on the Equal Opportunity & Title IX webpage..
UND Cares Program
How to Seek Help When in Distress
We know that while college is a wonderful time for most students, however, some students may struggle or have issues that arise. You may experience students in distress on campus, in your classroom, in your home, and within residence halls. Distressed students may initially seek assistance from faculty, staff members, their parents, and other students. In addition to the support we can provide to each other, there are also professional support services available to students through the Dean of Students and University Counseling Center. Both staffs are available to consult with you about getting help or providing a friend with the help that he or she may need. For more additional information, please visit the UND Cares Program Webpage.
How to Recognize When a Student is in Distress
The term “distressed” can mean any of the following:
- Student has significant changes in eating, sleeping, grooming, spending, or other daily activities.
- Student has cut off or minimized contact with family or friends.
- Student has significant changes in performance or involvement in academics, sports, extracurricular, or social activities.
- Student describes problems (missing class, not remembering, destructive behavior) that result from experiences with drinking or drugs.
- Student is acting withdrawn, volatile, tearful, etc.
- Student is acting out of character or different than usual.
- Student is talking explicitly about hopelessness or suicide.
- Student has difficulty concentrating or difficulty carrying on a normal conversation.
- Student has excessive dependence on others for company or support.
- Student reports feeling out of control of one’s emotions, thoughts, or behaviors.
Land Acknowledgement Statement
Today, the University of North Dakota rests on the ancestral lands of the Pembina and Red Lake Bands of Ojibwe and the Dakota Oyate - presently existing as composite parts of the Red Lake, Turtle Mountain, White Earth Bands, and the Dakota Tribes of Minnesota and North Dakota. We acknowledge the people who resided here for generations and recognize that the spirit of the Ojibwe and Oyate people permeate this land. As a university community, we will continue to build upon our relations with the First Nations of the State of North Dakota - the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nation, Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Nation, Spirit Lake Nation, Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, and Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians.
It is my goal to foster an environment of mutual respect in which everyone feels comfortable voicing their opinions, sharing their stories, and learning about potentially heavy or personally relevant material. If, at any point, you feel like the information covered in this class elicits thoughts, feelings, or concerns that you would like to discuss further, don’t hesitate to reach out to me, or the UND Counseling Center (701-777-2127).
Further, if you experience extenuating circumstances, sexual violence, identity-based harm, or any other personal crisis during the semester, don’t hesitate to reach out to me so we can provide academic assistance and help you in this course, and put you in contact with the appropriate resources and services (if needed).
- UND Care Team: 701-777-2664 (8:00 AM to 4:30 PM M-F) or 701-777-3491 (evenings and weekends)
- UND Campus Police: 701-777-3491·UND Student Health: 701-777-4500
- UND Title IX Resources
- Abuse and Rape Crisis Hotline (CVIC): 701-746-8900 (24 hours)
- Grand Forks Police Department: 701-787-8000 (24 hours)
- Emergency Room: 701-780-5280
- UND Student Diversity and Inclusion: 701-777-6985
- Food For Thought Pantry: (Wilkerson Commons Room 169; 701-777-4200)
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: (1-800-273-8255)