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Criner - REP 254 Syllabus

(Spring 2006)

George K. Criner, Professor and Chair
206 Winslow Hall
Phone:  581-3151  FAX: 581‑4278
Email: George Criner on FirstClass

OFFICE HOURS: Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and by appointment.  Since Dr. Criner is occasionally out of town and must also attend various committee meetings, students are encouraged to call or email him to arrange a meeting.  The Departmental Secretary, Karen Casey, (581-3154), or the Departmental Administrative Assistant Diane Mullen (581-3150) can also make appointments.

Text: Effective Small Business Management: An Entrepreneurial Approach.


Students will learn terminology, concepts and issues surrounding business management in the United States.  Particular focus will be paid to small businesses and entrepreneurship.  Students will also gain a proficiency in the use of spreadsheets for economic and business analysis.  All students will participate in a course project which will provide an opportunity to integrate the textbook concepts with an application as well as provide experience in spreadsheet modeling, teamwork activity and report and presentation preparation.


Item Weight
Exams (Feb. 13, Mar. 29, Apr. 19, Finals week as set by UM) Top 3 exams @ 20% each = 60%
Homeworks 10%
Class Projects 30%


Normally homework assignments will be due at the start of class. These homeworks can also be sent to the homework drop box, but must be postmarked by the start of class time.  Homeworks need to be typed. Some shorter homework assignments may be graded acceptable/unacceptable.  In the case of the short homeworks, if a student turns in a homework, they will receive full credit, unless the homework is found unacceptable.  If homework is turned in and found unacceptable, the student will hear from Professor Criner via email (or hard copy).  Students should save a copy of all of their homework (in hard copy or electronic form) since some of the shorter homeworks may not be returned to students.  Written homework answers will always be provided (normally sent to the FirstClass folder REP.  Students should check their answers with the answers provided and ask Professor Criner if they have any questions regarding the differences. If students do not turn in a homework on time, they will not receive any credit for that homework.  Homework assignments will normally be provided at least one week in advance.  Late homeworks will not be accepted unless they have a written official excuse stapled to it.


Four exams will be given, and students may skip one exam.  One exam will be dropped to allow for students to be out of town with a sanctioned UMaine event (such as sports activity or field trip), or to allow for a missed test due to an illness, car not starting, etc.  Exams may be multiple-choice, or multiple-choice with one or a few short answers or short essay questions.  One or more exams may be moved to another room in order to allow for students to have more space.


Each student is required to participate in a class project. Unless approved by Professor Criner, students will work in groups of four or five.  During some weeks, group activities will replace normal class meetings.  A few times during the semester, each group will meet separately with Professor Criner.  The project will involve outlining a business plan including an assessment of feasibility.  Each group will be required to make one or more presentations on the project.  Progress reports may also be required, and students will assist in evaluating other students’ project performance. Students will present their projects at the end of the semester. The order of presentation will be determined by volunteers or random draw.  Attendance at group meetings and attendance at group presentations will count as part of each student’s project grade.


One of the objectives of this course is for students to have the skill necessary to model economic and business concepts with microcomputer spreadsheets.  Students will be required to sign up for a sequence of spreadsheet lab sessions.  Students may be excused from attending these laboratories by passing a proficiency exam.


Course material will come primarily from the text and lectures.  Professor Criner intends to start with chapter 1 of the textbook and proceed through subsequent chapters, but may alter the order as far as time allows. Students are responsible for keeping up with material they may have missed during an absence, etc.  Students should feel free to consult the instructor whenever questions arise regarding material presented in class, the reading assignments, or other course issues.

Please turn cell phones off unless you are expecting an emergency telephone call.

Attendance may be taken periodically via a circulated sign in sheet, a short writing assignment, or group discussion.  Attendance may be used for giving extra credit.

If you have a disability for which you may be requesting an accommodation, please contact Ann Smith, Director of Disabilities Services, 121 East Annex, 581-2319, as early as possible in the term.

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