General Learning Goals:
• Problem solving and decision making abilities through the critical analysis,
evaluation, and interpretation of business information: Students will demonstrate
problem solving and decision-making ability as they synthesize information from different
angles to analyze topics such as firms’ financial conditions and interest rate pattern, and make
decisions on circumstances such as capital budgeting. Scores on quizzes and exams are based
on the appropriateness of student’s numerical analysis
Course Specific Learning Goals
Business finance is a core part of all BBA degree programs and is required of all students
who pursue a BBA degree in the College of Business Administration. This course covers
the specialized terminology, techniques, and principles appropriate to the management of
money within all types of organizations – especially publicly owned business corporations.
Primary topics covered in business finance are:
Financial statement analysis
Time value of money
Basic bond and stock valuation, and
Introduction to cost of capital and capital budgeting
The teaching approach used in this course is designed to achieve the following objectives.
1. Improve students’ knowledge of the highly specialized terminology which is
appropriate to the field of finance.
2. Assist students in learning fundamental financial principles and practices which are
generally appropriate to carrying out the finance function within an organization
with the objective of maximizing the organization’s value.
3. Promote greater understanding, through the application of course material, to the
solution of structured problems in finance.
Exams: There will be three equally weighted exams. Each exam is weighted 25% into your overall
grade. The first exam will cover financial statement analysis, which includes Ch 1, 2, and 3. The
second exam will cover time value of money concepts, including Ch 4, 5, 6, and 7. Final exam will
be mandatory and cover both time value of money concepts and basic capital budgeting concepts
(Ch 11, 12 and 13). Format and contents of an exam will be announced in class prior to the exam.
There will be no make-up for the exams. It is the student’s responsibility to know when and where
exams will be held. If you have an unavoidable conflict you must discuss this with me at least one
week before the exam. If an emergency arises, please notify me immediately; if you cannot reach
me directly, please leave a message. If you miss one exam, with a valid reason, the weight of the
missed exam will be transferred into the other two exams that you can take (for example, if you
miss the first exam, then your other two exams will be totally weighted 75%). This option can only
be exercised once, meaning that if you miss two exams, you lose at least 25 points in your total
grade. An unexcused absence from the exam will result in a grade of zero.
Quizzes: During the semester you will be given 3 quizzes. The lowest quiz grade will be dropped.
Therefore each of the remaining two quizzes will be weighted 10% into your overall grade. If you
miss one quiz, it will be automatically graded as zero and dropped as your lowest grade. If you
miss more than one quiz, one zero grade will be dropped and the other one (ones) will still be
counted as zero and carried into your overall grade.
Participation: Student participation is very important for this course. Therefore participation
credits are given to encourage students to engage in class discussion and participation. Students
with outstandingly good participation can earn up to 5 points of participation grades, while
students that seldom participate or are disruptive to class may get zero participation grade. In
addition to participate in class, your participation on WEBCT will also be evaluated.
Grading Schedules: In general, the following grading schedules will apply:
100 - 90% = A (superior) Exam 1 = 25%
89 - 80% = B (above average) Exam 2 = 25%
79 - 70% = C (average) Final Exam = 25%
69 - 60% = D (below average) Quizzes = 20% (10% * 2)
≤ 59% = F (failing) Participation = 5%
After I finish grading the quizzes or exams, I will bring them to class to return them to you. If you
cannot pick up yours in class, you have to appear in my office in person to pick them up. Due to
privacy concerns, you cannot pick up projects or exams for other students, including your friends.
Also due to privacy concerns, I do not give grades out via phone or email.
Arguing for your grades: If you believe there is a mistake in your grading, please feel free to
bring it back to me for a double-check. However, you can only do so within 7 business days since
your exam/report is returned to you, and you have to appear in person to do so.
Attendance and Classroom Policy
• Arrive on time for each class meeting. Arriving late to class is disruptive to your fellow
students. While arriving late for class is occasionally unavoidable, arriving late for
excessive times may result in lower grade or being administratively dropped from class.
• Avoid excessive absences. Students are expected to attend all class meetings. Absences
may lower a student’s grade. A student with excessive absences may be dropped from the
course by the instructor. (MSU Undergraduate Catalog 2010-2012, Vol. LXXVIII, No. 1,
• Prepare for each class. Read the assigned material, answer end-of-chapter questions and
problems, and come to class prepared to ask questions over issues you do not understand,
answer questions from the instructor, and participate in class exercises and discussions
• Silence your cell phone /pager. Either turn it off, or switch it to silent mode. Phone rings or
beeper beeps disrupt the whole class and will NOT be tolerated.
• No private chat with your fellow students in class. If you want to speak, speak loudly so
that the whole class can hear you.
• No food or beverage is allowed in the classroom. This is a college policy.
Violating above rules will either cause you being dropped from this class or cause your final
letter grade to be lowered according to the severity of the violation.
Some Insights Into This Course
The following insights are offered by the instructor based on many years of experience teaching
this course. It is hoped that some of these comments will assist you in successfully studying and
learning the significant concepts in business finance.
1. Students have indicated that the workload necessary to successfully complete business
finance ranges from moderate to heavy depending on their backgrounds in economics,
accounting, and statistics.
2. The textbook used in this course is an important element in the study of finance. For best
results, you should carefully study each assigned chapter, work as many problems and
answer as many study questions as is necessary to understand the concepts, and come to
each class prepared to ask questions and participate in class activities.
3. As an applied field of study, finance draws heavily from the fields of economics and
accounting. Reasonable backgrounds in both of these areas will greatly help you
4. Finance is also a quantitative subject. Many finance topics presented in standard finance
textbooks are easier to understand if one has a reasonable background in statistical topics
such as descriptive statistics (especially mean and standard deviation), basic probability
theory, probability distributions (especially the normal distribution), and simple regression
and correlation analysis.
5. The study of finance builds from one chapter to another. An understanding of one chapter
depends on the degree of mastery of previous chapters. Thus, it is not a good idea to get
behind during the semester or wait until the last minute to study for a test.
Syllabus Change Policy
This syllabus and the following class schedule serve as reference for the course, and they are subject
to change. Syllabus changes will be communicated in class or on WEBCT.