BAD 64011/74011 Section 001/001
Systems Simulation, Fall 2003
Lecture TH 12:15-1:30, BSA A404

Instructor Murali Shanker, A401 BSA
Phone: 330 672-1165
Office Hours To be announced


Course Objectives: Study the techniques and applications of computer simulation of existing or proposed real-world facilities and processes. The models of such facilities are often quite complex, precluding the use of more traditional analytical techniques. Specifically, students will learn to do simulations in a simulation language, to plan simulation studies, as well as analyze and interpret the result of simulations. Additional topics include selecting input probability distributions, random number generators, generating random variables, statistical analysis of simulation output, and variance reduction techniques.

Prerequisites: Graduate Standing

Students who have not successfully completed the course prerequisites must withdraw from this class. You risk deregistration otherwise.


Individual assignments (about 6)                  60%
Individual Project/Paper                              40%

Individual assignments will consist of problems, modeling assignments, and summaries of research papers. Research papers representing different areas of simulation, including output analysis, random number generators, parallel simulation, verification and validation, applications and modeling, will be assigned in class. Each summary is limited to two pages of a single-sided, double-spaced 8.5"x11" page. All assignments and project must be done individually.

The computer work will be most conveniently done on computers running Windows.

The project will be a complete simulation study of your choosing.

Last day to drop a course: 1 November 2003.

Course Schedule:

Topic Approximate Number Of Weeks Readings
Introduction to Simulation 0.5 Chap 1 (SWA)
Fundamental Simulation Concepts 0.5 Chap 2 (SWA)
A Guided Tour Through ARENA 1.0 Chap 3 (SWA)
Modeling Basic Operations and Inputs 1.0 Chap 4 (SWA)
Modeling Detailed Operations 1.0 Chap 5 (SWA)
Statistical Analysis of Output from Terminating Simulations 0.5 Chap 6 (SWA)
Intermediate Modeling and Steady-State Analysis 1.0 Chap 7(SWA)
Entity Transfer and Other Issues 1.0 Chap 8 and 9 (SWA)
Further Statistical Issues 1.0 Chap 12 (SWA)
Conducting Simulation Studies 1.0 Chap 13 (SWA)

Project Information: The individual project must be a complete simulation study of a real system of your choosing. This includes:

  1. Defining the system to be simulated and stating the purpose of the study.
  2. Collecting data on the system and use it to determine probability distributions and other parameters. Experience indicates that data collection can be a very difficult and time-consuming part of a study. For the purpose of this project, don't be concerned about getting a large sample size., Just collect enough data to define the model, with the knowledge that if you were being paid to do this (rather than paying to do it) you would get more data.
  3. Coding and verifying the model.
  4. Exercising the model to evaluate the system as it is, and at least one alternative configuration or operating policy, with an eye toward improvement. Pay attention to the statistical validity of your results. That is, do some sort of statistical analysis of the simulation output.
  5. Write a brief report describing what you did and what your results and recommendations are. Include code and output as an appendix. Write the report for someone who is familiar with the system, and with basic probability and statistics, but who does not know (or care) anything about how simulations are done. In other words, you must summarize your results, rather that present page after page of output data.