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The University of Southampton

MATH6147 Data Analytics

Module Overview

The module provides an introduction to the use of spreadsheets, databases and R for modelling in Operational Research.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Understand how spreadsheets can be used to help solve standard problems in Operational Research, e.g. queueing theory and linear programming
  • Appreciate the value of spreadsheets for solving small-scale practical problems
  • Understand the basic principles of database design
  • Use a standard spreadsheet package (e.g. Microsoft Excel) to carry out calculations
  • Carry out a practical project using a spreadsheet
  • Run basic queries to obtain information from a database
  • Use R for data manipulation and visualisation


1. Introduction to Excel: basic file operations; entering data; using formulae. 2. Linear programming: optimisation using Goal Seek and Solver 3. LookUp tables, random sampling and queueing models 4. Importing data and Pivot Table/Chart analysis 5. Introduction to database systems: entity-relation models; practical database design 6. Working with queries: creating a query; introduction to some basic SQL 7. Introduction to R: data input, manipulation and visualisation

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

The module will be taught using a mixture of lectures and computer workshops: 12 hours of computer workshops; 4 hours of lectures.

Independent Study55
Total study time75

Resources & Reading list

Winston WL. Operations Research: Applications and Algorithms. 

Rolland FD. The Essence of Database. 

Weida N, Richardson R & Vazsonyi A. Operations Analysis Using Microsoft® Excel. 

Software requirements. Microsoft Excel; Microsoft Access (or other database software)

Thomas T. Nagle, John F. The Strategy and Tactics of Pricing: A Guide to Growing More Profitably. 

Ritchie C. Relational Database Principles (Letts Educational). 

Robert L. Phillips (2005). Pricing and Revenue Optimization. 

Liengme BV. A Guide to Microsoft Excel for Business and Management. 

Barlow JF. Excel Model for Business and Operations Management. 

Lehmann M & Zeitz P. Statistical Explorations with Microsoft® Excel. 



MethodPercentage contribution
Coursework 40%
Coursework 30%
Coursework 30%


MethodPercentage contribution
Coursework assignment(s) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

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