37685 - Computational Tools

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2019/2020

Learning outcomes

This course provides students with basic information technology notions, including: the use of a computer connected to the internet, spreadsheets, the Web and firm information systems. Considering both proprietary and open source technologies. At the end of the course, students are expected to have a basic skill for: (a) using personal computers and spreadsheets; (b) using the Web, search engines and communication mechanisms; (c) using firm information systems.

Course contents

Important information: this course will take as given that students have previously attended the crash course Computational Tools, in which the basics of Excel spreadsheets (functions, pivoting, vlookup, primary keys) are introduced.

Internet and networks.

MS Access tables, queries and macros.

MS Excel Power Pivot and Power BI advanced techniques.

Proprietary and open source technologies.

Overview of firms IT systems.

Readings/Bibliography

Turban, Volonino, Wood / Information Technology for Management - international students version, Wiley, 2015 (10th edition).

Collie, Singh / Power Pivot and Power BI: The Excel User's Guide to DAX, Power Query, Power BI & Power Pivot in Excel 2010-2016, 2016 (2nd edition).

Jelen, Alexander / Pivot Table Data Crunching Excel 2016, Que Publishing, 2015 (2nd edition).

Teaching methods

Lectures and practical applications in laboratory.

Important note: up to 20 Erasmus students can be accepted, the criteria will be "first come, first served".

COVID update:

Lectures take place on Microsoft Teams, at the online lectures link.

Students are supposed to connect in time to the lectures and are responsible of the following:

  • Having a 64-bit computer firmly connected to the power network and (possibily via cable) to the Internet with a working camera and a working microphone;
  • Having 64-bit Microsoft Windows installed and running - in case of a Mac, see here possible solutions to install Windows on Mac computers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MuAVOpO7yFc&t=77s

    https://www.pcmag.com/news/how-to-run-windows-on-a-mac

  • Having 64-bit Microsoft Office installed (Unibo provides a free copy to its students, to get it they are required to connect to www.office.com and login with their Unibo credentials, then download the 64-bit WINDOWS Microsoft Office, NOT the Mac one) and Power Pivot activated and running (as an alternative it is possible to download 64-bit Power BI Desktop for free here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=58494).

Assessment methods

Practical test at the PC on MS Excel Power Pivot, MS Access queries and Excel Pivots and VLOOKUP, plus a few theory open questions.

COVID update:

Microsoft Access is temporarily not part of the final tests.

Final tests take place on Microsoft Teams, the link will be automatically sent by mail to the students that applied on Almaesami.

Students are supposed to connect 15 minutes before the official start, for identification and troublshooting, and are responsible of the following:

  • Having a 64-bit computer firmly connected to the power network and (possibily via cable) to the Internet with a working camera and a working microphone (also, an ID showing a picture must be at hand, to be identified);
  • Having 64-bit Microsoft Windows installed and running - in case of a Mac, see here possible solutions to install Windows on Mac computers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MuAVOpO7yFc&t=77s

    https://www.pcmag.com/news/how-to-run-windows-on-a-mac

  • Having 64-bit Microsoft Office installed (Unibo provides a free copy to its students, to get it students are required to connect to www.office.com and login with their Unibo credentials, then download the 64-bit WINDOWS Microsoft Office, NOT the Mac one) and Power Pivot activated and running (as an alternative it is possible to download 64-bit Power BI Desktop for free here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=58494);
  • Having all the above mentioned softwares, plus a tool to convert a word into a pdf (PDFCreator can be downloaded for free here: https://www.pdfforge.org/pdfcreator/download) ready to work, running and tested;
  • Applying in time on AlmaEsami to book the final test (no students will be accepted if out of the list, unless a specific agreement has been taken, with specified reasons).

When the application deadline on AlmaEsami is met, the Professor will send a mail to all the students that applied on AlmaEsami for that test date, sharing a folder where the datasets and the test files will be available, plus additional instructions, if needed. Students will have to check themselves their ability to upload and download files from that shared folder and inform the Professor with a mail in case something is wrong, so that issues are solved BEFORE the date of the test.

Teaching tools

Blackboard, slides, practical applications in laboratory.

Office hours

See the website of Francesco Bergamaschi