Syllabus for FIN-314
SMALL BUSINESS FINANCE
Small Business Finance – The application of basic financial management techniques focuses on the financial aspects of starting and running a business (100 or more employees). The core financial aspects of business entrepreneurship and problems encountered by those starting and running a small business are covered through the discussion of financial topics including working capital management, time value of money, financial statements, small business administration programs, succession planning, financing options, and alternative solutions to commonly discovered problems. Case studies are used to illustrate a macro overview and micro approach in developing and meeting company objectives.
After completing this course, you should be able to:
You will need the following materials to do the work of the course. The required textbook is available from the college's textbook supplier, MBS Direct.
While no specific model of financial calculator is required, the HP-12C or equivalent is recommended.
Small Business Finance is a three-credit online course, consisting of six (6) modules. Modules include topics, objectives, study materials, and assignments. Module titles are listed below:
Module 1: Concepts of Financial Management
Module 2: Financial Statements
Module 3: Profitability and Working Capital
Module 4: Forecasting
Module 5: Time Value of Money
Module 6: Capital Budgeting and Personal Finance
For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in online discussion forums, complete written assignments, take a proctored online midterm exam, and produce a final project. See below for more details.
Consult the course Calendar for due dates.
In addition to an ungraded "Introductions" forum, you are required to participate in six (6) graded online class discussions.
Communication with your mentor and among fellow students is a critical component of online learning. Participation in online class discussions involves two distinct activities: an initial response to a discussion question and at least two subsequent comments on classmates' responses.
All of these responses must be substantial. Meaningful participation is relevant to the content, adds value, and advances the discussion. Comments such as "I agree" and "ditto" are not considered value-adding participation. Therefore, when you agree or disagree with a classmate or your mentor, state and support your position.
You will be evaluated on the quality and quantity of your participation, including your use of relevant course information to support your point of view, and your awareness of and responses to the postings of your classmates. Remember, these are discussions: responses and comments should be properly proofread and edited, mature, and respectful.
You are required to complete six (6) written assignments based on a variety of topics covered in the course modules. These assignments are in the form of questions and problems.
In order to answer the problems in these assignments you will need to make calculations using a financial calculator, such as a HP-12C or similar model.
You can use Excel in conjunction with the financial calculator to simplify the process of solving the problems, but you must submit your written assignments as a Word document, which means you will have to export your table(s), etc., from Excel into Word.
Please note that while you will be able to use a financial calculator to solve problems during the midterm exam, Excel will not be available.
You are required to take a proctored midterm examination.
The midterm exam is two hours long and covers all material assigned in modules 1-3. It consists of questions and problems similar to the ones featured in your written assignments.
This is a proctored, closed-book exam, but you will be permitted to use a financial calculator. Excel will not be available during the midterm.
The exam requires that you use the College's Online Proctor Service (OPS). Please refer to the "Examinations and Proctors" section of the Online Student Handbook (see General Information area of the course Web site) for further information about scheduling and taking online exams and for all exam policies and procedures. Online exams are administered through the course Web site. Consult the course Calendar for the official dates of exam weeks.
Statement about Cheating
You are on your honor not to cheat during the exam. Cheating means:
If there is evidence that you have cheated or plagiarized in your exam, the exam will be declared invalid, and you will fail the course.
You are required to produce a Final Project in the form of a Business Financial Plan and submit it at the end of the semester. Your financial plan will be produced in three stages.
Consult the Final Project area of the course for details of what you need to do. Consult the course Calendar for due dates.
Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:
All activities will receive a numerical grade of 0–100. You will receive a score of 0 for any work not submitted. Your final grade in the course will be a letter grade. Letter grade equivalents for numerical grades are as follows:
To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or better (for an area of study course) or D or better (for a non-area of study course), based on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., exams, assignments, discussion postings, etc.).
First Steps to Success
To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:
Consider the following study tips for success:
Students at Thomas Edison State College are expected to exhibit the highest level of academic citizenship. In particular, students are expected to read and follow all policies, procedures, and program information guidelines contained in publications; pursue their learning goals with honesty and integrity; demonstrate that they are progressing satisfactorily and in a timely fashion by meeting course deadlines and following outlined procedures; observe a code of mutual respect in dealing with mentors, staff, and other students; behave in a manner consistent with the standards and codes of the profession in which they are practicing; keep official records updated regarding changes in name, address, telephone number, or e-mail address; and meet financial obligations in a timely manner. Students not practicing good academic citizenship may be subject to disciplinary action including suspension, dismissal, or financial holds on records.
Thomas Edison State College expects all of its students to approach their education with academic integrity—the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception. All mentors and administrative staff members at the College insist on strict standards of academic honesty in all courses. Academic dishonesty undermines this objective. Academic dishonesty takes the following forms:
Academic dishonesty will result in disciplinary action and possible dismissal from the College. Students who submit papers that are found to be plagiarized will receive an F on the plagiarized assignment, may receive a grade of F for the course, and may face dismissal from the College.
A student who is charged with academic dishonesty will be given oral or written notice of the charge. If a mentor or College official believes the infraction is serious enough to warrant referral of the case to the academic dean, or if the mentor awards a final grade of F in the course because of the infraction, the student and the mentor will be afforded formal due process.
If a student is found cheating or using unauthorized materials on an examination, he or she will automatically receive a grade of F on that examination. Students who believe they have been falsely accused of academic dishonesty should seek redress through informal discussions with the mentor, through the office of the dean, or through an executive officer of Thomas Edison State College.
Using someone else's work as your own is plagiarism. Although it may seem like simple dishonesty, plagiarism is against the law. Thomas Edison State College takes a strong stance against plagiarism, and students found to be plagiarizing will be severely penalized. If you copy phrases, sentences, paragraphs, or whole documents word-for-word—or if you paraphrase by changing a word here and there—without identifying the author, then you are plagiarizing. Please keep in mind that this type of identification applies to Internet sources as well as to print-based sources. Copying and pasting from the Internet, without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources, constitutes plagiarism. (For information about how to cite Internet sources, see Online Student Handbook > Academic Standards > "Citing Sources.")
Accidentally copying the words and ideas of another writer does not excuse the charge of plagiarism. It is easy to jot down notes and ideas from many sources and then write your own paper without knowing which words are your own and which are someone else's. It is more difficult to keep track of each and every source. However, the conscientious writer who wishes to avoid plagiarizing never fails to keep careful track of sources.
Always be aware that if you write without acknowledging the sources of your ideas, you run the risk of being charged with plagiarism.
Clearly, plagiarism, no matter the degree of intent to deceive, defeats the purpose of education. If you plagiarize deliberately, you are not educating yourself, and you are wasting your time on courses meant to improve your skills. If you plagiarize through carelessness, you are deceiving yourself.