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"An Experiential Learning System for Production Management: Business Simulation Using Spreadsheets"


Design Team
  Team: Chuda Basnet and John Scott


  Focus: Concept/Procedure Development
  Discipline: Business & Law
  Target: Undergraduate (late), Postgraduate
  ICT used: Spreadsheet
  Scope: Over several learning sessions

Designer's Summary


As part of one assessable task in an operations management course at the University of Waikato, students are required to develop a Decision Support System. Students are given a scenario where they assume the role of a Production Planner of a manufacturing company and use a spreadsheet-based production planning simulator called MRP-SIM to assist them with their task.

The simulator simulates a production system, which receives external orders (simulated). The students use this stream of orders to create forecasts and to decide what to order internally and externally on a weekly basis. The students receive feedback on profit made each week (of simulated time).

Students are supported with this task by:

  • A detailed instruction document.
  • Face-to-face class lecture.
  • Computer lab instruction.

Rationale for Inclusion


This exemplar has been selected for inclusion for the following reasons:

  • It demonstrates the use of ICT in the form of an Excel spreadsheet that students use to complete one assessment task. The Excel spreadsheet has been designed to simulate the process of production planning and management and as such, students use this tool to help them to learn about these processes.
  • It represents an ICT-based learning design that could be implemented with relative ease (the complexity rests in the development of the Excel spreadsheet macro).


Please Cite As:

  Basnet, C. & Scott, J. (2002). Description of An Experiential Learning System for Production Management: Business Simulation Using Spreadsheets. Retrieved , from Learning Designs Web site:
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