Asee peer logo

A Web Based, Interactive Simulation For Engineering Economics Courses

Download Paper |


2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.109.1 - 10.109.9



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Kevin Dahm

Download Paper |

NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1526

A Web-Based, Interactive Simulation for Engineering Economics Courses

Kevin D. Dahm and Ravi P. Ramachandran Rowan University


A game simulating realistic economic decision-making was devised and integrated into a Rowan University course on engineering economics in 2001 and 2002. The activity was extremely well received and the NSF provided a CCLI grant for development of software that automates the game, making it suitable for widespread dissemination.

The game itself challenges students to not only learn engineering economic principles such as present worth, but also to use them to make realistic economic decisions in a competitive setting. Each student starts with $10,000, and is presented with a list of investment opportunities. Students apply the principles learned in class to the possible investments and make decisions, such as how much to bid on a particular item in an auction. Additional investment opportunities are introduced weekly throughout the semester. The required analysis grows in complexity as the students’ knowledge base increases. The game is interactive; for example the owner of a factory must negotiate the price of raw materials he/she needs with the owner of a mine.

The software is written using standard HTML and Active Server Pages with a Microsoft Access Database. Students use the software to manage their company, taking such actions as placing bids in an auction, purchasing buildings and ships, setting production rates for mines and factories, and borrowing money from a bank. Students can also use the software to view reports, such as lists of their assets, their current bank balance, etc.

In the fall of 2003, an initial version of the software was used in an engineering economy course at the University of Kentucky, and the results of this preliminary test were presented at the 2004 ASEE Annual Conference. Since that time, the software has been revised to address shortcomings identified during the preliminary test. The improved software is currently being used in the engineering economics course at Rowan. This paper describes the game itself, the improved software, and its use in the course.

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2005, American Society for Engineering Education

Dahm, K. (2005, June), A Web Based, Interactive Simulation For Engineering Economics Courses Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--14142

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2005 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015