Throughout this course, you have learned how to apply quantitative reasoning and problem-solving strategies to a variety of staged, but real-world contexts. You
have built upon the skills you already had to advance the range of contexts to which you can apply mathematical thinking and problem-solving strategies
Your final project for this course will focus on real-world financial, statistical, and measurement-related contexts to assess your mastery of quantitative
reasoning and problem solving in these areas. Specifically, you will be working your way through opportunities for employment, selecting the one that best fits
your needs and wants, establishing a budget to manage your expenses, selecting the best options for managing debt, and planning for the future. You will then
take the strategies you have learned in this course and apply them to your own problem, and walk your instructor through your process for solving the problem.
For your problem, you can choose anything such as deciding what credit card to get, determining how much and what type of insulation to purchase, or planning
your garden, but you must run your selection by your instructor for approval.
Mastery of the skills and strategies covered in this course will help set the foundation for future coursework, future career opportunities, as well as problem
solving and decision making in your personal life.
This assessment addresses the following course outcomes:
Analyze real-world scenarios for the key aspects that can inform the selection of quantitative problem-solving strategies
Determine appropriate problem-solving strategies for approaching solutions to various real-world problems
Solve real-world problems through application of appropriate mathematical calculations
Articulate logical interpretations of quantitative information for informing personal real-world decisions
Prompt Congratulations on graduating with your bachelor’s degree from Southern New Hampshire University! A new array of opportunities is open to you, but which
will you choose, and how will it impact your life? Select your discipline area of interest and examine the set of jobs you have applied to and received offer letters
for to determine which one best fits your needs and wants. Once you have selected the opportunity you wish to pursue, discuss the impact your choice will have
on your life, establish your budget, plan to pay down your debt, and then determine a decision or issue from your personal life you want to solve, and solve it.
If you are uncomfortable solving a problem from your own life, select one of the problems provided in the Selected Problem Examples document.
Refer to the following critical elements to complete your final project:
I. Employment Opportunity Analysis: In this section of your final project, you will focus on the opportunities presented in the discipline area of interest to
you. Compare the opportunities as instructed below:
A. Outline the characteristics that are most important to you in a job search, and explain why.
1. Location: Compare the jobs in terms of distance and commute, and explain the impact each would have on your day-to-day life. Discuss
the impact of a commute on your life. Would you be willing to commute or relocate for any of these positions? Explain the
considerations and show your calculations. From your consideration of commuting and relocating, discuss the questions you would need
to consider before your final determination.
2. Salary: Find the occupational area on BLS.gov and compare the salary ranges for each job. Specifically, answer the following in your
i. Calculate what a reasonable salary would be for each job opportunity using the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) website, and
explain how you determined each figure.
ii. Calculate the starting income each position will provide you after taxes using an estimated flat tax rate of 30%, as well as the
annual income you would make at the 5-year mark after taxes using a flat tax rate of 32%.
iii. Were you to have information about the salaries of various levels of employees in each company, what (mean, median, or
mode) would you use to calculate your expected salary? Why?
3. Benefits: Compare the benefits and retirement packages of each opportunity, calculating theoretical retirement savings if applicable.
Consider the following:
i. How much retirement savings will you have in 5, 10, and 20 years considering the retirement options provided by each
employer in the job opportunity letters? If your employer matches your contributions, assume you will put aside the maximum
that the employer will match; if the employer does not have a retirement option, assume you will put aside 5% of your pre-tax
salary each year. Explain how you got your results.
ii. Compare how much of insurance costs each employer covers and how much you would be expected to cover. Be sure to
consider your personal situation, such as children who need coverage and how much the family plans will save/cost you.
C. Employment Opportunity Selection: Select an employment opportunity and defend your selection using your calculations and personal criteria.
How do you know this will be the best for your life and finances?
II. Living Expenses and Debt: Using your selected employment opportunity, analyze your monthly expenses and income, and prepare a plan for paying
down your debt. You can use your actual amounts of expenses and debt if you prefer, or, if you are uncomfortable using real numbers, or if you do not
have any debt, you can make up a principal amount, interest rate, payoff period, and minimum payment to cover at least one student loan, one credit
card, and one personal or auto loan. You can utilize as many loans as you like, but you must have at least three.
A. Budget Creation: Create a monthly budget using your new income, real-life expense categories, and the expenses associated with travel based
on your selected employment opportunity.
B. Debt: In this section, you will compare your lines of credit to determine the best payoff method for you.
1. Comparison: Compare monthly minimum payments, principal totals, interest rates, and payoff period.
2. Process: Determine how you will pay off your debt over time, considering your budget and your new income. Explain your process.
3. Plan: Establish a debt payoff plan that fits your budget, lifestyle, and the demands of the debt to be paid, explaining your reasoning.
III. Self-Selected Problem: Thus far you have shown your mastery of quantitative reasoning and problem solving using mathematical calculations as applied
to financial contexts. For this section of your assessment, select a problem that you are currently facing that would benefit from mathematical or
quantitative reasoning. If you are uncomfortable using a personal problem, select one from the Selected Problem Examples document. Explain the issue,
the factors involved, and your plan for solving it, and explain the quantitative methodologies you used.
A. Context: Explain the context of the problem. What is the problem? What factors are involved?
B. Analysis: Break the problem down into its key pieces. Is this a multistep problem? Are there multiple considerations that will require different
C. Approach: Explain how you will approach each step or aspect of the situation to solve the problem. What process or method will you use and
D. Implementation: Solve the problem. Perform any necessary calculations, showing your work and explaining your process.
E. Results: Articulate a logical interpretation of the calculations you performed and the results of your solution approach. What do the results
mean in relation to your particular problem? Discuss the results of the calculations. What do the results mean in terms of the overall situation?