FIN 311 Introduction to Finance

 Spring 2014 Cohort – Dr. Sharon Garrison


Only registered U of A students have access to FIN 311 course materials.
To access the course, follow the instructions supplied at course orientation.

FIN 311 is a seminar on finance for nonfinancial managers. The course will cover basic financial tools and principles in a user-friendly format. Both small and large business financial management will be covered. Specific examples based on actual company data will be employed.

This is a hybrid course, meaning that part of the material is delivered in-class and part will be delivered online. This will be explained the first day of class. That means that students are required to keep up with assignments on their own. There will be no makeups for missed or late assignments. There will also be no excuses for students who did not understand the schedule or who did not read the material on time.


On completion of the course students should:

  1. Better understand the financial system of the United States.
  2. Recognize the relationship of finance to other business disciplines.
  3. Know how to use basic financial information in decision-making.
  4. Be able to use basic financial tools and techniques.


Dr. Sharon Garrison
McClelland Hall, #306
Office Hours: Tue 9:45am 10:45am
  Thu 12:30pm 1:30pm
  (Others by Appointment)

Whitney Johnson
FIN 311 Teaching Assistant
McClelland Hall, #306
Office Hours: Mon 3:30pm 4:30pm
  Wed 3:30pm 4:30pm


Financial Management: Core Concepts 2e by Raymond M. Brooks

The course text book is Financial Management: Core Concepts 2e by Raymond M. Brooks. It is a custom etext with supporting web materials provided by the publisher. Students must purchase the required materials in order to complete exams. Access to course materials is described the first class meeting.

Financial Calculator

A financial calculator is used in this course. Students have a choice of the type of financial calculator, which includes a Hewlett Packard 10BII, a browser embedded financial calculator, and an Apple or Android device App. Access to these will be discussed during the first class meeting.

Course Policies

Course policies and procedures are available. Each student is expected to be cognizant of, and comply with these course policies.


Course grading will be discussed the first class meeting. Students accrue points for cases, a quiz, and an exam.

• 900 points are required for an A in the course,
• 800 points for a B,
• 700 points for a C, and
• 600 points to pass the course.
Description Topic Announced Due Value
Case 1 Contemporary Business Problems 01/23 01/30 50
Case 2 Quality of Earnings 02/13 03/27 150
Case 3 Time Value of Money and Capital Budgeting 02/20 03/06 200
Case 4 Comprehensive Case 02/13 05/06 250
In-class Exam Financial Markets, Taxes, Financial Statements, and Concepts from Time Value of Money and Capital Budgeting 03/13 200
Online Quiz Bonds, Stocks, and Return & Risk 04/22 150
Total Points 1000

Lecture Topics

 Date   Topic


01/16   Introduction and Class Overview, and Financial History

01/21   Financial History, Cont'd and Finance Overview

01/23   Problems Facing Business

01/28   Financial Markets and Regulatory Issues

01/30   How Companies Add Value and Financial Statements

02/04   Financial Statements, Cont'd and Analyzing Financial Statements

02/06   Analyzing Financial Statements, Cont'd

02/11   Sources of Financial Information

02/13   Quality of Earnings and Comprehensive Case Introduction

02/18   Time Value of Money Introduction

02/20   Financial Calculators

02/25   Time Value of Money Applications

02/27   Capital Budgeting Introduction

03/04   Capital Budgeting, Cont'd

03/06   Sources of Financing and Cost of Capital

03/11   Review for Exam and Discussion of Next Phase of Course

03/13   In-class Exam

03/18   Spring Break

03/20   Spring Break

03/25   Bonds

03/27   Comprehensive Case Meeting

04/01   Bond Valuation and Comprehensive Case Meeting

04/03   Stocks and Comprehensive Case Meeting

04/08   Stock Valuation and Comprehensive Case Meeting

04/10   Cost of Capital and Comprehensive Case Meeting

04/15   Return & Risk and Comprehensive Case Meeting

04/17   Return & Risk, Cont'd

04/22   Online Quiz

04/24   Comprehensive Case Meeting

04/29   Comprehensive Case Work

05/01   Comprehensive Case Meeting

05/06   Comprehensive Case Due is maintained by Dr. Sharon Garrison
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