O.R or Operations Research is a lot like IF in terms of the nature of the subject and study pattern you can follow for it, the content is totally different but if you look at it from a student perspective then it draws a lot of parallels from IF and which is why I term it as one of the ‘efforts= results’ subjects.
Now you will ask me: all subjects are the same, the amount of efforts put in is proportionate to the results you get! No that is not the case, for theory subjects you can never score full marks, even if you have worked really hard and in certain practical subjects as well you can’t score well if you are unable to grasp the steps and the procedure to be followed, but in the case of O.R the theory is to the point and the sums too can be learnt to perfection with practice and the level of difficulty for the sums is on par with IF, not too difficult and not too simple either but can manage to pass in the exam without much difficulty.
O.R is basically used for optimum allocation of monetary resources for the right task, it helps in deciding things like what quantity of what material must be applied to ensure the best quality and the lowest cost is taken into account or what price should be allocated for which seat in an aircraft or the price to be allocated to a particular transport service for logistics. It is the practical determination of the very famous principal of optimum utilization of resources.
Why do I need to Study this Subject?
We need to study optimum utilization resources, because as students of business studies we cannot afford to waste away any sort of resources that are at our disposal. The better we utilize our resources the more money we save and the more profits we generate as simple as that!
Is it Difficult to study O.R?
Theory No, Sums Yes and No, the sums vary in level of difficulty as per the different chapters so there are difficult sums which obviously become easy when you practice them a lot.
It is Boring?
No, it keeps you on your toes all the time, because the amount of sum solving that is needed for cracking O.R. It is a very engaging and interesting subject and you will enjoy it a lot!
Do I need to join a Coaching Class for this subject?
Yes, you need to join a class for O.R. It is required because the amount of practice that O.R needs in a systematic fashion can be met only by trained professionals, self study is an option but we recommend it less because with O.R some of the theory and the sums are very tricky.
What is the Syllabus for this Subject?
The syllabus for this subject can be divided into 4 units as follows:
Unit I : Introduction to OR and Linear Programming
Unit II : Transportation & Assignment Models
Unit III : Network Analysis
Unit IV : Decision Theory And Decision Tree
You can read the entire syllabus and list of reference books Here – Operation Research Syllabus and Reference Books!
How can I Study this Subject?
Studying O.R can be made a lot of fun, if done in the right way! You don’t need to approach it as something tedious and tiresome; you can make it super fun! If practice makes things perfect then why not make practice enjoyable? You can call up a bunch of buddies for an O.R marathon for a few days of the week. Spice this up some yummy snacks and a lot of music and O.R will be enjoyable.
Test each other to formulas or challenge each other to a set of different types of questions. Solve each other’s doubts and explain concepts this will make the required O.R practice much easier to complete. All different textbooks for O.R show different methods for solving sums and the same applies for the methods your college and classes professors will use, so you need to take a call as to whose method you wish to follow and then follow the same till the end.
No method is correct and no method is incorrect, it’s all about the answers that makes a difference with O.R. if you do attend lectures at college and feel comfortable with the method then do not confuse it with the method given out by the coaching classes professor because while solving sums if you have doubts no one will be able to solve it unless you use their method.
O.R has a little of sum solving, a little theory, certain sums have diagram making as well; so the chances of getting bored are very less, but it is important to schedule your practice because you can’t just focus on one part of the syllabus and then get stuck up with a lot of pending backlog before the exam day.
Once you attend coaching class, make sure you come back and devote an hour to revise whatever was taught because that method helps you to revise the concepts and techniques immediately and keep it stored in your memory properly.
You can devote an hour to sums and half an hour to theory every day for O.R as it needs all the practice, also you must follow the 5 golden rules to crack O.R which you can use to crack I.F too! These rules mentioned in the post on IF can be read right Here!
You can score well in O.R easily, even with a lot less practice than desired; you can manage to pass in the exam.
- LPP word problems have many of us stuck up
- Transportation: Vogel’s approximation method for balanced & unbalanced transportation problems. Optimality Test & obtaining of optimal solution, is an important type of sum you must know.
- Network analysis: CPM and PERT are important and of course drawing the diagram is where most students lose their marks
- In decision tress you can’t make a mistake in making the tree, the rest of the methods are easy.