Journal of Information Systems Education (JISE)

Volume 14

Volume 14 Number 4, Pages 353-360

Winter 2003


Teaching Case
Consulting at the Laser ISP (LISP) Company: Using Excel Metrics Capabilities to Solve Semi-Structured Management Problems


Douglas L. Dean
Paul B. Lowry

Brigham Young University
Provo, UT 84602, USA

Abstract: Introductory Information System (IS) courses commonly focus too heavily on teaching application features, as opposed to teaching unstructured problem-solving skills. In response to this pedagogical gap, professors at Brigham Young University have developed integrated cases that improve the instruction for their introductory IS course. In this paper, we overview a case that provides a realistic and compelling problem-solving experience for teaching Microsoft Excel measurement capabilities. This case describes the customer service issues and installation problems faced by an Internet service provider, along with pertinent cost and service data. The case requires the student to play the role of a management consultant who is asked to make business recommendations using Excel. To effectively work with this case, students need exposure to Excel lookups, date/time capabilities, and countif / sumif functions, as well as other basic Excel features. To help the instructor implement this case, we have provided teaching notes that overview the history of the case, teaching suggestions, and a highly detailed grading and discussion template.

Keywords: Excel, Metrics, Management consulting, Internet service providers, Help desk, Information systems, Customer service

Download this article: JISE - Volume 14 Number 4, Page 353.pdf


Recommended Citation: Dean, D. A. & Lowry, P. B. (2003). Teaching Case: Consulting at the Laser ISP (LISP) Company: Using Excel Metrics Capabilities to Solve Semi-Structured Management Problems. Journal of Information Systems Education, 14(4), pp. 353-360.