Product Cost and Investment Cash Flow Analysis


This course discusses costs and business practices to establish the cost of a product. The concept of time value of money (TVM) is developed to determine the present and future values of a series of cash flows. TVM principles are then applied to personal finances and retirement planning. This is a practical course that uses spreadsheets to better prepare learners in engineering and science for a career in industry.

This course can be taken for academic credit as part of CU Boulder’s Master of Engineering in Engineering Management (ME-EM) degree offered on the Coursera platform. The ME-EM is designed to help engineers, scientists, and technical professionals move into leadership and management roles in the engineering and technical sectors. With performance-based admissions and no application process, the ME-EM is ideal for individuals with a broad range of undergraduate education and/or professional experience. Learn more about the ME-EM program at

What you will learn

Introduction to Financial Principles

Overview of the course and introduction to key financial principles.

Costs and Cost Estimation Methods

Introduces types of costs and the break-even analysis; describes approaches to cost modeling and important cost estimation techniques.

Product Cost Analysis

Introduces types of inventory and how product cost is determined using the Job Cost and Activity-Based Cost methods.

Time Value of Money (TVM)

Introduces the concept of time value of money (TVM) as it applies to investment decisions; develops and demonstrates the expressions for the future value of an investment based on initial investments, compounding interest rates, and periods of time; uses analytical and spreadsheet models to solve for a variety of investment situations.

What’s included