Decision Modeling Case Study on Choosing University for Doctoral Study


Finding a research institution for academic career development is crucial to the graduate students especially in this college applying season. In this report I will demonstrate the decision making strategies to choose a university for Phd study powered with the Multi-Attribute Value Theory methods. I will introduce the problem scenario and alternatives first followed with performance modeling on different attributes with various value functions and weighting method. Finally, I will present the ranking based on the aggregated results. In an addition the sensitivity analysis also shows the robustness of the modeling system.

Problem Statement

Louis is one of my friend who is taking the Master of Mathematics in second year and he is planning to stay in research field and achieve a Phd after graduate. Due to the time limitation, he does not have enough time to prepare the GRE test and apply the universities in United States for the 2016 Fall Admission. Then he decided to study in Canada, because he also find lots of excellent Math faculties there. However the application fee is not free for most universities in Canada, to goal is to find the university that best fit his requirements.

Decision Analysis


By doing the research on Canadian Universites, we found there are totally 23 Universities has Mathematics departments and among them only 14 universities offers Phd degree in applied mathematics. Then Louis listed the 10 Universitis he most interested as the alternatives. Which are Unversity of Toronto, University British Columbia, McGill University, University of Waterloo, Université de Montréal, McMaster University, Simon Fraser University, University of Alberta, University of Victoria and Carleton University(Figure 1, Figure 2).