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File: ch08, Chapter 8: Scheduling

Multiple Choice

1. The authors recommend preparing a schedule for each ________.


a) Work package in the WBS
b) Task in the WBS
c) Major task level in the WBS
d) Project that has a WBS
Ans: c
Response: Refer to section 8.1.
Level: easy

2. In application, PERT has primarily been used for ________ projects.


a) Construction
b) Manufacturing
c) Industrial
d) Research and development
Ans: d
Response: Refer to section 8.2.
Level: easy

3. The critical activities in real-world projects typically constitute no more than


________% of the total activities in the project.
a) 5 percent
b) 10 percent
c) 20 percent
d) 50 percent
Ans: b
Response: Refer to section 8.2.
Level: easy

4. In a network, an activity can be shown in one of three conditions. Identify the


statement that does not correctly describe one of the three possible conditions.
a) The activity may have a successor but no predecessor
b) The activity may have a predecessor but no successor
c) The activity may have a predecessor and a successor
d) The activity may have neither a predecessor nor a successor
Ans: d
Response: Refer to section 8.2, terminology. If neither a successor nor a predecessor is
present, the activity is referred to as a hanging task.
Level: easy

5. In an AON diagram, when there are multiple activities without predecessors and there
are multiple activities having no successors, ________ are used to eliminate the potential
for hanging tasks in the network.
a) Start and stop nodes
b) Dummy activities
c) Lags and leads
d) Loopbacks
Ans: a
Response: Refer to section 8.2, terminology.
Level: intermediate

6. In the AOA network, circles depict ________.


a) Activities
b) Events
c) Logical dependencies
d) Dummy activities
Ans: b
Response: Refer to section 8.2, terminology.
Level: easy

7. Most commercially available project management software applications use the


________ type of network.
a) GERT
b) PERT
c) AOA
d) AON

Ans: d
Response: Refer to section 8.2, constructing the network AOA version.
Level: easy

8. The Gantt chart is intended to monitor the detailed progress of work, whereas the
master schedule contains only major tasks and is oriented toward ________.
a) Monitoring detailed progress of work
b) Overall project management rather than precise control of detailed work
c) Overall project management, including precise control of detailed work
d) Detailed resource management
Ans: b
Response: Refer to section 8.2, Gantt charts and Microsoft Project 2002.
Level:

9. The calculation of the standard deviation for the beta distribution is based on the
assumption that ________.
a) The range is divided by a count of the values used to compute the mean
b) The range is approximately equal to six standard deviations
c) The standard deviation is 50 percent of the mean
d) The standard deviation is a square of the statistical variance
Ans: b
Response: Refer to section 8.2, calculating activity times.
Level: intermediate

10. Task F has duration of 10 days and an early start date of 20 days. Based on the given
data, determine the early finish date for task F.
a) 10 days
b) 20 days
c) 30 days
d) 5 days
Ans: c
Response: Refer to section 8.2, critical path and time.
Level: easy

11. The shortest time in which the entire network can be completed is referred to as
________.
a) The critical time of the network
b) The critical path
c) The elapsed time of the network
d) The slack time of the network
Ans: a
Response: Refer to section 8.2, critical path and time. The critical path denotes activities
that, if delayed, will affect the projects completion time. The critical time can be
changed without changing the critical path. This is a fine but important distinction.
Level: advanced

12. While performing a forward pass calculation to determine the critical path of a
network, when multiple paths converge into a successor activity, the value carried
forward to the early start of the successor activity is ________.
a) The smallest early finish of the successors immediate predecessors
b) The smallest late finish of the successor's immediate predecessors
c) The largest late finish of the successor's immediate predecessors
d) The largest early finish of the successor's immediate predecessors
Ans: d
Response: Refer to section 8.2, critical path and time.
Level: easy

13. While performing a backward pass calculation for a network, when multiple paths
converge into a predecessor activity, the value carried backward to the late finish of the
predecessor activity is
a) The smallest late start of the predecessors immediate successors
b) The largest late start of the predecessors immediate successors
c) The largest early start of the predecessors immediate successors
d) The smallest early start of the predecessors immediate successors
Ans: a
Response: Refer to section 8.2, critical path and time, slack.
Level: easy

14. In a statistical distribution, when an observations value moves closer to the


distributions mean, the z-score value will ________.
a) Increase

b) Remain the same


c) Decrease
d) More data is needed
Ans: c
Response: Refer to section 8.2, uncertainty of project completion time.
Level: intermediate

15. When using the beta distribution, the denominator of the formula for standard
deviation should ________.
a) Always equal 6
b) Be adjusted by converting the range into the correct statistical variance
c) Be adjusted by converting the range into the correct z-score value
d) Be adjusted by converting the range into 50 percent of the mean
Ans: c
Response: Refer to section 8.2, uncertainty of project completion time.
Level: advanced

Short Answer

16. A ________ is the conversion of the project action plan into an operating timetable.
Ans: schedule
Response: Refer to section 8.1.
Level: easy

17. The authors, when discussing networks, describe ________ as a specific task or set
of tasks that are required by the project, use up resources, and take time to complete.
Ans: activity
Response: Refer to section 8.2, terminology.
Level: easy

18. The authors, when discussing networks, describe an ________ as the result of
completing one or more activities. It is an identifiable end state occurring at a particular
time. It does not use resources.
Ans: event
Response: Refer to section 8.2, terminology.
Level: easy

19. The arrangement of all activities (and, in some cases, events) in a project arrayed in
their logical sequence and represented by arcs and nodes, is called a ________.
Ans: network
Response: Refer to section 8.2, terminology.
Level: easy

20. In a network, a ________ is a series of connected activities (or intermediate events)


between any two events in a network.
Ans: path
Response: Refer to section 8.2, terminology.
Level: easy

21. In a network, if the delay of an activity will delay completion of the project, the
activity is called ________.
Ans: critical
Response: Refer to section 8.2, terminology.
Level: easy

22. In AOA networks, an activity of zero duration is called a ________.


Ans: dummy activity
Response: Refer to section 8.2, constructing the network AOA version.
Level: easy

23. The ________ chart shows planned and actual progress for a number of tasks
displayed against a horizontal timescale.
Ans: Gantt
Response: Refer to section 8.2, Gantt charts and Microsoft Project 2002.
Level: easy

24. Given project task E and estimates of 10 days for the optimistic time, 20 days for the
pessimistic time, and 12 days for the most likely time, the expected time using the beta
statistical distribution is ________ days.
Ans: 13
Response: Refer to section 8.2, calculating activity times. 13 days = (10 days + [4 * 12
days] + 20 days) / 6.
Level: easy

25. ________ law suggests that work expands to fill the allotted time.
Ans: Parkinson's
Response: Refer to section 8.2, calculating activity times.
Level: easy

26. Given project task E and estimates of 10 days for the optimistic time, 20 days for the
pessimistic time, and 12 days for the most likely time, the standard deviation for time
using the beta statistical distribution is ________ days.
Ans: 1.67
Response: Refer to section 8.2, calculating activity times. 1.67 days = (20 days -10 days)
/ 6.
Level: easy

27. Task H has duration of 5 days, an early start of 25 days, an early finish of 30 days, a
late start of 20 days, and a late finish of 30 days. There are ________ days of slack for
task H.
Ans: 0 days
Response: Refer to section 8.2, slack. The slack = (late finish - early finish) = (late start
-early start).

Level:

28. Any time two or more paths of a network come together, the probability of both paths
being on time is the product of the probabilities for the individual paths. This scenario is
referred to as ________.
Ans: merge bias
Response: Refer to section 8.2, uncertainty of project completion time.
Level: intermediate

29. Assume that task J has a most likely duration of 20 days, an optimistic duration of 13
days, and a pessimistic duration of 30 days. If the optimistic and pessimistic durations
are 95 percent estimates, the standard deviation for task J is ________ days.
Ans: 5.15
Response: Refer to section 8.2, toward realistic time estimates.
Level: intermediate

30. Using precedence diagramming methods, activity B must not start until after activity
A has been completed. Moreover, the outcome of activity A cannot be used until 3 days
after its completion. The type of relationship that exists between activities A and B is
correctly labeled as ________.
Ans: FS + 3d or FS + 3ed
Response: Refer to section 8.4, precedence diagramming. The amount of lag could be
indicated as +3d to reference work periods or as +3ed to reference calendar time that
includes both work periods and nonwork periods.
Level: advanced

31. In CPM, an activity can be conducted at a normal pace or an expedited pace, known
as ________, at a greater cost.
Ans: crashing
Response: Refer to the glossary.
Level: easy

32. An activity or event that, if delayed, will delay project completion is ________.
Ans: critical
Response: Refer to the glossary.
Level: easy

33. A clearly identifiable point in a project or set of activities that commonly denotes a
reporting requirement or completion of a large or important set of activities is called a
________.
Ans: milestone
Response: Refer to the glossary.
Level: easy

34. A ________ is a combination of interrelated activities and events depicted with arcs
and nodes.
Ans: network
Response: Refer to the glossary.
Level: easy
35. A ________ is an intersection of two or more lines or arrows, commonly used for
depicting an event or activity.
Ans: node
Response: Refer to the glossary.
Level: easy

Essay

36. Describe the benefits of forming a network of activity and event relationships that
graphically portrays sequential relations between tasks in a project.
Ans: The benefits of such a network include: the interdependence of all tasks, work
package, and network elements is documented, it can be used to determine the expected
project completion date, it identifies the critical activities that if delayed will delay the
project completion time, it identifies activities with slack that can be used should

schedule compression become necessary on the critical path, and it can be used to
schedule resources.
Response: Refer to section 8.1. Any benefit listed in section 8.1 is acceptable.
Level: easy

37. Explain why it is important to evaluate noncritical paths that possess large variances
and/or path times that are close to critical in duration.
Ans: Assuming that the project is stable and under control, random uncertainty present in
the network will exhibit cumulative interactions reflecting the inherent randomness of
independent activities within the network. Therefore, an activity having only a relatively
small amount of slack could potentially exceed the critical time calculated from the
expected critical path. Moreover, as statistical variances rise in relation to expected
duration, the range of uncertainty in near critical paths will exhibit wider dispersion.
When interdependencies are present in the network, simulation is an effective technique
for modeling the random interactions on critical and near critical paths.
Response: Refer to section 8.2, uncertainty of project completion time, and merge bias.
Level: advanced

38. Describe the differences between GERT and PERT/CPM network models.
Ans: In GERT, branching from a node is probabilistic whereas in PERT/CPM branching
from a node is deterministic. GERT provides flexibility in node realization while the
PERT/CPM method does not. GERT allows loopback to earlier events but PERT/CPM
does not. The arrows in GERT can represent time, costs, reliability, and other relevant
variables. In PERT/CPM, the arrows can only represent time. PERT/CPM is
comparatively easy to use as a control tool during execution of a project. GERT is
difficult to use as a control tool during project execution.
Response: Refer to section 8.4, GERT.
Level: intermediate

39. Explain the meaning of slack in a network.


Ans: Slack is synonymous with float. Slack is the amount of time that an activity can be
delayed without delaying completion of the project. In order to have slack, the activity
will not be located on the critical path of the network. An activity with slack can be
classified as a near critical activity because the amount of slack is small in relation to the
time required to complete the path it is in. Should it become necessary to crash a project,
it may be possible to borrow resources from activities that have slack.
Response: Refer to chapter 8.

Level: intermediate

40. Describe the process for determining the critical path in a network.
Ans: Draw the network and determine the logical relationships between the activities in
it. Determine the duration for each activity. Perform the forward pass calculation to
determine the critical time for the network. Perform the backward pass calculation to
establish the slack for each activity in the network. If an activity has 0 slack, then it is a
critical activity. The critical path is composed of the critical activities identified in this
manner. It is possible to have more than one critical path in a network.
Response: Refer to chapter 8.
Level: easy