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1
Event 3 – Estimation
1. Learning Effect
It is often true that workers become more efficient with the number of repetitions of a
job.
For example, let’s say a tree trimmer takes 8 hours to trim a single tree at the
beginning of the season. The second tree will take some proportion of that time, say 80%.
The time for the second tree would be: 0.8*8 or 6.4 hours. The assumption of learning
curves is that for each doubling of the number of repetitions, the time will be reduced by
the same proportion. Thus the time for the fourth tree would be 80% of the time for the
second tree. The time for the 8
th
tree would be 80% of the time for the 4
th
tree.
a. Implement the learning curve formulas in the
Estimates Lesson
(Lesson 5) in Excel.
Use the formulas to compute the times for each of the first six trees. Compute the
total time to compute all 6 trees.
Tree
1
2
3
4
5
6
Total
Time
b. How many trees will reduce the tree trimming time down to 3 hours?
c. Answer part b if the learning curve factor were 0.75.
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 Spring '10
 BARD

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