Project Appraisal (CIVL3812)


This unit of study is a third-year core unit for students enrolled in any of the undergraduate streams in the School of Civil Engineering and elective for all other branches of engineering and other faculties. The objectives of this unit of study are to develop students' ability to critically analyse issues involved in project appraisal and to equip students with the concepts, tools and analytical processes to effectively carry out project appraisal tasks for businesses, non-profit organisations, and governments. At the end of this unit, students should be able to comprehend and relate to real-life examples the fundamental concepts in project appraisal (e.g. the meaning of time value for money, equivalence); calculate common financial indicators for a given project and explain the relevance of each to the appraisal of the project; rank projects by combining both financial and non-financial indicators (e.g. environmental and social); understand how risks and uncertainties affect evaluation outcomes and be able to deal with uncertainties and risks in analysis; apply techniques to account for the effects of inflation/deflation and exchange rates in analysis; understand the concept and mechanisms for depreciation and carry out pre-tax as well as post-tax analysis; understand the assumptions, pros and cons of each evaluation method and be able to explain why a particular method is appropriate/not appropriate for a given project. The syllabus comprises time value of money, cost of capital, simple/compound interest, nominal/effective interest, cost/benefit analysis of projects; equivalence, net present worth (value), future worth (value), annual worth (value), internal rate of return, external rate of return, payback period, cost-benefit analysis, cost-utility analysis, identifying and quantifying non-financial benefits/externalities, price changes and exchange rates, techniques for multi-criteria group decision-making, economic analysis of business investment projects, depreciation, capitalisation and valuation studies, replacement of assets, real option, project risk analysis, decision-tree analysis, binomial method, WACC, MARR, equity capital, debt.

Our courses that offer this unit of study

Further unit of study information


Lectures, Tutorials, Online quizzes


Through semester assessment (50%) and Final Exam (50%)

Faculty/department permission required?


Unit of study rules

Assumed knowledge

MATH1005 OR MATH1905.



Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.