Course unit title Rational Decision-Making
Name and e-mail of the lecturer

Prof. Vihren Bouzov, DSc,

Course code 20134357
Learning activities and teaching methods Lectures, discussions, individual and group assignments
Contact hours 15
Course content ( maximum 700 characters)

The decision theory is the most successful claimant in the evolvement of a model of practical rationality. In terms of practice, rationality is a choice determined by good grounds or justified beliefs. The theory of decision seeks to offer a plausible model of rational action and to formulate general principles of rationality guiding decision-makers under conditions involving risk and unreliability of information. The agent has to make a choice in the presence of several alternatives: their results depend on the actual occurrence of a situation – in a set of situations mutually-excluding each other. The agent will be striving to act in a way that might bring about maximum meeting of his wants or preferences. The choice is rational if it maximizes the expected utility of action.

The Decision Theory offers simple models of human choice. A decision is always a decision to do something; it can be presented as a choice among possible alternative courses of action. A strategy is a sequence of mutually-connected decisions leading to realization of definite aims. Models shape the structure of choice in particular choice situations. They are idealizations and can be used as critical instances for an analysis of decision-making practice. According to the information possessed by the agent we can distinguish three different choice situations: a) certainty, b) complete uncertainty (complete indefiniteness), and c) risk (relative indefiniteness).

Assessment method Individual or group assignment