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Unit of study_

FINC6021: Corporate Valuation

Semester 1, 2020 [Normal day] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

This unit applies all aspects of finance theory to the general problem of valuing companies and other financial assets. This requires a synthesis of the fundamental concepts of present value, cost of capital, security valuation, asset pricing models, optimal capital structures, derivative pricing and some related accounting concepts. The unit aims to reach a level of practical application that allows students to understand both the theoretical frameworks and institutional conventions of real-world corporate valuations. Basic valuation concepts from accounting are reconciled with the finance theory on which firm value ultimately stands. Students are asked to make extensive use of Excel or similar software in valuation exercises.

Unit details and rules

Unit code FINC6021
Academic unit Finance
Credit points 6
Assumed knowledge


Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Maurice Peat,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Final exam hurdle task Final exam
Written exam
50% Formal exam period 2 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO14 LO13 LO12 LO10 LO9 LO8 LO7 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO3 LO2
In-semester test Mid-semester exam
Written exam
25% Mid-semester exam period 1 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO3 LO2 LO1 LO7 LO6 LO4
Assignment Assignment
Report and presentation
25% Week 12 2500 Words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO8 LO9 LO10 LO11 LO12 LO13 LO14
hurdle task = hurdle task ?

Assessment summary

  • Mid-semester exam: The exam will cover all material relating to weeks 1-5 inclusive. This assessment will provide students with an opportunity to review initial principles. You are assumed to know the material covered in the pre-requisite subject, FINC5001. This knowledge is likely to be required in all assessment tasks. In particular, you are expected to be competent in discounted cash flow analysis and to understand basic capital budgeting and capital structure theory. You will be required to analyse valuations using techniques introduced in the unit.
  • Assignment: The task will involve the analysis and valuation of an Exchange-listed Company from a given industry. The assignment will be completed in three parts. Work will be assessed based on the application of the tools and methods learnt in the subject. Further details will be posted on Canvas.
  • Final exam: The final exam will assess the material discussed between weeks 1-13. It is a closed book exam and consists of a combination of theoretical and practical exercises. It will assess a student's theoretical understanding of the models covered in the unit and the ability to think critically about the models and solve problems related to financial valuation. The final exam is listed as a HURDLE TASK which means you must complete the assessment in order to pass the unit. Students who fail to complete this assessment, even when their aggregate mark for the entire unit of study is above 50%, will be given a Fail grade for this unit. As a result, a student's academic transcript will show a Fail grade and the actual mark achieved if the final mark of the unit is between 0-49 and a Fail grade and a capped moderated mark of 49 for all other final marks.

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range


High distinction

85 - 100

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at an exceptional standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school. 


75 - 84

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at a very high standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school.


65 - 74

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at a good standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school.


50 - 64

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at an acceptable standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school. 


0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

For more information see

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 Introduction: 1. Simple concepts in valuation; 2. Mainstream valuation techniques Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 02 Firm operations and environment Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 03 Financial statements 1: using financial statements Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 04 Financial statements 2: modelling financial statements Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 05 Firm free cash flows: 1. Determining cash flows; 2. Cost of capital; 3. Terminal value Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 06 Risk analysis: 1. Uncertainty and investment analysis; 2. Sensitivity, scenario and simulation analysis; 3. Decision tree analysis Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 07 Cost of capital: 1. Estimating a firm’s cost of capital; 2. Estimating required rates of return for projects Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 08 Relative valuation using market comparables Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 09 Enterprise valuation: 1. Earnings dilution, incentive compensation; 2. Alternative enterprise valuation models Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 10 Valuation in a private equity setting Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 11 Valuing strategy, flexibility and high growth situations Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 12 Outstanding material and review Lecture (3 hr)  

Attendance and class requirements

Lecture recordings: Two lectures will be recorded and will be available on Canvas for student use. The first lecture each week and the lecture of the unit coordinator will be recorded each week. Please note the Business School does not own the system and cannot guarantee that the system will operate or that every class will be recorded. Students should ensure they attend and participate in all classes.

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Required readings

Sheridan Titman, John D. Martin (2020). Valuation: The Art and Science of Corporate Investment Decisions, (3rd ed), Pearson. [ISBN  9780133479522]

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. demonstrate an understanding of the various approaches to valuation analysis
  • LO2. solve practical financial problems using a range of valuation techniques
  • LO3. understand and create pro-forma financial statements for a variety of business structures
  • LO4. estimate a firm's cost of capital
  • LO5. generate an estimate of firm value and an appropriate recommendation based on an assessment of relevant quantitative and qualitative information
  • LO6. analyse critically the models covered in the unit and be able to discuss their appropriateness under various scenarios
  • LO7. interpret the financial implications of quantitative based results
  • LO8. ascertain the relevance of information sources for different valuation models
  • LO9. test the reasonableness of financial valuation results
  • LO10. solve for value estimates using a range of developed methods
  • LO11. use the functionality of Microsoft excel to create pro-formas financial statements, undertake cost of capital calculations, and perform scenario based analyses
  • LO12. identify firm structural issues and be able to assess the value of changes in investment and operational policies
  • LO13. effectively communicate valuation results through a range of quantitative and qualitative outputs
  • LO14. express key assumptions and forecasts for which valuation hinges on.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

No changes have been made since this unit was last offered.


The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

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