Core Business Courses

Admission, progression requirements and all program requirements can be found in the Graduate Catalog.

Managing the ethical climate in an organization is a basic responsibility of leaders and cannot be delegated to legal counsel. Ethical issues permeate organizations and firms as diverse as Duke Energy, Wells Fargo, Pfizer, Apple, Uber, Walmart, and the United Way have confronted ethical issues that negatively impacted both their reputation and financial performance. The U.S. government stipulates that all organizations need to have an effective organizational ethics and compliance program — or face both enhanced penalties and (more recently) individual liability.

Effective management of ethical issues — within an organization and in relation to a range of external stakeholders — is necessary for the purposes of ensuring organizational integrity, enhancing organizational legitimacy, and managing risk. The societal expectation that businesses have ethical responsibilities has never been greater or more widespread. Most medium and large sized organizations identify ethical values as a feature of their core missions. Employees at any size organization may be asked to perform actions that violate basic ethical norms.

The purpose of this course is to:

  • Facilitate the development of individual ethical decision-making skills, especially in an organizational context.
  • Learn how to exhibit ethical leadership in an organizational context.
  • Better understand societal expectations regarding firm social and environmental responsibilities.
This course will introduce and apply economic concepts to decision-making in business. Topics will include:
  • The importance of incentives
  • Scarcity
  • Marginal analysis
  • The tools of optimal decision-making
  • Demand and supply analysis
  • Market structure
  • Firm and market efficiency
  • Strategic behavior
  • Game theory
  • Uncertainty.
This course is intended to help you to use accounting information for strategic, tactical, and operating decisions with a focus on strategic cost management. Specifically, its aim is to:
  • Develop and enhance your understanding of the nature of cost and accounting information in organizations, your ability to use that information in making sound decisions, and your skill in assessing the consequences of these decisions.
  • Develop and enhance your understanding of the process and structure of management planning and control systems as a means to achieve corporate objectives, and of their intended and unintended consequences.

Operations is the study of how organizations transform, produce, and deliver value to the customer, client, or user of the product or service created by the organization. It involves the planning, organizing and management of resources to produce goods and services so as to meet the strategic goals of the organization. The operations (or production) function is an integral part of virtually every organization; the well-trained MBA must be familiar with and conversant in the myriad issues arising in this functional area. This course is devoted to the study of the operations function — specifically, understanding how to manage the provision of goods and services both effectively and efficiently, as well as understanding how to innovate processes so that they can fulfill (or surpass) the ever-increasing demands for higher levels of performance.

The objectives of this course are to:

  • Introduce the functional area of operations and to increase awareness of how operations interface with the other functional areas of an organization.
  • Understand the strategic role of the operations function as a key factor in determining an organization’s ability to be competitive in the global marketplace.
  • Become familiar with the various challenges, issues, and problems that occur in the management of manufacturing and service operations, and understand the terminology, modeling, and methodology that arise in the handling and resolution of these challenges.
  • Become familiar with recent technological advances that directly affect operations management.

The objective of the course is to provide an overview of the basic concepts and principles of financial management. The goal is to enable students to think through and come up with solutions to complex business problems from a finance perspective.

Topics to be covered include:

  • The corporate form of organization
  • Time value of money
  • Stock and bond valuation
  • Financial decisions
  • Firm valuation.

Emphasis on both the mathematical “tools” of financial decision making as well as the reasoning and concepts in appropriately applying these tools. 

The overarching objective of this course is to improve effectiveness as a manager by providing students with a foundation of knowledge in organizational behavior and the ability to apply it in practice.

Specifically, this course incorporates four broad objectives:

  • Define concepts, ideas, and best practices in organizational behavior topics (e.g., motivation, leadership, personality, and managing teams)
  • Describe and explain knowledge in organizational behavior
  • Apply such knowledge to the solution of real-world organizational challenges
  • Analyze problems/scenarios in managerial settings.

MBAD 6194 is designed to help you acquire basic strategic management concepts as well as to expose you to state-of-the-art strategic management research. This course will help you broaden your perspective so that you consider business functions from the perspective of the overall organization. The emphasis is on an integrated approach. You will be required to analyze and integrate across functional areas of management (i.e., accounting, finance, marketing, MIS, international business, operations management, etc.) in order to analyze problems, develop plans and propose recommendations on a top management perspective.

Some fields present well–defined problems with “right” and “wrong” answers. This is not true of strategic management, particularly not in the global context. Strategic decision makers generally deal with complex situations characterized by considerable uncertainty. The “problem” or “opportunity” is rarely obvious. Many interrelated problems and opportunities are usually involved. This course will help you develop skills and knowledge for dealing with such situations and assist you in identifying and evaluating alternative courses of action in a global business environment.  In particular, this course will enable you to perform an integrative analysis of the administrative processes of the various functional areas of a n enterprise. This includes the formulation and implementation of goals and objectives, as well as the selection of strategies under conditions of uncertainty as they relate to planning, organizing, directing, controlling, and evaluating policies and activities within each of the functional areas separately and jointly to achieve corporate objectives. Developing such a comprehensive business perspective is an integral part of the course.

The purpose of this course is to aid you in understanding the relationships that exist in a market- based economic system. You should benefit from such a program of study whether or not you plan to work in marketing, or for that matter, whether or not you plan to enter a business organization upon graduation. The course should provide you with an organized framework of concepts and terms which facilitate the understanding of the process of exchange from the perspective of a citizen, as well as from the perspective of a decision maker of marketing activities in an organization.

At the end of this course students will be expected to demonstrate the following objectives/skills:

  • To analyze critically the marketing process, the environment within which it operates, the institutions involved and the functions that are performed.
  • To present an analysis of marketing trends and how they apply to present and future innovations.
  • To incorporate the social and global aspects of marketing thought throughout the course.
  • To provide a foundation for those students who plan to do advanced work in marketing, innovation and related disciplines.
  • To enable students to understand how basic marketing ideas are applicable to other than business institutions, and to personal career and consumption patterns.
  • To create a dynamic and relevant future-oriented learning experience.

Business Analytics Concentration

+ one Digital Marketing elective

This class will provide an overview of the business approach to identifying, modeling, retrieving, sharing, and evaluating an enterprise’s data and knowledge assets. We will focus on the understanding of data and knowledge management, data warehousing, data mining (including rule-based systems, decision trees, neural networks, etc.), and other business intelligence concepts, covering the organizational, technological and management perspectives.

Business intelligence (BI) is a broad category of applications and technologies for gathering, storing, analyzing, and providing access to data to help enterprise users make better business decisions. BI applications include the activities of decision support systems, query and reporting, online analytical processing (OLAP), statistical analysis, forecasting, and data mining. 

The learning objectives of the course are: 

  • To understand the role of business intelligence and analytics in today’s competitive and turbulent business environment.
  • To be familiar with the terminology of the field, basic principles, and concepts of business intelligence and analytics.
  • To learn how to use and apply key methods for analytics (e.g., regression, decision trees, clustering, and association rule).
  • To use a range of tools (e.g., R, SAS Enterprise Guide/Enterprise Miner, IBM SPSS Modeler) appropriate for data analytics problems.

This course is designed to provide students, primarily in the fields of business and economics, with a sound conceptual understanding of the role management science plays in the decision-making process. This is an important course in developing decision models and their applications to management problems. The emphasis is on models that are widely used in all industries and functional areas, including operations, supply chain management, finance, accounting, and marketing.

Specific topics covered in this course include fundamental techniques such as linear, integer, goal and multi objective programming, queuing theory and applications, decision support via Monte Carlo simulation, decision making under uncertainty and risk, decision trees, and multi-criteria decision making.

In this course, students learn to model the business problems, analyze and solve the models, and then interpret the solutions obtained to make recommendations to managers. The emphasis will be on both formulating an appropriate model for a given business problem and developing an Excel based solution approach by utilizing built-in and add-in software tools like Analytic Solver Platform and Data Analysis. 

This course is designed to help students apply business analytics techniques to explore and analyze various types of data, so they can find subtle and non-trivial relationships that are understandable, useful, and executable to business owners. Managers in various functional areas can exploit valuable insights gained via fact-based decision-making to achieve competitive advantages.

This course will examine principles, ideas, and data analytics tools underlying the current practice of data mining. Specifically, students will understand basics of predictive modeling, experimentation, survival analyses, text mining, forecasting, and social network analytics. By understanding business analytics at the practical and non-highly mathematical level, students will be able to translate information into decisions and convert information about past performance into reliable forecasts. 

This course will develop understanding of practical applicability of analytics methods in a variety of business scenarios. This course will not just describe/explain the end results, but also discuss the process of formulating/refining business objectives, data selection, data preparation, model selection and evaluation that lead to the results. The students will learn how to formulate analytic tasks in support of business objectives, how to define successful projects, and how to evaluate utility of existing and potential applications of discussed technologies in practice. This course will take a case approach, complemented by lectures, seminar style discussion, and lab work. This course will use statistical software R for hands-on experimentation with various analytics techniques. 

Digital Marketing Concentration

+ one Business Analytics elective

With the technological advances and the increasing speed of data-generation in the digital era, it is essential for managers to understand the capabilities and limitations of common analytical tools and gain managerial insights from the patterns and associations in digital business data in order to make informative decisions.

This course will cover key concepts pertaining to digital marketing (new product sales forecasting, market segmentation, and digital advertising) through a variety of activities including lectures, case discussions, individual exercises, and a team project. Along with the key concepts, this course covers important marketing analytics techniques with a focus on digital marketing applications. Therefore, this course suits students who are interested in learning analytic techniques with an emphasis on digital marketing problems. 

The primary objective of this course is to expose students to the essential data-analysis knowledge, methodologies and hands-on experiences of analytical tools combined with lectures, discussions, and interactive communications to help students develop decision making abilities essential in the digital economy.

Social media have dramatically transformed how individuals communicate. This new communication paradigm is also changing how firms are reaching out to customers and is different from traditional one-to-many forms of communication. The main difference of this new medium is that consumers have an increased share of voice, which makes this channel a different landscape for firms.

This course starts with an overview of this new paradigm, and covers topics related to developing social media strategy and implementing their respective tactics with marketing and business goals in mind. Specifically, it covers the following topics: 

  • Traditional media vs. social media 
  • Social media strategies and objectives
  • Social platforms
  • Social advertising
  • Content economy and influencer marketing. 

Upon finishing the first half of the course, which covers substantive and strategic aspects of social media marketing, the second half covers various analytical methods suitable to the social media data, such as:

  • Social listening and social media data structure
  • Text and image analytics
  • Social metrics and regression analysis
  • Social segmentation and cluster analysis
  • Network analytics.

Organizations are increasingly recognizing that the development of differentiated products and the creation of strong brands are fundamental strategic imperatives, as they are key to a wide range of important business outcomes. This trend is evidently strong in the connected world, where omnichannel businesses encompass brick-and-mortar and digital channels.

In this course, we explore the concepts, theories, and frameworks related to the creation and management of successful products and brands. Special attention will be paid to how the digital era has influenced product development (e.g., the rise of the sharing economy represented by Airbnb and Uber) and how the digital era has complicated brand management (e.g., the influence of online consumer reviews on brand equity). We also explore the strategies that facilitate firms’ success in the modern hyperconnected marketplace.