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There’s no instruction manual for a successful enterprise. Taught by expert Ross faculty members, our curriculum prepares you to make tough choices, take action in ambiguous situations, and meet any challenge.
The Online MBA curriculum was designed with one goal in mind: the active, engaging delivery of your education, in an online format that prepares you to lead in an increasingly digital world. You’ll connect with your classmates and professors, get feedback on your progress in real time, and enjoy an immersive, interactive learning experience.
Live, online sessions with faculty and students include case discussions, group work, role playing, and presentations. A typical 2.25-credit course has four of these live events. The majority of course sessions will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. Eastern time or 8-9:30 p.m. Eastern time.
Short modules, readings, and exercises explain key concepts. Students can work at their own pace on this material as long as they have completed certain designated modules in time for the live learning event.
You’ll choose the pace that works best for your day-to-day schedule and based on when you want to complete the program. Here’s a sample course load for a student who plans to finish the program in two or 3.5 years:
Optional On-Campus Courses
Once you have completed the Online MBA core coursework, you are eligible to attend elective courses on campus in Ann Arbor with other Michigan Ross MBA students.
You may enroll in a dual-degree program after being accepted to both Michigan Ross and another U-M school or college. Separate applications must be submitted to both schools; acceptance to either school is not contingent upon the other.
Choose among a variety of elective courses to customize your studies according to your interests and goals. Of the 57 credits required for the program, 18 are reserved for electives.
This course provides a systematic framework for using financial statements in business analyses. It considers a comprehensive set of tools to analyze the information contained in financial statements and demonstrates how to use the information to evaluate financial performance. It addresses questions such as: (1) how do operating and financial decisions contribute to a firm's return, (2) why does firm performance differ between competitors, (3) has the firm distorted the accounting numbers and how will this influence reported performance, and (4) how does the financial performance today predict future events, such as credit default.
This course has been designed to help developing leaders effectively navigate the challenges of significant organizational disruptions that have become increasingly prevalent in today’s fast-moving, constantly evolving business environment. Participants in this course will explore the stakeholder theory of management and discover how and why an understanding of various stakeholder perspectives can inform and dramatically improve a leader’s response to events that threaten an organization’s survival. Unique to this course, participants will have the opportunity to interact with several c-level executives from some of the world’s most recognized and respected brands who have guided their enterprises through major disruptions and have lessons to share from their experiences. Also unique to this course, participants will learn from experience as they role-play members of different stakeholder groups during four simulated press conference events that have been designed to help learners build on the extensive crisis leadership foundation they will develop throughout the course. Ultimately, this course is about the understanding and development of individual and organizational resilience—the ability to anticipate potential threats, to cope effectively with adverse events when they occur, and to adapt to changing conditions to ensure a viable path forward for the organization.
This course focuses on two main questions: How do firms develop and maintain profits in the face of competition, and how do governments use antitrust and competition laws to set limits on the degree to which firms exercise market power? This course applies analytical tools of economics and basic game theory to understand the effects of firm tactics and strategies on the firm's customers and rivals, and their likely reactions, and to see how policies designed to promote competition affect the feasibility of various actions firms might want to take. Antitrust laws have spread globally: this course compares the U.S. approach to antitrust policy with that of other countries, and draws implications for business. The dimensions of competitive strategy covered include horizontal mergers, cooperative pricing, product differentiation, strategies to deter entry, predatory practices, strategic commitment, vertical relationships with suppliers and distributors, and vertical restraints.
Targeted toward graduate students of business as well as those in engineering and scientific disciplines, this elective course is designed to provide students with an introductory overview of the world of venturing - that is, to give students a broad sense of the business fundamentals needed to plan, launch and grow a new startup business. Taught by a veteran entrepreneur, this course employs a mix of class discussions, readings, lectures, group exercises, homework assignments and guest speakers to expose students to key models, concepts and terminology that together will provide both business students and technologists/scientists with a conceptual framework to better understand the entrepreneurial world, how it works, and how to navigate it and succeed in it.
This course focuses on corporate asset management, in particular, on valuation. Topics include capital budgeting methods, estimating incremental cash flows, estimating cost of capital, valuation of projects, valuation of companies in takeovers, valuation of leveraged buyouts, valuation of private companies and valuation of strategic options. The course also covers working capital management.
This is an advanced corporate finance course with an emphasis on debt and equity management, security issuance, and distribution policy. Topics include descriptions of types of debt and equity, tradeoffs in the choice of an optimal capital structure; the role of capital structure in competitive strategy; the design of capital structure and securities to control information problems and limit conflicts of interest between different classes of security holders; procedures and costs of issuing securities including initial public offerings, and the determinants of optimal payout policy. The course is intended for those with career objectives in financial management, the corporate finance aspects of investment banking, or general management.
Negotiation Strategy in a Global Economy - An MBA without a developed understanding of the social psychology and economics of effective negotiations cannot be an effective leader. In virtually all business decisions, the resources you want to invest and what you expect to receive in return are open to explicit and implicit negotiations. The course introduces a real-world toolkit for a strategic approach from pre-negotiation planning to post-negotiation evaluation. It focuses on joint value creation, profit maximization, and conflict management. Importantly, this course provides a challenging and developmental environment. Intensive simulations with peer review and rapid-feedback, personal journals and coaching are deployed to make you more comfortable and successful as a negotiator. This course is designed to help you develop strategic flexibility in negotiating across a variety of contexts, whether cultural, professional, or personal.
This course is designed to help you achieve the success that you desire throughout your life. Specifically, the course provides you with conceptual frameworks and skills that will help you get better and more meaningful results at work, achieve your career goals, and craft a fulfilling life overall - regardless of the particular jobs or professions you choose. Based on decades of research about the beliefs and behaviors that predict success, this class gives you an opportunity to creatively consider multiple visions of a life well lived and design your way toward a happy, healthy, and productive life.
Objective: Strategic and tactical decision problems that firms face became too complex to solve by naive intuition and heuristics. Increasingly, making business decisions requires "intelligent" and "data oriented" decisions, aided by decision support tools and analytics. The ability to make such decisions and use available tools is critical for both managers and firms. In recent years, the toolbox of business analytics has grown. These tools provide the ability to make decisions supported by data and models. This course prepares students to model and manage business decisions with data analytics and decision models. Specifically, the course aims to achieve the following goals: A. To develop the ability to identify key drivers in business decisions and develop analytical models for prediction and prescription. B. To learn a variety of tools and techniques for a range of tactical, operational, and strategic business decision problems that apply in a broad range of problems. C. To develop the ability to communicate the results and findings of analytical solutions to different. Specifically, the course will cover descriptive analytics (e.g., data visualization, query, data slicing), predictive analytics (e.g., forecasting, classification, simulation), and prescriptive analytics (e.g., optimization). Examples include decision problems in supply chain and logistics, retail revenue management, finance, and risk management.
Spreadsheets have advanced to the point of providing powerful, general-purpose functionality and are among the most widely used decision-support tools in business today. This course deals with decision support using spreadsheets, including: what if analysis; financial, statistical and time/date functions; graphical presentation of data; organizing, sorting, querying and extracting information from spreadsheet and external databases and the World Wide Web; cross-tabulation of data; data tables; creation and management of scenarios; use of a solver to find optimal solutions to problems; the design to macros to support spreadsheet applications; and data maps. An expert level of spreadsheet use is achieved. Windows-based spreadsheet software (such as Excel) is used.
This course covers the management of a firm's advertising effort (with some coverage of related topics like direct marketing, public relations, and sales promotions). It covers the institutions, theoretical principles, and managerial decisions relevant to advertising management, and is designed for managers in marketing positions and in advertising agency account management.
This course focuses on the critical questions for any market-driven entity: which markets and customers to serve, what function to provide, and the means to achieve competitive advantage. These strategic marketing decisions often involve though, uncertain choices, and while long-term focused, they must be periodically revisited to sustain advantage or identify new opportunities. Students will acquire skills to develop, assess, and adapt market-based plans that reflect these strategic choices. This course will also examine potential strategic marketing responses to market disruption and disruptive innovation. Students will then apply these skills in a comprehensive, realistic business simulation, where teams must make integrated strategic and tactical decisions in a highly competitive and evolving market. Given the broad organizational impact of strategic marketing decisions, this course is relevant to future leaders in marketing, strategy, general management, business development, finance, venture capital, entrepreneurship and consulting.
This course seeks to deepen and broaden your understanding of competitive strategy. As such, it is a natural follow up to the cores strategy class that you have already taken. The course deepens your understanding of several of the concepts that you were introduced to in the core class, such as industry analysis, by exploring their use, utility and limitations in different kinds of strategic environments. This course also broadens your strategic analysis abilities by introducing you to new tools and frameworks, not covered earlier. Additionally, a key instructional objective of the course to help you develop a rigorous approach for addressing complex business problems.
Virtual communication is a fact of business today: Team members are scattered across countries. Presentations are delivered via web conferencing. What does this mean for effective communication? This course goes beyond the basics of good business communication to help students become effective communicators and build strong relationships, even if they don't have the advantage of proximate space. Topics will include best practices for email writing and teleconferencing, and understanding different communication technologies.
On-campus learning residencies are an important, required part of the Online MBA and provide in-depth, hands-on workshops in business leadership, innovation, and transformation.
During the Multidisciplinary Action Projects (MAP) course, you’ll work in a team to solve a problem for a real-world company or organization. This experience is designed to test your business acumen. This semester-long, 3-credit course is required.