Objectives of the Masters of Business Administration Program

The Masters of Business Administration is a professionally focused degree that is designed to produce graduates who possess practical knowledge and associated critical thinking skills desired in today’s competitive business world. Students will be grounded in the study of business through a core curriculum of management, leadership, marketing, law, finance, accounting, economics, and business strategy. They are also given the opportunity to pursue interesting specializations in areas of their choice.

Within the business program, certain required courses form the academic and practical framework adults need to succeed in increasingly responsible leadership roles within their professional and personal organizations. In addition to the institutional level learning objectives, the Masters of Business Administration also seeks the following specific learning outcomes of its graduates. The overall objective of the MBA is to prepare students to assume positions of leadership and responsibility in administrative positions in a globally competitive marketplace. The curriculum is designed to enhance the skills, knowledge, and analytical ability of our MBA students.

The following are proposed general learning goals. They represent general outcomes desired for new MBA graduates. These general outcomes drive (a) the content of MBA courses and curriculum and (b) assessments (instruments or observations) that serve as measures of specific learning outcomes. With reference to each of the respective areas of business administration, graduates in this degree program will be able to:

  1. Business Knowledge and Skills: Demonstrate an understanding of business knowledge (principles, concepts, theories, perspectives) and skills (procedures, methods, strategies, approaches) for each business function/discipline, and of the interrelationships among business functions/disciplines. This includes the content knowledge and skills from each business area covered in the Core, Capstone, and Managerial Applications courses. We recognize that MBA students may not have a standardized set of learning experiences, given that some receive waivers for Core courses and (b) the selected major courses. In spite of this, we expect there to be overall breadth and depth of students’ knowledge and skills for each business area.
  2. Application to Business Situations and Problems: Demonstrate the capacity to apply knowledge and skills to business situations and problems in domestic and international settings. The emphasis here is on students’ application of knowledge and skills to business situations and problems. These situations and problems may entail new and unfamiliar circumstances requiring the need to adapt, innovate, cope with unforeseen events, and to manage in unpredictable environments – and should include international settings
    This includes:

    a) Strategic thinking: Demonstrate the capacity to assess business environments and opportunities, and to align business activities in developing and implementing organizational strategy and change in complex and uncertain conditions. The emphasis here is on integration and alignment in strategy and change, and on coping with dynamic technological, economic, competitive, legal, social, political, and cultural environments

    b) Critical thinking: Demonstrate the capacity to identify problems, define objectives, gather and analyze information, evaluate risks and alternatives, make decisions that are ethical and responsible, and to communicate clear, defensible ideas and plans

    1. Critical thinking is defined broadly. This recognizes that real-world management entails more than being adept at problem-solving in situations where the problem is well- defined, all the necessary information is given, and there is one best solution. Managers must also be able to find problems; clarify objectives; find information; cope with information that is incomplete, uncertain, ambiguous, biased, or irrelevant; and recognize that there may be more than one “correct” solution or approach
    2. Ethics and responsibility (social responsibility and responsibility to stakeholders) are incorporated into the learning outcomes here. The goal is for students to recognize and anticipate situations where decisions involve ethical standards in balancing obligations, rights, fairness, benefits, and costs to stakeholders and society
    3. Communication is mentioned both here and in 3a below. Here, the communication entails presenting and defending the outcome of critical thinking, e.g. one’s analysis, decisions, recommendations, or plans

    c) Management of resources: Demonstrate the capacity to acquire and manage organizations’ financial capital, human capital, assets, and information

  3. Organization, Team, and Personal Skills: Demonstrate the capacity to work effectively and communicate with others as a colleague and as a manager.
    This includes:

    a) Teamwork and communication: Demonstrate the capacity to collaborate and communicate effectively with others. This includes skills in working with colleagues, groups, and teams, including interpersonal oral and written communications

    b) Group and organization effectiveness: Demonstrate the capacity to manage, influence, and lead others, and facilitate their development. This includes skills needed where one has responsibility for the work of others.

    c) Interpersonal and cultural perception: Demonstrate the capacity to perceive commonalities and differences in others’ values, styles, and perspectives, and how culture affects those commonalities and differences.This entails skills in perceiving how personality, experience, and culture may impact how people behave, think, and communicate.

    d)Continual learning and career development: Demonstrate the capacity for continual self-managed learning for professional and career development. This includes skills and insights involved with self-direction, learning and adapting, and managing one’s career