What Does an MBA Curriculum Look Like?

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Business executives analyzes data charts from their previous quarter.

In an increasingly modernized economy, a college degree has become an asset that helps demonstrate the capacity and drive to employers. Moreover, specializations can highlight specific skills that can be applied to a variety of different job environments. Ninety percent of Ohio University MBA graduates state that their degree has improved their job performance, and 80% believe it has helped them advance their careers. For those who are interested in pursuing a career in business, an MBA can serve as a valuable stepping stone toward a rewarding career.

What Is an MBA?

Many executives and entrepreneurs hold Master of Business Administration (MBA) degrees because the skills and education they gained empowered them to move forward in their careers. An MBA can come in a variety of different forms, with different concentrations and specializations offered by different programs. Gaining an MBA positions graduates to develop critical thinking, leadership, analytical, and decision-making abilities. By learning the skills it takes for a business to function, this degree often opens a wider set of professional prospects. Armed with academic experience, MBA graduates embrace both a theoretical and practical understanding of business by analyzing a variety of real-world scenarios.

What Skills Does an MBA Develop?

  1. Critical thinking involves the analysis of a given situation and, in turn, forming a judgment. In business, critical thinking is required on a daily basis. As new problems and opportunities present themselves, successful business professionals utilize critical thinking to put their organization ahead of the curve.  Ohio University’s MBA curriculum exposes online students to a number of situations that help them develop this skill.
  2. Leadership skills are an essential component of any successful business person. While reasoning and other competencies may enable them to tackle difficult challenges, it is leadership that often determines the success of the operation as a whole. Successful leaders demonstrate both a comprehensive understanding of the issue at hand, as well as a willingness to communicate and assign responsibility to others efficiently. Through theoretical approaches, empirical research, and real-world case examples, students perceive the leadership skills necessary to succeed in the business world.
  3. Analytical Skills involve the breakdown of large problems into smaller subsets. Analytical mastery is required in business for a number of reasons. Through recognition of patterns, successful business people can stay ahead of the competition and react efficiently to changing market trends. Market research and data are meaningless if there are no competent professionals to draw significant conclusions and produce appropriate strategies. An online MBA from Ohio University includes learning from experienced professionals who are drawing their own analytical conclusions and developing their own analytical skills.
  4. Decision-making is an integral aspect of a business. To successfully make decisions, individuals must be able to synthesize all available background information to optimize outcomes. These are the skills and techniques that successful businesses employ as they encounter uncertainty. By learning these skills, online MBA students are better equipped to gain confidence in their own decision-making abilities and recognize what information is necessary to make informed choices.

Ohio University Online MBA Course Examples

An Ohio University online MBA curriculum features a number of core courses, as well as eight different concentrations. These include finance, health care, executive management, business analytics, operations and supply chain management, accounting, strategic selling and sales leadership, and business venturing and entrepreneurship. Following are some of the unique skills that are studied through an online MBA from Ohio University:

  • Operations & Supply Chain Management: This course offers students the potential to improve their critical thinking skills. Through an understanding and analysis of important business topics such as capacity planning, quality control, inventory planning, and supply chain management, students appreciate the importance of applying foundational business topics toward more specific problems they encounter in their careers. By examining real-world cases, students are exposed to productive methods of approaching problems critically and effectively.
  • Strategic Selling & Sales Leadership: Enables students to visualize themselves as executives who are largely responsible for the state of their company. Using what they have learned from their other coursework, students will perform a thorough analysis of an assigned company, and then develop a corporate strategy based on their findings. By thinking critically about the circumstances in which their assigned company operates, students gain valuable experience in piecing together various sources of information into a coherent strategy. They also gain the background knowledge necessary to feel confident in their decision-making process.
  • Data Analysis for Decision-Making: This is another core course offering. Data is one of the most important components of a business, and the ability to synthesize large sets of information into practical action is an essential aspect of analytical competence. By learning about commonly used data and related software, students discover applicable analytical skills that can be leveraged among a wide range of business environments. In addition, this class will discuss appropriate and logical responses to different data outcomes.
  • Finance: Managers must make a variety of decisions when it comes to financing. Decision-making is at the heart of our Managerial Finance course. Instruction will explore the most effective ways to approach and conduct this vital task. By understanding financial analysis, what information is necessary to make financial decisions, and what various fiscal mechanisms firms employ, students develop their decision making prowess relative to financial management.

The Current Ohio University Online MBA Curriculum

Core Courses

MBA 6320 Data Analysis for Decision Making – 3 Credits
MBA 6340 Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management – 3 Credits
MBA 6315 Accounting for Executives – 3 Credits
MBA 6335 Managerial Finance – 3 Credits
MBA 6350 Strategic Marketing and Supply Chain Management – 3 Credits
MBA 6360 Strategic Use of Information – 3 Credits
MBA 6370 Management of Operations – 3 Credits
MBA 6380 Strategic Leadership – 3 Credits
MBA 6912 Applied Business Experience (CAPSIM) – 2 Credits

Finance Concentration Courses

MBA 6345 Financial Markets and Institutions – 3 Credits
MBA 6355 Investments – 3 Credits
MBA 6365 Advanced Corporate Finance – 3 Credits

Business Analytics Concentration Courses

MBA 6390 Predictive Analytics – 3 Credits
MBA 6395 Data Management, Business Intelligence and Analytics – 3 Credits
MBA 6325 Prescriptive Analytics – 3 Credits

Operations and Supply Chain Management Concentration

MGT 5021 Management of Lean Six Sigma Programs – 3 Credits
MGT 5023 Supply Chain Risk Management and Global Supply Chain Design – 3 Credits
MGT 5025 Project Management – 3 Credits

Accounting Concentration

ACCT 5010 Intermediate Accounting Concepts – 3 Credits
ACCT 5020 Advanced Accounting Concepts I – 3 Credits
ACCT 5030 Advanced Accounting Concepts II – 3 Credits

Strategic Selling and Sales Leadership Concentration

MBA 6300 Building and Developing Customer Relationships – 3 Credits
MBA 6400 Sales Leadership – 3 Credits
MBA 6500 Sales Analytics – 3 Credits

Business Venturing and Entrepreneurship Concentration

MGT 5070 Managing Innovation and Corporate Entrepreneurship – 3 Credits
MGT 5071 Ideation, Concept Development and Business Models – 3 Credits
MGT 5072 New Venture Creation – 3 Credits

Learn More

Regardless of the courses or specialization you choose, an MBA will provide you with an excellent set of business-applicable skills. Through coursework that addresses the most pressing aspects of business, students will learn to forge their own paths and create their own opportunities within this rapidly changing economy. If pursuing an MBA sounds right for you, Ohio University offers an MBA degree program that is 100% online, with no GMAT required.

Recommended Readings

Webinar: Ohio University College of Business – Application Process
Ohio University Blog, “MBA Programs: What Is Business Process Management?”
Ohio University Blog, “A Tale of Two Advanced Degrees: Master’s in Finance vs. MBA”


Fortune, “What’s an MBA For, Anyway?”
Investopedia, “Master of Business Administration”
U.S. News and World Report, “What an MBA Degree Is and What You Need to Know”