Course Descriptions

Course catalog descriptions for courses offered in all currently published terms.

Business Administration

BA 101 Development Seminar
  1 hours Terms Offered: F13, F14
  Advisory Prerequisites: Freshman standing, permission of instructor 
  Preparation Initiative Development Seminar --- This seminar is intended for pre-BBA students who aspire to significant, socially responsible business leadership careers but have had limited prior exposure to what such careers entail and require. The Seminar entails a variety of activities that provide such exposure, including presentations on business specialities, such as finance, marketing, and operations management; reading and writing about contemporary business developments,; and practicing methods for learning the kinds of technical skills that are essential for excellence in the modern, global business environment.
BA 200 Businesses and Leaders: The Positive Differences
  3 hours Terms Offered: F14, W14, F13(B)
  Businesses and Leaders: The Positive Differences --- Businesses and their leaders coexist with society and are both influenced by and influencers of societal issues. In this course, we explore the competing tensions of how business practices and leaders impact organizational performance as well as broader social outcomes across the private, public, and nonprofit sectors. We will look at social issues that arise from business operations that result in threats to public goods and market failures; how societal issues create space for business opportunities; and the leveraging of corporate resources to solve societal problems that create values for stakeholders and shareholders.

In addition to studying the role of business in society, this course examines personal and professional responsibility. This will entail students examining the connections between personal values, career goals, ethical decision making, and moral courage. Also, students will reflect upon their responsibilities and contributions to the Ross community and the business profession, and develop personal plans to guide their actions.
BA 201 Business Thought and Action
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: F13, W13, F14
  Cross-listed with: ENTR 390 
  Business Thought and Action --- This course introduces students to business. In this course we foster development of the key skill of learning via reflection on one's own experience. The course will rely heavily on examination of individual organizations or industries from which generalizations can be made. Specific situations will be selected to convey the excitement of business situations, the role of business in society and the global scope of business. The primary purpose of this class is to educate students about the broad range of problems and opportunities that businesses face and the tools and skills that are necessary to face them. A secondary purpose is to show the students the richness of business activity by 'peeling back the onion' via case discussions of situations and companies they have experienced in their lives. Students will gain familiarity with different kinds of information resources: from trade magazines to mass market books to research journals.
BA 380 Senior Seminar
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: F14, W14
  Advisory Prerequisites: BBA, SR.STD. 
  Senior Seminar --- This course is an honors-type seminar that is open to a limited number of BBA seniors. Students in the seminar work in a collaborative environment with a professor to develop a thesis that builds on previous liberal arts and BBA course work. Through the exploration of ethical, political, historical, psychological, scientific, social and cultural aspects of current business issues, students have the opportunity to develop a well-rounded perspective that is valued in the global environment of business.
BA 399 Independent Study Project
  1 - 3 hours Elective Terms Offered: S13, P14, M13, S14, F13, P13, W13, F14, W14, M14
  Independent Study Projects --- Independent study projects, supervised by faculty, are available to juniors and seniors in good academic standing. To select a study project, students should consult the appropriate professor about the nature of the project and the number of the credit hours the work would earn. One to three credit hours may be earned. Junior and senior BBAs may elect only one independent study project in a term, and no more than three during the BBA program. No more than seven credit hours from study projects may be counted toward the BBA degree. To register for a project students must submit an approved Independent
Study Project application, available online.
BA 415 Advanced Business French
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W13, W14
  Advisory Prerequisites: Three years of university-level FRENCH and pre-screening with instructor 
  Cross-listed with: FRENCH 414 
  Advanced Business French --- This course, taught in French, targets undergraduates and graduates with an interest in International Business and Trade. Topic-specific vocabulary is learned and applied in a comprehensive overview of banking, import/export, stock market, e-trade, office matters and business etiquette. Students come away with a strong sense of their ability to perform a job among French-speaking co-workers and with a full understanding of French business systems. Case studies, guest speakers and in-class student presentations in French contribute to the comprehensive nature of this class.
BA 476 American Business History
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: F14
  Advisory Prerequisites: Junior, senior, or graduate standing 
  Cross-listed with: HISTORY 476 
  American Business History --- In this course, the origins, the development, and the growth of businesses are studied. The course traces the beginnings of American business enterprise from Europe and describes business activities during the American colonial, revolutionary, and pre-Civil War periods. It then discusses economic aspects of the Civil War, post-civil War industrial growth, business consolidation and the antitrust movement, economic aspects of World War I, business conditions during the 1920s, effects of the 1929 depression and the New Deal upon business, economic aspects of World War II, post-war business developments, the crash of 2007-2008 and some current business trends. The topics are enlivened by discussions of business personalities.
BA 499 Doing Business in German
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W13, W14
  Advisory Prerequisites: GERMAN 350 or one 300-level course beyond GERMAN 232, and permission of instructor 
  Cross-listed with: GERMAN 430 
  Doing Business in German --- This course introduces students to the language of German business and gives them insight into Germany's place in the global economy. The course is organized around major business and economic topics, such as: the geography of business and industry in German; the European Union and Germany's role therein; traffic, transportation and trade; social structure; economic structure; ecology. In addition to the basic text, students will read actual business, merchandising, and advertising material; newspapers and magazines. There will also be short videos on business and related topics.
BA 512 Ethics of Corporate Management
  2.25 hours Elective Terms Offered: S13, W13(B)
  Course Prerequisites: No credit in LHC 531, 421 
  Cross-listed with: NRE 512 
  Ethics of Corporate Management --- This course, commonly known as the "business ethics" course meets the law/ethics requirement of the MBA program. The course provides a theoretical background of how to evaluate moral claims in business, provides and introduction to the issues related to corporate social responsibility, and discusses how to manage ethics in organizations. Using a framework describing managers' economic, legal, and ethical responsibilities, this course draws upon classical oral theory as well as the most up-to-date contemporary business ethics thinking. Through a discussion of dilemmas of executives, employees, and organizations, the course examines topics such as corporate compliance systems, corporate culture, human rights, corruption, and cross-national business ethics. In this course we also examine ethical leadership in terms of acting on your values in an organizational setting and building an ethical organization.
Class participation is critical, and active interaction has been a trademark of the class. Even the "lecture" portion is very interactive. The full-scale discussion consistently opens eyes to new dimensions of business behavior.
BA 523 Comprehensive Health Care Strategies
  2.25 hours Elective Terms Offered: W13(A)
  Comprehensive Health Care Strategies --- This course provides a data-driven, rapid-fire, comprehensive survey of health care issues and strategy as seen from the varying perspectives of the industry's primary stakeholders: patients, physicians, other caregivers, health system executives, employers and managed care companies, policymakers, medical device manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies, and other vendors. The course begins with the core physician-patient transaction and from this underlying relationship builds a model of health care delivery and financing around which these varying perspectives are framed. For example, we will examine the strategies followed by these different players vis-a-vis a costly new medical technology, such as a cochlear implant or sepsis medication. The course includes brief historical accounts from stakeholders' perspectives, but focuses on today's pressing challenges and future opportunities, including technology and globalization. Much of the course is based on cases and readings, and it includes several industry speakers.
BA 528 Tools for Discovery
  1.5 hours Elective Terms Offered: F14(B), W13(A), W14(A)
  Tools for Discovery --- Every manager and consultant needs to know how to conduct effective exploration into managerial problems; This course teaches the practical skills and analytical tools useful for managerial problem discovery; i.e., effective interviewing, focus groups, learning through observation, as well as more contemporary techniques such as internet data analysis and experience sampling. Appropriate for both MBA1s and MBA2s.
BA 553 Multidisciplinary Action Projects - MAP
  7.5 hours Core Terms Offered: W13(B), W14(B)
  Advisory Prerequisites: 1st year MBA core 
  Multidisciplinary Action Projects (MAP) --- MAP is a field study program in which teams of students apply structured problem solving techniques to analyze multidisciplinary business problems or opportunities and make recommendations for improvements. It is a unique feature of the Ross MBA program -- the action learning experience it provides is central to the School's curriculum. Students learn how businesses apply and integrate multiple functions and gain an appreciation of the value of teamwork through an intense hands-on project at a sponsoring company. Students are strongly discouraged from taking additional course work while enrolled in MAP due to time obligations and intensive group work. More specifically, participation in international or non-local projects especially requires that no other course work is concurrent in Winter "B"
BA 554 Evening Multidisciplinary Action Projects (MAP)
  6 hours Elective Terms Offered: F13, F14
  Advisory Prerequisites: ACC 501, ACC 551, BE 501, FIN 551, MKT 501 & STRATEGY 601 
  Evening Multidisciplinary Action Projects (MAP) --- This Multidisciplinary Action Program for Evening MBA students is an intensive elective course designed to apply core course topics to projects sponsored by institutions. Students are formed in teams ranging in size from 4-6 students. The course begins with all of the companies meeting individually with the teams and is centered on a week of travel during the Fall break during which students conduct primary research through interviews of relevant industry participants. There will be 5 scheduled Saturday meetings with faculty and/or sponsors in addition to individual team meetings to be scheduled according to the team's schedules. Projects will vary according to the needs of the sponsoring companies and will include market entry analysis, financial analysis, expansion studies and business model development.
BA 591 Map I
  7.5 hours Core Terms Offered: W13, W14
  Advisory Prerequisites: Global MBA students 
  Map I
BA 605 Green Development
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W13, W14
  Cross-listed with: NRE 605 
  Green Development --- The built environment is a major source of society's environmental impact; and is a major opportunity to find solutions. This course explores green development from a variety of perspectives: energy, heating, water use, construction processes, architectural design, site planning, brownfield development and others.
BA 612 Business Strategies for the Base of the Pyramid
  2.25 hours Elective Terms Offered: F14(B), F13(B)
  Business Strategies for the Base of the Pyramid --- The condition of the world's poor is the subject of growing attention. Global poverty is increasingly seen as an unacceptable outcome of the current economic system, and there is interest in exploring new market-based approaches to poverty alleviation. The emerging base of the pyramid (BoP) perspective aligns business-oriented incentives for growth, innovation, and profits with the development community's efforts to create a more inclusive capitalism. In fact, the relationship between profits and poverty alleviation in pursuit of mutual value creation is a central component of the BoP perspective.

To explore these issues, this course integrates concepts of strategy, international business, non-profit management, and poverty alleviation to stimulate the leadership skills and competitive imagination needed to design BoP ventures. Through combination of cases, readings, lectures, videos, and outside guests, class session will engage students in discussions aimed at: 1) identifying the opportunities associated with a new perspective on serving BoP markets; and 2) developing the strategies, business models, and partnerships required to productively explore those opportunities.
BA 615 Decision Management
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W13
  Advisory Prerequisites: MBA ONLY 
  Decision Management --- No company can prosper unless the people working in that company consistently make outstanding decisions. And how well a company's people make their decisions is a direct consequence of actions taken by the company's managers - their decision management practices. This course provides principles and practical guidance that will help the student become and remain an excellent decision manager over an entire career.
BA 635 Accelerating Your Management Consulting Skills
  1.5 hours Elective Terms Offered: F14
  Advisory Prerequisites: BE 502, STRATEGY 502 
  Accelerating Your Management Consulting Skills --- This course provides students an opportunity to learn and apply the integrative problem-solving and communications skills required to be a successful management consultant. The focus of the course is on business unit strategy (an integrated set of actions designed to generate a sustainable competitive advantage). The course intertwines frameworks drawn from different functional areas and is taught through a combination of lecture and case discussions. The cases are taught with the students in the role of consulting teams helping senior client executives to define and address their most pressing problems, and to make recommendations to improve performance and to build capabilities in their organizations. The course is designed to strengthen integrative problem-solving skills, analytical skills, and executive-level written and oral communication skills.
BA 685 International Business Immersion: Health care delivery in emerging markets
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W13, W14
  Advisory Prerequisites: MBA Core 
  International Business Immersion --- This course offers an opportunity for students to explore the business and policy environment of a country or region in depth. The course consists of three distinct parts: (1) campus-based learning about the target country's business and policy environment; (2) intensive travel and direct engagement with business and government leaders to gather information for a team-project research topic (travel done over winter break); and (3) analysis and synthesis of your findings in the form of group projects. These will be presented as business/policy briefs, as well as presentations to the Ross community. The campus-based learning, which takes place during Winter A, involves readings, discussions, guest speakers, and research on the focus country. Projects will explore a specific business or policy issue in the focus country.
BA 750 Independent Study Project
  1 - 3 hours Elective Terms Offered: S13, P14, M13, S14, F13, P13, W13, F14, W14, M14
  Advisory Prerequisites: Graduate standing 
  Independent Study Project --- Independent study projects, supervised by faculty, are available to graduate business students in good academic standing. To select a project, students should consult the appropriate professor about the nature of the project and the number of credit hours the work would earn. Students earn one to three credit hours per project and may elect only one study project in a term. Graduate business students should consult their program bulletins for information
regarding total number of projects and credits that can be applied to their degree. To register for a project students must submit an approved Independent Study Project application, available online.
BA 830 Teaching Fundamentals
  .5 hours Elective Terms Offered: W13(A), W14(A)
  Advisory Prerequisites: Doctoral standing 
  Teaching Fundamentals --- This course is designed for U of M Business School doctoral students who are preparing for their teaching semester. The course emphasizes three interrelated areas: (1) conceptual understanding of the theory and research related to teaching, (2) awareness of the attitudes associated with effective teaching, and (3) identification of the behavioral skills necessary to facilitate learning in the college classroom and to be an effective participant in the academic community. BA830 meets for three 3-hour sessions in Fall A. All Second year UMBS doctoral students are required to take it at this time.
BA 831 Teaching Practicum
  1 hours Elective Terms Offered: F13, W13, F14, W14
  Advisory Prerequisites: Doctoral standing; BA 830 
  Teaching Practicum --- This course is designed for U of M Business School doctoral students who are preparing for their teaching semester. The Practicum focuses on basic instructional techniques. During the practicum, students have the opportunity to practice and evaluate lectures, activities, and discussions. The Practicum meets for five 3-hour sessions. It is taught twice, once is Sept/Oct and again in Aug. All second year UMBS doctoral students are required to take the Practicum prior to their teaching semester.
BA 840 Seminar in Organizational Studies
  1 - 4 hours Elective Terms Offered: W13
  Advisory Prerequisites: Doctoral Student Status 
  Cross-listed with: SW 713, SI 702 
  Seminar in Organizational Studies --- This seminar provides a forum for the discussion of research and theory about organizations and organizational processes. In keeping with its interdisciplinary character, the seminar will consider both macro and micro-processes and their intersection. Presentations will be made by faculty and advanced graduate students from within the university, as well as from other universities and centers for research on organizations.
BA 850 Empirical Research Methods
  1.5 hours Elective Terms Offered: W13(A), W14(A)
  Advisory Prerequisites: Doctoral standing 
  Empirical Research Methods --- This course is intended as an introduction to the methods of the social sciences and to the particular issues raised by applied business research done outside the laboratory. In addition to covering issues around the design of particular research projects, we will focus on developing research streams, that is, related pieces of research that build around a common theme and that advance its theoretical agenda.
BA 870 Research Methods in the Behavioral & Social Sciences
  3 hours Elective Terms Offered: W13, W14
  Advisory Prerequisites: Doctoral standing 
  Cross-listed with: SOCADMIN 870 
  Research Methods in the Behavioral and Social Sciences --- This course is designed to provide conceptual and operational skills needed to do and interpret basic and applied research in the behavioral, managerial, and social sciences. Particular focus will be on structural equation models (known also by such names as causal models, path analysis, analysis of covariance structures, simultaneous equation models with latent variables) with an aim to addressing measurement and hypothesis testing issues, as well as exploring the broader philosophical foundations and implications of the methods. We will cover such topics as reliability, validity, explanation, prediction, control, and understanding of individual, group, and organizational phenomena. Considerable emphasis will be placed on examination of assumptions, measurement, theory specification, theory operationalization, estimation of parameters, hypothesis testing, and interpretation of findings. In addition, such topics as questionnaire design, formative versus reflective indicators, confirmatory factor analysis, high order factor models, cross-sectional and longitudinal designs, recursive and non recursive models, survey and experimental research, multiple group analyses, and the role of cross-cultural inquiry will be considered.