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Full-time MBA Subjects

 

General Management I

Data Analysis

This subject provides the fundamental quantitative skills necessary you need to extract information from data to make better managerial decisions. You will become familiar with the tools of quantitative analysis, develop the necessary skills for analytical thinking and gain a quantitative mindset to measure performance. The fundamental quantitative skills you gain from this subject will provide a foundation for advanced MBA subjects and an analytical framework for solving managerial problems throughout your career.

Financial Reporting and Analysis

Understanding and using financial accounting information is essential to your success as a professional manager. This subject provides you with foundation knowledge about for-profit entities’ external financial reporting – knowledge that is not only the basis for correctly interpreting and applying accounting information, provided for internal managerial decision-making, but also for financial statements, used to make externally‐focused judgments and decisions (e.g., assessing a firm’s intrinsic value or its strengths and weaknesses, relative to competitors).

People Management

This subject provides the analytical skills and tools to identify, diagnose and solve people-related challenges in organisations. It examines different theoretical perspectives and concepts, underlying individual, group and organisational behaviour, and teaches you how to apply these concepts in a practical manner to improve performance.

Economics for Managers

This subject gives you economic-reasoning tools for developing and evaluating strategic business options and making better choices. You will discuss the fundamental concepts and develop analytical skills required in managerial and strategic decision‐making.

General Management II

Leadership

Develop the capability to lead individuals and teams through intrapersonal (self-awareness, self-management) and interpersonal (social awareness, social skill) development. This confidence-building subject includes theoretical and conceptual content alongside solo and group exercises, designed to prepare you for leadership experiences in the MBA program and your future career.

Social Responsibility and Ethics

Learn about the societal context in which business operates and develop the skills for reasoning about the ethical problems it generates. This intensive subject examines the various stakeholders of business and discusses the obligations that corporations have to them. It considers strategies for achieving corporate social responsibility goals and also examines a range of alternative approaches to moral reasoning.

Finance

This introduction to valuation and financial management is based on the principle that firms should be managed to increase the wealth of their shareholders, subject to fulfilling their contractual and legal obligations to other stakeholders. To this end, it focuses on valuing financial assets and selecting investment projects. It provides a solid foundation if you want to specialise in finance or study other finance electives later in your MBA.

Marketing Management

The focus of this subject is the challenges that organisations face in managing demand and how to address them with optimal demand‐side strategies. To be successful, organisations need to recognise, create, grow and protect market‐based assets that influence demand. You will learn how (and which) marketing investments help develop market‐based assets, how they translate into market outcomes, and how market outcomes help ensure an organisation’s long‐term survival and success.

Process and Operations Management

In fiercely competitive global and dynamic environments, companies face increasing pressures to exceed customer expectations along multiple performance measures, such as cost, quality, flexibility and innovation. This subject deals with the design, management and continuous improvement of business processes, providing some of the core concepts that are essential for leveraging a firm’s operational capabilities to achieve sustainable competitive advantage. It takes a logical and rigorous approach to planning and controlling process structure and provides managerial levers for achieving the desired performance from a business process.

General Management III

Innovation Bootcamp

During this intense, week‐long subject, you are introduced to a number of exciting techniques and concepts, including individual creativity and brainstorming, team creativity, innovation within small and large firms, and linking ideas, generated in this subject, to your other subjects, including strategy, marketing and operations.

It is not a "theory" subject. It is hands‐on and experiential, with a focus on a real project to help you acquire practical skills. We want you to learn how to think outside the box and be creative and inventive, whether you decide to become an entrepreneur or join an existing firm. Such skills are becoming more important to employers as industries face rapidly changing market conditions and innovative global competitors.

Corporate Financial Management

This subject provides advanced knowledge about financial management - knowledge that is the basis for funding a firm’s investments and using its resources efficiently, and useful for addressing risk management, capital investment in foreign markets and corporate payout policy.

Management Accounting

This subject gives you foundation knowledge about the financial information that underlies managerial reports, used for internal planning, decision‐making and performance evaluation. This knowledge is fundamental to making informed, value‐creating, managerial decisions.

Global Business Economics

This subject examines the broad environment in which firms operate and explains factors that affect the output growth, inflation, unemployment, interest rates and exchange rates of a country in a globalised world. These economy‐wide variables are beyond a firm’s control but critically influence their decision‐making. The subject presents a macroeconomic framework to illustrate the dynamic interconnections among markets (such as financial assets, goods and services, labour, money) and government policies. With the aid of country case studies and current policy research, it demonstrates that economics is not primarily a set of answers but a method of reasoning.

Strategy

This subject examines: a general manager’s primary roles and responsibilities in formulating business strategies and building and sustaining competitive advantage; the fundamental issues involved with integrating and coordinating the activities of different functional areas, such as marketing, operations management, accounting, human resource management and finance; and the frameworks and tools, commonly used to develop and assess business strategies.

Business in Asia

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Full-time MBA Class of 2015 in Shanghai for the ‘Business in Asia’ subject.

This field-study subject allows you to apply the skills you develop in the core subjects of your MBA program. The main deliverable is a detailed research report, describing a study in one of the developing markets of Asia, typically China. The field study (or project) can focus on a specific organisation, new or existing products/services/ventures, or entire industries. You can also focus on a specific area of business, such as marketing, finance or human resources management. It is divided into two parts, with the first part in Melbourne, during the core MBA modules, and the second part a 10‐day field trip in a selected Asian market, normally Shanghai. During the field trip, you conduct primary research in the form of interviews with business executives, company visits and surveys or other appropriate research techniques.

Social Entrepreneur Consulting Practicum (Capstone)

Working in syndicates as consultants to social entrepreneurs, who are creating a business plan and sales pitch to obtain external funding, you will work through the entire consulting process from receiving the client brief, negotiating the final terms of the consulting project, executing the negotiated consulting activities, and delivering and presenting a final client report. The consulting activities will require you to apply and integrate the knowledge, skills and attributes, acquired on your MBA program.

Business in Complex Environments (Capstone)

This subject places you into syndicates to complete a business simulation in which you manage a company. The simulation requires you to apply and integrate the knowledge, skills and attributes that you have learned and developed on the MBA program.

Personal Effectiveness Program (PEP)

This program runs across the three core MBA modules and helps you develop the skills and knowledge required to effectively manage the early stages of your career. It identifies your specific needs and provides ongoing support, training and opportunities to practise and perfect your career skills.

It focuses on three core areas:

  • Communication skills, covering effective presentations, verbal communication, written communication and public speaking
  • Career development skills, including case practice, interview skills, CV writing, networking and business etiquette
  • Team skills, including managing conflict, cultural awareness, giving and receiving feedback, and resilience. 

Entrepreneurial Mindset

Running across the three core MBA modules, this program develops your entrepreneurial mindset by giving you the knowledge, skills and attributes to identify and evaluate value creation opportunities, see obstacles, problems and failure as opportunities, make opportunities viable, and sell ideas to others.

Full-time elective subjects

Elective subjects vary year to year but may include:

Brand Management

This elective prepares you for the challenges of building, protecting and strengthening a brand. It takes is a very applied approach and examines all the key areas of brand management, including brand research, brand building, brand strategy, brand positioning, brand extension and brand architecture. It is case based and uses examples from consumer goods, services, B2B, retail, luxury goods and other major areas of branding.

Business Intelligence

Big data is big business but there’s not enough managers who can ask the right questions and interpret the results of analysis effectively. This subject will teach you how to extract relevant information from large amounts of data to make business decisions. Learn about data-mining, the science of extracting useful information from large datasets and apply this to predict future outcomes.

Consumer Behaviour

Current approaches to business emphasise the importance of adopting a consumer focus. At its essence, marketing and business more broadly - is an attempt to influence consumer behaviour. This subject seeks to provide insights into consumer psychology as a basis for developing powerful consumer‐influence tactics and marketing strategies. You will learn about fundamental theories and concepts in consumer psychology and new research findings to enhance your understanding of how and why people choose, use and evaluate goods and services the way they do.

Corporate Strategy

One of the most significant changes to occur over the last century was the emergence of conglomerates - diversified corporations that grow through acquisition and are characterised by separate headquarters and relatively autonomous and discrete operating units. This economic form was subsequently challenged by new types of economic organisation, such as private equity and multi‐sided platforms. This subject addresses the challenges facing executives, running multi‐business firms, and the way they develop strategies to create value across the businesses that their corporation owns.

Financial Institutions

This subject prepares you for a manager role in the rapidly developing financial services industry, in particular banking. It addresses three main issues or challenges, related to financial services. First, the conceptual issues underlying the industry to help you develop a broad view of the management function. Second, the various kinds of risk that managers in the industry face, and here you are provided with a generic set of tools for managing return. Third, the regulatory changes that have occurred because of the recent financial crisis. A key component of the subject is an online bank simulation game that provides enhanced insights into all three issues.

Game Theory for Business Strategy

Managers make decisions, day in, day out, that affect other people within their firm, such as division members and subordinates, as well competitors, customers, regulators and even capital markets. Moreover, the outcome of their decisions depends on the decisions of others. Therefore, anticipating how others could react is essential for making the best decision and achieving a successful outcome. This subject introduces you to the basic tools for analysing choices, notably, the main concepts around individual decision‐making and strategic interaction (game theory). The combination of these tools will allow you to approach managerial problems critically and analytically. As a result, you will be able to think strategically in complex, interactive environments.

Implementation of Strategy

The subject begins with a review of strategy to ensure that students have a shared understanding of the basic concepts and frameworks of strategy. From this foundation, the subject is organised around two general questions:

Is an organisation structured in a manner that allows the implementation of strategy?

Do the people in the organisation want to implement the strategy?

Structural issues are mainly driven by the way the various parts of the organisation relate to each other and interact, and the structure often yields results that are detrimental to the organisation and impede the execution of the strategy.

Investments

This subject gives you the tools of modern finance for devising and evaluating financial portfolios and making better investment choices. You will discuss and develop techniques for valuing financial instruments and gain a working knowledge of portfolio management, pricing and hedging with options on individual stocks and indexes, forward and futures contracts, monetary policy and how its conduct affects investment performance, and how to devise investment strategies that exploit market inefficiencies.

Managerial Judgement

This subject is based on state‐of‐the‐art neurobiological research that sheds light on the obstacles we face when making decisions and managing our emotions. By discovering the roots of many of these difficulties, we can also find solutions to the problems created by our biological history.

MBA Internship

This subject involves completing a minimum, 4-week, full-time, work placement (or equivalent that may be undertaken as part of a longer internship). It integrates academic learning, employability skills and attributes, and knowledge of organisations, workplace culture and career pathways. At the end of the subject, you report on your workplace project. You will gain enhanced employability skills - communication, interpersonal, analytical, problem‐solving, organisational, time‐management and an understanding of career planning and professional development.

Managerial Project

In this subject, you will develop the skills necessary to complete a sustained piece of applied research, carrying it from problem recognition and definition to completion. Using theory and concepts derived from the program you will apply them to a real managerial problem in order to develop creative insights into potential solutions.

Marketing Communications

In this subject, you will explore what leading firms are doing in response to changes affecting the discipline of marketing communications. You will consider the main concepts, tools and techniques of contemporary marketing communications and focus on the design and implementation of effective marketing communications campaigns. You will also consider the issues that arise in planning, implementing and controlling communications strategies across multiple media, such as print and broadcast advertising, PR, direct, online and other electronic channels.

Marketing Strategy

This subject demonstrates the benefits of undertaking marketing actions within a strategic framework and shows how that can be achieved. A good marketing strategy allows you to refine your vision, check its fit with your target markets’ needs, focus your efforts on the most worthwhile opportunities and see how best to realise them. This subject examines each of the three logical steps in this process: analysis; generating and calibrating strategic options; and planning to realise the chosen options.

Mergers & Acquisitions

Merger & acquisition activity is a mainstay of the growth characteristics of large firms and has been a feature of business life for well over a century. While there have been many merger ‘waves’ over the years, this pathway to growth has constantly maintained its importance. This subject begins with an examination of the history of, and reasons for, merger and acquisition activity, providing a rationale for the study of the whole process, which extends from the decision to acquire through to the means of achieving successful post‐merger integration.

Negotiations

Negotiation is the art and science of securing agreements between two or more interdependent parties. The central issues of this subject deal with understanding the behaviour of individuals, groups and organisations in competitive situations. The purpose is to understand the theory and processes of negotiation, as practised in a variety of settings. The subject is designed to be relevant to the broad spectrum of negotiation problems, faced by managers and professionals, often in a global context.

Performance Metrics

This subject addresses approaches for assessing individual and firm performance that are useful for achieving strategic objectives. It focuses on two key issues: common financial and non‐financial metrics, used to assess individual and firm performance; and frameworks for identifying appropriate performance metrics.

Product Management

Understand the issues involved in developing product strategies, including issues related to services marketing. This subject will give you the analytical skills necessary for market research and developing sound product-related decisions. You will gain a conceptual framework for organising your thinking about product-related problems and an understanding of the marketing or product manager's role in developing product strategies.

Supply Chain Management

Emerging trends in globalisation and renewed emphasis on operations as a source of competitive advantage have led to organisational changes that focus on inter-functional coordination, often spanning several firms in the supply chain. This subject discusses recent developments in manufacturing-marketing‐supply chain linkages and studies operational decisions that make such interfaces efficient and effective. It explores inter-functional dependencies, sources of conflicts and an effective, managerial, decision-making paradigm. It is based on the premise that an organisation can become globally competitive when all elements that comprise its supply chain network are efficient and decision-making is coordinated across the chain. You will examine, in detail, issues related to market‐led operations, and managing supply and distribution.