Majors and Programs
The School of Business Administration offers the following nine majors:
Accounting is the process of identifying, recording and analyzing information necessary to evaluate the past, present and future economic activities of organizations. Accounting is often said to be the language of business. Accountants apply their skills in areas such as auditing, taxation, financial analysis, information systems, management and policy. These services are provided to large and small businesses, not-for-profit entities, and governmental units.
The future is uncertain. Some of the events that can happen are
undesirable. "Risk" is the possibility that an undesirable event will
occur. Actuaries are experts in:
- Evaluating the likelihood of future events
- Designing creative ways to reduce the likelihood of undesirable events
- Decreasing the impact of undesirable events that do occur.
The impact of undesirable events can be both emotional and financial.
Reducing the likelihood of these events helps relieve emotional pain.
But some events, such as death, cannot be totally avoided. So,
reducing their financial impact is very important. Actuaries are the
leading professionals in finding ways to manage risk. It takes a
combination of strong analytical skills, business knowledge and
understanding of human behavior to design and manage programs that
Actuaries love what they do. Their work is intellectually
challenging and they are very well-paid. Actuaries are key players in
the management team of the companies that employ them. In a
fast-changing world, with new risks and the need for ever-more creative
ways to tackle them, there are constant opportunities for personal and
professional growth in an actuarial career, and the pleasure of
life-long learning. Most actuaries work in a pleasant environment,
alongside other professionals, and enjoy the respect of their peers.
Actuaries are the analytical backbone of our society's financial
security programs. They are the brains behind the financial safeguards
we have implemented in our personal lives, so we can go about our daily
lives without worrying too much about what the future may hold for us.
These are the safeguards that protect us from life's catastrophes. The
insight into risk that actuaries have also helps to ensure that our
savings are working hard for us, so that everything we love and cherish
can grow and flourish. The work of actuaries benefits all of us.
Economics is a prominent social science. It provides a primary basis for decisions at the national, business, and individual levels. It analyzes how businesses and households make decisions and prescribes solutions to societal problems such as unemployment, inflation, pollution and crime. Students are taught to think analytically and develop models appropriate to understanding the consequences of decision making. In addition, quantitative analysis and problem solving are integrated into the economics curriculum, thus providing students useful skills. Economics instills in students strong critical-thinking capabilities. Economics majors consistently attain high scores on national placement tests - GMAT, LSAT and GRE.
Besides preparing students for careers in business, an education in economics is excellent preparation for graduate studies in law, business and public administration, environmental studies, as well as in economics. Economics is a flexible choice for students seeking a rigorous, well-respected and relevant major without specializing in a narrowly defined area. If you do not want to get stuck in some field, then majoring in economics is a way out!
Finance is involved with the acquisition, investment and management of the cash resources of business entities, governmental agencies, and individuals. Its practitioners must have a thorough understanding of the financial markets where money is raised, know how to analyze investment opportunities, and because the objective of any financial decision is to maximize value, understand how investors determine value. Finance majors learn the theory and analytical tools associated with finance related decision-making in organizations. A major in Finance will help you develop the essential skills for careers in financial reporting and analysis and investment portfolio management for profit or not-for-profit organizations.
The purpose of the general management major is to enable a student to choose a variety of management courses with the greatest flexibility (keeping in mind that core course requirements are the same for all majors). Substantial numbers of employers are looking for broadly educated students at the Bachelor’s degree level, and many students are not ready to specialize early in their careers.
General management majors still take courses in accounting, information systems, finance, organizational behavior, marketing, operations management, and business policy. Students who intend to continue in a more specialized graduate school program may want to consider this option.
Human Resource Management
Human resource managers are concerned with the effective use of human resources in organizations. This field encompasses a broader view of the traditional personnel function to include not only the recruitment, selection, development and evaluation of individuals, but the planning, design and management of various organizational functions. The major in Human Resources Management develops the skills needed to administer the personnel functions of organizations. It is designed primarily for students who intend to pursue careers in administration, personnel management, labor relations or wherever the management of people at work is a central concern. Emphasis is placed on developing an intensive understanding of the concepts and techniques needed to acquire, develop and utilize an organization’s human resources. The program includes broad coverage of such topics as personnel psychology, personnel administration and labor/management relations, in addition to providing basic knowledge of organizational behavior.
Management Information Systems
Management Information Systems (MIS) is concerned with using information and communication technologies to support management at all levels (supervisory, middle, top) and in all business functional areas (accounting, finance, marketing, human resources, and operations management) with the information they need for planning, control, and problem solving. In addition to computer technology, MIS considers how managers and knowledge workers actually use information and how systems specialists and end users interact during the analysis, design, implementation, and on-going use of information systems. MIS experts attempt to bridge the gap between information technology and people’s needs. A related field is Computer Science. The two majors differ in that Computer Science emphasizes the technical side of hardware and system software, whereas MIS emphasizes application software development and the business context in which an information system exists.
Marketing is a management process that includes all of the activities involved in bringing a product or service to its successful delivery to customers. Most people mistakenly identify marketing with selling and promotion. Pete Drucker, one of the leading management gurus, put it this way: “The aim of marketing is to make selling superfluous. The aim is to know and understand the customer so well that the product or service fits them and sells itself.” The marketing activities involved in bringing products to market include marketing research, product development, pricing, marketing logistics, marketing channel management, wholesaling and retailing, and promotion, including advertising, sales promotion, and personal selling. Two other major areas of marketing are industrial marketing, which focuses on developing and selling products to companies, and international marketing which focuses on marketing in other countries.
Principles of Marketing is the foundation course which provides an overview to the discipline. Marketing Management is designed to allow students to develop problem solving skills through marketing case analyses. Consumer Behavior provides students with an opportunity to develop an in-depth understanding of consumer behavior phenomena that are so vital to business success. Marketing Research focuses on developing specialized marketing research skills. Having satisfied the requirements of these courses, students may select various elective courses to suit their own needs.
Operations Management is concerned with the management of the production processes and distribution of products and services. The major in operations management provides a strong managerial and technical education to students interested in the field (including manufacturing planning and control, supply-chain management, service management, project management, process management, and quality management). The major prepares students with the fundamental knowledge they need to work effectively in operations in manufacturing and service sectors, and provides them with advanced knowledge about best practices, current technologies, tools and their application, and leadership skills necessary to operate in a globally diverse and competitive marketplace.