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The USC Marshall Online Master of Business Administration
Program Overview   About USC Marshall

Curriculum

Developing students to be leaders in the global marketplace

The Marshall Online MBA offers students an integrated curriculum with award-winning video content that consists of five cross-disciplinary courses. In each course, students acquire essential knowledge about the corresponding core subject areas—marketing, finance, management, accounting, entrepreneurship, and more—and gain insight into how these disciplines fit together.

OMBA’s integrated courses are developed and taught by a team of faculty members who engage students in contemporary, practical exercises and timely real-world discussions. Students report that they successfully apply what they learn in our courses to their current business challenges. In today’s increasingly complex and interconnected business environment, a holistic understanding of how organizations work is essential. This advanced integrated curriculum is the cornerstone of the Marshall Online MBA and supports our primary goal of developing students into leaders ready to succeed in the global marketplace.


Online MBA Courses

Students must complete all of these courses to graduate from the program:

Beginning with one week of online discussions, readings, activities and assignments and ending with a six-day residential intensive, this course kicks off the Marshall Online MBA. Students explore the fundamental roles of the manager and the process of thinking critically to solve business problems that leaders encounter. GSBA-501 also familiarizes students with managerial and strategic frameworks and helps them develop critical managerial communication skills. The course features team-building activities and culminates with a team competition during which students analyze and recommend solutions to a business problem of a prominent company or other organization.

Upon completing this course, students will be able to:

  • Understand general manager roles and integrative thinking
  • Identify key dimensions of leadership in organizations
  • Apply essential analytical and rhetorical skills for managers
  • Apply key theories/concepts in competitive strategy and sustainable advantage
  • Formulate strategy through analysis, develop solutions, and select optimal actions
  • Develop action plans for strategy implementation
  • Compare and contrast managerial communication styles
  • Discuss implications of leadership communication
  • Evaluate collaboration strategies and emerging tools
  • Analyze team dynamics, development and communication
Online 15-week course and prerequisite for all other courses in the OMBA program

Students learn to frame and analyze contemporary business problems using statistical evidence, economic principles, financial accounting concepts, and various analytical tools. The course incorporates these core subject areas—financial accounting, microeconomics, analytics and statistics, and virtual teams— into an overarching theme that explores the fundamentals of business. Students develop working strategies for analyzing and communicating fundamental business decisions.

Upon completing this course, students will be able to:

  • Understand the use of business analyses such as economic factors, financial statements and statistical analyses
  • Apply these analytic approaches to frame and analyze challenges and opportunities
  • Adapt and effectively communicate analytic findings to various audiences
  • Use theoretical concepts and best-practice case analysis for management
  • Develop innovative virtual team approaches to support business priorities
Online 15-week required course

Students explore multiple aspects of new venture management including how to identify and implement new business opportunities on a global scale. They also are introduced to tools and concepts needed to manage internal relations and operations. The course incorporates these core subject areas—entrepreneurship, organizational behavior/negotiations, and contract law—into an overarching theme that explores multiple aspects of new venture management. Students develop working strategies for effective entrepreneurial start‐ups.

Upon completing this course, students will be able to:

  • Describe new venture creation from ideation through launch
  • Create and adapt a business model using primary and secondary data
  • Deliver effective, persuasive evidence-driven pitches
  • Manage challenges faced by individuals, groups and organizations
  • Analyze and evaluate organizational designs
  • Develop confidence and skill in negotiation
  • Analyze fundamental elements of torts, sales warranties and products liability, contracts, IP protection, anti-trust, and white collar crime
  • Evaluate selection, organization, and capitalization of business entities
  • Identify persuasive techniques with various types of decision-makers
  • Make business decisions using inferential statistics and data models
Online 15-week required course

Students learn to streamline operations across functions in an organization. The course incorporates these core subject areas—managerial accounting, operations management, employment law, and statistics/analytics—into an overarching theme that explores the internal management of a company. Students develop working strategies for effective internal relations, data/financial analysis, and operations.

Upon completing this course, students will be able to:

  • Evaluate financial status of a company based on accounting documents
  • Recognize and manage employment law and discrimination issues
  • Analyze internal processes in operations management
  • Identify potential areas of organizational conflict
  • Lead effective teams
Online 15-week required course

Students explore tools and strategies for effectively managing external resources to compete and grow in an international marketplace. The course incorporates these core subject areas—corporate finance, marketing strategy, internet analytics/social media, and communication—into an overarching theme that explores management of the company in terms of external relations/operations. Students develop working strategies for effective new product development and communication with key stakeholders.

Upon completing this course, students will be able to:

  • Develop an integrated 3-statement projection model in Excel
  • Explain pros and cons of various types of capital and understand how to manage leverage
  • Analyze capital investment decisions using risk and break-even analyses
  • Develop effective online and social media strategies
  • Collect and analyze internet data to aid decision making
  • Evaluate strategies and components of external crisis communication
  • Evaluate market segments, trends, and issues in new product development
  • Apply consumer behavior concepts to successful marketing strategy
  • Develop meaningful market analyses and tactics using the 4Ps and 3Cs (or 5Cs) frameworks
  • Recognize importance of customer satisfaction, marketing performance metrics, effective salesforce management, and the impact of marketing on profitability
Online 15-week required course

Students are introduced to strategic analysis and decision making of the business environment and learn how to enable a company to thrive in a global economy. The course incorporates these core subject areas—macroeconomics, corporate strategy, financial markets, and analytics—into an overarching theme that explores the external environment of a company. Students develop strategies and skills to manage a company’s overall business environment.

Upon completing the course, students will be able to:

  • Discriminate between good and bad strategy, leverage core strategy, and construct effective business and corporate strategies
  • Identify and dissect the key competitive forces of industries and anticipate and predict their impact on a firm’s strategic moves
  • Identify, describe and explain a firm’s corporate strategy and evaluate the effectiveness of the firm’s corporate advantages to produce superior profits
  • Identify, describe and explain a firm’s global strategy and evaluate the effectiveness of the firm’s global advantages to produce superior profits
  • Understand risk and return in stock and bond markets
  • Use portfolio theory to construct portfolios to meet investment objectives
  • Analyze uses of financial and real options by both investors and firms
  • Evaluate the effects of government policy, such as changes in tax rates or money supply, on individuals, firms and the economy
  • Analyze and critically evaluate news reports about the macro economy in the financial press
  • Collaborate with others to appraise news reports about the U.S. and world economies


The Online MBA for a Digital Age

Distinguished USC Marshall faculty collaborate with talented instructional designers to create a rigorous curriculum in an environment that’s riveting and real.

 

Semester Start and End Dates

Online MBA courses are offered on a semester schedule:

Fall 2017: Monday, August 7 — Friday, December 22

Spring 2018: Monday, January 8 — Friday, April 27

Summer 2018: Monday, May 7 — Friday, August 24


Course Sequence and Format

GSBA 501 and GSBA 505 are prerequisites for all other Online MBA courses. GSBA 535, 537, 538 and 539 may be taken in any order and comprise the program’s second, third, fourth, and fifth semesters.

With the exception of GSBA-501, all courses are fully online and consist of asynchronous and synchronous course work. If students choose to take a break from the program, they can resume their studies the following semester.


Asynchronous and Synchronous Learning Tools and Activities

Asynchronous

Asynchronous activities can be completed at each student’s convenience and include:

  • Video presentations and other content produced at the Marshall dedicated studio
  • Moderated discussion boards
  • Case studies and simulations of real-world business scenarios
  • Self-assessment exercises, interactive games, and other virtual learning experiences

Synchronous

Students participate in weekly class sessions via webcam, during which they discuss the material in-depth and benefit from the perspectives of their fellow classmates and Marshall faculty. Synchronous activities include:

  • Class meetings
  • Collaborative virtual activities and assessments including facilitated team meetings
  • One‐on‐one faculty sessions via webcam*
  • Other real‐time interactions

*Instructors are also available via regularly scheduled virtual office hours and email.


Course Structure

Courses are modular in structure. Students are expected to complete all readings and online asynchronous content in preparation for live online class meetings. These meetings take place two to three times per week and last between one and two hours. The live class meeting schedule varies each semester, but is held at convenient times for working professionals:

  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday between 5 p.m. and 10 p.m. (Pacific Time)
  • Saturday and Sunday between 8 a.m. and 12 p.m. (Pacific Time)

Request Information

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