Accounting Measurement, Reporting and Control

The key objective of the course is to learn the fundamental principles and methods of financial and managerial accounting, such that students become more discerning consumers of accounting information, both as external users and as managers within a firm. The course introduces concepts and methods of accounting, with an emphasis on the uses of accounting information in making economic decisions, in controlling organizations, and in holding them accountable to stakeholders. The course studies information that is:

  • Measured, reported to and used by individuals and entities external to organizations - generically known as financial accounting.
  • Measured, reported and used within organizations - generically known as managerial accounting.

Student will have an opportunity to examine transactions, events, and practices that occur in the context of several functional areas - such as production, operations and marketing — and subsequently study how accounting systems interact with them. Students will emerge from the course as more financially literate individuals who can understand the linkages between accounting and other business disciplines.


Entrepreneurship is a unique, creative process that can transform an abstract idea into an effective and value-creating venture in the real world. In creating effective ventures, entrepreneurs not only satisfy the unmet market needs with new products (goods/services), but often also create the products and markets jointly as part of the entrepreneurial process. This course is designed to provide a broad overview of key issues to consider in the entrepreneurial process and facilitate this learning process by refining a venture idea into a completely new one.

The course will help students to identify and clarify the market potential and viability of ideas and to seriously consider how (and if) such a new venture will add value to your life, to your potential investors and partners, and to society at large. We will question entrepreneurial strategies, markets, resource requirements, and consider the mission and the goals of the venture and learn how to select organizational designs that promote them.

Entrepreneurship will consider broadly and legitimately all ideas oriented towards the formation of a venture that creates value by bringing people and resources together – the possibilities are limitless! Students will be expected to refine their understanding and knowledge of entrepreneurial ideas to the point where they can intelligently and passionately decide whether to "go for it" or not. The course discussions will assist in learning about themselves, their capabilities, passions, goals, and role in society and think about and practice reaching out to potential customers, partners, suppliers, and experts.

Frontiers in Technology

This course enhances the work done in the classroom through an ongoing series of seminars &workshops, corporate visits both from business leaders and to various headquarters, and talks by researchers who are pioneering new technology. Through working in conjunction with our world-class engineering departments, the Technology Management Program provides a glimpse of new breakthroughs that are expected to affect our lives over the coming years. Learn more about the MS in Technology Management Program's Frontiers in Technology.

Introduction to Business

This course provides a broad-based introduction into the complex and fascinating world of management and serves as a useful gateway to the MSTM curriculum. Topics include fundamentals on economics, money and banking, industry and competitive analysis, business-level and corporate-level decision making and so forth. You will have an opportunity to analyze existing companies, as well as to try your hand in creating a business plan in an industry of your choice.

Management of the technology-intensive companies is not a world of certainty. Thus, within the classroom, reasonable people (with different experiences) will view alternative decisions differently and class discussion will be an integral component of the class. Creativity and team participation will also be highly valued as you discover the complexity and variety of data collection and analytical tasks that go into creating a viable and effective business plan.

Introduction to Finance

This course provides an introduction to financial management and decision making for graduate students who do not necessarily have previous training in the discipline of making decisions pertaining to investments in projects, and financing their operations. Topics covered include: an overview of financial environments, valuation of securities, risk-return relationships, capital budgeting, financial analysis and planning, cost of capital, and options.

Managing Innovation

The importance of innovation is at an all-time high, but managing innovation is different than "normal" management, as new markets and technologies pose distinctive challenges. This course aims to equip you for successfully addressing those challenges. We start by examining how new technologies can transform industries, and how firms can positively respond to such changes. We then explore how to overcome barriers to such changes, and how firms can balance the competing tensions of developing new technologies and markets while operating in mature ones. We also consider innovation topics at the individual and group levels, such as managing creativity and product development teams. Finally, we look at innovation strategies that involve establishing links to other firms through the consideration of alliances, joint ventures, and "open" innovation strategy.

Managing Intellectual Property

In the Managing Intellectual Property (MIP) course, we will study the fundamental concepts issues, practical strategies, and solutions from managerial, legal, economic, and public policy viewpoints. The result is a complex and integrated perspective about how firms compete based on knowledge.

Knowledge is embodied in products, services and productive processes. Given recent changes in U.S. and many overseas IP regimes, firms are increasingly faced with decisions about whether to manufacture novel products on which their IP is based, or simply to license the IP to other manufacturers, or both. One of the key aims of our MIP course is to understand why and how firms develop knowledge, commercialize it themselves through concrete products and services and convey it to others profitably. A firm's MIP strategy is a part of a broader set of decisions which shape their long-term survival and performance prospects.

MIP is also about people: managers, lawyers and public policy makers. Where IP is concerned, all three functions are essentially important to the survival and success of firms competing on knowledge. Managers take the strategic decisions about how much to invest in knowledge development (the R&D budget decision), whether to commercialize knowledge, and if so, how to go about that knowledge commercialization.

Lawyers take important decisions about whether and how to appropriate firm knowledge. That is to say, they turn knowledge developed by the firm into the firm's property in the form of patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets. Lawyers are also central to understanding how firms should protect their rights to such commodities knowledge; to sue or not to sue an infringer; to negotiate licensing agreements; and to assure compliance with laws and policies that define firm property rights over the appropriate period of time.

Public policy makers are also vital to the success of firms competing on knowledge. They are, for example, the patent examiners assessing the "novelty" and/or "non-obviousness" of some invention for which a patent is sought. They are judges deciding cases of patent, copyright or trademark infringement, trade secret misappropriation, or unfair competition in cases that could enrich or deprive one or more litigating parties of hundreds of millions of dollars. They are non-governmental organizations ("NGOs") like the United Nations, the World Trade Organization or the World Health Organization which seek to influence the application of IP policy in the U.S. so that other goals like international IP trade or low-cost anti-viral drugs to combat AIDS and HIV in Sub-Saharan Africa might be expanded.

The MIP course both permits and requires exploration of these managerial, legal, economic, and policy perspectives. Providing these perspectives, presenting key concepts, analysis, practical strategy, policy solutions, and cultivating a broader view of how firms compete based on knowledge are the general aims of the MIP course.

Marketing Management

There are three main learning objectives for this course. First, the students are to learn the terminology, institutions, and programs of modern marketing. Second, we focus on the strategic analysis of marketing opportunities, and the communication of marketing decisions through the case analysis method. Third, students must apply this knowledge in an innovative and interactive marketing simulation for your final project.

New Product Development

The focus of the New Product Development course is on the integration of the firm's marketing, strategy, design, and development functions when creating a new product. The course is intended to provide students with the following skills:

  • An understanding of management processes, market research, and forecasting methods that firms can utilize for faster and more effective innovation development.
  • Competence with a set of tools and methods for new product design and development.
  • Confidence in your own abilities to create new products.
  • Awareness of the role of multiple functions in creating a new product (e.g. marketing, finance, industrial design, engineering, production).
  • The ability to coordinate multiple, interdisciplinary tasks in order to achieve a common objective.
  • Reinforcement of specific knowledge from other courses through practice and reflection in an action-oriented project setting.

Leadership and Teams

Many organizations and their managers today recognize that the critical sources of competitive advantage lie in not only ingenious product design, brilliant marketing strategy, or state-of-the-art production technology, but also in having an effective system for obtaining, mobilizing, and managing the organization's human assets. Essentially, the design and management of effective organizations is a major source of a competitive edge.  A number of developments are making organizational design and its management increasingly salient for managers, such as the changing characteristics of the labor force, the rapid pace of technological innovation, greater international competition, and greater attention to diverse customers.

The main objective of the course is to introduce the basic concepts, theories, and techniques necessary for understanding, designing, and managing organizations that achieve value creation.  Instead of focusing purely on the individual employees, their motivation, or leadership, this course emphasizes the tasks of organizational units, their internal processes, and the overall design for effective functioning of organizations that can execute business strategies within an ever-changing context.

The course is based around four fundamental questions about designing and managing organizations. First, how should firm strategies and business models be taken into account when designing organizations? Second, what are some of the basic issues and principles of designing the overall structure of the organization? Third, how should managers design performance measurement systems for managing their critical resources that can lead to successful implementation of their business strategies? And lastly, how can managers put all these elements together to make their organizations perform well and change in today's rapidly evolving business environment?

Processes Management

Process Management involves ensuring that the underlying product or service is of the highest quality, that the appropriate design and technology is chosen for the production or service process, the planning and control of the flow of parts or customers is managed so that lead times are reduced to minimal levels, and the distribution of the finished goods or services is efficiently done. Process Management requires making decisions to handle issues that range from how to ensure that the customers get products on time, to determining how much capacity is needed to provide a high level of service, to evaluating which technology will best meet a given company's needs.

The course focuses on fundamental principles for designing a new process, improving an ongoing process, and managing a process to ensure customer satisfaction. This course is a foundational one for Supply Chain Management, which looks at linkages across organizations, whereas Project Management is a more specialized body of knowledge for a specific type of process aimed at answering the "How" questions.

Project Management (PM)

This course aims to develop your skills in Project Management in a way that will enable you to initiate, control and evaluate the success of projects.

In this course students will develop a facility for the planning and control of projects in general, which includes the definition, scheduling, and monitoring of activities in order to meet or exceed stakeholder expectations from a project. Stakeholder expectations from a project entail successful delivery on time, cost, quality and scope of the project. The course is real-world focused and uses a mix of lectures, case discussions, and applications (including project management software).

Simulation and Risk Analysis

This course is about using numbers to make better decisions, and is focused around a "hands-on" use of quantitative tools for finding solutions to management problems involving risk and uncertainty. Warren Buffett once said, "There is no such thing as bad risk, only bad rates." This course will teach you why this is so.

There are two main course objectives: (1) Introduce you to practical, yet sophisticated tools suitable for modeling and solving complex managerial problems with risky outcomes; (2) Improve your skill and experience with the use of spreadsheet tools the for analysis of management decision problems.

Topics covered include: decision trees, compound decisions, value of information, simulation analysis, and probability assessment. Students will learn to mathematically model business decision problems and apply their newfound analytical skills to realistic business situations. The material covered is useful for executives in all professional areas of business, including but not limited to accounting, finance, marketing, information systems, operations management or any other area where it is important to combine quantitative analysis with expert intuitive judgment.

Statistics for Management Decision Making

Business decisions involve dealing with partial information in an uncertain environment. This course will develop a foundation of probability assessment and introduce data analysis tools that can generate quantitative information useful in decision making. You will learn to become comfortable analyzing large data sets, and drawing actionable conclusions from them. The foundation laid by this course is also necessary for subsequent courses such as Financial Management, Process Management, Project Management, and Risk Simulation Analysis, as well as everyday, practical decision-making.

Supply Chain Management (SCM)

In this course, students explore how firms can better organize their operations to align their supply with the demand for their products and services. We analyze key tradeoffs and phenomena related to supply chains - from suppliers to distribution. The Supply Chain Management (SCM) course develops analytical skills, in addition to introducing state-of-the-art concepts and problem-solving tools that are directly applicable to the design and planning of supply chains. Students cover issues of SCM in a wide variety of industries — from groceries and automotives, to services and humanitarian organizations. We discuss the impact of shifts from traditional channels to electronic markets, and the new initiatives that have been introduced to address these new challenges, such as: Vendor Managed Inventory, Variety Postponement, Remanufacturing, Contracts, and Quick Response. The course is real-world focused and uses a mix of lectures, case discussions and applications.

Technology Practicum

The men and women who successfully meet the rigors of the University of Illinois' Technology Management Program are expected to be leaders in their respective organizations upon graduation. It is with this in mind that we developed the Technology Practicum, so that students might have a chance to truly discover their newly developed abilities and hone their leadership skills in the midst of a real world project.

The Practicum is the Capstone course of the MSTM. As such, it integrates all of the knowledge you will have acquired in the program to that point alongside your personal and professional experiences and those of your teammates. By helping the student teams to bridge the knowledge to experience gap, The Practicum empowers you to make sound recommendations to our clients, covering the myriad issues they bring to us to work on. It is, as the old saying goes, "A Baptism of Fire."

Learn more about the MS in Technology Management Program's Practicum.

Technology Strategy

The course on Technology Strategy deals with those decisions that determine the future directions of technology intensive organizations and effective implementation managerial choices therein. Technology Strategy addresses the organizational structure, resources &capabilities, and strategic positioning of the firm to create, capture, and sustain competitive advantage in high technology industries. In this course, students will develop skills in understanding how firms gain and sustain competitive advantage, in analyzing strategic business situations, in formulating strategy, and in implementing strategy and organizing the firm for strategic success. This course covers not only some of the traditional elements of strategic management such as industry analysis, competitor analysis, generic strategies, and diversification, but also subjects that are directly relevant to technology intensive organizations such as sources of innovation, types and patterns of innovation, standards battles, timing of entry, collaboration strategies, and protecting innovation.

In Technology Strategy, we learn to take the perspective of top management. Whether you are going to be a CEO or just want to be able to convince the CEO to adopt your ideas, it is vital to know how to speak the language of strategy. We will briefly cover some core concepts: industry analysis, competitor analysis, generic strategies, resource analysis, and diversification.

In other courses, you learn how to create tools such as accounting statements, marketing research, risk analysis, financial planning, project management, and supply chain analysis. However, having the most astute accountants or the most creative marketing staff will not create superior profits if their advice leads you to enact the same exact initiatives as your competitors. In Technology Strategy, we employ case studies to practice using information from these tools. Our goals are to reconcile conflicting information, develop feasible alternatives, and evaluate them in an objective manner.

All cases, lectures, and discussions focus on technology-intensive organizations. We learn about sources of innovation, types and patterns of innovation, standards battles, and entry timing. We also discuss how to interact with other firms in or outside your industry as competitors or collaborators (and sometimes both).

The case discussions and interactive class format create an opportunity to develop your skills at communicating these high-level ideas verbally, and extemporaneously. Assignments follow the format of written business communication: professional, brief, and persuasive.

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