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Business Administration: Bachelor Coursework Summary

Students pursuing a bachelor's degree in business administration can pursue a general degree or select a concentration. Coursework covers topics in a variety of business areas, as well as any specialization chosen.

Essential Information

Bachelor's degree programs in business administration prepare students to become entrepreneurs, work as managers or take on positions in a specialized area, such as accounting, marketing or finance. These programs typically introduce core business concepts during the first two years. Juniors and seniors often go on to specialize in an area, such as economics, marketing, project management, finance, human resource management, accounting, international business or information systems. General business administration programs are available, however, for those who don't want to specialize.

Common core courses in a bachelor's program include those in financial and managerial accounting, management, business statistics, financial management, marketing and microeconomics. Most programs also require coursework in communications, science, social studies and math.

Students who pursue a specialization usually take five or six additional courses on the selected subject. For example, someone pursuing a finance concentration might complete courses in financial statement analysis, investments and real estate, while someone pursuing an information systems concentration might complete courses in networking, application development and information technology project management. Some schools require that students complete an internship in their specialization area.

Here are some concepts commonly explored in undergraduate business administration courses:

  • Inventories and distribution
  • Liabilities
  • Ratio analysis
  • Forecasting
  • Capital
  • Consumer behavior
  • E-commerce

List of Common Business Courses

Accounting Course

Basic accounting principles would be presented here, and students learn how to prepare and analyze financial reports. Concepts introduced include the accounting cycle, recording and adjusting entries, accounts receivable and payable, assets, liabilities and equities. Accounting procedures for differing kinds of businesses, internal controls and cost accounting would also be discussed.

Finance Course

This course generally serves to introduce the concepts of financial management. Topics include investment and financing decisions, budgeting and forecasting. The time value of money, stock and bond values and capital budgeting techniques would also be covered. Participants can also examine the international aspects of investments and financial management.

Management Course

Introductory courses describe and analyze the different parts of business activities in order to gain an understanding of how businesses work toward a goal. Topics might include planning, organization, leadership, governmental regulations and organizational structure and behavior. Later courses draw upon the knowledge gained throughout the degree program to do case studies or to set up a simulated business.

Statistics Course

Students in introductory statistics courses learn about such concepts as sampling, presentation of data, probability theory, simple linear regression and correlation. Later coursework in business statistics would apply these concepts to business and economics using statistical software. Descriptive and inferential statistics applications are also covered. Statistics courses typically have math prerequisites.

Marketing Course

The foundations of marketing, including market research, consumer behavior, promotion and retailing, are normally introduced in this course. Students study how marketing strategies are established and implemented. International marketing and e-commerce would be explored, along with the concepts of branding, salesmanship and channels of distribution.

Economics Course

Typically, business students take both macro- and microeconomics courses. The macroeconomics course covers the basic elements of a free-market economy, such as money supply, resource allocation, national income, banking and governmental interventions. Microeconomics courses present the concepts of consumer demand, market structure, resource demand and the functional distribution of income.


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