Why is the course valuable to entrepreneurial students?
AEM1200, “Introduction to Business Management”, delivers a broad introduction to concepts that are fundamental to understand and to endeavor in business, in management and, hence, in entrepreneurship. It is meant to both inform the student and to set a strong foundation for further studies and action.
What kind of students should/should not take this course?
AEM1200 is a required course for students transferring into the Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management and for students pursuing the minor in Agrobusiness Management. In addition, AEM1200 can fulfill requirements for the Viticulture and Enology major, for the Dyson Business Minor for Engineers, for the Minor in Business for Life Sciences Majors and, most recently and notably, for the University-wide Business Minor. While a student with a strong entrepreneurship orientation may decide to skip AEM1200 in favor of taking independent courses in marketing, accounting, and human resources management / motivation, by taking AEM1200 such a student finds a readymade set of connections across different functional and staff areas in business that may make her further understanding of the subjects easier to obtain.
What are the challenges associated with taking this course?
AEM1200 tends to be a very large lecture class, easily filling Call Auditorium (capacity: 602 seats.) A student who wants to learn in this environment has to be motivated and willing to keep up with the pace of work without strong faculty or TA involvement. In addition, given that students taking the course tend to see it as a requirement, the atmosphere in the classroom can be not readily conducive to learning. On the other hand, it is a repeated experience that students who engage the course acquire a skill set that can be readily and successfully applied in the real world, most notably in internships and in entrepreneurial initiatives.
AEM 1200 is undergoing a process of experimentation and transformation. First, both news analysis (in the form of WSJ articles short analysis essays) and business cases have been introduced. Second, the setting up of the University-wide Business Minor has brought the need to revamp contents and assignments as to harmonize the course with the UBM requirements and needs. The final form of the course may still take a couple of iterations to emerge. Nonetheless, the commitment to cover the fundamental concepts of accounting and corporate finance; marketing; business operations; management, organizational theory and behavior and business ethics remains whole.