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Business Frameworks: Getting Students to the Starting Line

“I’m interested in an MBA, but I don’t have a business background.”

We hear this all the time and our immediate response is: not only is it okay to not have a business background before entering the Baylor MBA program… it’s the norm.

The Baylor MBA welcomes students from all educational backgrounds—from engineering to finance, from social work to accounting. Whether you come from the sciences or communications, whether you’re looking for a career pivot or a career launch, we’ve got you covered.

One way that we ensure that everyone starts the program on a more level playing field is by sending all of our incoming students through a brief, yet rigorous, set of leveling courses. Baylor MBA’s academic advisor Chelsea Derry provides a bit of insight into our very first requirement of the Baylor MBA Program, Business Frameworks.

What is Business Frameworks and what does it entail?  

Business Frameworks is a four-week course that covers four key content areas that prepare you for your MBA coursework.  It starts towards the end of July and carries us through to orientation.  We cover some of the basic topics in accounting, Excel, finance, and quantitative business analytics. For some, it’s an introduction to these subjects and for some, it might be a bit of a review. Either way, Frameworks allows everyone to start getting to know a handful of their professors and start getting acclimated with their teaching styles before the semester begins.

 Why is Frameworks an important part of our program?  

The Frameworks content has been carefully curated by the core MBA faculty to ensure students have what they need in order to be successful in their full semester coursework.  For example, we found that it was inefficient for students to learn Excel while simultaneously learning analytics. By establishing Frameworks, we make sure students are able to get some of the basic Excel skills they need prior to starting their analytics class. Doing so allows students to focus on learning the analytics and not be hindered by not knowing Excel.

Compared with other schools, how does Framework set Baylor MBA apart from others?  

Most other MBA programs just jump right in with the core coursework.  While this works well for programs that have mostly students with extensive business backgrounds and experience, we want to make sure that all students are on the same starting line at the beginning of the program.

While we highly value both the academic and professional diversity represented in the Baylor MBA program, Frameworks ensures that all students of all backgrounds can be successful.

Do you have any advice for incoming students regarding the Frameworks course?  

Frameworks really is designed to move students from square one to being ready to tackle what’s next. So, there isn’t much prep needed.  However, if an incoming student is really eager, I encourage them to strengthen their reading skills. They can do this by reading both business text and non-business text. It’s more about practice than content. Students have a lot of reading throughout their journey that is the Baylor MBA program and the stronger their reading habits are, the more efficient they’ll be able to work through the assigned readings. Students who follow this advice tend to thank me when they’re midway through Organizational Behavior or Strategic Management.

Coming into the Baylor MBA program, students of all backgrounds are challenged. They are stretched and pulled from their comfort zones. Some may resist more than others, but they all become stronger. They emerge more resilient and flexible. Baylor MBA prepares students for leading in a world of speed, change, and oftentimes, ambiguity.

Baylor MBA students have discovered time and time again that Business Frameworks is the perfect start to such a transformative journey.


About Baylor’s MBA Programs

Baylor’s MBA Programs are designed strategically for professionals looking to take their careers to the next level in leadership. Rigorous MBA classes taught by dedicated faculty and industry experts offer both theoretical knowledge and the practical skills required to succeed in modern global business. Wherever you are in your career, Baylor has an MBA program to fit your lifestyle and to move you toward your professional goals. Baylor offers a Full-Time MBA, an Executive MBA in Dallas, and an Online MBA.

Prospective candidates can learn more about all Baylor MBA programs by visiting the Baylor MBA website: https://www.baylor.edu/business/mba/.

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