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Course descriptions

 

Core courses:

 

  • Managerial Statistics

Basic concepts of probability and statistics used in management are presented. Topics include data analysis and display, descriptive measures, random variables, probability distributions, inference, an introduction to analysis of variance and regression analysis, time series analysis, and statistical applications to quality control, as well as model usage and statistical communication. Management applications using case studies/examples and computer packages are emphasized.

 

  • Financial and Managerial Accounting

The purpose of the course is to introduce the core concepts, basic principles and practices of modern financial and managerial accounting to provide a working ability of an intelligent use of accounting reports.
The topics will be addressed from the point of view of the user of accounting information with the focus on what the user of accounting information needs to know about accounting.
This course includes mastering of principles and organization of Financial and Managerial Accounting. The first part of the course includes mastering of double entry system, preparation of income statement and balance sheet. The second part includes analysis of financial and accounting information and the educated use of this information for managerial decision-making.

 

  • Financial Management

The purpose of the course is to introduce the core concepts, basic principles and practices of modern financial management to provide a working ability to make financial decisions regarding:
 Valuation;
 Risk management;
 Debt and payout policy;
 Financial planning and analysis;
 Financing, mergers and acquisitions.

The topics will be addressed from the two points of view: 1) as an investor who is seeking to make intelligent investment choices and 2) as a business manager trying to maximize the value of the firm's stock.

 

  • Marketing Management

The purpose is to acquaint students with the process of formulating and implementing marketing management strategies in complex environments.  Current best practices in Europe and North America is examined with a view to adopting them to the Latvian business environment.

objectives for the course are:

  1. To introduce participants  with the variety of concepts, theories, facts, analytical procedures, techniques and models and their application within business organizations with the view of the Latvian business environment
  2. To develop students’ ability to analyze the marketing environment and to draw conclusions from the analysis;
  3. To understand principles of marketing segmentation, targeting, positioning and brand building
  4. To develop integrated marketing communication programs that integrate key marketing strategy elements for long-term competitive advantage; and,
  5. To evaluate and control marketing programs.

 

  • Organizational Behaviour

The course examines personal characteristics of organization members and presents some of the different mental maps each possesses in order to understand how these factors influence the effectiveness of organizations.
Also the role of groups in organizations, the stages of group development, and the actions that can support the development of effective groups is analyzed. Issues related to individual and group decision-making and problem solving are examined, and tools are presented to support these processes.
Significant time is devoted to frameworks for understanding motivation and behavior in organizations and theories that provide direction for managing organizational members effectively. The human side of corporate change is explored with a focus on understanding how and why people react to corporate change and identifying opportunities for enhancing the effective implementation of change. Finally, the course explores our role in making ethical and socially responsible decisions as we participate in and manage organizations.

 

  • Human Resource Management

The purpose of this course is to increase students’ understanding of the impact of HRM in an organization and the underlying principles of the effective HR support in achieving organization’s strategy.

Professors believe that HRM can be learned mainly by doing - applying theoretical concepts into the real life. Therefore an important part of the course is Group project. Students have to self-organize into groups of 5-6 and each group is required to prepare a project report related to specific human resource management topic of choice and during the last classes of the module to present it for the rest of the class. Students have to select a topic and explore it in the context of a specific organization. Any type of organization from private or public sector can be selected for this project.

 

  • Managerial Information Systems

The purpose of this course is to help the existing and future business managers making decisions about information systems. The course will deal with issues and questions such as: How can information technology help the organization to become more effective and efficient? How to evaluate complexity and cost of the information system development? The overview of technologies and the main paradigms of MIS development will also be exposed to students. This course is neither computer science course nor computer usage course.

 

  • Managerial Economics

The primary objective of the course is to expand students' knowledge of economic theory and to demonstrate applications of the theory in actual practice. The course will show how the application of economic theory and concepts helps managers to make allocation decisions that support the economic goals of their firms.

 

  • Strategic Management

Strategic Management is first and foremost about the policy making, as well as the strategy formulation and execution aspects of the general manager’s job. General managers run businesses. They are responsible for the overall direction and success of their business units in a competitive environment. Therefore, the point of view taken in this course is that of a general manager.
This course is designed to provide students with an opportunity to revise, integrate, and apply concepts, tools, and skills they have acquired in their past academic and practical experience to a variety of business situations. The focus is on making decisions, many of which are broad and strategic, from a holistic perspective.
Every managerial situation is new and unique. There are no "recipes" applicable to all cases. Therefore, learning is best achieved by doing in a variety of new situations. The course study method simulates and encapsulates this doing with the constraints of the classroom. This will help students acquire a sense of strategic balance which, once acquired, is never entirely forgotten.

 

 

Electives:

 

  • Project Management

Objectives of the course are:
     Understand the purpose of Project Management (PM) and learn to use the tools and techniques used in contemporary PM.
     Review how PM is used in different organizations and learn to recognize characteristics of an undertaking where PM approach is appropriate.
     Understand the organizational and behavioural dynamics of the PM process.
     Realize role responsibilities and authority boundaries of the project manager.
     Understand project success criteria and learn how to organize project activities to achieve them.
     Recognize the importance of project monitoring and auditing.
     Evaluate the globalization impact on PM, and review procedures that would facilitate success of international projects.

 

  • International Marketing Management

This advanced course provides further experience in applying marketing concepts, analyses and tools to the distinctive challenges of formulating and implementing global/multinational/international marketing programs. Marketing is the business function that deals with customers' needs and wants. We will look at these needs and wants from a global perspective. The role of international marketing management is to help companies better understand local customer preferences, use that knowledge to design appropriate products and services to offer to selected customers, and determine the most effective methods to communicate, to capture, and to deliver value. Successful global companies are those that pursue objectives, can employ resources and invest in the future of their company to satisfy the long-term needs of customers better than competitors. These ideas apply also to international not-for-profit institutions and public sector organizations.

This course addresses the management challenge of defining international marketing problems, analyzing the current and future situation, posing and evaluating alternative actions, and setting objectives to implement the best integrated set of marketing tactics to carry out a company’s strategy in its target markets. This course will also stress the fact that marketing is but one ‘cog in the wheel’ of a business. It is important to understand marketing in the context of the total business, including all the other business functions, especially the human element, the value chain, and how this whole ‘ecosystem’ relates to global society as a whole.

This course focuses on developing your thinking and marketing plans that are transparent and accountable. In order to do this, you must understand yourself, your values, and be able to improve upon any situation, convince skeptics of your ideas, commit to something and take action! This is how real life works. Specifically, this course seeks to develop your skills in applying the analytic perspectives, decision tools, and concepts of marketing as they relate in a global context

 

  • Investments and Banking

The main goal of the course is to provide students with the knowledge about financial and securities markets, financial intermediaries and institutions, and diverse financial instruments. The course provides tools and techniques for performing the valuation of different securities traded in the financial markets. Students get experience in making real-life investment decisions using Stock-Trak Portfolio Simulations. Substantial part of the course is devoted to company valuation.

 

  • International Financial Management
This course is designed for students interested in international financial markets. The course covers the main areas of the modern financial markets – foreign exchange, equity, fixed income markets, derivatives as well as alternative investments. The course will also provide an introduction to portfolio management. The course is intended to provide theoretical base for understanding the financial markets and instruments, supplemented by discussion and analysis of empirical events in the markets as well as practicing quantifying ability.
 
 
  • Entrepreneurship

Entrepreneur is a person who walks through empty field and sees in his mind nice buildings, parks and factories. He is a person who sees opportunities and is ready to take the risk of failure in order to create something new. Some might call it an optimistic “can-do” attitude towards life.

The RBS entrepreneurship course takes this mindset and combines it with the theoretical concepts learned in accounting, marketing, finance, organizational behavior, and operations management.  In practical terms, this means applying these core MBA business skills in evaluating and actually creating (on paper) new business ventures.  The course can also be of value for those who did not have all the courses mentioned above but who have experience in entrepreneurship or have the desire to start your own companies.  The main focus of this course will be the creation of a workable business plan for a real or theoretical business idea.

Entrepreneurship is partly science and partly art, but probably a lot more art than science.  Creating successful new enterprises from scratch necessarily demands a high degree of imagination, resourcefulness and independent thinking.  Students will be given many real-life examples of successful (and failed) entrepreneurial startups, from various angles (marketing, finance, human resources, etc.), and will be expected to learn from these cases and apply the knowledge to homework, group exercises, etc. 

 

  • Entrepreneural Finance

The course is intended to give students an understanding of the entrepreneurial finance process. It covers the full range of venture capital/ private equity financing activities, focusing on a variety of deals – start-ups, growth investments and buyouts – from both the entrepreneur’s and the investor’s point of view. Class discussions will cover a broad range of challenges, from assessing investment opportunities to structuring financings, from dealing with entrepreneurial business issues to ultimately realizing one’s investment. The main learning objectives are to understand:
     How to assess a venture capital/ private equity investment opportunity,
     How to value an unquoted (privately-held) company,
     How financing transactions are structured, and
     How investors exit from unquoted investments.

 

  • E-Business Solutions

The primary objective of this course is to study the phenomena of ebusiness/ecommerce and their impacts. Specifically, this course will address the spectrum of business processes that are being redefined and improved by using the Internet and its associated technologies. We will also relate these redefined processes to underlying business objectives and benefits. 
The course will use business cases, videos and other material that relate to the effect the e-business/ecommerce have on organizations and customers, including channel partners, for example, e-CRM, Selling, e-Procurement, and Supply Chain Management.

We will cover elements that relate to the issues and solutions. 

This course will be divided into two parts. Part I will study the concepts and end with the mid term examination. Part I will be preliminary a lecture style introduction of all the course chapters it will also include practical case work. Part II will be case and article review style and will be tested in the final exam.

 

  • Information Assurance

In the modern world, business managers have to take an active role in processes related to information technologies as more and more risks are coming to threaten the customer data,electronic business transaction, and other information, which any business relies upon. This is no longer area of IT experts alone! As the business managers are the only ones who can truly understand the value of the data, they may not stay away from the information security processes. 

Information assurance is a set of measures that protect and defend information. If the business is planned for longterm survival, so must be information assurance.

 

  • Business Communication Skills

This course is designed to provide students the opportunity to study in detail the theoretical and practical approaches to business and management communication. The course combines lecture, discussion and presentation. In the course you learn to analyze audiences, develop arguments, and test your ability to persuade in writing and speaking. Course work will involve both persuasive and expressive writing, individual and group presentation, class discussion and individual exercises designed to sharpen your performance.

The specific learning objectives in this course are:

  1. To develop a practical knowledge of the theories and principles of business and management communication. This is accomplished through reading of the textbook and enhanced by other course materials.
  2. To develop tools that aid communication in a wide range of scenarios including one on one meetings, group meetings, presentations, negotiations, etc. This is accomplished through the textbook, supplemental materials and group exercises.
  3. To strengthen your communication skills through group and individual exercises in different communication scenarios. Exercises will include several presentations.

 

  • Corporate Finance

The main objective of this course is to enable to apply the theoretical concepts of finance, covered in the basic finance courses (Financial Management), to problems in the area of corporate finance with all the complexities that the real world entails. The course focuses on fundamental themes in corporate finance both in a local and an international setting including: the analysis of cross-border investments, mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance, take-over battles and defenses, leverage buyouts (LBOs), project finance, corporate restructuring, companies in financial distress and bank merger valuations. The main theme surrounding these topics is valuation, more specifically the course focuses on how to maximize Enterprise Value. Accordingly, we examine the problems and practices of financial managers in key areas of international business.
This course will also provide a pool of research ideas for the Master thesis in Finance. Through the term project and assignments, you will practice using financial and research databases (e.g. Amadeus, Thomson Datastream, etc.).

 

  • IT and Strategy

Course explores information technology strategies of an organization from the perspective of a Chief Information Officer and it provides conceptual frameworks for the development and deployment of information technology strategies. Course covers technology concepts and trends, underlying current and future developments in information technology, and fundamental principles for the effective development of computer-based information systems.
There are several objectives of this course. Students will gain a fundamental understanding of the role and responsibility of a Chief information\Chief Technology Officer and the CIO’s role in guiding the development and implementation of enterprise wide Information Technology strategies. In addition the students will also gain an understanding of how Information Technology units fit into the strategic and management operations of complex organizations.

 

  • Consumer Behavior

This course is based on a combination of lectures, presentations and practical assignments with an emphasis on putting theory into practice. Students are expected to come to class prepared to participate in class discussions/presentations.  This means assigned readings completed, cases analyzed, assignments prepared, etc.  Professor expects active student class participation in class in terms of asking and responding to questions and sharing of personal experiences.
This course is primarily about the behaviour of an individual in the consumption process. This process is different in organizations, but only to the extent that organizations are more rigorous and structured in how they purchase goods and services. It must be remembered that even in organizations people are ultimately responsible for all aspects of the consumption process.
Specific objectives to be achieved include the following:

  1. Understanding the different purchasing processes of various groups and, that people can belong to various groups at various times, e.g. men vs. women, young people vs. older people, families vs. individuals and the like. Understanding these processes will allow students to develop more precise product/service positioning strategies
  2. Understanding the role of myths, rituals and cultures/sub-cultures in the purchasing process will give students direction in preparing marketing communications programs for different target audiences.
  3. Finally, learning, memory and knowledge and forgetting give direction on all aspects of the marketing mix, but especially to product and communications.

Successful completion of the marketing management course is a prerequisite.

 

  • Business Ethics

Professional ethics is the set of standards adopted by professionals insofar as they see themselves acting as professionals. In this course we shall deal with the issues of professional ethics, broadly taken.  Professional ethics cannot be understood without studying in detail the process of decision-making which involves the calculations about various sorts of issues.  Professional opinion on a given problem is only one element in the array of constraints that one faces.  The decision-maker has to be aware of her own preferences; the ethical, environmental and legal consequences of her decisions; the issues related to the conflict of interest; confidentiality; intellectual property, etc.  Clearly, there is no recipe that provides the guidelines applicable in all cases.  Our decisions are made on the basis of what we believe.  But we might be wrong.  We can anticipate the future in a responsible manner by developing a set of skills that are necessary for making judgments in complex cases according to a thorough evaluation of the relevant elements.   In this course we shall try to develop the ability to think ahead, to recognize the ethical issues, and the decision making patterns. 

 

  • Business Law

The Business Law course aims at providing MBA students with an understanding of the main legal principles governing operation of business, setting legal framework for relationship with business partners, dealing with the state authorities, resolving disputes and protecting the know-how and human resources of one’s own business. After completion of the course, students should be able to differentiate between different areas of business law, conduct prima facie evaluation of each situation and determine the principal required course of action.

 

  • Operations and Service Management

The increasingly competitive nature of markets over the past years has reemphasized the key role of operations in bringing about the growth and profitability of organizations. Operations management is a function responsible for up to 70% of costs, assets and people in every company despite of its area of activity. Issues such as fast and on-time delivery, providing products and services right the first time, cost control and reduction are important in most markets.

The purpose of the course is to acquaint students with understanding of the major principles and practices of manufacturing and service operations with a view to adopting and adapting them to the needs and business environment of the companies they are involved with.
The main emphasis of this course will be on putting theory into practice and exploring how operations are managed in different by size and nature companies and institutions in Latvia and abroad.

 

  • Marketing Communications

The purpose of the course is to acquaint students with theoretical and practical approaches to the major elements of a successful integrated marketing communications (IMC) program.  The focus in this course is in two areas: communications theory and practice and use of social media as marketing communications tools.
This course will be based on a combination of lectures, presentations and practical assignments with an emphasis on putting theory into practice. Students are expected to come to class prepared to participate in class discussions/presentations.  Professor expects active student class participation in class in terms of asking and responding to questions and sharing of personal experiences.
Successful completion of the marketing management course is a prerequisite.

 

  • Knowledge Management

The course is about knowledge creation, sharing and transfer, innovation and creativity, human and organizational networks and complex dynamics in these systems.
Overall aim of the course is to widen the understanding of knowledge related processes as a contribution to overall competitiveness of your organization.The course has the following specific aims:
     To provide new perspectives and models in order to enable you to view the processes within and among organizations from knowledge perspective;
     To facilitate interest in the topics covered by this course and stimulate action, based on things you will explore;
     To stimulate deeper exploration of topics of your own interest that are related to the course;

Knowledge is dynamic process and embedded in people and networks of people. Thus the course is oriented towards giving you the basic models, structures and tools, and facilitating your own exploration of the topics of your own interest. Remember, that you have to be active, walk your path and make your explorations yourself.

 

  • Marketing Research

The main objective of the course is to gain good working knowledge of theoretical and practical approaches to major elements of marketing research through homework assignments, case analysis and discussion.

Our specific objectives for the course are:

  1. To introduce participants to marketing research process and applied research methods and their application within business organizations with the view of the Latvian business environment;
  2. To develop ability to analyze business environment and formulate market research problem, develop marketing research brief and marketing research proposal;
  3. Explain the process involved in purchasing market research and the development of effective client-supplier relationship
  4. Evaluate the appropriateness of different qualitative and quantitative research methods to meet different research situations
  5. To develop good working knowledge of the multivariate data analysis with applications to marketing research
  6. To develop questionnaire and topic guide
  7. To develop skills in presenting and evaluating research information to provide decision and recommendation.

 

  • Leadership

This course is designed to provide you the opportunity to study in detail the theoretical and practical approaches to leadership. Success in a growing, competing business requires a high degree of cooperative effort and hard work focused on providing solutions that make a difference to customers. Skilled leadership in this environment demands the ability to integrate soft human elements with hard business acumen to create a business future profitable for all stakeholders.

The specific learning objectives in this course are:

(1) To develop a practical knowledge of the theories and principles of leadership. 

(2) To strengthen your self-management skills. Leaders must set the example for the behavior they want emulated. 

(3) To analyze and practice the interpersonal and strategic skills leaders use to get people to individually and collectively accept direct responsibility for creating and improving their own circumstances.