Elective Courses

Professor Sandeep Baliga

Tailor your studies to your personal interests and professional goals with more than 40 elective courses. Taken during your second year of study, these intensive courses cover a rich array of topics, markets and industries.

Students can take electives domestically at the Evanston and Miami campuses or globally at the Global Network schools.

Choose to take a minimum of four and maximum of eight elective units. Please note that elective course offerings are subject to change.

Accounting and Finance

Entrepreneurial Finance & Venture Capital

This course is aimed primarily at people who may be involved in an entrepreneurial venture at some point in their careers, whether in a startup, a spinoff from a large organization, or a turnaround. This course is also useful for venture capital careers and students interested in the Venture Capital as an Asset class (Limited Partners). There are four main topics covered using case studies: Evaluating Entrepreneurial Opportunities in Startups, Source of Financing for Startups, The Structure of VC Deals, and Exit Decisions to IPOs or buyouts.

Global Corporate Restructuring

This course covers ventures, family businesses, closely held firms and corporate restructuring transactions both in the U.S. and in an international context. Students analyze different corporate restructuring strategies including mergers, acquisitions, takeovers, spin-offs and leveraged buyouts. The course integrates corporate governance and agency dimensions, financial and strategic management aspects, and legal and accounting considerations into a unified framework for investigating issues in unlocking hidden values for all stakeholders involved.

International Finance

This course explores international financial instruments, markets and institutions. Topics include the nature of foreign exchange risk, the determination of exchange rates and interest rates, the management of foreign exchange risk with forwards and options, exchange rate forecasting, evaluation of international investments, currency speculation, the impact of monetary policy on exchange rates, and current developments in the international financial system.

Investment Banks, Hedge Funds, and Private Equity

This course focuses on the influences of private equity and hedge funds on corporate decision-making. It also examines the measures that corporations take to counter threats and exploit opportunities represented by these investors. Students also analyze competition and cooperation between investment banks, private equity, and hedge funds.

World Economy

This course studies the most important business regions in the world, including the U.S., Europe, Japan, China, India, Russia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and Africa. The goal of this course is to provide students with a working knowledge of the economic drivers, challenges and opportunities that are present in these regions. Students also learn about the performance of equity and bond markets in different countries and the economic forces underlying oil and other commodity markets.

Management and Organizations

Creating and Managing Strategic Alliances

This course examines the theory and practice of strategic alliances such as joint ventures, licensing agreements, buyer-supplier partnerships and consortia. This course covers how to design alliances, and how to avoid the many potential problems and complications in managing these relationships.

Family Enterprises: Success and Continuity

This course is intended for students who come from business-owning families, whether they work for the family business or not. Topics range from values-driven culture, to succession and family dynamics, continuity planning, leadership and strategic performance, and family constitutions and business governance. The course is also appropriate for those with family foundations, family offices or family investment companies.

Incentives, Organization and Strategy

This course explores how managers can design incentives that align with company objectives. The goal of the course is to offer a micro-economic approach to both the internal organization of firms and its relationship with the firms’ overall strategies.

Innovation Strategy and Management

This course focuses on innovation within business entities, covering typical technology and product-innovation programs as well as processes, marketing and other forms of innovation. The course addresses innovation as a holistic strategic management imperative, and focuses on real-world issues, products and systems.

Leading High Impact Teams

This course examines the design, management, and leadership of teams in organizational settings. The focus of the course is on the interpersonal processes and structural characteristics that influence the effectiveness of teams, the dynamics of intra-team relationships, and sharing knowledge and information in teams.

US Healthcare Strategy

This course applies strategic principles to a variety of healthcare settings. Students become acquainted with several U.S. health sectors, regulatory oversight of these sectors, and major policy issues.

Strategies for Growth

This course connects frameworks from economics and strategy to the experiences of firms attempting growth initiatives to illustrate why some businesses can scale successfully while others struggle.

Managerial Economics

Game Theory

This course studies strategic interaction and conflict resolution in competitive and cooperative environments. Principles of strategic reasoning and related mathematical formulas are taught through real-life examples and in-class games, giving students an edge in external business competition and internal organization management.


Advertising Strategy

This course hones critical thinking skills related to the fundamentals of planning and executing advertising strategy. The course unfolds along the stages of an advertising campaign including target selection, consumer insight development, building a brand position and evaluating executions. At each stage, questions faced by brand managers, advertisers and marketers are asked and answered.

Consumer-Led Growth

This course discusses practical lessons for delivering business growth and provides a playbook and simple tools for growing people and growing business across small and large industries around the world. With the acceleration of globalization and increasing impact of the digital revolution, it has become even more difficult for organizations to grow. This course will discuss practical lessons for delivering business growth.

Marketing Research

This course provides a fundamental understanding of how well-managed firms gain insights into their customers and the marketplace. The course is aimed at managers who are the ultimate users of research, and thus responsible for determining the scope and direction of research conducted.

Marketing Analytics: Leading with Big Data

This course teaches senior leaders how to leverage the value and insights of the work done in data science to transform their organization. The class focuses on marketing applications such as pricing, promotion, churn management, and memberships.


Decision Modeling and Optimization in Excel

This course focuses on structuring, analyzing and solving business-decision problems on Excel spreadsheets. Problems involving optimal resource allocation and risk analysis are studied through applications in operations, finance and marketing. The course also covers decision analysis, data analysis and forecasting.


Strategic Challenges in Emerging Markets

This course provides toolkits and frameworks to successfully confront the challenges of doing business in emerging markets and achieving competitive advantage through globalization. The course integrates numerous business examples with insights from the latest economics, business strategy, and political science research to provide the international business manager with a cutting-edge, integrated perspective on globalization and a set of strategic solutions to manage the most prevalent business risks in emerging markets.

Strategy Beyond Markets

This course teaches concepts, skills, and analytical tools for dealing with non-market issues, based on economic principles, political analysis, and to a lesser extent social psychology and law. They identify patterns of behavior and outcomes, ways of thinking about those patterns and outcomes, methods of analysis that facilitate understanding and prediction, and the shaping of strategies to improve business performance.

New Venture Discovery

This course is designed to help students navigate the earliest stages of starting a new venture beginning with the identification of a problem in the market worth solving. Students learn the tools and techniques to translate these problems into viable business concepts, with an emphasis on enabling an aspiring entrepreneur to get as far as possible, with as few resources possible, as fast as possible.

Visualization for Persuasion

This course covers the neuroscience behind the path from understanding to memory, the power of engaging an audience’s visual and motor system, and the importance of leveraging existing brain networks through stories and metaphors. Students will learn to convince clients, customers, and colleagues of the merits of their view, using the latest breakthroughs in cognitive science, computer science, and graphic design.

Bias and Forecasts Under Deep Uncertainty

This course provides frameworks to identify persistent psychological biases that underlie frequent forecast failures. Students will learn how to anticipate these biases and discover tools to improve their decision-making process.

The core courses and electives that I took as part of this program became the inspiration for my future and set the path for my professional career.

  Kishore kakani '14