Business school

The Ecole Supérieure de Commerce of Paris (now ESCP Europe) is the oldest business school in the world

A business school is a university-level institution that confers degrees in Business Administration. It teaches topics such as accounting, administration, economics, entrepreneurship, finance, information systems, marketing, organizational behavior, public relations, strategy, human resource management, and quantitative methods.



They include schools of business, business administration, and management. There are four principal forms of business school.

  1. Most of the university business schools are faculties, colleges or departments within the university, and teach predominantly business courses.
  2. In North America a business school is often understood to be a university graduate school which offers a Master of Business Administration or equivalent degree.
  3. Also in North America the term "business school" can refer to a different type of institution: a two-year school that grants the Associate's degree in various business subjects. Most of these schools began as secretarial schools, then expanded into accounting or bookkeeping and similar subjects. They are typically operated as businesses, rather than as institutions of higher learning.
  4. In Europe and Asia, some universities teach only business.

Notable firsts


Doctor of Professional Studies (DPS)

Use of case studies

Some business schools center their teaching around the use of case studies (i.e. the case method). Case studies have been used in graduate and undergraduate business education for nearly one hundred years. Business cases are historical descriptions of actual business situations. Typically, information is presented about a business firm's products, markets, competition, financial structure, sales volumes, management, employees and other factors affecting the firm's success. The length of a business case study may range from two or three pages to 30 pages, or more.

Business schools often obtain case studies published by the Harvard Business School, IESE, the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan, the Richard Ivey School of Business at The University of Western Ontario, the Darden School at the University of Virginia, INSEAD, other academic institutions, or case clearing houses (such as European Case Clearing House). Harvard's most popular case studies include Lincoln Electric Co.[5] and Google, Inc.[6]

Students are expected to scrutinize the case study and prepare to discuss strategies and tactics that the firm should employ in the future. Three different methods have been used in business case teaching:

  1. Prepared case-specific questions to be answered by the student. This is used with short cases intended for undergraduate students. The underlying concept is that such students need specific guidance to be able to analyze case studies.
  2. Problem-solving analysis. This second method, initiated by the Harvard Business School is by far the most widely used method in MBA and executive development programs. The underlying concept is that with enough practice (hundreds of case analyses) students develop intuitive skills for analyzing and resolving complex business situations. Successful implementation of this method depends heavily on the skills of the discussion leader.
  3. A generally applicable strategic planning approach. This third method does not require students to analyze hundreds of cases. A strategic planning model is provided and students are instructed to apply the steps of the model to six to a dozen cases during a semester. This is sufficient to develop their ability to analyze a complex situation, generate a variety of possible strategies and to select the best ones. In effect, students learn a generally applicable approach to analyzing cases studies and real situations.[7] This approach does not make any extraordinary demands on the artistic and dramatic talents of the teacher. Consequently most professors are capable of supervising application of this method.

History of business cases

When Harvard Business School was founded, the faculty realized that there were no textbooks suitable to a graduate program in business. Their first solution to this problem was to interview leading practitioners of business and to write detailed accounts of what these managers were doing. Of course the professors could not present these cases as practices to be emulated because there were no criteria available for determining what would succeed and what would not succeed. So the professors instructed their students to read the cases and to come to class prepared to discuss the cases and to offer recommendations for appropriate courses of action. The basic outlines of this method are still present in business school curriculum today.

Other approaches

In contrast to the case method some schools use a skills-based approach in teaching business. This approach emphasizes quantitative methods, in particular operations research, management information systems, statistics, organizational behavior, modeling and simulation, and decision science. The goal is to provide students a set of tools that will prepare them to tackle and solve problems.

Another important approach used in business school is the use of Business simulation games that are used in different disciplines such as business, economics, management, etc.

There are also several business school that still rely on the lecture method to give students a basic business education. Lectures are generally given from the professor's point of view, and rarely require interaction from the students unless notetaking is required.

Global Master of Business Administration ranking

Each year, well-known business publications such as Business Week,[8] The Economist,[9] US News & World Report,[10][11] Fortune, Financial Times,[12] and the Wall Street Journal[13] publish rankings of selected MBA programs that, while controversial in their methodology, nevertheless can directly influence the prestige of schools that achieve high scores.


See also


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • business school — ˈbusiness school noun [countable] a college or part of a college where students can study economic and financial subjects and learn about managing a business: • Manchester Business School is one of the leading business schools in the world. * * * …   Financial and business terms

  • Business@school — ist eine Initiative der Boston Consulting Group (BCG) zur Förderung des wirtschaftlichen Verständnisses an deutschen Gymnasien. Die Teilnehmer beschäftigen sich ein Schuljahr lang zunächst mit Konzernen sowie kleinen Wirtschaftsunternehmen aus… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Business@School — ist eine Initiative der Boston Consulting Group (BCG) zur Förderung des wirtschaftlichen Verständnisses an Gymnasien. Die Teilnehmer beschäftigen sich ein Schuljahr lang zunächst mit Konzernen sowie kleinen Wirtschaftsunternehmen aus ihrer Region …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • business school — [biznɛsskul] n. f. ÉTYM. V. 1970; mot amér., de business, et school « école ». ❖ ♦ Anglic. Aux États Unis, École de commerce. || Une business school prestigieuse. || « C est une carrière de banquier à faire rêver les jeunes loups. Mais elle ne… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • business school — business schools N COUNT A business school is a school or college which teaches business subjects such as economics and management …   English dictionary

  • business school — ☆ business school n. a school offering courses, esp. at the graduate level, in economics, management, accounting, etc. * * * …   Universalium

  • business school — ☆ business school n. a school offering courses, esp. at the graduate level, in economics, management, accounting, etc …   English World dictionary

  • Business-School —   [ bɪznɪz skuːl] die, / s, Business College [ bɪznɪz kɔlɪdʒ], in Großbritannien und den USA Berufsfachschule für Sekretärinnen und kaufmännische Berufe …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Business School — École de commerce Une école de commerce (Business school) est un établissement d’enseignement supérieur spécialisé, dans le commerce et le management. Sommaire 1 Présentation 2 Histoire 3 Répartition géographique …   Wikipédia en Français

  • business school — noun a graduate school offering study leading to a degree of Master in Business Administration • Hypernyms: ↑graduate school, ↑grad school * * * business school UK US noun [countable/uncountable] [singular business school …   Useful english dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.