According to the most recent figures from the National Center for Education Statistics, more than 6.5 million people enroll in distance education courses at degree-granting post-secondary institutions per semester. Universities can optimize student outcomes and the overall success of academic programs by developing the technical capabilities and pedagogical expertise to engage learners in their homes.
A flexible online program featuring robust instructional design can help professionals change the course of their careers. These are some of the distinguishing characteristics that have made USC’s Online MBA one of the most acclaimed in the U.S.:
An Integrated Curriculum Designed for the Future of Business
An online program only achieves world-class results when the learning environment, choices of texts, lectures and exercises are all built around a clearly unified set of learning objectives. Many business schools have recently been forced to attempt recreating their on-campus courses in virtual settings, but Marshall tailored a unique curriculum to suit the distinctive requirements and vast possibilities of remote learning.
Guided by faculty expertise and Marshall’s own teams of talented instructional designers and video producers, the USC Online MBA synthesizes an array of advanced concepts. Professionals gain a holistic understanding of how organizations function and overcome major disruptions in today’s hyper connected global marketplace.
The curriculum presents an integrated approach to business problems that draws insights from fields such as marketing, finance, management, accounting and entrepreneurship. Every student takes five cross-disciplinary courses that explore topics like strategic leadership, which prepares them to identify new opportunities for growth and make decisions about a company’s external relationships. A team of faculty experts and guest lecturers bring varied perspectives to the table based on their own research and experience.
Marshall’s award-winning instructional designers collaborated closely with professors to create courses that thoroughly engage with the complex nature of today’s organizations—helping students answer challenges like how to effectively lead in global organizations and how to build an analytics-driven culture. Students around the world receive access to the infrastructure and resources they need to complete a variety of synchronous and asynchronous activities. Through case studies, analytical exercises and discussions, professionals learn to pair the theoretical principles behind management decision-making with real-world situations.
Making Instructional Videos Compelling
One of the greatest advantages of an online course is the ability to fit asynchronous, remote class sessions into a busy schedule. But the convenience of listening to lectures from home isn’t enough to make students feel the excitement of intellectual discovery that graduate courses should inspire. To capture students’ interest and make them feel actively involved, instructional videos must be created with attention to detail and production values that match the rigorous subject matter.
That’s where the unique capabilities of a university like USC, home of the world-renowned School of Cinematic Arts, prove invaluable. The Online MBA program won two Telly Awards for producing video content that breathes life into key business concepts and provides vital context for case studies. The top business researchers and educators on the USC Marshall faculty instruct online students through attention-grabbing multimedia content that’s created in accordance with pedagogical best practices.
Dynamic lecture videos offer an in-depth perspective on advanced strategic thinking through high-quality picture and sound, clarifying concepts by incorporating visual aids and animation. The appealing visuals help learners delve more fully into complex issues in economics or competitive strategy and discover how theoretical principles can be applied to their own careers.
“Carefully designed video lectures with very high production quality took us through difficult concepts with ease,” Online MBA graduate Nidi Modh explained. “These pre-recorded video lectures are rich, dense and help explain the concepts extremely well. The asynchronous delivery mechanism gave me the liberty to prepare the topics to my satisfaction at my own pace.”
Live Interactions Can Change Lives
In a great MBA program, the opportunities for collaboration, networking and mentorship are often just as important as the lectures. Students discuss their career plans with faculty members, attend guest talks from business leaders and meet fellow professionals who work in a variety of fields. Cohort-centered instructional design brings those advantages into the online space, so students can connect even when they are unable to leave home or live on different continents from one another.
The structure of the Online MBA encourages students to think about how every team member contributes to growing a successful organization and how they might structure their own teams in the future. During the first course of the program, students visit USC’s Los Angeles campus for a one-week residency. This experience encourages a productive relationship among the members of a cohort by asking them to address a real business problem in a consulting competition.
The bonds formed in the residency deepen throughout the students’ time in the program as they participate remotely in real-time class discussions and use virtual collaboration tools for group exercises. Cohort members often form study groups and socialize through teleconferencing and instant messaging. When guest speakers visit campus, online students are invited to join the rest of the business school by viewing the session live and asking questions.
As professionals exchange ideas and complete projects together, they grow their international networks. These relationships have the potential to shape Marshall graduates’ future careers. Every MBA student becomes a member of the Trojan alumni network, a highly active community with more than 390,000 members around the world.
USC Marshall’s Online MBA equips professionals to achieve results in a rapidly changing business environment. With instructional design that focuses on analytical savvy, strategic thinking, high-quality multimedia content and one-on-one interactions, an online business program can deliver rich experiences that lead to successful careers. Marshall draws on its vast resources as a leading research institution to help students see the big picture and work effectively with multidisciplinary, international teams.
About the USC Marshall School of Business
USC Marshall is one of the premier business schools in the U.S. and internationally recognized as a home for path-breaking research that emphasizes entrepreneurship, innovation, leadership and social responsibility. The USC Online MBA from the Marshall School of Business is built to help students succeed in the digitally driven business landscape, providing a curriculum focused on the practical skills expected of today’s global leaders. Located in the heart of Los Angeles, Marshall brings undergraduate and graduate students a unique perspective on the world, including global opportunities for experiential learning. The vibrant and active Trojan alumni community includes more than 89,000 people in 92 countries.