Prep for MBA Core Curriculum

Baylor Business MBA

Ready for the MBA Core Curriculum?

During your MBA program, the course material and the analysis of business cases will require:

  • Extensive use of financial analysis and accounting information
  • Application of basic economics concepts
  • Use of statistical data analysis
  • Application of mathematical models

If you have an undergraduate degree in business, you will have taken courses in financial accounting, finance, math, and economics.

Below is a summary of topics that Core 1 professors will assume you know. In order to keep the length of the program to 16 months, no class time will be spent in review of these principles.

Students with minimal background in any of these areas should seek to strengthen their skills in order to facilitate a smooth transition into the MBA program. We recommend several options for strengthening skills in these areas:

  • Business Foundations

  • All incoming students who do not have a business undergraduate degree are required to take Business Foundations. Business Foundations is a 12 credit hour, one-semester of coursework that gives you all of the business prerequisites you need before entering Core 1 classes in the MBA program. Some students with business undergraduate degrees choose to take Business Foundations to renew their knowledge of accounting, economics, finance and statistics. For more information about Business Foundations, contact Laurie Wilson, Director for Graduate Business Degree Programs.

  • GMAT Business Ready

  • The online prep courses let you review fundamental business school concepts at your own pace, so that you can come to class ready for success.

Concepts/Principles/Terms with which you should be familiar and able to use prior to attending the first semester of core MBA courses:

Financial Accounting

  • Double-entry accounting (role of debits and credits; account analysis)
  • Basic principles of GAAP (generally accepted accounting principles)
  • Preparation of financial statements (income statement, balance sheet, statement of cash flows)
  • Computation of cost of goods sold (merchandising and manufacturing firm)
  • Gross margin analysis
  • Computation of cost of goods manufactured
  • Depreciation of property, plant and equipment; amortization of Intangible assets
  • Computation of present value of future cash flows
  • Understand how record and report stockholders' equity, including retained earnings
  • Tracing transactions that reflect a company's business activities through the complete accounting cycle and ultimately to the financial statements


  • Time value of money
  • Stock valuation models
  • Bond valuation models
  • Project/asset evaluation
  • Financial forecasting
  • Operating leverage
  • Cost of capital
  • Investor returns
  • Efficient market hypothesis
  • Capital markets


  • Mathematical functions
  • Limits
  • Differential calculus
  • Partial derivatives
  • Lagrange multipliers
  • Probability distributions
  • Linear programming
  • Hypothesis testing
  • Understand Microsoft Excel financial functions
  • Use graphical and numerical summaries using Microsoft Excel
  • Frequency distribution
  • Central tendency and dispersion
  • Binomial and normal distributions

Macro/Micro Economics

  • Understand the function and operation of markets
  • Name the determinants of demand for products
  • Name the determinants of supply for products
  • Elasticities of demand and supply
  • Perfect competition
  • Monopoly
  • Oligopoly
  • Monopolistic competition
  • Determining cost of production in the short and long term
  • Determination of interest rates and exchange rates
  • Understand the creation and multiplication of money and how the money supply is controlled
  • Understand how fiscal & monetary policies affect the economy.
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