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Concentrations

Concentrations provide you with intensive study either within a discipline or in a unified theme across disciplines. 

In consultation with Silicon Valley employers, Santa Clara University business faculty has developed several concentrations to enhance your understanding of current topics, preparing you for careers in demand throughout our dynamic economy.

These concentrations build on foundational business knowledge by offering advanced coursework and integrating current business topics. As a result, you'll develop expertise and connections in particular functions or industries. Evening MBA students may choose to complete one concentration unit comprising a minimum of 12 units within a specific subject area as part of the degree.

This concentration is inter-disciplinary. It meets a growing need for knowledge workers in the Valley who employ quantitative methods, economic paradigms, and technology to business processes and decision making. The student who specializes in this concentration will have strong analytical and data skills combined with business knowledge that will be applied to solving problems where business intelligence is a fundamental driver of corporate value.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand and acquire technical expertise in various quantitative fields such as statistics, econometrics, stochastic processes, calculus, optimization, and software paradigms, that underlie various analyses undertaken by corporations.
  • Learn how to build models (theoretical and econometric) to characterize business situations, develop strategies, and analyze these models collecting, verifying, and using data to achieve optimal business decisions.

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Leveraging SCU's location and strong alumni presence in Silicon Valley, this concentration examines the tools needed to develop ideas into businesses and to stimulate entrepreneurial activities in existing mature businesses.

Learning Objectives

  • To develop an analytical framework for evaluating new business opportunities.
  • To review some of the special operating problems of new enterprises including the problems of survival in the early years, maintaining growth in an orderly fashion, and maintaining momentum as the firm approaches maturity. This involves developing and integrating an understanding of the accounting, finance, marketing, operations and management issues that start-ups face.
  • To identify the unique entrepreneurial challenges faced by start-ups in high-technology sectors of the economy – these include infotech, biotech and cleantech. This involves reviewing the salient characteristics of these sectors, identifying the key strategic issues associated with them and then providing tools/frameworks to address these challenges.
  • To provide an opportunity for students to evaluate their own abilities and goals in regard to small business opportunities. A career in one's own business has both advantages and disadvantages.

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The finance concentration provides an extensive and deep knowledge of finance, assisting students to transition from technical functions or advance in financial leadership.

Learning Objectives
Students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  • Analyze the valuation effects of investment and financial policies
  • Interpret and analyze financial information and develop financial models for decision-making
  • Explain the role of markets and financial institutions on the economy


The finance concentration has two tracks:

  • one for students most interested in careers within corporations, in positions such as Chief Financial Officer, and
  • one for students most interested in careers within investment companies, in positions such as Chief Investment Officer

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Learning Objectives

  • Demonstrate how to create, organize and sustain systems and processes necessary for success in rapidly changing and turbulent environments.
  • Give examples of how one can lead in complex systems with grace and competence, and how one can leverage the strengths of other people, partners, and organizations.
  • Describe the impact of systems on people and people on systems.
  • Delineate interpersonal competencies and awareness of the social and moral dimensions of decisions.

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Learning Objectives

Students will be able to describe and apply current and evolving marketing frameworks to both high tech and non-high tech environments, integrate marketing processes with other traditional business elements to develop creative strategies and plans, and utilize marketing concepts and approaches to optimize customer satisfaction and contribute to societal well-being. Students may focus on one of three emphases: Product and Brand Management, Channel Marketing and Sales Management, or Digital Marketing and e-Commerce;or they may develop their own course plan.

This concentration can follow one of three prescribed areas of emphasis (not required), or be self-designed. To complete the Marketing Concentration you are required to complete 12 units of marketing electives.

If you choose to pursue an emphasis, the three areas are:

  • Channel Marketing and Sales Management
  • Digital Marketing and e.Commerce
  • Product and Brand Management

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Students may propose an individual studies concentration, subject to approval of a faculty advisor. The proposal must show why the planned coursework will enhance a student's career objectives or intensify an area of inquiry not offered by the existing concentrations.

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The Digital Marketing and eCommerce concentration has been replaced by the Marketing Concentration (see above) and is not available to students enrolling in Fall 2015 or later. It remains open to those students who enrolled in the 2013 curriculum before Fall 2015.
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Completion of this specialization will prepare students to work in the global food and agribusiness industry and supporting industries. 

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Although Santa Clara University’s MBA program has a general management perspective, students may use their choice of electives to select a concentrated emphasis. Students do not, however, have to select a concentration or, once chosen and begun, do not have to finish the concentration in order to graduate.

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