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What Can You Expect From A Business Master’s Curriculum?

Find out what you can expect from a business master's curriculum, from hard knowledge to work experience


By  Simon Lovick

Mon Dec 28 2020


What can you expect from a business master's degree?

A business master’s curriculum can provide all the essential tools for an ambitious professional, ranging from building specific skills, to bolstering work experience, to providing tailored career help and advice.  

If you’re looking to apply for a business master’s, here’s what you can expect from the curriculum. 

Foundational business knowledge

Many people join a business master’s from a non-business bachelor’s and without prior professional experience. It’s important therefore that masters curricula provide a rigorous introduction to core concepts. 

At EDHEC Business School, like with many business masters programs, core modules in year one form this introductory look at business concepts. It’s these courses that provide the base knowledge to explore subjects more deeply in your subsequent years. It may also provide useful preparation for the business environment which students enter during work experience.

On most EDHEC masters programs you can expect to find core modules on strategy, corporate finance, marketing, and business development and innovation. For each program, like the Master in Management (MiM) or the MSc in Finance, these will include other core concepts around the subject. 

Leadership skills


Most employers will tell you that soft skills are just as important, if not more important, as a hard knowledge. Companies are looking for managers who are just as adept at leading and motivating a team as they are with finances or strategy.

Business master’s programs place a strong emphasis on leadership skills—for many, they’re known as leadership factories. 

The Leadership Development Chair at EDHEC is central to research and delivering relevant and cutting edge leadership training on the master’s curriculum. This includes courses on emotional intelligence, psychoanalysis and management, and non-verbal resources of leadership. 

Specialist skills and knowledge

On top of generalist business knowledge, masters curricula will often give students a chance to specialize on certain subjects of interest. This is an important part of producing rounded leaders, who can not only lead in various business environments, but also offer expertise on certain areas. 

The Grande Ecole structure at EDHEC dedicates an entire year to specialization in a certain field. Students in their third year can choose from a range of 14 Master of Science (MSc) programs on a wide range of subjects, to combine with the MiM of their choosing. 

Take the MSc in Entrepreneurship and Innovation, for students on the MiM in Business Management. This is a chance to finesse the important skills that any startup founder needs, starting with a start-up bootcamp and rounding off with pitching skills and design thinking. 

Or there’s the MSc in Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence, perfect for anyone eyeing up tech-centered roles, from digital marketing to data analysis. This gives students an insight into the technical side of technologies that may inform their career. 

Work experience

Gaining work experience during a master’s has two-fold benefits. First, it's a chance to put into practice everything you’ve learned, testing your preparation for when you graduate. 

It can also help you get valuable work experience on your resume. For many master’s candidates who have come straight from a bachelor’s, this provides crucial first steps for job hunting. 

The three year program at EDHEC allows for the whole second year, also known as the Professional Immersion year, to be dedicated to work experience. Students get the chance to complete two six-month internships at top companies in Europe. 

Aspiring consultant Marco Vecchiato interned first at Heineken in Amsterdam, then moved to work at PwC in Luxembourg. “On the professional immersion, you can apply the skills you learn during your masters, and understand whether the industry you are interested in will be the right fit for your career,” he says.

International exposure

Narrowing down your choice of location for a master’s might be tricky. But that doesn’t mean that you’ve limited yourself to one destination. 

Business masters curricula come topped up with international opportunities to give you exposure to different styles of learning and working. This ranges from study trips to international consulting projects to semester-long exchanges. 

Going abroad features heavily on EDHEC’s Master’s curriculum. The professional immersion year allows students to take internships at any number of international destinations. 

Alternatively, students can opt to do a semester-long exchange at any of EDHEC’s partner institutions. This ranges from top European schools like Bocconi University and the University of St Gallen, to internationally-renowned schools like UNC Chapel Hill and HKUST. 

Career support


A key element of a master’s curriculum is helping students narrow down their choices and prepare specifically for applying and working at their job of choice. 

Targeted career help is important to ensure that each student gets the attention and assistance they need. EDHEC’s Masters Career Center helps each student determine their ambitions, target their industry of choice, and prepare for applications and interviews. Group training and one-on-one coaching are pivotal parts of the curriculum.

This ultimately helps ensure that business master's graduates have their pick of top industries and employers.

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