University of Southern California

The Curriculum

The program requires successful completion of the following 19-unit program with a minimum cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 for all coursework applied to the certificate and an overall graduate GPA at USC of at least 3.0.


Course NumberCourse Name
GSBA 520Business Fundamentals for Non-Business Professionals (3) (must be taken in the first semester)
ACCT 509Concepts of Financial and Management Accounting (4) (Online fall)
GSBA 523 or BUCO 503Communication for Management (3)* or Advanced Managerial Communication
GSBA 528Marketing Management (3) or 3-units of MKT courses selected from the list of electives below**
GSBA 543Managerial Perspectives (3) or 3-units of MOR courses selected from the list of electives below**

* Students in the Master of Communication Management (CMMG), Master of Arts in Global Communication (CMGL) and Master of Arts in Strategic Public Relations (PRS) programs may substitute BAEP 551 Introduction to New Ventures (3) or BAEP 550 Entrepreneurship and Venture Management (1.5) plus another 1.5-unit elective for GSBA 523. Students who have extensive presentation experience may be allowed to substitute BUCO 533 Managing Communication in Organizations (3) with permission of the program director.

** If sufficient sections of the GSBA required course are available, students will be expected to take the GSBA courses unless approval to take an alternative from the electives list is granted by the program director.


Select additional courses from those listed below to total 19 units. The course(s) selected may not duplicate prior graduate coursework. Enrollment in some courses may require additional preparatory coursework to satisfy prerequisites. Permission to register without the required prerequisite or recommended preparation is subject to approval of the instructor of the class section in which the student wishes to enroll or the department representative identified with the list.

Course NumberCourse Name
ACCT 537Performance Measurement, Evaluation, and Incentives (3)
ACCT 547Enterprise Information Systems (3)
ACCT 572Corporate Accounting and Reporting (3)
ACCT 581Financial Statement Analysis (3)
BAEP 550 or 551Entrepreneurship and Venture Management (1.5) or Introduction to New Ventures (3)
BAEP 552Cases in Feasibility Analysis (3) (Prereq/Coreq BAEP 550 or BAEP 551)
BAEP 556Technology Feasibility (3)
BAEP 557Technology Commercialization (3)
BAEP 559Investing in New Ventures (3)
BUCO 503Advanced Managerial Communication (1.5 or 3)
BUCO 504Professional Writing for Business (1.5)
BUCO 533Managing Communication in Organizations (1.5 or 3)
(not an option for Communication Management students/graduates)
GSBA 556Business Models for Interactive Digital Media & Services (3)
DSO 520Logistics Management (3)
DSO 525Quality Improvement Methods (3)
DSO 580Project Management (3)
(not an option for students who have taken or will take ISE-515)
DSO 581Supply Chain Management (3)
DSO 582Service Management: Economics and Operations (3)
DSO 584Global Operations Management (3)
FBE 529Financial Analysis and Valuation (3)
FBE 531Corporate Financial Policy and Corporate Control (1.5 or 3)
FBE 557Business Law and Ethics (3)
FBE 560Mergers and Acquisitions (3)
MKT 512Customer Insights and Analysis (3)*
MKT 525Consumer Behavior (3)*
MKT 526Advertising and Social Media Strategy (3)*
MKT 530New Product Development (3)*
MKT 533Branding Strategy (1.5 or 3)*
MKT 543Market Demand and Sales Forecasting (3)*
MKT 555 Marketing Channels (1.5 or 3)*
MKT 556Internet Marketing (3)*
MKT 560Marketing Strategy (3)*
MKT 565Global Marketing (3)*
MKT 580Fostering Creativity (1.5 or 3)*
MOR 548Competitive Advantage through People (3)
MOR 551Human Capital Performance and Motivation (3)
MOR 555Designing High Performance Organizations (3)
MOR 560Managerial Judgment and Decision-Making (3)
MOR 567Interpersonal Influence and Power (3)
MOR 569Negotiation and Deal-Making (3)
MOR 571Leadership and Executive Development (3)

*For approval to register for the recommended MKT courses, BFNBP students should contact the professor teaching the class and request a D clearance. Approvals for D-clearances should be forwarded to

Coursework credited to a degree previously awarded by USC cannot be applied to the Graduate Certificate in Business Fundamentals for Non-Business Professionals. Appropriate substitutions for required courses will be determined and documented by the program director.

In some circumstances current USC graduate students may be allowed to take courses that will be credited to the Graduate Certificate in Business Fundamentals for Non-Business Professionals at the same time as courses required for another program. Current students who wish to pursue the certificate and a graduate degree simultaneously should consult with their degree program advisor. Applicability of certificate courses to the student's primary degree program is determined by the student's home department. For those students who receive permission to apply course work to both programs, it is critical that the certificate be completed before or in the same semester as the degree program.

Successful completion of the program is acknowledged by a certificate awarded by the University.

Class Schedules

GSBA 520 is offered fall and spring semesters.
ACCT 509 is offered every fall semester.

Access the USC Schedule of Classes at for recent and current elective schedules.

For additional information contact or call (213) 740-0671.