Shape your own programme

Electives provide you with the opportunity to specialise in an area of particular interest or to explore new avenues.

The Global Online MBA elective portfolio consists of 14 modules across a number of subject areas which have been newly developed for online learning. You can choose five electives from the portfolio which you will study in the second year of the programme.

Supported by our own experienced faculty, many of the electives include guest lecturers from industry and other academic institutions who impart their unique insights and real-world experience to the class.

As a Global Online MBA student, you can also attend up to two face-to-face electives from our on-campus portfolio.

Administrative label
GMBA electives


Advanced Corporate Finance

This module covers corporate financial decision-making, specifically, an overview of corporate financial policy, and financial forecasting, financing decisions, corporate investment decisions and valuation, and mergers and acquisitions. By the end of this module, you’ll:

  • Have a thorough understanding of the main aspects of financial decision-making, and in particular financing decisions, investment decisions and mergers and acquisitions.
  • Be able to apply the concepts and methods to make financial decisions in real-life cases.

Private Equity

This elective examines the role of private equity financing as a type of financing, and the critical issues that the parties (investors, banks, managers, entrepreneurs/shareholders) involved in a transaction will face during the investment process and their negotiations. Topics covered include fundamental analysis, applications and models related to private equity professionals, management and the entrepreneurs.

The purpose of this module is to provide a strong theoretical framework, practical applications and tools to Business School students interested in private equity finance and investments covering the topics of Raising Equity and Debt Finance, Growth Capital Finance, LBO Finance, Distress, Project & Infrastructure Finance. Through this module, students will learn about the PE market and new trends, finance instruments and structures, the applications of these tools in companies’ acquisitions, the role of the investment banks or the private equity funds in the equity and debt-raising process, the financial and legal structuring and the valuation process executing an investment, risk and returns analysis.

Mergers and Acquisitions

This module is designed to introduce you to the issues raised by corporate mergers and acquisitions. The subject is one that calls on the services of many professionals including company executives involved in the initial search and screening of candidates, investment bankers and stockbrokers who may advise on bid tactics, dealing with city regulations and raising finance, corporate lawyers who deal with the documentation and who may present a case if the bid is referred to the anti-trust regulators, and PR consultants who may advise on lobbying various parties and presenting the case for or against the proposed merger to shareholders. The module integrates knowledge gained earlier in the MBA programme in areas such as accounting and finance, strategic management and organisational behaviour.

Marketing and Analytics

Brand Management

This module is concerned with building, measuring and managing brands over time, and with how to leverage advertising and the other elements of the marketing communications mix to build and strengthen brand equity. Firms are increasingly becoming aware that one of their most valuable assets is the brand associated with their products and services. Creating strong brands that deliver customer value, and maintaining and enhancing the strengths of those brands over time, are management imperatives. Given that marketing acts as the boundary spanning activity between the firm and the external environment, nearly everybody will, at some point in their career, wear a marketing hat. So, understanding key marketing topics such as branding is beneficial regardless of one’s professional background and career direction.

International Business

This module deals with the major issues faced by companies in international business and marketing. A central theme of the module is the continuing need to balance the competing dimensions of local adaptation and global integration. This means that international managers can neither fully adapt to the demands of local markets nor fully apply globally standardised models.

The challenge in international business is how to reconcile local and global demands from both inside and outside the company. Similarly, international managers need to navigate the dilemma of recognising international differences in culture and behaviour while avoiding stereotyping. Special attention will be paid to strategies for and from emerging markets.

Pricing Strategy

Deciding how to price products and services depends heavily upon economic, marketing, and behavioural phenomena. This module will provide you with a systematic presentation of the factors that need to be considered when setting prices, and will show you how pricing alternatives can be developed. Whereas the emphasis of this module is on one aspect of the marketing mix (i.e. pricing), the pricing decision is not independent of other marketing decisions. As a result, this module will constantly integrate the pricing decision back into the marketing mix, and evaluate its effectiveness in achieving broader managerial objectives.


Venture Capital Finance

The goal of the venture capital module is to understand what venture capital is, how it differs from other types of financing, and the decision-making process with respect to screening and selecting of business proposals, negotiating and structuring the deal, following up on investments, and exiting.

This module is structured around the VC process, from deal origination to exit. Even though the venture capital industry worldwide has been growing significantly over the last decades, the industry still retains an air of mystery. By learning about the VC lifecycle, meeting venture capitalists, and learning about their real-life experiences, you will gain insight into the VC industry. In addition, you will get the opportunity to act as venture capitalist or entrepreneur seeking venture capital finance as part of a simulation offered during the elective.

Strategic Management

Advanced Strategy

This module gives you the opportunity to develop a detailed understanding of the sources of competitive advantage as well as a clear strategic approach to the understanding of strategic decisions and decision-making. The module builds on the Strategy core module.

The aim, through looking at a variety of case companies, is to discern patterns, teasing out common strategic and leadership characteristics that are the hallmark of breakout companies. These are companies that are not confused about strategy – they evolve and change rapidly. However, a constant feature is the ability to keep things simple and focussed and make the moves that have a big impact on the market. Whatever the company examined, the evidence amassed in this elective reveals that using a strategic perspective to take entrepreneurial actions are crucial determinants of business success.

Digital Business

The Internet, together with other information and communication technologies, continues to revolutionise industries. E-commerce is now a given in many industries, but many incumbent firms rooted in traditional business models struggle to figure out the new terms of competition. By examining the experience of earlier industry transformations, we attempt to shed light on what may lie ahead for industries currently undergoing upheaval (software, telecommunications, music, and other forms of digital content and services).


The study of leadership is about how to better manage the challenges we face motivating and inspiring people. At its most basic, it’s about making things happen in an organisation in a constructive way. It’s not about wasting our energy trying to change who we are. Instead, it’s about finding new and better ways of ‘being ourselves’ through enhanced insight and new skills.

In order to make you more effective as a leader, this module will help you become aware of your personality and other traits in order to make you more effective through diagnosis (questionnaire assessment exercises), insight (introspection and reflection of one’s traits, habits, and behaviours) and self-development (plans to adapt and change to tackle future challenges), as well as introduce you to new skills useful in dealing with common leadership challenges and dilemmas.

Leading Yourself

The prerequisite of organisational leadership and managerial effectiveness is the capacity to lead and manage oneself. To this end, the module will take students on an enriching inner journey through which they will learn to unveil and develop their qualities thanks to the empowering experience of deep meditation. The module will integrate notions of holistic wellbeing with positive psychology and eastern philosophy to provide a balanced learning experience connecting knowledge development with practical wisdom.

Managing Negotiations

Managing Negotiations will develop your understanding of the principles, strategies, and tactics of effective negotiation and professional relationship management. You’ll learn how to critically analyse a conflict, recognise and avoid common barriers to effective negotiation, improve your ability to analyse negotiation situations, and create opportunities for mutual gain in negotiations.

Knowledge objectives:

  • Distributive and Integrative Negotiations
  • Cognition and Biases in Negotiations
  • Negotiation Analytics
  • Power and Influence in Negotiation
  • Multi-party Negotiations
  • Cross-Cultural Negotiations

Skill objectives:

  • Diagnostic and analytical skills
  • Communication skills
  • Negotiation skills
  • Relationship management skills

Operations Management

Operations management plans and coordinates all activities in the process of producing and delivering the products (goods and services). Matching supply with demand is one of the most critical steps toward effective operations management for firms. In this module, we will explore how firms can better organise their operations so that they more effectively align their supply with the demand for their products and services. This module will cover a mix of qualitative and quantitative problems and issues confronting operations managers. The first part of the module details different kinds of business processes, the impact of variability on business processes, and explains how to measure key process parameters like capacity and lead time. The second part of the module focusses on process improvement and examines classic ideas in quality management as well as recent ideas on lean operations. The module concludes with a brief introduction to inventory management with applications in revenue management.

Strategic Problem Solving

The goal of this module is to teach you the fundamental skills of strategic problem solving. You will learn how to approach a business problem in a structured and efficient way that’s based on the problem solving techniques of the top tier consulting firms.

This module is a must for aspiring consultants, it’s a great way to prepare for a career in consulting, get a taste of what consulting is like, or prepare for case interviews. This module also prepares those who aren’t interested in consulting. The skills learnt in this class will prepare students to tackle the complex business problems that they will encounter in any role.

Final Project (optional)

This module allows you to put the theory taught on the MBA into practice. You’ll develop specialised expertise by researching a real business issue and influence real commercial outcomes, if your recommendations are implemented by a sponsoring organisation.

Find out more

Electives available and course outlines are subject to change. Imperial College Business School reserves the right to alter courses whenever they need to be amended or improved. Faculty may also change as and when required.

The quality of online learning materials is absolutely outstanding. The administrative staff really get to know each individual and are always ready to assist you with any issues that might arise. Academic staff members are experts who are highly regarded professionals.
Jane Mills
Global Online MBA: Class of 2015-17
Jane Mills