Academic Programs

Academic Units: Department of Finance and Business Law

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Mission Statement
The Program of Finance and Business Law strives to prepare students for decision-making roles in an increasingly technological and global environment.
  Goals
To support its mission, the Program of Finance and Business Law is committed to the following:
  • Creating an educational environment that fosters an intellectual curiosity about the functioning of commerce and the facilitating role of finance and business law.
  • Using an integrative instructional approach to provide a quality comprehensive educational, cultural and social experience for students.
  • Raising expectations and aspirations of students.
  • Providing a proper balance between challenge and support in the education process.
  • Providing the larger university community with access to the basic principles and applications of finance for essential life cycle decisions through courses designed for non-finance students and through innovative and contemporary curriculums.
Back to top of page Career Opportunities
The finance major is designed to prepare students for careers in the financial management of industrial and commercial enterprises; commercial, retail and mortgage banking; investment analysis and portfolio management; real estate; insurance; finance positions in federal, state and local governments and graduate study.
  Corporate Finance
  • Junior Analyst – Finance, Planning and Administration
  • Financial Analyst – Revenue
  • Financial Analyst – Capital Budgets
  • Manager, Capital Budgeting
  • Manager, Project Finance
  • Manager of Financial Planning for Subsidiaries
  • Manager, Financial Planning
  • Vice President of Finance
  Portfolio Management
  • Securities Analyst – Common Stock
  • Securities Analyst – Private Placements
  • Direct Loan Analyst
  • Securities Analyst – Publicly Traded Bonds
  • Portfolio Analyst
  • Manager, Pension Fund Investments
  • Director, Investor Relations
  • Account Executive (Securities Broker)
  Working Capital Management
  • General Credit Manager
  • Assistant Treasurer – Cash Control and Risk Management
  • Senior Banking Analyst
  Corporate Real Estate, Insurance and Miscellaneous
  • Mortgage Analyst – Production
  • Mortgage Analyst – Closing
  • Director of Risk Management
  • Corporate Model Analyst
  • Consultant – Mergers and Acquisitions
  Banking and Financial Institutions
  • Corporate Banking Officer
  • Lending Officer – European Corporate Banking
  • Marketing Officer – Metropolitan Banking
  • Vice President – Credit Policy (Financial Analysis Department)
Back to top of page Co-curricular Activities and Organizations
  • Financial Management Association
  • Madison Investment Fund
  • Quantitative Finance Club
Back to top of page Degree and Major Requirements
The Program of Finance and Business Law offers programs leading to the Bachelor of Business Administration degree in finance and the B.S. degree in quantitative finance. As part of the JMU assessment program, graduating seniors are required to participate in assessment activities. Assessment information is used to assist the College of Business faculty in modifying curricula.
  Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance
The B.B.A. degree in finance requires a minimum of 120 credit hours of undergraduate course work. Fifty percent of this work or 60 credit hours, must be taken outside of the College of Business. In counting the 60 credit hours of non-business courses, students may include all hours taken in General Education (usually 41), up to a total of nine hours in economics (GECON courses must be counted as economics) and three hours of COB 191, Business and Economic Statistics. The remaining hours, to bring the total to 60, must be taken from any department outside the College of Business. Students should carefully select these non-business electives to help them gain additional knowledge and expertise for their careers and personal lives.

Required major courses provide all finance majors with an emphasis in financial management. Electives within the major permit students to obtain an additional emphasis. The finance major conforms to the general structure of the B.B.A. degree programs set forth on Pages 62-64. The credit-hour requirements for each of the program components are as follows.

  Degree Requirements
Required Courses
Credit Hours
B.B.A. core courses1
44-45
Finance major requirements
24
Free elective2
3
General Education courses3
41
Non-business electives
7-11

120
1 Up to seven hours of core requirements in economics and calculus may also be taken for General Education credit. Students who take the General Education packages and courses recommended by the College of Business will have only 38 credit hours of additional B.B.A. core requirements.
2 Any course offered by the university.
3 The General Education program contains a set of requirements each student must fulfill. The number of credit hours necessary to fulfill these requirements may vary.
Major Requirements
FIN 360. Money and Capital Markets
FIN 365. Intermediate Finance
FIN 371. Principles of Investments
FIN 488. Advanced Financial Policy
Finance electives
  Recommended Schedule for Majors
First Two Years
Students planning to major in finance must complete the 29 to 30 hour, lower-division B.B.A. core curriculum set forth on Page 63 prior to enrolling in upper-division core courses, normally taken in the first semester of the junior year. It is expected that the lower-division core curriculum will be completed during the first two years of study along with all, or most, of the university General Education curriculum. Failing to complete all lower-division core requirements on time will delay enrollment in upper-division core and major courses until at least the second semester of the junior year.

Third and Fourth Years
Finance majors will follow the course schedule below to complete the final two years of their program. It is possible to deviate from this program, but care must be taken to ensure that all course prerequisites are met.

Junior Year
First Semester
Credit Hours
COB 300A. Integrated Functional Systems: Management
3
COB 300B. Integrated Functional Systems: Finance
3
COB 300C. Integrated Functional Systems: Operations
3
COB 300D. Integrated Functional Systems: Marketing
3
General Education or non-business electives
3

15
   
Second Semester
Credit Hours
FIN 360. Money and Capital Markets1
3
FIN 365. Intermediate Finance1
3
Finance electives1
6
General Education or non-business electives
3

15
1 Finance major requirement.
   
Senior Year
First Semester
Credit Hours
FIN 371. Principles of Investments
3
Finance electives1
3
Free elective
3
General Education or non-business electives
6

15
1 Finance major requirement.
   
Second Semester
Credit Hours
COB 487. Strategic Management
3
One Computer Information Systems elective
3
FIN 488. Advanced Financial Policy1
3
Finance or business law elective1
3
General Education or non-business electives
6

15
1 Finance major requirement.
Back to top of page Bachelor of Science in Quantitative Finance
The B.S. degree in quantitative finance is designed to prepare students for careers in financial engineering, structured finance, financial modeling, securitization, actuarial science, financial analysis and portfolio management. The focus of this program is on problem solving in the quantitative areas of finance with an added emphasis on the application of complex securities to a variety of financial situations.

The quantitative finance program, which is an interdisciplinary major with many courses co-listed with the math department, is a highly structured program requiring minor fields in both mathematics and economics or a double major in mathematics and quantitative finance. If the double major is selected students are required to take GECON 200, ECON 201 and ECON 331 but are not required to complete the economics minor. Students electing this program should consult with their major adviser as early as possible to identify the appropriate course sequencing. Students electing to double major in mathematics and quantitative finance should also consult with a mathematics advisor as soon as possible. The required courses for the B.S. in quantitative finance are listed.

  Degree Requirements
Credit Hours
General Education1
41
Quantitative requirement2
3
Scientific Literacy requirement2
3-4
General Education courses3
41
Major requirements (listed below) and electives
73-77

120
1 The General Education program contains a set of requirements each student must fulfill. The number of credit hours necessary to fulfill these requirements may vary.
2 In addition to course work taken to fulfill General Education requirement.
Major Requirements
COB 241. Financial Accounting
Finance Courses
FIN 360. Money and Capital Markets
FIN 365. Intermediate Finance
FIN 380. Elemental and Derivative Securities
FIN/MATH 395. Mathematical Finance
FIN/MATH 405. Securities Pricing
FIN 450. Financial Risk Management
FIN 480. Seminar in Financial Engineering
Choose two of the following:
FIN/MATH 328. Time Series Analysis
FIN/MATH 465. Seminar in Actuarial Science I
FIN/MATH 466. Seminar in Actuarial Science II
FIN/ECON 372. International Finance and Payments
FIN 455. International Financial Management
FIN 471. Advanced Topics in Investments
FIN 488. Advanced Financial Policy
BLAW 470. Financial Products: Regulation and Protection
Mathematics Courses
MATH 236. Calculus II
MATH 237. Calculus III
MATH 238. Linear Algebra and Differential Equations
MATH 248. Computer and Numerical Algorithms
MATH 318. Introduction to Probability and Statistics
MATH 440. Fourier Analysis and Partial Differential Equations
Economics Courses (For economics minor)
GECON 200. Introduction to Macroeconomics
ECON 201. Principles of Economics (Micro)
ECON 331. Intermediate Microeconomic Theory
ECON 332. Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory
ECON 385. Econometrics or MATH 322. Applied Linear Regression
One upper-level economics elective
Back to top of page Transfer Credit
In general, all finance course work must be completed at JMU. Transfer credit for finance courses is awarded only in certain circumstances. In no case will transfer credit be awarded for more than two finance courses, and in no case will transfer credit be awarded for FIN 488, Advanced Financial Policy. Contact the program director for more information on transfer credit.