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College of Business

Mission Statement

The JMU College of Business is a learning community committed to excellence in:

  • Preparing students to be engaged, principled business professionals and leaders;
  • Advancing scholarship in business disciplines; and
  • Enhancing organizational performance through our outreach activities.

Vision Statement

To be regarded as a leader in preparing collaborative business partners engaged with ideas and the world.


Integrity: We are a community dedicated to honesty, mutual respect, ethical reasoning and responsible behavior.

Intellectual Growth: We value academic excellence achieved through the intellectual curiosity and growth of both faculty and students, and through the creation and maintenance of a challenging and rigorous learning environment that encourages critical thinking and life-long learning.

Community: We value a supportive, inclusive culture where diverse ideas, backgrounds, and experiences strengthen our community, contributing to a global and multi-cultural mindset.

Engagement: We value an engaged, active learning environment inside and outside the classroom.  We enrich the student experience through mutually beneficial internal and external relationships.

Innovation/Collaboration: We value initiative, creativity, collaboration and entrepreneurial spirit.  We promote new ideas and solutions that advance intellectual growth and have a positive impact.


The College of Business offers baccalaureate degree programs leading to a Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.), a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) and a Bachelor of Science (B.S.). All degree programs offered by the College of Business are accredited by AACSB International – The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. The following academic majors are offered as a B.B.A.: accounting, computer information systems, economics, finance, international business, management and marketing. Students may also earn a B.A. or B.S. in economics. Quantitative finance is offered as a B.S. degree. The B.B.A. degrees essentially require the same general structure consisting of the four components shown below:

  • General Education component
  • B.B.A. core component
  • Major component
  • Electives (non-business electives and free electives)

General Education Component

General Education is required of all students regardless of their major or professional program. While much of the general education component of a student's baccalaureate program is completed during the first two years of study, a student has four years to complete this component. Typically, students complete their General Education course requirements during their last two years of study.

B.B.A. Core Component

B.B.A. majors must complete all of the B.B.A. core components as part of their degree program. The following courses comprise the B.B.A. Lower-Level Core Component:

COB 191. Business Statistics (3 credits)1

COB 202. Interpersonal Skills (3 credits)

COB 204. Computer Information Systems (3 credits)

COB 218. Legal Environment of Business (3 credits)

COB 241. Financial Accounting (3 credits)

COB 242. Managerial Accounting (3 credits)2

COB 291. Introduction to Management Science (3 credits)3

ECON 201. Principles of Economics (Micro) (3 credits)

ECON 200. Introduction to Macroeconomics (3 credits)

MATH 205 or 235. Introductory Calculus or Calculus with Functions (3-4 credits)4

The following courses comprise the B.B.A. Upper-Level Core Component:

COB 300A. Integrative Business: Management (3 credits)5

COB 300B. Integrative Business: Finance (3 credits)5

COB 300C. Integrative Business: Operations (3 credits)5

COB 300D. Integrative Business: Marketing (3 credits)5

COB 487. Strategic Management (3 credits)6

1 MATH 220 may be substituted for COB 191 if MATH 220 was taken prior to declaring a B.B.A. major at JMU.

2 COB 241 must be completed before COB 242 is taken.

3 COB 191 and MATH 205 or MATH 235 must be completed before COB 291 is taken.

4 Calculus is required but not used in calculating the B.B.A. core GPA.

5 All four COB 300 courses must be taken during the same semester.

6 COB 487 must be taken during the senior year.

Major Component

The eight academic majors offered by the College of Business consist of 24-33 credit hours. Students pursuing a B.B.A. degree may take major courses after being formally accepted into the college and after they have enrolled/completed COB 300. The major program component of the B.B.A. degree is designed to be completed in three traditional semesters after COB 300. Students should plan their course work with that timetable.

Acceptance into the College of Business permits a student to enroll in COB 300 and to be formally accepted as a business B.B.A. major. However, some majors in the college may impose standards that exceed those of the college as a whole. A student must meet both the College of Business requirements and the requirements of the major in which he/she seeks to enroll. Refer to the appropriate sections of the catalog for specific degree requirements for the individual majors in the College of Business.

Non-business Elective Component

The B.B.A. degree requires a minimum of 120 credit hours of undergraduate course work. Fifty percent of this work, 60 credit hours, must be taken outside of the College of Business. In counting the 60 credit hours of non-business courses, B.B.A. students may include all hours taken in general education (usually 41), up to nine hours of economics courses (including ECON) and three hours of COB 191. The remaining hours, to bring the total to 60, must be taken from any academic unit 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.

Recommended Course Sequence

In order to remain on a four-year graduation track, students should follow the recommended course sequence below:

Courses to be Completed During the First Year

COB 191. Business Statistics (3 credits) 1

COB 204. Computer Information Systems (3 credits)

ECON 201. Principles of Economics (Micro) (3 credits)

ECON 200. Introduction to Macroeconomics (3 credits)

MATH 205 or 235. Introductory Calculus or Calculus with Functions (3-4 credits)

1 MATH 220 may be substituted for COB 191 if MATH 220 was taken prior to declaring a B.B.A. major at JMU.

Courses to be Completed During the Sophomore Year

COB 202. Interpersonal Skills (3 credits)

COB 218. Legal Environment of Business (3 credits)

COB 241. Financial Accounting (3 credits)

COB 242. Managerial Accounting (3 credits)

COB 291. Introduction to Management Science (3 credits)

Progression Standards for the College of Business

Acceptance to the College of Business and COB 3001

Any student admitted to JMU can declare any major offered by the College of Business. Students are not formally accepted into the College of Business until certain requirements are met. Requirements to continue pursuing a B.B.A. degree are described here.

Students are formally accepted into the College of Business as a B.B.A. major and permitted to register for COB 300 when the following requirements are met:

  • A completed application for acceptance into the College of Business is submitted to the COB Academic Services Center according to the following schedule:
    • November 1 for upcoming spring semester.
    • April 1 for upcoming summer session and fall semesters.
  • Successful completion with a GPA of 2.7 or better in the business core courses: COB 191, COB 202, COB 204, COB 218, COB 241, COB 242, COB 291, ECON 200 and ECON 201.
  • Successful completion of calculus.
  • A GPA of 2.7 in the B.B.A. lower-level core courses (excluding MATH 205) is achieved.

No core course may be attempted more than two times. Attempted courses include courses in which a final letter grade, including "W," "WP" and "WF," is recorded on the student's official JMU transcript.

Acceptance is granted within one calendar year of the applicant's first application. Two applications, in consecutive semesters or sessions of enrollment, are permitted.

The B.B.A. core GPA is calculated using grades earned in the B.B.A. lower-level core excluding calculus (MATH 205 or MATH 235). Only grades earned at JMU will be used.

The university policy for calculating repeat-credit and repeat-forgive will be followed. Students with a 2.7 B.B.A. core GPA are assured acceptance into the College of Business and COB 300. Students who meet all of the requirements above but fail to achieve a 2.7 B.B.A. core GPA will be accepted to the College of Business and COB 300 based on B.B.A. core GPA, pending resource and space availability.

Students who fail to meet the standards described above will be denied acceptance into the College of Business and will be referred to Career and Academic Planning for assistance in choosing another major.

Consult with the major department for further progression requirements in the specific degree programs.

1 Requirements to be accepted into the College of Business are effective based on when a student intends to enroll in COB 300. Students are advised to consult the College of Business Academic Services Center for current requirements.

Declaration of a Business Major

JMU students pursuing a major outside the College of Business who wish to change their current major to a B.B.A. major in the College of Business must be in good academic standing at the university on the date they submit a "Change or Declaration of Major" form.  This policy affects students desiring to change their major to one of the following: accounting, computer information systems, economics (B.B.A. degree only), finance, international business, management and marketing. 

Business as a Second Major

A student enrolled in any JMU degree program other than the B.B.A. program who wishes to select a B.B.A. major field (i.e., accounting, computer information systems, economics, finance, international business, management or marketing) as a second major must complete the following courses:

  • All B.B.A. core courses (refer to the B.B.A. core component section); and
  • All requirements specific to the major selected.

Transfer Credit Policy

AACSB International-accredited colleges of business generally allow only a limited amount of business course work prior to the junior year. Because of that restriction, accredited colleges are required to detail a process for accepting transfer courses.

To meet that requirement, the JMU College of Business has established the following transfer credit policy: The College of Business normally does not award transfer credit for courses that were taken at the 100 or 200 level if those courses are offered at the 300 or 400 level at JMU. If a transfer student wishes to receive credit for such a course, the following steps must be taken:

  1. The student must present the course syllabus and appropriate course materials to the academic unit head of the relevant academic program in the JMU College of Business.
  2. The academic unit head must determine that the course covers material similar to that covered at JMU. If the material is not deemed sufficiently similar, then the student must take the course at JMU. This decision is final and may not be appealed.
  3. If the material is considered sufficiently similar, the student may take a comprehensive examination covering the JMU course material and must pass it with at least a grade of 70 percent, or the student may choose to complete the course itself.
  4. If the student passes the comprehensive examination, the academic unit head will report that result to the College of Business Academic Services Center, which will prepare a course substitution form.

Additionally, each academic program in the College of Business will accept no more than two courses for transfer credit toward the major. The major is defined as the course work required by a major field of study in addition to the lower- and upper-level B.B.A. core courses. For a course to be considered for acceptance in the student's major, it must have been completed in an AACSB International-accredited business program at a four-year university. Certain majors within the College of Business may have more restrictive policies on transfer credit. Those policies are explained in later sections of the catalog.

The JMU College of Business prescribes that at least 50 percent of the business credit hours required for the B.B.A. degree be earned at JMU. Specifically, this statement means that no fewer than 28 of the required credit hours in the College of Business be completed at JMU. Required credit hours include the B.B.A. Core and the courses required for the major. The following B.B.A. core courses do not count toward meeting this requirement: COB 191, ECON 201 and ECON 200.

Individual academic programs in the College of Business may have transfer credit limitations in addition to this overall requirement. Refer to the specific academic major.

Internships for Business Majors

Students with majors in the College of Business are encouraged to participate in at least one formal business internship prior to graduation. Most commonly, students serve as interns in business organizations during the summer between their junior and senior years, but internships are not restricted to that period of time.

In some cases, students may receive academic credit for internships. In such cases, the maximum amount of credit that may be obtained is three credit hours. The minimum requirements for such academic credit are the following:

  • The student must have at least junior standing.
  • The internship must be approved in advance by the Faculty Internship Coordinator and the academic unit head in the student's major, and the student must be registered for the class credit during the internship experience.
  • The intern must complete a minimum of 200 hours of work experience.
  • The intern's immediate supervisor must submit at least one performance evaluation to the Faculty Internship Coordinator.
  • The intern must submit a final written paper and participate in an exit interview with the Faculty Internship Coordinator.
  • Internships in more than one program are permitted. However, double counting (i.e., receiving credit for a single internship experience in more than one major) is not permitted.

Some majors in the College of Business may have higher requirements than these minimum standards.

College of Business Minors and Concentrations

Chinese Business Studies Minor

The Chinese business studies minor can be completed by taking one Chinese language course, POSC 371. Topics in Comparative Politics, HIST 341. Selected Themes in World History, IB 298 or IB 498–I. Business Environment in China and Southeast Asia, IB 298 or IB 498–II. Chinese Business Operations, and MKTG 380.  Principles of Marketing. Note that business majors will take COB 300D rather than MKTG 380. MKTG 380 (or COB 300D) will be taken at JMU. The other five courses will be taken in conjunction with the JMU Study in China Program, and will be taught by professors or instructors from Chinese universities.

Students in this minor will:

  • Become aware of China's history and culture.
  • Learn about China's political, social, and economic systems.
  • Become familiar with China's government, and business operations.
  • Understand China's economic role in Asia and the world.

European Business Concentration

The European business concentration can be completed by taking COB 300A-D (Integrative Business: Management, Finance, Operations, Marketing–12 credit hours) and COB 301 (European Integration, Culture and History–3 credit hours) in Belgium as part of the Semester in Antwerp program.

These two courses will be taught in the context of the European Union and, as a part of the curriculum, students will visit and study European businesses (e.g., European high-tech startup companies, businesses in the Port of Antwerp) and the institutions that comprise the European Union (e.g., the Council of Europe, the European Parliament). Students will visit business, governmental and cultural institutions in such countries as France, England, Germany, Luxembourg, Norway, the Netherlands, Austria and others, depending on which semester the student goes abroad.

Students in this concentration will:

  • Acquire an in-depth understanding of the European business environment.
  • Learn about the institutions of the European Union.
  • Gain an understanding of the issues surrounding economic and monetary union.
  • Apply the integrated functional systems to the European market.
  • Understand the role of culture in conducting business in Europe.

This concentration is only available to students who complete COB 300 and COB 301 with the Semester in Antwerp program.

General Business Minor

The general business minor is only available to students who declare and complete one of the following majors: chemistry, engineering, health services administration, hospitality management, physics, or sport and recreation management. Students should submit a declaration of minor form to the College of Business Academic Services Center (Zane Showker Hall 205) to officially declare the general business minor.

The following courses must be successfully completed with a minimum 2.00 grade point average in order to graduate with the general business minor:

Required Courses

Credit Hours

ACTG 244. Accounting for the Non-Business Major


CIS 204. Computer Information Systems


ECON 201. Principles of Economics (Micro)


FIN 345. Finance for the Non-Financial Manager


MGT 305. Management and Organization Behavior1


MKTG 380. Principles of Marketing



1 Engineering majors may substitute ENGR 221 and ENGR 322 for MGT 305.

Matriculated JMU students may only take one minor course for transfer credit. Students who plan to take a course for transfer credit should complete the Permission to Take Courses for Transfer Credit form, including all signatures, prior to registering for the course elsewhere.