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Advanced Technical Management

The Certificate Program in Advanced Technical Management is intended for technical professionals with a Bachelor's / undergraduate degree in a technical field such as science, engineering, mathematics, computer science, architecture, or other, who want to improve their job prospects by learning more about business and management. The program is especially relevant for those who have limited opportunities to advance in their current career, but who do not have the time or opportunity to go back to graduate school.

The program motto is "Learn more to earn more" with the mission to help students improve their chances for better jobs and career advancement. The program consists of eight (8) courses focused on practical business management with most of the coursework completed online. Students complete the final module with the three-day Capstone Conference on the Auburn campus. The Capstone Conference will include faculty lectures, discussions, and casework. It will culminate with a certificate ceremony marking the completion of the program. This format allows the students to interact with their faculty and other students in their cohort.

Students complete the online portion of the program in six months with the on-campus Capstone Conference taking place in either December or May. Students can currently complete the program in either English or Mandarin Chinese (with other language options available soon).


Marketing is much more than advertising and sales. You will learn about the marketing mix of product, place, price, and promotion to meet the needs and wants of customers. The psychology of why and how customers choose is reviewed. This covers both final customers and business to business customers. The process of marketing intangibles is contrasted with marketing physical products. The course will also cover market and marketing analysis, marketing metrics, and sensitivity analysis.

How does a company develop a successful product offering in a crowded market space? How does a company develop a completely new offering – an innovation – in a market space that has never existed before? This module covers the process of new product development from concept development through commercialization. You will learn building blocks required of to develop a successful New Product. We will cover Situational Analysis & Data Development, Understanding Customer Needs, Benchmarking, the Idea-to-Development Process including Concept Testing, Managing the Product Development Pipeline, and Launching New Products. You will leave with a "tool kit" of skills that can be referenced long after the course is completed.

Where does money come from and where does it go when you are trying to run a business? This course will provide you the foundation to better understand the importance of keeping track of your firm’s money. It will provide you an understanding of the how it is raised, how it is spent, how it is invested. You will finish the course with a better understanding of the impact of accounting and finance on your business. You will learn the financial aspects of launching and operating a high-tech business in areas such as engineering, computer science. It is designed for individuals and aspiring entrepreneurs and seasoned professionals who have no prior training in finance or accounting. The major tools include cash flow management, financial statement structure and analysis, the time value of money, and risk assessment. You will gain exposure to key concepts including venture capital, transfer pricing, global exchange, asset investment and budgeting, corporate financial structure and the choice of debt vs. equity financing, financial market valuations, and the financial implications of business strategic decisions.

What is organizational behavior and what impact does it have on your firm? How human behavior interfaces with the organization itself has a profound impact on the manner in which a firm operates. Key concepts involved in managing human resources for technology companies are presented. Primary topics covered include leadership, negotiation, and ethical considerations with a human resources perspective that covers multiple management layers in the organization. The course also covers planning and management for innovation and organizational change issues that often accompany innovation within tech companies.

What is an entrepreneurial focus and how does it impact technology companies? Having an entrepreneurial focus is characterized by the taking of financial risks in the hope of profit. This module offers a unique combination of topics focused on helping companies adopt an entrepreneurial management approach to innovation. You will learn about different options for developing innovation including ownership forms, and buy or build decisions. The course distinguishes between entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs and how each affect innovation. Entrepreneurs are those who start businesses with a focus on the external market rewarding them when they provide a successful product or service to the market. Intraprenuers are individuals within a company who promote innovative product development and marketing. Other topics covered include business valuation, patents, trademarks, copyrights, and licensing.

What is the supply chain and how will it help my business? The supply chain is the sequence of processes involved in the production and distribution of a firm’s offering. You will learn the keys to a successful company structure from a supply chain perspective. We will cover the processes of materials management, sourcing, scheduling, quality management, importing and exporting, trade barriers and legal issues as integral component of supply chain strategy. The course takes a comprehensive look at the complete supply chain to include inbound, outbound, and on site logistics integration with a particular focus on technology companies.

The information systems management function helps organizations transform and improve business processes. We will cover the basic concepts required to manage information systems for decision making. Decision support systems are increasingly powerful and central to managing corporate success. You will learn database design and management including data goals, data analysis basics, decision making, and data security. One of the key components covered is cybersecurity.

This module is the capstone module of the program and builds on earlier modules. It is delivered partly online and partly on campus at the culmination of the program certificate ceremony. Topics covered include competitive analysis, business strategy and execution, web analytics, performance metrics, developing a complete business plan, planning for growth, and exit strategies. As part of this module, students will engage in lectures, discussions, and group work on campus during the certificate ceremony portion of the program.


You will take courses designed specifically for this program by a combination of Auburn and international faculty who have taught at some of the most prestigious universities in the world, including Columbia, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), China Europe International Business School (CEIBS), Shanghai Jioatong, Nyenrode, Manchester, University of North Carolina, Xiamen University, INSEAD, and others.

Your faculty have extensive experience training managers and executives in Asia, Europe, and the United States. Your faculty have consulted or trained managers for companies including General Electric, Lufthansa, Unilever, Siemens, OPPO, BBK, Shanghai Jahwah, China Unicom, Shenzhen Novophalt, Hewlett Packard, Motorola, Electrolux, Novartis, BASF, Honeywell, Nokia, Kodak, Digital China, Guang Ming, Jiang Ling, TCL, San Ming, Netease, Vivo, L'Oreal, Nestle, Eli Lilly, Huawei Technologies, Lenovo, IKEA, Ryder Integrated Logistics, Rheem, Michelin, Sony, and others.

Capstone Conference

After you have successfully passed the first seven modules, the final module (Module 8) will be available to you. This is a capstone or overall integration of all components of the program. It is broken down into two parts. Part one, will be composed of material delivered online like the previous seven (7) modules. The second is The Capstone Conference. During the three day Conference you will engage in lectures, discussions, and group work. The Conference concludes with a closing banquet and certificate ceremony.

Auburn University will provide documentation and assistance to help you apply for a visa to the United States. This visa will allow you to visit Auburn University to complete your certificate program on Auburn’s campus and participate in the Capstone Conference.

Note: A visa is not guaranteed. If you are unable to attend the Conference you will be allowed to complete the Certificate.


Learning Philosophy and Process

Auburn University is a place of higher learning. We take the process of learning seriously. Integrity relates to being honest and having strong moral principles. The certificate you earn will be based on your individual effort. Although at a distance, you will be held to our high standards. You will be expected to read and complete assignments, watch all module videos and learn material provided in each module. You are expected to pass exams which will demonstrate your learning in each module. Mentors and tutors will be available to help you along the way. They will keep you on track for completing the program on time. Proctors will oversee your exams to maintain integrity in our program and in your learning. Upon successful completion of all modules, you will have earned your certificate.

Below is the Auburn Creed. It is a standard for all students at Auburn:

The Auburn Creed

I believe that this is a practical world and that I can count only on what I earn. Therefore, I believe in work, hard work.

I believe in education, which gives me the knowledge to work wisely and trains my mind and my hands to work skillfully.

I believe in honesty and truthfulness, without which I cannot win the respect and confidence of my fellow men.

I believe in a sound mind, in a sound body and a spirit that is not afraid, and in clean sports

that develop these qualities.

I believe in obedience to law because it protects the rights of all.

I believe in the human touch, which cultivates sympathy with my fellow men and mutual helpfulness and brings happiness for all.

I believe in my Country, because it is a land of freedom and because it is my own home, and that I can best serve that country by "doing justly, loving mercy, and walking humbly with my God."

And because Auburn men and women believe in these things, I believe in Auburn and love it.

–George Petrie (1943)

Module Grading

Each module will have exams which must be passed to earn your certificate. The material on each exam will have been covered in your video and in assigned readings. The exams are challenging, but designed to assess only what is included in each module. Should you not pass your exam on the first attempt, you will be allowed to take the exam again at a later date. This will give you time to go back to videos and readings to help you learn the module. You will also have the opportunity to work with tutors if you need more help. Our goal for you is to master the material. We want you to learn the content to enable you to apply your knowledge in your professional and personal life. We want you to gain value from your educational experience with us. We want you to be a part of the Auburn Family. Our brand is important to us. It is globally known and respected. We have standards that must be met. We will do our part. We expect you to do yours.

Last Updated: April 24, 2018