MG495 Business Policy

for S2J 2013

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Mission Statement: Park University provides access to a quality higher education experience that prepares a diverse community of learners to think critically, communicate effectively, demonstrate a global perspective and engage in lifelong learning and service to others.

Vision Statement: Park University, a pioneering institution of higher learning since 1875, will provide leadership in quality, innovative education for a diversity of learners who will excel in their professional and personal service to the global community.


MG 495 Business Policy


S2J 2013 IN


Steve E. Topi


Adjunct Faculty


AA-Maple Woods Community College
BBA- Management; Park University
MBA-Management; Rockhurst University

Office Location

Home; Retired.

Office Hours

Retired;  24/7

Daytime Phone

Hm: 816-833-2993

Other Phone

Cell: 816-214-0844


Semester Dates

Mar thru May

Class Days


Class Time

5:30 to 9:50 PM


EN306B and completion of business/management core or permission of the instructor

Credit Hours



Concepts in Strategic Management & Business Policy; Wheelen & Hunger; 13th ed.
Prentice Hall;  ISBN:  978-0-13-215322-5

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:

The Book of Five Rings;  For Executives
Miyamoto Musashi's classic, by Donald Krause.
USA publisher;  NicholasBrealey Publishing, reprint 2004
ISBN:  1-85788-133-8
Handout by instructor:  SWOT-Analysis (Thompson-Strickland);  Goal-Planning & Strategy (LMI).

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
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Course Description:
MG495 Business Policy: A series of business cases and materials dealing with a variety of problems confronting general management selected to illustrate the major areas of managerial concern: environmental opportunities and constraints, formulation of business policy, organization for business activity and marshalling of resources for achieving of the firm. 3:0:3 Prerequisites: EC141, EC142, EC315, EN306B, FI360, MG260, MG352, and MK351 or permission of instructor
Business Policy (MG-495) is a capstone course for graduating business-administration students.  This exciting, challenging course focuses on the manner in which firms and top managers formulate, implement and evaluate strategies and business policy.  Strategic-Management and business-policy concepts and techniques are studied in-depth.  Students will utilize the knowledge acquired from prior classes, along with new strategic-management and business-policy techniques learned in this course, to plan the future direction of various organizations.  The major responsibility of students in this course is to learn to make objective strategic/policy decisions and to justify these decisions through oral and written communication skills.

Educational Philosophy:

The facilitator's educational philosophy is one of academic and practical balance, introducing the student to new concepts and engaging them into practical perspective. The course will be a balance between lecture, class discussion and exploration into current concepts of management and leadership, with numerous examples of contemporary policy issues.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Define the term “strategic management”.
  2. List four phases of strategic management
  3. List four basic elements of strategic management.
  4. Define the term “strategy”.
  5. Identify the five forces that shape competition as described by Porter.
  6. Explain what is meant by the term "competitive advantage".
  7. List three directional strategies.
  8. List the five stages of international development.

  Instructor Learning Outcomes
  1. Define Business Policy.
  2. Explain how policy differs from strategy.
  3. Explain what part policy plays in implementing strategy.
  4. Explain who determines company policy and how it is implemented.
Core Assessment:

All Park University courses must include a core assessment that measures the course's Core Learning Outcomes. The purpose of this assessment is to determine if expectations have been met concerning mastery of learning outcomes across all instructional modalities.  

For this course, the core assessment is a Comprehensive Final Examination to be administered in all sections of MG495.  This exam is worth at least 30 percent of the student's final grade and will test students' mastery of the Core Learning Outcomes (as listed on this syllabus) through definitions, essay, and/or multiple choice questions. 

 This core assessment is a CLOSED BOOK, CLOSED NOTES comprehensive examination that must be administered and proctored in the classroom and may not be given as a take-home examination. Students should not have access to the exam or its questions before it is administered. The duration of the exam can be no longer than two hours. 

 No calculators, computers, or materials other than a writing instrument may be used for the exam; this applies to all students, regardless of whether the exam is for on-line or face-to-face students. Completion of the exam is strictly individual; students may not work in groups to complete the exam. 

Link to Class Rubric

Class Assessment:
The class assessment will be comprised of case analyses, responses to discussion questions, classroom participation and two examinations. The midterm examination is an open book examination. The comprehensive final is NOT a take-home test and is a closed book and closed notes examination.  

We will identify learning objectives met through written exams; a mid-term exam, core learning-outcomes test, an individual case-study (report) and a Final-Project. Groups will be assigned for the Final-Project.

* The core-outcomes test will be assigned during the 7th class;  no take-home, notes, cell-phones or open-book.
* Instructor learning-objectives will be assessed by responses on the mid-term, written assignments and final-project.



Mid-Term Exam:         20% - 200 points
Individual case-study:   20% - 200 points
Core Test:                   20% - 200 points
Participation:               15% -  150 points
Final Group Project:    25%  - 250 points

900-  1000  =  A
800-   890   =  B
700-   790   =  C
600-   690   =  D
Under 600   =  F

The course grade for students will be based on the overall average of homework and tests taken during the course in accordance with the weighting of the various requirements as stated in the syllabus.

All final exams in all School of Business courses will be comprehensive and will be closed book and closed notes. They will constitute 30% of the total course grade and will not be a take-home exam. They will be completed during the test week in the period designated by the registrar or by the Proctor in the case online courses. If calculators are allowed, they will not be multifunctional electronic devices that include features such as: phones, cameras, instant messaging, pagers, and so forth. Electronic Computers will not be allowed on final exams unless an exception is made by the Dean of the School of Business.

Late Submission of Course Materials:
Basically, late work is NOT accepted.  However, there may be cases where deviation may be allowed. The major point is that late work should be the exception and not the rule and will only be accepted on a case by case basis with instructor approval. Therefore, the following applies to ALL late work, unless prior arrangements have been made with and approved by the instructor: All late work will be downgraded at the discretion of the instructor, up to 20 points for every day or part of a day it is late. Late work may not be accepted if it is more than 5 days late. No late work for weeks 1 through 4 will be accepted after the end of week 4. No late work will be accepted after the end of week 8. Unless all required work is submitted, the student could receive a failing grade for the course. N.B.: Since this is a "CASE STUDY" Course, failure to complete all the case studies, (COULD) or the proctored final examination, (WILL) result in failure of the course

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

Conduct of this course will include; lecture and group-discussion, case-studies and analysis, written-exams, and (group) oral/written presentations, backed up with PPT presentations.  The case-study method has proven to be effective and introspective in developing efficient use of knowledge and analytical tools gained and enhanced during the course.

Students are expected to attend all classes and participate in class-discussions, oral presentations and group projects.  Attendance/class-participation will be considered, based on performance-quality related to class participation, practical exercises and group activity.  There will be two written exams; mid-term and core-test. They will be based on the reading-assignments and case-studies covered in class and the text.
* A senior-management test (Peregrine) will be administered during the term, as instructed by administration.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Class Activities,



Meeting - 1,

Chapter 1; Review & discussion.

Read Chap.1


Meeting - 2,

Chapter 2&3; Review & discuss.

Read Chaps 2 & 3


Meeting - 3,

Chapter 4&5; Review & discuss.

Read Chap. 4 & 5

Review for Mid-Term

Meeting - 4,

Chapter 6&7; Review & discuss.

Read Chap. 6 & 7 

Mid-Term Test; Chaps.1 thru 7

Meeting - 5,

Chapter 8&9; Review & discuss.

Read Chap. 8 & 9


Meeting - 6,

Chapter 10; Review & discuss.

Read Chap. 10

Individual case-study prep & senior test. 

Meeting - 7,

Chapter 11; Review & discuss.

Read Chap. 11
Study for Core Test

Core Test; Chaps. 1-11
Individual case-study due

Meeting - 8,

Prepare final group presentation.

Prepare presentation 
Group Presentations

Group Presentations;
Final Project; Re-cap class.

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life. Park University students and faculty members are encouraged to take advantage of the University resources available for learning about academic honesty ( or Park University 2012-2013 Undergraduate Catalog Page 97

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. from Park University 2012-2013 Undergraduate Catalog Page 95

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.

Park University 2012-2013 Undergraduate Catalog Page 98

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: .


CompetencyExceeds Expectation (3)Meets Expectation (2)Does Not Meet Expectation (1)No Evidence (0)
Explain what is meant by the term                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    
Provides Porter's definition of the term, a thorough explanation of how a firm has a superior position to that of competitors, and at least one actual example Provides Porter's definition and an explanation of competitive advantage which supports the superior position of the firm to that of competitors Provides only a definition of the term “competitive advantage” No answer or insignificant explanation 
Identify the five forces that shape competition as described by Porter                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
Identification and description of Porter's forces and an explanation of how each force impacts the competitive environment. Identify all five of  the forces as described by Porter. Identification of less than five of the forces. No answer or a provision of  unrelated, insignificant data. 
List three directional strategies.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
List of the three different directional strategies,  a description of each, and an explanation of the effect of use on the organization's plans. List  three directional strategies that may be used in planning by an organization. List less than three different directional strategies. No answer or a provision of  unrelated, insignificant data. 
Define the term “strategy”.  Define the term “strategic management”.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
Provide a complete definition of the term(s) and an explanation of how each term is used in the analysis of business plans. Provide a complete definition of the term(s). Provide a partial definition of the term(s). No answer or a provision of  unrelated, insignificant data. 
List the five stages of international development.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
Provide a list of the five stages and explain how the stages may or may not be evolutionary. Provide a list of the five stages in order of development. Provide a list of less than five stages and/or not in the order of development. No answer or a provision of  unrelated, insignificant data 
*List four phases of strategic management. *List four basic elements of strategic management.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
*Provide a list of the four phases along with an explanation or description of the activities that occur during the respective phase.

*Provide a list of the four elements along with an explanation or description of  how the element is important to the overall management plan. 
*Provide a list of the of the four phases in order of  phasing.

*Provide a list of the four elements.

*Provide a list of less than four  phases and/or not in the order of  phasing.

*Provide a list of less than four  elements. 
*No answer or a provision of  unrelated, insignificant data

*No answer or a provision of  unrelated, insignificant data 
Whole Artifact                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             
List four phases of strategic management.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            
Provides a thorough, detailed list, description and explanation of the company's phase of strategic management, the elements being used, the competitive advantage, and a prediction of the long range effect on the organization. Using the lists and an actual company case report, identify the phase of strategic management, the elements being used, the strategic direction, and the competitive advantage. Provides incomplete list(s), and partial  or incomplete identification of the phase of strategic management, the elements being used, the strategic direction, and the competitive advantage. No answer or a provision of  unrelated, insignificant data 
List the five stages of international development.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
Submits a complete list, identifies the stage of development in an actual (or provided) business, and predicts the long range outcome or effect on the business. Provides a complete list and using the list, identifies the stage of international development in an actual (or provided) business. Provides an incomplete list and/or unable to use the list, to identify the stage of international development in an actual (or provided) business. No answer or a provision of  unrelated, insignificant data 


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Last Updated:1/24/2013 8:08:50 PM