Multidisciplinary Action Projects - MAP

Course Code
BA 553

7.5 hours

Multidisciplinary Action Projects (MAP) --- MAP is a field study program in which teams of students apply structured problem solving techniques to analyze multidisciplinary business problems or opportunities and make recommendations for improvements. It is a unique feature of the Ross MBA program -- the action learning experience it provides is central to the School's curriculum. Students learn how businesses apply and integrate multiple functions and gain an appreciation of the value of teamwork through an intense hands-on project at a sponsoring company. Students are strongly discouraged from taking additional course work while enrolled in MAP due to time obligations and intensive group work. More specifically, participation in international or non-local projects especially requires that no other course work is concurrent in Winter "B"

Multidisciplinary Action Projects provide an opportunity for teams of first-year MBA students to analyze a real, complex business problem or opportunity in an organizational context with a participating company.  Each team works under the guidance of a multidisciplinary faculty group with expertise in areas such as the following: Computer and Information Systems, Managerial Accounting, Operations Management, Organizational Behavior, Statistics and Management Science, Management Communication, Corporate Strategy, Finance and Marketing.  Each faculty team guides a group of projects during the second seven weeks of the Winter term. 

The MAP teams design new processes, generate ideas for optimizing business and e-commerce opportunities, and recommend process improvements or business solutions for a variety of current business needs. The teams do not usually have time during the seven-week program to initiate implementation of their recommendations.  Upon completion of their analysis, the MAP students prepare a detailed written report and make formal presentations of their recommendations to the Business School faculty and to representatives from the host company. 

Management Communication faculty are assigned to MAP each year, one to each faculty team.  In addition to working with their colleagues to guide and evaluate students, the Communication faculty consult with students on management communication issues in the projects assigned to their faculty team. These issues include such topics as addressing multiple audiences, adapting communication to specific contexts and requirements, identifying existing communication networks, developing effective team communication practices, disseminating information through formal and informal channels, and communicating values and visions.  Communication faculty advise students on their final written reports and presentations.  They offer a MAP Communication Handbook both in hard copy and online that discusses and illustrates best practices in written and oral aspects of organizational written and oral communication.