Goals and Core Competencies
Aletheia University Department of Business Administration
Educational Objectives, Main Achievement/Core Competencies
The Department of Business Administration in Aletheia University trains and equips students with business management expertise, with an international perspective, with a sense of ethics, cultural and societal responsibility, to become mainstays in the society and in the business realm.
Main Achievement/Core Competencies:
This department cultivates students’ professional skills and ability such as: (1) technical and practical skills, (2) interpersonal communication skills and teamwork, (3) independent thinking, conceptualization and innovation, (4) international perspective, and (5) corporate social responsibility.
To become experts in business management is to embody a manager with professional knowledge, including technical capacity, interpersonal, and conceptual capabilities. Functional managers need more technical capacity and less conceptualization while on the other hand, senior-level managers need less technical and more conceptual skills.
Practical skills refer to work-specific knowledge and abilities to perform an organizational role. A professional business manager must have the following skills and abilities: accounting processes and know-how financial statement analysis; computer and Internet network literacy; collection, organization, analysis, presentation and usage of data for statistical inference; use of futures, options and various financial instruments to hedge and take advantage of arbitrage opportunities on foreign exchange, commodities and financial assets.
Business managers need to frequently communicate and coordinate with their supervisors, subordinates, peers, customers, and suppliers so strong interpersonal skills are highly necessary. Interpersonal competence refers to the ability to understand, change, lead, and control the behavior of other individuals and groups. In order to train students’ interpersonal skills, the course curriculum is designed to include courses such as Organizational Behavior, Consumer Behavior, Business Communication and Negotiation. Aside from these courses, students are required to facilitate group discussions and make report presentations. The department also encourages students to participate in national and international academic seminars and do written as well as oral presentations. Furthermore, the department organizes case competitions and other activities for students. Lastly, they are motivated to participate in different social organizations and community activities, which can all greatly boost their interpersonal skills.
As senior managers go on to occupy higher levels in the company, the more they need conceptual skills. This implies the ability of creating constructs from trivial concepts and ideas, and then analyzing the situation thoroughly. Because high-level managers have to handle more and more complex scenarios, they must be able to streamline a large number of trivial and concrete ideas into constructs prepared for strategic thinking. In order to cultivate the students’ conceptual skills, the department provides management classes, give management and strategic management courses. The department also conducts regular tournaments to encourage students to practice solving cases with the use of learned concepts and theories.
International vision refers to the abilities of students to work and compete globally in the future. Since the 1990s, the era of knowledge economy emerged. A country or a group of individuals who are able to create and acquire advanced knowledge and technology can create wealth. However, most of these advancements are created in Europe and the United States where intellectual property protection is more rigorous and all the information is written in English. If Taiwanese students lack the ability to proficiently read English, there is little to no opportunity to acquire such knowledge and technology, thereby affecting national economic development and national income growth. It is more and more critical to possess professional English skills to be able to create economic boom with these foreign advancements. However, the students’ English proficiency is only in the moderate level and the ability to read professional English is limited. This not only affects the national economic development but also affects the students’ competence. Therefore, this department emphasizes the students’ international view and English ability through the promotion of using non-translated textbooks in class, setting of English grade threshold as a graduation qualification, encouragement of more interaction with the language, and provision of opportunities for students to participate in international seminars. These efforts goes not to say that students will have topnotch English skills upon graduation but rather, hope that through consistent and persistent contact with the language, the students are able to improve their own professional English ability.
Many recent global events, including the case of Enron, have transformed the public’s perception of enterprises into the negative side. The recent occupation of the Wall Street movement reflects such negative outlook for the entire business world. In Taiwan, the fire accidents of Formosa Petrochemical Corp., mass displacement of employees from Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. Ltd. (subsidiary of Foxconn Technology Group), as well as the controversies of food additives and plasticizers – have all affected the way people think about corporate interests especially shareholders’ priorities, the concept of Corporate Social Responsibility and social attention. Corporate Social Responsibility refers to the way in which an enterprise operates to meet the standards of moral, legal and societal requirements. Aside from considering the interests of shareholders, there is also a need to take into account the impact on other stakeholders such as the employees, consumers, community residents, and the natural environment. This department aims to train and educate a full range of professional managers who like physicians, lawyers, accountants and other professionals, to always comply with ethical norms even in unpredictable circumstances. They must have the ability to base decisions on moral values and judgments in coordination with the interests of stakeholders. Therefore, this department requires students to take Corporate Ethics and Governance, as well as Human Rights courses. The concept of CSR is also weaved into different subjects and relevant course materials. The department also holds a business ethics case competition with the goal of enabling students to understand and apply social values and to finally, make moral judgments.
To become a full-range professional manager, it not only requires professional knowledge but also have a deep understanding of human relations. Humanistic literacy refers to the ability of observing social phenomena, understanding social problems, and paying careful attention to the society. First, achieving this helps professional managers understand the accepted social values and help them make moral decisions. Second, many new business innovations are born from the entrepreneur’s observation of the changing humanities and social practices, such as Facebook. Facebook was built on the entrepreneur’s understanding of people’s strong demand for social networks and saw a great opportunity to cater to such demand. Therefore, professional managers must be equipped with very strong human relations quality.
We strongly believe that if students have the expertise on enterprise management, an international perspective, the ability to continuously improve English skills, and have the ability to make moral judgments, they can become pillars of our society and business organizations. They can help enterprises create value while attaining profits, and supporting continued growth of the national economy as well as stabilization of our society.