Accounting, Operations, and Information Systems

Major in Operations Management


Description of Field

All firms have an operations function. It is the group of people concerned with delivering a product or service to the customer. A basic understanding of this process is important within all functional areas of a firm. The success of many businesses and government organizations depends on how efficiently they can match supply and demand. In general, operations management students study the business processes needed for the purchasing, transformation and delivery of goods and services. Specific topics include demand forecasting, workforce planning and scheduling, production planning and scheduling, inventory management, and supply chain management. These topics are supported and complemented by the study of analytical tools such as optimization and simulation, which are useful not only to analyze operations but other business issues as well.

Career Opportunities

Opportunities for majors are in the operations function of any firm. Large firms have departments dedicated to different aspects of the operations function. Smaller firms need operations specialists to drive out cost from the delivery process. Firms with international operations, including ones who outsource parts of their operations, need people who can manage international supply chains. Business analysts provide simulation or mathematical models of crucial decisions to inform choices. Minors in Operations Management with a concentration in Business Analytics will learn to develop decision support systems to help inform choices in their field. Minors concentrating in Operations will bring to their job an understanding of the process by which the firm satisfies customer needs.

Sequence of Courses

Year Two -- Fall Year Two -- Winter
  • ACCTG 311
  • BUS 201
  • MARK 301
  • MGTSC 312
  • *3 in electives outside Business (See Note 1)
  • ACCTG 322 or MIS 311 (See Note 2)
  • FIN 301
  • OM 352
  • SMO 310
  • *3 in electives outside Business (See Note 1)
Year Three Year Four
  • BLAW 301 (See Note 3)
  • BUEC 311 or ECON 281 (See Notes 5)
  • MIS 311 or ACCTG 322 (See Note 2)
  • *12 in Operations Management electives (See Note 4)
  • *6 in free electives (See Note 1)
  • *3 in electives outside Business (See Note 1)
  • *9 in Operations Management electives (See Note 4)
  • *21 in free electives (See Note 1)


  1. See U of A Calendar section 64.1.4
  2. Either ACCTG 322 or MIS 311 may be taken in Year Two with the other taken in Year Three.
  3. May be taken in any year except Year Two, Fall Term.
  4. May be taken in either of Year Three or Year Four.
  5. Operations Management electives may be chosen from any 400-level OM courses and from a list of additional approved courses available from the Department of Accounting, Operations & Information Systems. At least four of the seven Operations Management electives must be chosen from 400-level OM courses, MGTSC 405 and 455.
  6. Students planning to take advanced course work in Economics may wish to substitute ECON 281. See U of A Calendar section 64.1.4(4). ECON courses used to satisfy the requirements of this major may not be used to satisfy the requirements for coursework outside the School of Business.


  1. Students with a declared major in Operations Management may choose to do a minor in any subject area of Business. See U of A Calendar section 64.1.5. Minors are not required. Students are urged to select areas that complement the major. Students may also wish to consider the Cooperative Education program (see U of A Calendar section 64.5).
  2. Students with a declared major in another area may complete a minor in Operations Management by fulfilling the requirements of U of A Calendar section 64.1.5. *3 must be in OM 352.
  3. Students wishing to construct informal programs of study outside the School of Business should consider the following suggestions:
    1. Economics: Any senior ECON course, with Departmental approval.
    2. Statistics/Mathematics: Additional work is recommended for students who are interested in graduate studies, for example, MATH 373 and STAT 265