Certificate in Financial Decision Making and Business Analytics

Business School Ranked 3rd Nationally • University Ranked 9th Worldwide • College Ranked 3rd Nationally


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Final Application Deadline: Monday, September 4, 2018
Language Requirement: TOEFL 100 or IELTS 6
Coordinator: Gus Mosse
Program Dates: January 3 – June 16, 2018
Program Tuition: $30,000
(includes tuition, course materials, accommodation and meals)
Quarter: Winter and Spring


The Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies is offering a certificate program in Financial Decision Making and Business Analytics for students at the Capital University of Economics and Business (CUEB). The program begins in January and ends in June, with the option for qualified students to extend their studies through August. It will push students to develop their financial and analytical skills in a community dedicated to rigorous study and critical thinking. The program will offer courses in Financial Decision Making during the winter quarter and Business Analytics in the spring. In addition, students will complete a two-week Intensive Academic English course at the beginning of the program and continue to take academic and professional ESL courses throughout the duration of their stay. The program offers US models of Financial Decision Making and the practice of Business Analytics, exposing students to valuable international perspectives. 

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Financial Decision Making (January 22 - March 30)

Through rigorous coursework in economics, corporate finance, and accounting, students will gain insight into the various aspects involved in business decision making in a global setting. In addition, students in the program will be exposed to the University of Chicago practices of critical inquiry, rigorous analysis, and innovative thinking.

Financial Accounting
This course teaches you the terminology, tools, and techniques of financial accounting and shows you the relationships among major types of financial statements: balance sheets, cash flow statements, and income and expense statements. You learn how these statements are prepared, what information you can learn from them, how they treat the most common kinds of assets and liabilities, and how they report revenues, expenses, and cash flows according to generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP). Financial reporting requirements for various kinds of firms are discussed. 
Managerial Analysis
Financial accounting looks back at past financial performance and generates statements meant especially for a company's external stakeholders, such as investors, lenders, and government regulators. Managerial analysis looks forward and serves decision makers inside the company. This course shows you an array of practical, flexible tools you can employ to analyze and measure financial and organizational performance. This will help you manage and reduce costs, increase operational efficiency, identify profit-maximizing production and service volumes, improve internal controls, and develop performance metrics for critical business processes and operations. 
Corporate Finance
This course teaches principles and practices in corporate finance, with a particular emphasis on evaluating levels of risk and rates of return on corporate investments and resource allocations. Topics in the course include risk/reward assessment, the time value of money, interest rates, discounted cash flow analysis, rates of return, the capital asset pricing model, sources of funding, capital structure of a firm, stock issuance and buy-backs, dividend policy, and cash management. 
Constructing Investment Portfolios
This course teaches knoweldge and skills especially relevant to those pursuing careers in investing and portfolio management. But even for corporate managers, the course provides insight into how important corprate stakeholders, namely, shareholders and investors, get and respond to information about corporate financial performance. Topics include financial markets, stocks, bonds, options, methods of trading, sources of information, investment portfolio objectives, risk and volatility, asset allocations, and theories of fundamental and technical analysis. 

Students in classroom

Business Analytics (April 9 - June 15)

Working with data effectively to drive insights is becoming a necessary skill for every individual who would like to make sound decisions. The spring quarter Business Analytics curriculum is designed to improve students' evidence-based decision-making skills. It will equip them with the ability to manage analytics teams and act as translators between business and technical people. 

Statistical Analysis
This course provides a comprehensive and practical introduction to statistical data analysis. The statistical techniques taught in this course will enable students to analyze complex datasets and formulate and solve real-world problems to facilitate data-driven decisions. Throughout the course, students will learn concepts and fundamentals of statistical inference and regression analysis by studying theory, developing intuition, and working through several practical examples. 
Leadership Skills: Teams, Strategies, and Communications
In this course, students learn how to work effectively in teams to identify, structure, and communicate the business value of data analytics to an organization. The goals of the course are (1) to identify points in an organization that can benefit from analytics; (2) to structure analytic problems from a strategic perspective, thereby identifying business impact; (3) to develop the ability to communicate the power of analytics to others; and (4) to work in a team to accomplish these and related goals successfully.  
Data Mining Principles
Drawing on statistics, artificial intelligence and machine learning, the data mining process aims at discovering novel, interesting and actionable patterns in large datasets. This class will introduce the student to the fundamentals of data mining: association and sequence rules discovery, memory-based reasoning, classification and regression decision trees, comparison of data mining models, logistic models, scorecard models, and neural network models. 
Data Visualization Techniques
This course teaches students how to work with real-world data and leverage analytics to help solve business problems. We will examine data requirements and sources of data; utilize statistical techniques and visualization methods to evaluate data completeness and quality; assess and compare model performance; learn how to effectively communicate analytical insights to non-technical audiences. 

Academic Credits and Registration

UChicago campus with student riding bicycle. Students in the Financial Decision Making and Business Analytics program will be registered as full-time students at the University of Chicago. They receive 300 units of credit per quarter, which grants them full-time student status. Students who successfully complete all course requirements will be awarded a Certificate in Financial Decision Making and Business Analytics and a transcript by the University of Chicago. Completion of the program will position students to apply to take Summer Session courses alongside University of Chicago students.


Participants in this program are housed in a contemporary apartment complex within easy commuting distance of the University of Chicago campus. Apartments come furnished with beds, furniture, and full size kitchens. Additional amenities include complimentary WiFi, multiple lounge areas, a fitness center, a computer center, bike storage, and free laundry facilities on every other floor. A University of Chicago Graduate Assistant will be housed at the residence with the students.

Program Faculty


John Twomby, Ph.D

John Twombly, Ph.D.

John Twombly, Ph.D.

Professor John R. Twombly holds a Ph.D. and an MBA from the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business and a BS in Economics (summa cum laude) from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. Currently the Undergraduate Program Director and Clinical Professor of Accounting and Finance at The IIT-Stuart School of Business, Professor Twombly has held positions at Northwestern University's Kellogg School, The Wharton School, the University of Chicago, Loyola University of Chicago, and the University of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada.

In addition to his classroom teaching, Professor Twombly presents CFA review sessions and has conducted continuing education seminars for major corporations, including ABN-AMRO, Avery International, Caterpillar Inc., Dial Corporation, Harris Bank, Reichhold Chemical, and Traveler's Express. Professor Twombly applies his financial acumen by actively managing a residential real estate portfolio in Chicago/Evanston.

  • Financial Accounting
Ira Goldberg, Ph.D

Ira Goldberg, Ph.D.

Ira Goldberg, Ph.D.

Ira Goldberg provides strategic financial leadership, analysis, and advice for the Argonne National Laboratory Leadership Computing Facility, which delivers world-leading computing capability for breakthrough science and engineering. He is utilized as a lab-wide resource for cost benefit analyses, leases, and third party financing. Prior positions at Argonne include heading finance for the Leadership Computing Facility and heading finance and administration for the CIO.

Previously, Mr. Goldberg was Vice President for Finance and Treasurer of Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois. While at Knox, he oversaw the largest bond issue in the college's history, restructured the endowment investments, and led a transition to computerization in the Business Office. He teaches Economics, Finance, and Decision Making at the University of Chicago's Graham School and has worked in economics and finance as a consultant.

Mr. Goldberg is involved as a volunteer. He served the Argonne Credit Union for over ten years in different capacities, including Chairman of the Board, Treasurer, and Supervisory Committee Chair. A former board member of the University of Chicago Alumni Club-Chicago, he was voted President Emeritus, and continues to plan alumni events. He also served as a volunteer and Board member of the Chicago Booth School Alumni Club for 20 years.

Mr. Goldberg holds a Doctorate and Masters in Economics from Southern Illinois University where he wrote his dissertation about philosophy of science and social science. He also has an MBA in finance and accounting from the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business. Mr. Goldberg has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Knox College. He enjoys outdoor activities, especially hiking, biking, gardening, and cross country skiing, and finished in the top ten at the 2014 Turkish Airlines World Golf Cup finals.

  • Managerial Analysis

Charles Sloan

Charles Sloan

Charles M. Sloan joined Oak Family Advisors, LLC, a registered investment firm, on April 1, 2016 as President and Co-Chief Investment Officer.

Mr. Sloan is a seasoned investment analyst and portfolio manager. After working as a staff auditor with the firm of Arthur Andersen & Co. from 1988-1990, Charlie began working in the financial industry in 1990 at Harris Trust and Savings Bank, a subsidiary of Bank of Montreal, in trust administration and asset management. He then worked for Holland Capital Management (HCM) as a senior equity analyst from 2000-2001 and again from 2003-2005. Between 2001-2003, Charlie worked for Bufka & Rogers, LLC (now part of Mid-Continental Capital, LLC) as a Portfolio Manager, and returned in 2005 as an Executive Vice President and Portfolio Manager where he worked until March of 2015. Most recently he served as Interim CFO for Forward Health Group, a Population Healthcare software company in Madison, Wisconsin.

  • Constructing Investment Portfolios

David Ellis

David Ellis

David B. Ellis has served as Adjunct Professor in the Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies for over ten years. Mr. Ellis received an MBA in Finance and Accounting from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business in 1979. The majority of his business career was at the Sara Lee Corporation in Chicago, for which he filled various financial positions in both Financial Planning and Analysis and in the Treasury Department, where he was Assistant Treasurer with responsibility for all areas, including corporate finance, debt issuance, international and foreign currency, merger and acquisition funding and integration, cash management, and worldwide pension funding. In addition to teaching at the Graham School, he also serves as the General Manager of the Evanston Symphony Orchestra, in which role he was honored as the Orchestra Manager of the Year for 2012 by the Illinois Council of Orchestras.

  • Corporate Finance