Starting WGU MBA IT Management on Mar 1, 2019



  • Basic85Basic85 Member Posts: 182 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Will you be paying for this all out of your pocket?  
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin
    No, my employer will pay for everything less the $145/term service & resource fee.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin
    I just completed MGT2 - IT Project Management. This course requires three task submissions demonstrating sufficient competency to pass. The tasks are based on typical work and problems a project manager would encounter in creating and managing IT projects.

    Overall it was a very good class for me as someone who has only worked in IT projects and has never had to manage (non-trivial) IT projects. The hands-on, learn-by-doing method of this course really helped me learn the material. The course texts (PMBOK, etc.) are more reference material than reading assignments. The amount of document, video, and live support is more than generous to pass this class. The really tricky part is knowing when you have completed enough of the tasks to turn in. You could keep working on them nearly forever, refining and improving the detail and accuracy. To get me through this course, I focused on something an instructor said: "The task doesn't need to be perfect, just reasonable." That really helped. Still, I look much longer than I needed to complete because I have a tendency to over-engineer complex work.

  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin

    I just passed C202 - Managing Human Capital. This is a Human Resources Management (HRM) class focused on what a manager should know about HR in the USA. The course is basically a grand memory association exercise of HR terms, concepts, and history. It also gives an idea of how the HR department thinks and what a manager should be thinking/doing with his/her own reports as well.

    Studying for C202 is accomplished by sifting through quite a bit of online materials, which includes videos and topic quizzes. There are also pre-recorded tutorial sessions (via Adobe Connect) and several very helpful study guide docs. However, I must admit that a good deal of my "cramming" was from a very extensive flashcard set on Quizlet that was recently posted. I'd recommend this set for anyone taking C202 or wanting a preview of its content.

    This was my first Objective Assessment course, meaning that the course is passed by exam testing rather than by submitting papers or projects. Only a single, 70-question exam is required to pass C202. You are given two hours to take, but I only needed 35 minutes and passed on the first attempt.

    In preparation for the final assessment exam, there is a pre-assessment exam that you can take up to three times. (The content is the same for each take.) Its format and style is a fairly good representation of the final exam. It is recommended that you take the pre-assessment first before studying the C202 material. This will give you a baseline of your native understanding of the material and also allow the instructor to give you advice on what topics you need to study before taking the final exam. You can take the pre-assessment again when you feel that you need testing again, such as a day before you take the final assessment exam.

    Now I am at a decision point. I have finished my first term at WGU two months early. I can opt to start the next course in my degree plan (C212 - Marketing) early or take the next two months off for a Summer vacation from WGU work. I am in no hurry to complete this MBA program, but I am very interested in the next class and quite tempted to dive into it now. However, I would be "under the gun" to get the course completed by the end of the term. I think that I just talked myself into going for it now.
  • UnixGuyUnixGuy Mod Posts: 4,504 Mod
    @JDMurray Did you get a chance to go through some theories in Managing human capital? e.g. equity theory, goal setting theory, motivation, ...etc?


    Check out my YouTube Channel!

  • MrsWilliamsMrsWilliams Member Posts: 192 ■■■■□□□□□□

    Great Progress and detailed review thus far.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin
    UnixGuy said:
    @JDMurray Did you get a chance to go through some theories in Managing human capital? e.g. equity theory, goal setting theory, motivation, ...etc?

    Yes, but only skimmed the concepts in case they appeared on the exam. An MBA course of study only gives you a taste of topics and provides little opportunity for "deep dives" into anything. You would need to do such extra studying on your own. (Does "a mile wide and an inch deep" sound familiar to IT certification fanciers? :) )
  • UnixGuyUnixGuy Mod Posts: 4,504 Mod
    @JDMurray I really enjoyed learning those theories, and I've been noticing them in different work situations. Thought they were useful

    Check out my YouTube Channel!

  • Swift6Swift6 Member Posts: 268 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Doing good @JDMurray. Your MBA journey so far makes for an interesting read.
    Keep the posts coming.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin
    edited August 2019

    I just passed C212 - Marketing. This is a broad-based marketing course whose material is somewhat focused on technology businesses and products. The major topic areas are the function of marketing, Customer Relationship Management, feasibility and profitability of marketing products, marketing strategies, and risks and opportunities in an entrepreneurial enterprise. In this course, there is the usual online readings, videos, and external links to other resources. No cohort meetings are offered, but the instructors are readily available to answer student's questions.

    There is only one task in C212, a paper in which you create a marketing plan for technology to introduce two new products (goods or services) into a global (non-USA) marketspace. Unless you are already a marketing person, the research you will need to do to write this paper will give you a very good insight into what is needed when considering to launch a specific product in a specific market--or not.

    The one curious thing about this paper is the recommended size is 8-10 pages. However, there are 17 headings in the paper's template. Writing one page of material per heading (1-inch margins, double-spaced) and adding a cover, TOC, and references section will bring the paper to 20-pages at a minimum. (My paper was 23 pages.) I have a tendency to over-engineer anything that I am working on, so I took much longer to finish this paper than I should have. My paper was accepted on the first attempt. (Hint: Use a lot of resources on the Internet rather than searching through the course materials to do your research.)

    I will admit that I was initially excited to take this course. I have complained about advertising and marketing tactics my entire life, but I have never actually taken a course in marketing. Well, while this course contains good material, the material is also very non-technical and did not hold my attention very well. I suppose the course material wasn't "information-dense" enough for me. This is also the first time I found the online format of the WGU course material to be a bother. I would rather have had the course material in book-form that I could quickly flip through when I got bored with the topic that I was reading. I also miss using a yellow hi-lighter to mark important facts written on paper.

    Completing C212 also completes my first term at WGU and puts my MBA program at 34% completed. Now I need to get with my student advisor and get enrolled in term 2. My Letter of Credit is already sitting in Student Accounts and waiting for me to accept my next course before billing my tuition assistance provider. Let's hope billing goes more smoothly this time!
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin

    I just passed MMT2 - IT Strategic Solutions. This is a 4 CU course requiring your papers written to demonstrate an understanding of a wide variety of topics, including business communications, business ethics, risk management, security policies, analysis of IT architecture, business needs, and identify emerging technologies that may support future business goals. These papers were long and, despite following the course rubric religiously, I'm sure that I over-engineered these papers as typical for me. 

    This is another good example of a WGU course where you must steadily chip away at it or it will seemingly drag on forever. Be sure to create all your task paper templates, watch the videos, and read all the FAQ/FYI course information available. I didn't need to communicate with any of the course instructors and there were no live cohorts. You don't need to do the tasks in order (I did 1,3,2,4) but do task 1 first to get you off on understanding what the course is about.

  • EANxEANx Member Posts: 1,077 ■■■■■■■■□□
    It's important to write the amount that you think is necessary, rather than focusing on a number of pages. The "8-10 pages" for your marketing paper is a suggestion, your submission was 23 pages, mine was five and a half and both passed on the first attempt. I found early on that I went faster when I wasn't trying to add extra material or make material tighter. I decided I'd fix what was needed if a paper ever came back. Only time I had a paper returned was when I didn't answer the requirement in quite the right way and that only happened twice. 
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin
    Yes, my minimum content is one-page per A-head for each paper. Each entry in the course's rubric is one A-head. Therefore, 17 A-heads will create a paper 17+ pages in length. Of course, many A-head sections are more than one page in length in my papers.  :|

    I'm now in the C206 ethics course. Based on your experience, EANx, I'm thinking that I'll try the "small and tight" content format and see if I can get all three papers submitted and accepted by Thanksgiving.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin
    edited November 2019

    This week I passed C206 - Ethical Leadership putting me at 54% complete for the WGU MBA IT degree. This is a very "soft" course detailing ethical theory, legal and regulatory requirements, ethical problems, and whistleblowing. If you work in a large company that has an ethics department, code of conduct training, and a corporate social responsibility initiative then this course material should be very familiar to you. In fact, you can probably complete and submit all the required work in a week if you are very familiar with corporate legal and HRM ethical issues.

    This is the first WGU course that I've taken that has been recently revised (released in September 2019). The cohort sessions covered the requirements of both the new and previous releases. This presented an interesting view of how WGU revises a course to make the material more current and to update or remove aspects of the assignments that have been confusing to a significant number of students.

    I decided to try writing the task papers with the minimal amount of information necessary to convey that I understood the objectives described by the course rubric. My previous papers had been very large, which is my typical academic style. For this course, I decided that for each rubric requirement I would write no more than 2-4 paragraphs of concise and detailed description and explanation. Well, this strategy made the papers much quicker to write and I assumed they would be quicker to grade as well.

    However, the average time to process each paper for grading (including resubmissions for corrections) was nearly two days--the longest of any course I have taken at WGU. (I had become very used to "same day service" for assignment grading from WGU.) I believe this delay is because C206 is a required course in many degree programs at WGU. There are probably many thousands of students concurrently enrolled in C206 along with myself all competing for attention from the graders.

    My next challenge is to complete C211 - Global Economics for Managers by the end of the year. This course looks like a considerable amount of reading. This is an objective assessment (i.e., exam) course. It will be a nice change to compile study notes for a single exam rather than writing 3-4 papers to pass a course.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin

    Today I passed C211 - Global Economics for Managers putting me at 63% complete for the WGU MBA IT degree. This course is a survey of micro and macroeconomics at a high level with no math (but there are some graphs). The information in this course is very relevant to the current USA financial news involving tax cuts, tariffs, the Federal Reserve, international trade, and economic globalization. If you are an active investor who trades in stocks or options you need to know how international trade, exchange, markets, and economies work from the point of view of economists who deal in predicting what consumers will do and how and where money will flow.

    All that being said, this was my most difficult course so far at WGU. I find economics very interesting, but the hundreds of terms, definitions, and concepts that this course presents were really more than I ever wanted to know. I made the mistake of taking this course over the Winter holidays and while I was having major remodeling work performed on my house. Although I did have time to study, if this material doesn't stick in your mind--as it didn't stick in mine--this course can be quite a mountain to climb. 

    This course is completed by passing a single objective assessment (i.e., a final exam) of 50 questions with a passing score of (I'm estimating) 75%. I studied for this assessment in exactly the same way I would for a certification exam by compiling study notes from the course's text and video material, studying only from my notes, scheduling the exam, and then cramming right up to the day of the exam. It was the right strategy for me because I passed with the assessment with a score of around 75% (*whew!*). I genuinely thought I would need one or two retakes to pass.
  • shochanshochan Member Posts: 980 ■■■■■■■□□□
    I'm scheduled to start March 1st, 2020 for the Systems/Cloud BA, but still hesitant to go fwd as some of the classes I absolutely have NO interest in taking (CIW & SQL).  I also hate writing papers, so I am almost to the point of just saying screw it & not even start.
    CompTIA A+, Network+, i-Net+, MCP 70-210, CNA v5, Server+, Security+, Cloud+, CySA+, ISC² CC
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin
    Talk with your program mentor about your concerns; they have heard and fixed it all by now.  :)  Find out how many of the courses you will be taking have performance assessment (i.e., writing assignments). Probably quite a few do but you never know. That degree might be mostly objective assessments (i.e. exams). 
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin

    I just passed C207 - Data-Driven Decision Making putting me at 71% complete for the WGU MBA IT degree and finishing my second term at WGU. This course is a survey of quantitative analysis, statistical tools, and quality tools that requires demonstrating the understanding of how to apply the proper analysis technique to the proper data sets to answer specific questions. I have no background in data analysis (chi square, standard deviation, linear regression, etc.), process controls (control charts, SIPOC, Six Sigma, etc.), or the problems involved in data sampling and bias, so I had to learn everything from the ground up.

    This is the only course in my degree plan that has both a performance assessment (two papers) and objective assessment (final exam). The first paper is used to describe a simple statistical analysis of some real-world data of your own choosing. (I selected a t-test analysis of two groups of some historical stock market prices to accept/reject the null hypothesis.) In the second paper, you present the results of your analysts in a business report form. It took a  couple of tries for me to get the first paper accepted (they are very picky about using the correct wording) and I nailed the second paper on my initial attempt. It was good to get that out of the way because the OA exam was probably my most difficult exam at WGU yet.

    There are so many concepts in this course to learn, understand, and memorize: compare the t-state to the t-critical; know the threshold where the p-value rejects the null hypothesis; histogram vs Pareto; to use linear regression or linear programming, r-square or Bayes theorem. You also learn truisms, such as "You can't manage what you don't measure." Confused? Yeah, me too. The OA exam is only 70 questions, so most of what you learn will not be on the exam, but you have no idea exactly what will be (hint: know standard deviation really well). You must also know how to calculate probability, simple index, and standard deviation for the exam--including memorizing how to draw the Empirical Rule standard deviation chart from memory.

    PRO TIP: You do not need to use a calculator to do the simple arithmetic formulas required for the OA exam, but one is very handy to have. The WGU student handbook has a long list of financial calculators (un)acceptable for use. I bought an HP-12C Platinum for $50 and it worked more than well. (I have two financial courses coming up and it may be useful there too.)

    I ended up doing much better on the C217 OA exam than I had hoped (around 80%) and was genuinely surprised (and relieved) to have passed, as I was resigned to fail the first attempt as a "practice run." The pre-assessment exam and practice quizzes in the course are the same content as the OA exam, but the questions on the exam itself are worded very oddly and required several re-readings to understand. (How often has this been a complaint spoken of IT certification exams?)

    To study for the C217 OA exam, I advise reading/watching everything presented in the course learning plan, attending the live webinars and watching the pre-recorded ones multiple times. Do all the quizzes and drill, drill, drill until you are lecturing other people on statistical models, quantitative analysis techniques, and the differences between quality control and quality assurance. Don't forget to engage your course instructor(s) with questions about what you are not understanding. And finally, may the mean, median, and mode be with you.

    So, now on to my third term, which will be two finance courses followed by the MBA-IT capstone course. My official end date is August 31, 2020, but I'm actually aiming to finish one to two months earlier. I wish that I could read ahead and see what happens. 

  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin
    edited April 2020

    I just passed C213 - Accounting for Decision Makers putting me at 80% complete for the WGU MBA IT degree and in my final term at WGU. This course is a survey of everything to do with accounting. It's "a mile wide and a foot deep" in budgeting, profit planning, cost systems, financial analysis, controls, and regulations. I have no background in finance or accounting and therefore had no prior learning to give me a base for tackling this course. (I have not balanced a checkbook since the 1980's.) Therefore, this course was my most challenging yet at WGU.

    The only requirement to pass C213 is to pass the C213 Objective Assessment (OA) exam. To study for this exam, you must eat this elephant one bite-at-a-time and at a steady pace. Watch all the videos in the course materials, do the quizzes at the end of each section, and read through all of the Course Tips materials. They are put there to help you pass the course more than to make you a better accountant. If you have an accounting/finance background you will burn through the course material a lot faster than those of us who don't really know the difference between a "net" and a "gross."

    I can't recommend the C213 cohort webinars enough. They are invaluable for understanding cash budgeting, internal control and regulations, and financial statements and calculations. Unfortunately, the recordings of past webinars was not available in C213 when I took it. The recordings had been removed and were in the process of being replaced with newer recording with subtitles--a 2020 FERPA requirement. Fortunately, I used Audacity to record the audio of several cohort webinars (the slide decks are made available in Course Tips) and OBS to record audio/video of one webinar successfully. (The webinars are presented online using Cisco WebEx.) I recommend being ready to do this for yourself if the C213 cohort recordings are still not available for you.

    PRO TIP: Once again, a calculator is very handy to have for the assessment exams, but just a 4-function with percents is all you will need.

    Like with C217, I ended up doing much better on the C213 OA exam than I had hoped, and was genuinely surprised at the high score I received (80-85%-ish). The C213 pre-assessment (PA) exam is the same type of content as the OA exam, but (again) the questions on the OA exam can be worded a bit oddly and use terms that you may not have seen in the course material. (Is there at least two terms for everything in the world of accounting?) Over-study for the C213 PA and you'll pass the OA exam the first time.

    Finally, I must mention some very good Websites to use for supplemental study information. I have found wonderful accounting and financial explanations on Investopedia, My Accounting Course, and AccountingTools. Investopedia, in particular, has very understandable explanations of accounting concepts and good and short video explanations too. People have also put together flashcards of WGU course study terms on Quizlet. Search on Quizlet for WGU and the course code (such as "WGU C213") and you'll find more than a few decks. Just make sure you study from recent Quizlet decks and not ones that are many years old.

    Next up is C214 - Financial Management (aka "The Beast"). I've read this is the course where you will need to actually use the financial functions on your financial calculator. I just started C214 today so wish me luck!
  • NyblizzardNyblizzard Member Posts: 332 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I just finished the MSCIA and plan on starting this degree later this year and your writeups will be front and center. Thank you for the constant updates!
    / \
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin
    Great, I'm find you my after-course ramblings useful!

    WGU periodically updates each of its courses, so you might find some differences in several of these MBA courses when you take them, but the spirit of the process will be the same. 
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,866 Admin

    I just passed C214 - Financial Management putting me at 89% complete for the WGU MBA IT degree. This course is about the principles and processes of financial decision-making for public corporations. The major concepts covered are efficient market prices, balancing risk and return, the Time Value of Money (TVM), types of financial statements, and how cash is moved around. Most of the problems you will need to solve to pass this course are based on these concepts. If you already understand these concepts well, and know how to use the FV, PV, PMT, I/Y, and N keys on a financial calculator, you will find the C214 material very familiar. Except for C213, I have no background in finance or accounting and therefore had no prior learning to give me a base for tackling this course, which will likely be my most challenging in this degree program.

    There is one course in every degree program that is given the nickname "The Beast" and this course was definitely it for me. C214 is a "mile wide and an inch deep" buffet of a financial terms, concepts, formulas and language that was all new to me. You only need to pass one, 70-question Objective Assessment (OA) exam to pass the course, but getting there is most of the battle. 

    A vital key to passing the OA on your first attempt is to completely understand all of the elements of the balance sheet, the income statement, and the statement of cash flows (from operations, investment, and financing). Be able to write out these statements on a blank sheet of paper. From this you will have a very good understanding of many of the financial formulas and ratios that you need to know for this course. Throw in capital management, capital market theory, long-term investments, and government regulations and you get an idea of the rest. You are given three hours to complete the OA; I did it in 90 minutes and passed on my first attempt.

    C214 is the only WGU course I've taken where the majority of recommendations from both students and instructors was to not use the eText course material to study for the OA. Instead, there are numerous quizzes, study guides, and recordings of cohort webinars provided that boil-down the finance concepts and formulas found in the eText material. The course overview video (2.5 hours) and the three session videos (1-1.5 hours each) are available in the Announcements and Course Tips sections and are an absolute must to learn from. These are recordings of the cohort webinars that you may attend live to ask questions. These sessions cover all of the concepts in the PA and OA exams and also provide instructions on how to use the TI calculator.

    PRO TIP: The C214 course material is based on using the inexpensive TI BA II Plus calculator. However, you can use another type of financial calculator if you learn how to use it properly. Having no prior experience using a financial calculator, I decided to use the HP 12c Platinum for C214 (and for C213 and C207 as well), which is only a little more costly than the TI. I much prefer HP calculators (with RPN) to other brands and decided the HP 12c was for me, as I would have had to learn either the 12c or BA II from the ground-up anyway. The HP 12c is also the longest-lived and best-selling device ever produced by Hewlett-Packard, so I figured that millions of financial professionals can't all be using the wrong calculator.

    There are also video recordings of cohorts reviewing conceptual financial material, financial formulas, and some problematic topics as well. These cohort videos become unavailable as they are periodically refreshed by newer videos, but the information is basically the same. Sometimes it takes a long while  for the recording to be posted, so it's best to record these webinars for yourself when you attend them.

    PROTIP: Copy these video files to your local computer as soon as they are available in the C214 Announcements and Course Tips sections. You will be listening to the videos multiple times as you take notes on how to understand financial concepts and solve financial calculations, so you might as well have them handy on your computer and smartphone for offline, on-demand access. You may also record the live (WebEx) webinars yourself from your computer screen using OBS. Record on at low-resolution and a lower frame rate setting to minimize the video file's size, otherwise a recorded file might be GBs rather than only MBs in size.

    PRO TIP: The course videos are provided as MP4 files with a corresponding subtitles file that have a .vtt extension. A vtt file is just a text file containing all the subtitle text and frame placement information. This means that the entire transcript of the video is available to you for text searching too. The MP4 viewer you use must be able to import the vtt file for the subtitle text to appear over the video. In VLC, the Subtitle > Add Subtitle File menu item is all you need to do this.

    PRO TIP: If a course video is only accessible using the in-browser Panopto viewer, use your browser's View Source right-click menu item on the player frame, search for .mp4 to locate the full URL of the video file, and use wget to to download the MP4 file to your local computer.

    You will learn everything you need to know to pass the OA from these videos. The course's eText and several Websites (, should be used as a supplements to learn things you don't understand in the videos. Watch the videos, takes notes, do the quizzes in the eText, learn and understand the conceptual material and how to do the financial calculations, get study suggestions from other student in the Course Chatter, and schedule an appointment with a course instructor for one-on-one help with specific topics that you just aren't understanding.

    C214 is a giant elephant to eat. Unless you are already very experienced with corporate finances, you won't be able to eat too quickly or too much in one sitting. You also won't be able to pass the OA exam by cramming at the last minute. Chew on C214 daily at a slow and steady pace or it will definitely choke you with feelings of anxiety and demoralization that you will never be able to absorb such a preponderance of information in so little time. However, if I passed C214 having no prior financial experience and and only a brand new HP 12c then you can too!

    Now on to the C218 capstone, my final course in the WGU MBA IT program!  :D
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