Taught course

Business Analytics: Operational Research and Risk Analysis

The University of Manchester · Alliance Manchester Business School

Entry requirements

We normally look for a First or Upper Second class honours (2:1) degree from a UK university or the overseas equivalent, in a quantitative subject such as mathematics, statistics, physics, engineering, computing, management science or economics.

Months of entry


Course content

The course introduces you to the fundamental theories, approaches and analytical toolkit of decision sciences, applied operational research, and statistics.
It shows you how they can be applied to common problem areas across business and management. You then have the opportunity to choose from a broad range of options to meet your interests or career aspirations.
The course gives you a solid theoretical foundation and quantitative skills, alongside practical problem-solving techniques. Much of your learning involves real-life scenarios using case studies, individual and team consulting-based assignments, presentations and software tools. An understanding of analytical approaches in business and management opens up many exciting career paths in consultancy, finance, retail and manufacturing sectors, government analytics units, defence and major ‘solution providers’ in IT systems, outsourcing and telecoms.
Visit Masters courses for more details.

Career opportunities
Recent recruiters include: America Veintiuno, Aon, Convergys, Deloitte, Goldman Sachs International, HSBC, IBM, Royal Bank of Scotland, Saudi Aramco, Swiss Re, Triumph Motorcycles
Course structure (All taught units are 15 credits)
Semester 1
  • Applied Statistics and Business Forecasting
  • Mathematical Programming and Optimisation
At least one and no more than two of the following ‘specialist’ electives:
  • Decision Behaviour, Analysis and Support
  • Financial Analytics
  • IS Strategy and Enterprise Systems
  • Social Media and Web Analytics
One elective unit from:
  • Global Operations Management: Theories and Concepts
  • Managing Projects
  • Strategic Supply Chain Management
Semester 2
  • Data Analytics for Business Decision Making
  • Risk, Performance and Decision Analysis
  • Simulation and Risk Analysis
One elective unit from*:
  • Business Improvement Tools and Techniques
  • Credit Risk Management
  • Games Businesses Play
  • Global Supply Chain Management
  • Information and Knowledge Management
  • Psychology of Behaviour and Decision Making
* By agreement with the course director, one elective unit may be taken from another MBS or School of Mathematics Masters course. All elective units are subject to availability and timetabling constraints.
Summer research period
Research dissertation [60 credits]:
The dissertation gives you the opportunity to apply what you have learned in the taught part of the course. It normally consists of a literature review followed by a piece of empirical work, involving either qualitative or quantitative research.
Topics reflect the expertise of your lecturers and you may be asked to choose from a list of options. Subsequently you will be allocated to one of these options.
Examples of recent dissertation topics include:
  • Non-linear programming and a heuristic approach for a dairy product range optimisation
  • Evaluation of forecasting and supply chain issues in a major Indian FMCG manufacturer
  • Structural equation modelling
  • Prioritisation of product groups for carbon labelling for a leading UK supermarket
  • Depot location, fleet sizing and demand forecasting for car rental

Information for international students

IELTS 7.0 or TOEFL 100 internet-based. English language test results submitted must be less than two years old. See the website for more information: Language requirements

Fees and funding

UK students
International students

Alliance MBS Scholarships are also available - contact the Admissions Office for details and visit the Alliance MBS website for further details: Scholarships

Qualification and course duration


full time
12 months

Course contact details

PGT Masters Admissions Office
+44 (0)161 306 1339