Review of first semester courses – MBE Programme (Part I)

The first semester of the Master’s programme in Bioentrepreneurship (MBE) for the 2021/2023 academic session will come to an end officially in January. And I thought it might be great to share a review of the courses we took in the semester.

Please be aware that this is just a general overview of the courses based on my own experiences.

Before we begin, let me mention a couple of facts

  • For the MBE, Karolinska Institutet (KI) collaborates with some other universities in Stockholm, to offer some of the programme courses. Hence, we take business administration courses at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) and our elective courses at the Stockholm School of Entrepreneurship.
  • In the first semester, we took 4 courses from KI and 2 courses from KTH. The courses are – Theory in Bioentrepreneurship, Industrial Management, Communication in Bioentrepreneurship, Project Management, Market Analysis, and Strategic Management Control

This review will be done over two blog posts. This is the first one and I will cover the first 3 courses.

Theory in bioentrepreneurship

This was the first course we took at KI. It was a good introduction to bioentrepreneurship in general, as we explored the academic and theoretical foundations of the field.

The unique pedagogical teaching method that will characterize most of our learnings in the programme was also introduced. This method focuses on integrating practical elements with the theories, and it also involves a lot of self-reflection and peer-to-peer learning.

This course was offered at a 50% pace as we were taking another course at KTH simultaneously.

We learned a lot about the history of (bio) entrepreneurship, the processes underpinning it, and the bioentrepreneurial ecosystem in general.

A big component of our learning was a personal reflection on the concepts we were learning. We communicated this through reflection logs which made up a part of our student assessment.

At the end of the course, we also wrote individual reports on our learnings.

What surprised me about this course was the large amount of research data already available within the field of bioentrepreneurship. It is a relatively new field, but it has grown rapidly especially in recent years.

Our learning was through classes, seminars, and workshops.

Industrial management

This course was given simultaneously with Theory of Bioentrepreneruship, however, it was offered at KTH.

In this course, we explored 3 core modules – Industrial management & value creation, product costing, and Financial accounting & financing.

During the first module, we learned how companies are able to create value for their customers by creating and maintaining unique business models.

We learned in detail about value proposition, value creation, and value capture and how these provide the foundation for an industrial company’s existence.

In product costing, we studied how companies determine the prices of their products and services by aligning these to costs. We also learned about the different costing methodologies being used by different industries and why.

In addition, we were also introduced to investment appraisals and the methods for calculating both the present and future value of investments.

The third module was about financial accounting and corporate finance. We learned how to first assess the health of a company by evaluating its financial metrics.

We learned the basics of book-keeping and accounting. And we also learned the methods for determining the capital requirements of companies.

We had 1 voluntary assignment where we analyzed the annual report of a real company, a business simulation exercise, and a mandatory exam.

This course was the first time many students in the MBE programme were introduced to financial concepts, and it was both exciting and challenging.

Communication in bioentrepreneurship

This was the second course at KI and third in the master’s program. This was an interesting and practical course where we explored first the mechanics of dialogue – listening, feedback, and intrapersonal communication.

Furthermore, we learned skills that would help improve our academic writing skills. We also had a practical workshop and an assignment that helped us to practice our learnings.

Another exciting part of this course was the storytelling modules. We learned the core principles of visual and oral communication including how to create and give professional PowerPoint presentations, and oral storytelling.

We also worked in groups to create presentations on topics provided by the course teacher. In addition to this, we had oral storytelling individual assignments which culminated in every member of the class creating an oral presentation.

And of course, we also had a workshop on pitching!

My favorite part of this course however was the final examination. We were tasked with reflecting on the learnings from the course. We also had to identify 3 areas of personal improvement of our communication skills and create a plan for bridging any identified gaps.

This helped us put our skills into perspective and provided a practical platform for improving them. And for me, this is the hallmark of learning.

And that is it for part I of the blog…

I hope this has been an informative piece about the demanding but interesting MBE first semester. I shall be writing the second part of the post in January, stay tuned.

Wishing you happy holidays!!!

Umar Adegoke - Bioentrepreneurship

Umar Adegoke - Bioentrepreneurship

Hi! I am Umar from Nigeria, currently studying for a master's in bioentrepreneurship. I like science and business, and my programme is right at the intersection of both. I also like football, Formula 1, cats, and hot chocolate. And here's a random fact - I can name the capital city of nearly all the countries on the planet. Feel free to put this to test if we run into each other. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.


Anna Birgersdotter

Anna Birgersdotter

Wellwiritten :) Your communication teacher is happy!

Olaoluwa Mamora

Olaoluwa Mamora

Thank you for this beautifully written and enlightening piece.

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