Learn how to read and analyze financial statements and understand basic techniques to manage costs and capital investment decisions.
Introduction to Management Engineering series
This MOOC is part of the Introduction to Management Engineering series, which is designed to introduce prospect master students and people interested in managerial disciplines into the key fundamentals of Management Engineering. Through an analytical and engineering approach, the series provides basic concepts and language in the areas of Strategy, Economics, Financial Accounting, Organization, and Operations Management.
The series is the result of a collaborative design between METID, the service of Politecnico di Milano devoted to e-learning and e-collaboration, and the Study Course in Management Engineering.
If you are a POLIMI student you have to log in using your Person Code. This is the only way to prove your participation in this course for official recognition.
About This Course
This is an introductory course on financial and management
accounting. How many times have you heard of net profit, operating
profit, operating margin, cash, earning and so on? But are they
referring to the same concepts or are they different things?
The first part of this course will introduce the basic
accounting principles and accounting terminology to understand how a
company keeps control of financial events and provides information on
how it is performing. These basic concepts will support the analysis
of financial reports companies prepare. We will go through balance
sheet, income statement, financial statement, learning how to read and
The course will also provide the basis of management accounting
introducing some techniques (e.g. break- even analysis or NPV) to
support managers in making short-term and long-term decisions, such as
"Is it convenient to dispose a production machine and buy a new one?"
or "How many products should the company sell in order to break-even?"
The course will bring examples and case studies that will help
students better understand the practical applications of the basic
accounting principles and techniques. At the end of the course,
students will be able to read, understand and analyze financial
documents and to apply simple techniques to analyse costs and evaluate
capital investment decisions.
At the end of this course a new edition will be activated.
The course is divided into 5 "weeks".
No prerequisite knowledge is required. It is particularly
recommended for students with little background in financial and
Deborah Agostino is lecturer in Management and Organizations at
Politecnico di Milano (B.Sc in Computing Systems Engineering). She is
also lecturer in Management Accounting and Control at MIP (the
Business School of Politecnico di Milano) where she teaches in
international MBA courses. She received a B.Sc. in Management
Engineering from Politecnico di Milano in 2006, a Master and PhD in
Management Engineering in the same university respectively in 2008
and 2012. In 2011, she was visiting scholar at the Edinburgh business
school, developing skills on accounting in the private and the public
sphere. She researches management accounting (i.e. performance
management) in organizational networks. This topic has been largely
investigated during the three years of the Ph.D cycle, with a
specific focus on the organizational network for the provision of the
local public transport. Recently, she has developed a new field of
research on accounting in the social media era. This area addresses
the usage of social technologies by local administrations to engage
with citizens, with a specific attention to the measurement issue and
the impact of social media on the management control cycle.
How much does the course cost?
Nothing! You can access the course absolutely free of charge
and completely online 24/7.
Will I receive a Certificate of Accomplishment at the end of
Yes, at the end of the course you will receive a Certificate
of Accomplishment to show that you successfully completed the
course (by answering correctly to at least 60% of the questions).
The Certificate is not valid for university credits, nor it
represents a statement to prove the passing of the university
admission test at Politecnico di Milano or at any other university.
What should I do in order to receive the Certificate?
The Certificate of Accomplishment will be released
to anyone who successfully completed the course (by answering
correctly to at least 60% of the questions). You will be able to
download the Certificate of Accomplishment directly
on the website. Pay attention: the certificate will
be generated only
after the closing of the edition. In order to view and download it
you will have to wait a few days after the completion of the course.
I wasn’t able to view all course materials and to complete
the quizzes before the end of the edition; what should I do?
The course materials will still be available to all registered
users for a long time, even after the closing of the edition.
In order to obtain a Certificate of Accomplishment, instead,
you will have to register to an active edition of the course and
answer correctly to the quizzes.
Are there any specific pre requisites to attend the course?
No, no particular pre requisites are needed.