GRA 6835 The Practicing Strategist

GRA 6835 The Practicing Strategist

Course code: 
GRA 6835
Strategy and Entrepreneurship
Course coordinator: 
Birgitte Grøgaard
Course name in Norwegian: 
The Practicing Strategist
Product category: 
MSc in Business - Strategy
2024 Spring
Active status: 
Level of study: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

This is the final course for MSc in Business, Strategy majors. The course integrates and builds on knowledge gained in the other MSc courses. To prepare students for practical work in strategy, this course focuses on developing and applying the skills which are needed to operate as a strategist. In order to develop these skills, students will undertake a "live" strategy project for an organization. Students will be organized into groups, each with a unique strategy project.

During the semester, interact directly with their “client organization”. The groups scope their projects, identify and gather data for their strategic analysis, and provide recommendations to their clients.

Learning outcomes - Knowledge
  • Participants have gained insight into the practice of strategic analysis/consulting
  • Participants can analyze internal and external environments and identify key strategic challenges
  • Participants go beyond the basic issues and identify nuances and complexities of the issue
  • Participants identify and question the validity of key assumptions underlying the issue
Learning outcomes - Skills
  • Participants have gained experience in real projects
  • Participants have developed skills in identifying main strategic challenges and breaking these down into manageable topics/issues to analyze
  • Participants have developed skills in assessing the appropriateness of applying key concepts and frameworks to practice
  • Participants are able to identify, gather, and analyze data to make robust decisions
  • Participants use data to support arguments
  • Participants have developed skills to communicate clearly both orally and in written form
  • Participants have learned how to work in teams when working on strategy projects and problems
General Competence
  • Participants understand the complexities related to strategic management
  • Participants can draw on established theories and frameworks to improve their decision-making
Course content

This course is a capstone experience in which groups of MSc students constitute strategy consulting teams and work on actual projects. The course is a professionalization opportunity during which students: actively manage their project; collaboratively specify the project’s objectives; and develop research, analytical, and presentation skills. Bridging the gap between classroom and conference room, the experience will help students develop industry skills expected in professional consulting and other future career paths.

Teaching and learning activities

Much of the class involves “flipping the classroom” through student presentations and discussion of ongoing projects. This allows all students to learn from diverse projects while developing analytical skills, critical thinking, and presentation skills. The in-class sessions are structured as consulting workshops. 

Students are required to submit a signed consulting contract, participate in client meetings, participate in group supervision, conduct in-class presentations, and contribute with inter-project feedback. Tools and exercises may be used during class to facilitate information sharing and communication. Failure to participate actively throughout the semester will disqualify the student from signing his/her/their name to the written consultancy report and oral client presentation.  

The presentation grades are initially group-based, but will be individually adjusted based on clarity and persuasiveness of the communicated information. Group evaluations are mandatory and may affect individual grades. Individual adjustments may also include, but are not limited to, how the individual structures the message, the clarity and substance of what is communicated, transitions between speakers, voice quality and pace, mannerisms and eye contact, and the use of media.

Software tools
No specified computer-based tools are required.
Additional information

The exam for this course has been changed starting academic year 2023/2024. The course now has two exam codes instead of one. It is not possible to retake the old version of the exam. Please note new exam codes in the Exam section of the course description. 

It is the student’s own responsibility to obtain any information provided in class.

Active participation throughout the course is necessary to ensure that the final consultancy report is of good quality. 


All courses in the Masters programme will assume that students have fulfilled the admission requirements for the programme. In addition, courses in second, third and/or fourth semester can have specific prerequisites and will assume that students have followed normal study progression. For double degree and exchange students, please note that equivalent courses are accepted.


Deviations in teaching and exams may occur if external conditions or unforeseen events call for this.

Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Written submission
Group (1 - 3)
1 Semester(s)
Exam code: 
GRA 68352
Grading scale: 
Examination when next scheduled course
Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Multimedia production
Group/Individual (1 - 3)
1 Semester(s)
Group presentation that is video recorded and submitted.
Exam code: 
GRA 68353
Grading scale: 
Examination when next scheduled course
Type of Assessment: 
Ordinary examination
All exams must be passed to get a grade in this course.
Total weight: 
Sum workload: 

A course of 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours. Therefore a course of 6 ECTS credits corresponds to a workload of at least 160 hours.