About High School of Business

Project-Based Business Education

High School of Business™ (HSB) does business like business does business. Teams of students work on real projects, providing an authentic reason for learning. It’s engaging, it’s challenging, and it naturally teaches the 21st century skills necessary for success in college and career now and in the future.


How do cities encourage new businesses to open? Which cell phone service is the best choice? How can a small business use its story to grow business? Should a company manufacture in another country? Students work through real questions like these in each HSB course.

Each course is built around MBA Research’s National Standards for Business Administration, which are based on business practitioner research, as well as academic standards. Course content is accelerated, with outcomes reaching grade 14. College-level learning paves the way for college credit opportunities.

College Credit Opportunities
Principles of Business

Principles of Business, a project-based business course, develops student understanding and skills in such areas as business law, economics, financial analysis, human resources management, information management, marketing, operations, and strategic management.

Through four community-based projects, students acquire an understanding and appreciation of the business world. They develop a business analysis report, conduct an environmental scan of the local business community, and investigate business activities. Throughout the course, students are presented with problem-solving situations for which they must apply academic and critical-thinking skills. Formal reflection is an on-going component of the course.

Business Economics

In Business Economics, students work through six projects that expand their understanding that businesses are influenced by external factors that are often beyond their control. Consumer spending, government policies, economic conditions, legal issues, and global competition are addressed through practical, current applications to everyday societal and business life. Decision matrices are introduced, and the importance and costs of quality are stressed.

Students develop their knowledge and skills in such areas as economics, entrepreneurship, operations, and professional development. Throughout the course, students will be presented with current economic problems for which they are asked to determine solutions, often through the application of decision matrices.

Principles of Marketing

Principles of Marketing is a project-based business course that develops student understanding and skills in the functional areas of marketing: channel management, marketing-information management, market planning, pricing, product/service management, promotion, and selling.

Students acquire an understanding and appreciation of each of the marketing functions and their ethical and legal issues. Decision matrices are employed to aid in market planning.

Principles of Finance

Principles of Finance furthers student understanding of two specific business activities—accounting and finance—that were introduced in an earlier High School of Business course, Principles of Business. Through multiple projects, students make connections between accounting, with an emphasis on cash flow, and finance, with an emphasis on decision-making. Students acquire an understanding of financial statements, calculate financial ratios, and make business decisions based on their interpretation of those financial statements and ratios. In addition, students determine the impact of financial transactions on the accounting equation and examine business-financing options.

Principles of Management

Principles of Management is a project-based business course that expands student understanding of management. Students acquire an appreciation for aspects of management, such as project management, human resources management, knowledge management, quality management, and risk management. In addition, ethical and legal considerations affecting business activities are stressed, and students develop a business plan that will be used to open their own business as part of the next course, Business Strategies.

Business Strategies

Business Strategies serves as the capstone course for the High School of Business program.

Students finalize marketing, financial, and management plans developed previously, incorporating them into a business plan for a nonprofit organization. The nonprofit venture is actualized during the course, requiring students to engage in risk assessment, strategic planning, and performance assessment.


9th grade course – optional

Leadership, a project-based leadership course, develops student understanding and skills in such areas as communication skills, emotional intelligence, operations, and professional development. Students acquire an understanding and appreciation of the need for leadership skills. To encourage immediate implementation of leadership skills, Leadership utilizes an ongoing service-learning project for course delivery and reinforcement. The course content is sequenced for students to identify, plan, implement, and evaluate a service-learning project based on the needs of their community/school. Throughout the course, students are presented problem-solving situations for which they must apply academic and critical-thinking skills.

Wealth Management

9th grade course – optional

This project-based financial literacy course develops student understanding and skills in such areas as economic decision-making, time value of money, financial management, and types of investments. Students acquire an understanding and appreciation of the need for personal financial management and investing. To encourage immediate implementation of financial management skills, Wealth Management utilizes an on-going project for course delivery and reinforcement. The course content is sequenced for students to develop a full understanding of their role and responsibility in their financial future. Throughout the course, students are presented problem-solving situations for which they must apply academic and critical-thinking skills.

[High School of Business] is unique in that it’s project based, so I got to really work with my classmates and work together toward common goals.

- Lynn Rader, Leipsic High School, ’12

Project-Based Learning

Project-based learning is the heart of High School of Business. Projects are introduced at the beginning of the learning and provide the reason for students to learn.

The result is learning that is deep and long-lasting. These authentic experiences naturally build the 21st century skills students will need now and in the future.

Each project is designed around learning standards. Instructional resources and assessments ensure students master the content as they work in teams to find a solution to the problem they have been charged with.

Instructional Resources

Business and industry moves fast. High School of Business keeps pace with annually-updated resources delivered in a variety of formats to keep students engaged.

  • Course guides built around standards-focused projects, including all resources needed to teach the projects
  • MBA Research Learning Center licensed accounts for teachers and their students—the curriculum management system is pre-loaded with project resources, including hundreds of interactive, instructional modules
  • HSB Bootcamp activities start each course with fun, hands-on learning to build interest, camaraderie, and 21st century skills
  • HSB Briefings, or short lecture notes, support teacher-led instruction for the most difficult content
  • Observational internship guidelines, checklists, and forms
  • LinkedIn instructional support for building professional networking skills


Regular and varied assessments ensure students master the content as they work to complete the projects.

  • Checkpoint assignments keep students on track throughout a project
  • Weekly quizzes and mid-term exams provide regular formative assessment
  • Pretests measure individual student growth
  • Final exams

Aligns Well With Perkins V

High School of Business is a coordinated, sequenced program of study that leads to a post-secondary credential. The program delivers what students need to be successful in business careers that are necessary across all industries. It also includes focused, sustained PD; work-based learning opportunities; national and local post-secondary credit agreements; and preparation for a workplace credential.

Perkins V How HSB delivers
Program of study 6-8 sequenced semester courses that can be delivered in 2-4 years
Focused, sustained PD PD for course content and pedagogy (project-based learning) is focused on each course and delivered as courses roll out at the school
Measure of CTE program quality—states choose one of three: Post-secondary credential, Post-secondary credit, Work-based learning HSB can meet all 3 quality indicators:

  • Program of study leads to a post-secondary credential that can be attained after or during high school
  • National and local college credit agreements are in place for HSB courses, and participating schools can pursue additional local agreements as necessary
  • An observational internship is part of the curriculum. In addition, some schools choose to add an additional hands-on internship opportunity.
In-demand sectors, occupations
  • No matter which industry is identified as “in-demand” in your state, the companies in it will need financial managers, data analysts, project managers, accountants, and marketers. HSB immerses students in knowledge and skills from all areas of business administration.
  • 35% of all U.S. jobs will be in business, marketing, finance, and sales in 2026[1]

Connections With BPA, DECA, and FBLA

Think of it as a partnership. High School of Business is the curriculum that pairs with your co-curricular program. High School of Business teachers confirm that many of the projects in each High School of Business course naturally feed into competitive events. In addition, the skills that students use to work on High School of Business projects (including teamwork, leadership, and delivering oral presentations) strengthen their use of these skills, resulting in success at BPA, DECA, and FBLA competitions.

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