Skip navigation

Transportation Institute

Transportation Institute Masters Banner


Designed and delivered to meet the needs of working professionals, the MS in Transportation Management degree program consists of five, one-week residencies on the University of Denver campus, one 1-week residency near a domestic port, and a travel seminar to an international location. You will progress through the program with a core group of fellow students, known as a cohort. This face-to-face opportunity for interaction between faculty and executive education participants provides a fundamental principle of education adopted by the University of Denver: collaborative interaction. To supplement the more traditional lecture format, you will also be challenged with team projects, offsite activities, and group discussions related to transportation management.

The degree program curriculum provided by the Transportation Institute has been certified by the American Society of Transportation and Logistics. The degree program graduates are certified in transportation and logistics and may use CTL as a professional and educational designation.

The MS in Transportation Management curriculum consists of 20 courses for 60 quarter hours of academic credit and is presented in an integrated, interdisciplinary, and industry-relevant method. Some courses are delivered in multiple sections, or modules, throughout multiple onsite residencies. Each module for a course is taught by the same faculty member(s). You can expect to have pre-residency and post-residency coursework assignments for each module.

Core Management Courses

Excellence in Leadership for Transportation

This course will provide an integrated exploration of current topics most important for leadership success within the transportation industry. Current best leadership practices will be reviewed, and common leadership challenges within transportation will be analyzed for successful resolution.

Executive Management Practices in Organizations

This course will provide a comprehensive view of best practices for executive management in transportation workplaces. Organizational situations will be assessed from a variety of viewpoints and policies analyzed for optimal execution of strategy.

Leading with Integrity

This course will explore ethical decision making and values-based leadership. Values, ethics and organizational philosophies will be assessed for best application in various corporate settings within the transportation industry.

Applied Micro Economics & Pricing 

The course will involve fieldwork and U.S. site visits observing and discussing the physical elements underlying the long-term and marginal economics of the firm and its pricing strategies and policies. In addition, the course will discuss basic microeconomic concepts used in the analysis of business services, including the concepts of market size; marginal, average, short-run, and long-run costs; and production levels as they relate to revenue and contribution with a focus on pricing for the firm relative to its fixed and variable costs, market share framework, and competitive issues both within the mode and between modes

Marketing & Sales Management Strategies

This course will examine the foundations of marketing as well as the process of developing, assessing and implementing marketing strategies in the transportation and supply chain industries. The foundations are grounded in an understanding of customers' wants and needs and a commitment to satisfying those needs within the resources of the organization, the long-term benefits of society and the economy, and the highest ethical and moral standards in this global economy. Based on this foundation the students will learn the process of formulating marketing strategies, such as segmentation, targeting, positioning and the four P's of marketing: product, price, place and promotion.

Legal Studies: Contracts & Regulations

This course will focus on the fundamentals of creating and implementing effective contracts, whether with customers, suppliers, or labor. The contract discussion will be framed by regulatory and policy realities both in domestic and international contexts, including an understanding of federal and international laws, liability, regulations, policies, programs, and agencies impacting contracts.

Financial & Managerial Accounting

This course will cover the basic theory, principles and practice of financial accounting and examine accounting statements including income and cash flow statements and balance sheets. Discussions include managerial use of accounting data useful in making investment and cost decisions, assessing cash flows and the use of the organization resources to produce profit. Additional topics will include reading and understanding the 10-K, basic accounting standards and practices, and assessing the quality of financial information found the accounting reports.

Financial Analysis & Capital Structures

Complementing Financial & Managerial Accounting, this course will use ratio analysis to determine relative performance of companies and the industry to enable management to assess operating efficiency, profitability and effective use of capital. Capital structure concepts, fixed and variable cost considerations, the use of operating and financial leverage and the concepts of business and financial risk will be discussed. The course also includes a basic review of the principle of time value of money.

Capital Decision-Making & Capital Markets

This course will examine the management decision process for making capital expenditures that enhance the value of the firm, cash flow estimation for capital budgeting purposes, decision models for capital budgeting, weighted average cost of capital, decisions in capital constrained situations, sensitivity analysis and a review of the capital markets.

Global Trade & Economics

This course will examine the World Trade F15 Organization and the regional trade agreements, such as NAFTA, EU, and ASEAN, with regard to their impact on North American transportation, trade, and economy overall including their relationship to account deficits and their N20; and their impact on disputes and how trade disputes are settled. In addition, the course will address the global economy and economics and its drivers, comparing and contrasting North America, China/Asia, the European Union and selected emerging economies to include impacts on global trade, such as trading patterns, outsourcing, and changing production areas.


Advanced Transportation & Supply Chain Management Courses

Analysis of Freight & Passenger Transportation Business Segments

This course will provide an overview of the freight and passenger transportation sectors of the North American economy, focusing on various modes and their financial profiles, including aggregate revenue, income, market share and investment. The course will include a discussion of the vision of a transportation system for the future—one that moves people and goods efficiently, economically, safely and securely, and in an environmentally benign manner on integrated, seamless, ethical transportation processes using the strengths of all modes and minimizing their weaknesses. The course will discuss how such multi-modal systems for freight and intermodal systems for passenger operate in and impact the development and growth of the U.S. and global economies.


Geographic Information Systems (GIS) & Statistics 

This course will introduce the quantitative transportation tools of GIS and statistics that support problem solving with data management, modeling, and visualization. GIS addresses (1) the challenge of "big data," a significant discussion topic in business, (2) modeling (including linear programming) of networks, routing/scheduling, and location analysis, and (3) visualization output and how it is used for decision making. The statistics component focus is on the framing, tools, and appropriate applications of the statistical processes and how statistics can be correctly used in different data analysis situations in transportation.

Principles of Supply Chain Management 

This course will provide an overview of the basic principles of supply chain management, giving students an understanding of supply chain processes from sourcing to finished goods and customers to suppliers, identifying the five core supply chain processes and examining the role that transportation and logistics play in the supply chain. Students will learn the key operating and financial measures of supply chain management that impact the users and providers of services. Additionally, current trends in the technology of supply-chain management, including applicable global trends will be covered.

Advanced Transportation & Supply Chain

Transportation costs and inventory considerations are significant drivers of total logistics and supply chain management costs. This course expands on the earlier Principles of Supply Chain Management course, providing detailed concepts and applications for freight transportation and inventory considerations in supply chains. This will include modal comparisons and contrasts of operational, financial, marketing, and information technology tools/software available in the freight and supply chain industries. Collaboration and competition between and among the modes will be explored to understand specific tactics to improve modal and supply chain efficiencies and competitive alternatives in both the global and domestic markets. Additionally, current trends in freight transportation and supply chain management across the globe will be studied and discussed to consider strategies and tactics to shape, manage, and respond to those trends.

Multimodal Passenger-Freight Transportation Systems

The purpose of this course is to explore the multimodal characteristics of transportation systems with emphasis on shared assets and the interactions between freight and passenger flows. The students will learn how passenger transit and vehicular transportation systems are planned and operated, the concept of external benefits, and the potential impacts on freight movements. By the end of the course, students will have a better understanding of how public and private sector transportation management and investment decisions affect one another.

International Transportation & Supply Chain Management Analysis

This course will survey and analyze at a macro level the international freight and passenger operations, policies, and other concepts covered in fundamental and advanced courses, as applied to the locations and facilities included in the planned International Transportation Travel Seminar. In addition, this course will explore specific passenger and freight transportation management structures and operations for transportation systems in important international locations and facilities.

Senior Management-Executives & Issues Seminar

Through the use of transportation executives in the classroom, this course will explore in-depth some of the key concepts covered during the course of the degree program, to include topics such as applied transportation finance, merger and acquisition issues, shipper transportation metrics/requirements, global freight flows to/from North America, and government/military transportation. In addition, in case studies, students will propose options for real-world challenges using knowledge and data from current events, degree program courses, case material, and guest executive presentations.

Individual Leadership Development Project

This course will guide students through the process of developing and executing individualized leadership development projects to enhance specific leadership skills and goals within their current management structure or an assigned organization. Through work over the six quarters of the program, the leadership projects will provide a unique opportunity for each student to hone critical aspects of her/his leadership, which, in turn, benefits the students, their organizations, and the larger transportation, logistics, and supply chain community.

Business Development & Productivity Improvement Planning Project

This course will guide students through the creation of a comprehensive business development and/or productivity improvement-oriented business plan, with a preferred focus on the transportation industry, to develop a new revenue growth or new service opportunity for their organization or an assigned organization. Through work over the six quarters of the program, this project provides each student with important business planning and development skills to create implementable business plan, which may provide tangible benefits to their sponsoring organization as well.

International Transportation Travel Seminar

The Seminar will provide an onsite experience for students as they visit and study freight and passenger-related facilities and governmental agencies in major international locations. This international travel seminar will allow students to see new and emerging technologies in action that may provide significant productivity improvements. Students will also have the opportunity to examine the management and operation of transportation and supply chain operations in other countries. Students will meet with executives, government leaders and local managers of these systems to learn directly about the challenges of serving the global economy.