Business Studies

Welcome to the Business Studies Department

Aims and Values

We are keen to endorse our department as ‘Results with a Smile’. We strive to ensure that every student in our department completes their chosen course with an accredited qualification. Our aims are:

  • To share our knowledge and skills with our students to enable them to understand the business world and make them aware of the opportunities that are available to them
  • To have mutual respect between the teachers and the students and to provide a positive teaching environment, where students are always happy to ‘have a go’
  • To ensure that students are challenged and stretched to achieve the very best grade they can and to offer feedback to students for them to be able to move on
  • To offer extra revision sessions, either after school or during holidays
  • To provide students with a wide range of resources and the use of computers and laptops

Curriculum Structure
We offer a Personal Finance course in Year 8. In Years 10 and 11, Business is an optional subject for students to take either GCSE Business or BTEC Business. In Years 12 and 13 students can study A-level Business or a BTEC course either as the Extended Certificate or the Diploma.

Year 8 – Personal Finance
All Year 8 students will study this course, unless they have chosen to take an extra language. It is a stand-alone course in that it does not discriminate against any student taking an extra language in Year 8, against taking it as an option in Years 10 and 11. There are no crossovers between the work in Year 8 and that in years 10 and 11, so everyone who chooses to take Business as an option in year 10 will be at the same starting point. Personal Finance is not a compulsory subject with the curriculum and therefore we have a great deal of leeway in what we teach and how we teach it. Generally, students enjoy this subject as there is a great deal of group work, projects, research and use of computers. The scheme of work covers many different personal finance topics such as bank accounts, budgeting, credit and debit cards, bank statements, inheritance, payslips, bank loans and fraudulent bank notes.

Edexcel GCSE (9-1) Business
The aims of this course are to enable:

  • students to know and understand business concepts, terminology and the impact of business on individuals and the wider economy
  • students to investigate and analyse real business cases locally, nationally and globally
  • students to develop as enterprising individuals that are capable of creative thinking and have enquiring minds
  • students to apply quantitative skills and interpret data

Theme 1 – investigating Small Business
This covers five topic areas; Enterprise and entrepreneurship, spotting a business opportunity, putting a business idea into practice, making the business effective and understanding external influences.

Theme 2 – Building a Business
There are another five topic areas to be covered in year 11; Growing the business, making marketing decisions, making operational decisions, making financial decisions and making human resource decisions.

Assessment
The assessment always takes place in Year 11 and takes the form of two 1-hour and 30 minute exams, including calculations, multiple-choice, short-answer and extended-writing questions.

BTEC Level 2 Business Enterprise Tech Award
The main focus is on the knowledge, understanding and skills required to research, plan, pitch and review an enterprise idea that includes the development of key skills such as market research, planning, financial transactions and communication. This is a new course that started in September 2018 and is made up of 3 components: Exploring Enterprise, Planning an Enterprise Activity, Promotion and Finance for Enterprise. Assessment is through one exam and two pieces of coursework.

AQA A-level Business
Students study business in a variety of contexts, large and small, national and global, service or manufacturing) and will consider:

  • competition among businesses and the ethical and environmental issues
  • factors that determine the success of a business and the impact of stakeholders
  • how technology is changing business
  • the interpretation of quantitative data

Topics to be Covered:
There are 10 topics to be studied; what is business, managers, leadership and decision making, decision making to improve marketing performance, decision making to improve operational performance, decision making to improve financial performance, decision making to improve human resource performance, analysing the strategic position of a business, choosing strategic decision, strategic methods and how to pursue strategies and managing strategic change.

Assessment
There are three 2-hour exams to be taken in Year 13 including multiple-choice, short answer and essay style questions.

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Business
BTEC courses are very popular because they focus on the development of the practical, interpersonal and thinking skills required to be able to succeed in employment and higher education, so they prepare you well for either an apprenticeship and going to University. The learning programme covers the business environment, finance, marketing and human resources. This course is the equivalent to one A-level.

Topics to be Covered and Assessment
There are 4 units covered over 2 years and these are:

  • Unit 1 – Exploring Business (Coursework)
  • Unit 2 – Developing a Marketing Campaign (Exam)
  • Unit 3 – Personal and Business Finance (Exam)
  • Unit 27 – Work Experience in Business (Coursework)

BTEC Level 3 National Diploma in Business
This course is the equivalent to two one A-levels so in addition to the units above, four others are also studied:

  • Unit 4 – Managing an Event (Coursework)
  • Unit 5 – International Business (Coursework)
  • Unit 6 – Principles of Management (Exam)
  • Unit 8 – Recruitment and Selection Process (Coursework)

How to Support Your Child in our Subject?
Try to encourage your child to watch the news, read a good quality newspaper or have the BBC news app on their mobile. The more they understand about what is going in the business world and the economy, the easier it is for them to understand the terminology and case studies used in the text books and exams. For homework for Year 8 it is often about learning key terms or some type of research. For GCSE students it is all about completing case studies to replicate what the exams will be like. For A-level students, they will also do case studies, but in addition to that, they also need to complete match time sheets to aid their revision, especially with the exams now being linear. For BTEC students, there is always coursework to complete and I can guarantee that no BTEC student will be 100% up-to-date with this so there is always something to do. Programmes such as The Apprentice and Dragons’ Den will have some relevance to all Business students. Websites that are useful include: bbc.co.uk, businessstudiesonline.co.uk, times100.co.uk, tutor2u.net, bized.co.uk, businessballs.com, wikipedia.com

Where can this subject take you?
Whether you choose A-levels or a BTEC course in the sixth form, you can still follow the same route: University, an apprenticeship, or a college course to specialise in something like accounting. Whatever you do, there are hundreds of careers to choose from using business studies including: accountant, investment analyst, bank manager, project manager, risk manager, digital marketing officer, estate agent, franchise owner, human resources manager, marketing executive, personal shopper, secondary school teacher or even a wedding planner.

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