Head of Department – Mr A Malcolm
Mathematics – Grade 5 English – Grade 5
Examination Board: Pearson Edexcel Level 3 Advanced GCE in Business
Introduction/General Advice and Requirements
Business Studies is essentially a problem solving course, centering on how businesses operate in the real world. The subject can be applied to any organisation and it will also offer an insight into the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead in any career.
The A-level specifications for Business Studies are both stimulating and practical for the real world. There is significant emphasis on how to start up a new business, moving into the development of those new enterprises, through to the dynamic and challenging nature of global commerce.
Students are expected to be aware of, and up to date with, current affairs.
Course Content & Assessment
Theme 1: Marketing and people
This theme enables students to understand how businesses identify opportunities and to explore how businesses focus on developing a competitive advantage through interacting with customers. Students develop an understanding of how businesses need to adapt their marketing to operate in a dynamic business environment. This theme also considers people, exploring how businesses recruit, train, organise and motivate employees, as well as the role of enterprising individuals and leaders.
Theme 2: Managing Business Activities
This theme enables students to develop an understanding of raising and managing finance, and measuring business performance. The theme outlines the importance of using resources efficiently within a business to ensure that goods or services can be delivered effectively and efficiently, and to a high quality. Students also consider the external influences that have an impact on businesses, including economic and legal factors.
Theme 3: Business Decisions and Strategy
This theme moves from functions to strategy, enabling students to develop their understanding of the core concepts and to take a strategic view of business opportunities and issues. Students analyse corporate objectives and strategy against financial and non-financial performance measures and how businesses grow, and develop an understanding of the impact of external influences. The theme covers the causes and effects of change and how businesses mitigate risk and uncertainty.
Theme 4: Global Business
Students investigate businesses that trade on a global scale and explore their reasons for doing so. Students develop an understanding of the globally competitive environment and consider the ethical and moral dimensions of global business activities.
Paper 1: Marketing, people and global businesses (2 hours; 35%) Paper 1 will assess marketing, people and global businesses. Questions will be drawn from Themes 1 and 4, and from local, national and global contexts.
Paper 2: Business activities, decisions and strategy (2 hours; 35%) Paper 2 will assess business finance and operations, business decisions and strategy. Questions will be drawn from Themes 2 and 3, and from local, national and global contexts.
Paper 3: Investigating business in a competitive environment (2 hours; 30%) Paper 3 will assess content across all four themes. Questions will be drawn from local, national and global contexts. For Paper 3, there will be a pre-released context document issued on our website in November of the previous year. A new context will be given to centres each year and will relate to the examination series for the following summer.
We aim to enrich Business Studies students with industrial visits, Student Investor Challenge, outside speakers, and other in-house and public competitions.
Taking this course allows an individual to apply the skills across a huge range of vocations. In every area of work you will be required to work for yourself, as a small group or in a large team. Careers which are more obvious include such things as business management, consultancy, marketing, accountancy, banking, insurance, media, information technology, teaching, the law, hotel and catering, tourism and retail management.