Business

Miss Lucy Miller (Head of Department) BA (Reading), PGCE (UWE) 
Dr Andrew Tytko BSc, PhD (Leeds), MA (Durham), PGCE (Kingston)

What is Business?

Business is essentially a problem solving course. It initially looks at the nature and purpose of business and how businesses are run and managed from the perspective of the four functional areas; Finance, Marketing, HR and operations. The course will cover all the key problems and questions businesses must face. 

At AS level students make decisions, based upon thorough analysis of information relating to business scenarios from a range of varying contexts. At A level, the course develops further to focus to how established businesses can improve their performance and effectiveness by making strategic decisions and managing change.

Why Study Business?

Business gives students a unique insight into the world of work.  Through its study, students discover how businesses operate and learn about their key elements and essential business functions. Business offers an opportunity for students to acquire a range of relevant business and generic skills such as decision making, problem solving, challenging assumptions and critical thinking all of which are highly transferable to employment. Students will develop both a holistic and yet critical understanding of businesses from a range of contexts.  Business is an excellent foundation for those wishing to pursue careers in management, accountancy, marketing, project management, human resources, business consultancy, and business journalism as well as those interested in continuing further study. 

Teaching Styles

Business is taught through the use of both real and hypothetical business case studies. We look at the various ways in which a fictional business could raise finance or explore the rise and fall of HMV, BHS and Woolworths. It is crucial to study both national and international businesses and to explore the reasons for success and failure of well-known firms such as Apple, Sky, Marks and Spencer’s, Bentley, ASOS and DeBeers and also less well-known businesses from a wide range of industries.  

Teaching includes presentations, discussions, group work, research, investigation and report writing. Students are issued with materials in lessons and through a variety of approaches become familiar with assessing the information, identifying strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats so that they can confidently suggest appropriate courses of action for the firm to take or identify mistakes that may have been made. Lessons are fun, interesting and the teaching styles used make it exciting to learn.

Entry Requirements

A degree of numerical work is involved in Business and students need to be confident looking at financial data and interpreting their meaning and conducting further calculations. Much of the formal assessment requires calculations and written analysis of these so strong writing skills are also essential. Grade B at GCSE Maths is advisable.