Business Studies

Business Studies is a dynamic subject which combines the key skills of  literacy and numeracy in an interesting and relevant real world context. The Lessons are varied and exciting as we believe that using real business case studies aids application of the theory. We encourage students to be proactive and work independently to problem solve wherever possible. Students are empowered to peer teach and carry out research projects. Business Studies is offered at GCSE and at A Level.

Key Stage Four Curriculum

We offer the iGCSE Business Studies course.  The iGCSE course is rigorous and leads very nicely in to the A Level course. There is no coursework with the iGCSE. All areas are externally assessed by a two hour written examination at the end of the course. The course specification code is 4BSO. Course materials can be found at the following link:

http://qualifications.pearson.com/en/qualifications/edexcel-international-gcses-and-edexcel-certificates/international-gcse-business-studies-2009.html

There are five areas of study across the two years:

Section Content Summary
  1. Business Activity and the Changing Environment
This section examines the objectives of businesses, the changing environment and the criteria for judging success. The focus is on the importance of having clear business objectives and how the business environment provides opportunities for, and imposes constraints on, the pursuit of those objectives.
  1. Human Resources
This section looks at people in organisations focusing on their roles, relationships and management in business.
  1. Accounting and Finance
This section explores the use of accounting and financial information as an aid to decision making.
  1. Marketing
This section focuses on identifying and satisfying customer needs in a changing and competitive international environment.
  1. Production
This section examines the way organisations use and manage resources to produce goods and services.

A Level Curriculum

All A Levels have been redesigned and the modular element has been removed. The course became linear from September 2015 and this means that all of the assessment will take place at the end of the course. The A level Business Studies specification code is 7131 for AS Level and 7132 for A2 Level. We offer the AQA specification, as we have done for the last 20 years. The 10 topic areas as follows:

  1. What is business?
  2. Managers, leadership and decision making
  3. Decision making to improve marketing performance
  4. Decision making to improve operational performance
  5. Decision making to improve financial performance
  6. Decision making to improve human resource performance
  7. Analysing the strategic position of a business (A Level only)
  8. Choosing strategic direction (A Level only)
  9. Strategic methods: how to pursue strategies (A Level only)
  10. Managing strategic change (A Level only)

AS Level (Year 12) will be assessed using the following papers:

Paper 1: Business 1 Paper 2: Business 2
Areas 1-6 assessed Areas 1-6 assessed
Written exam: 1 hour 30 minutes Written exam: 1 hour 30 minutes
80 marks in total 80 marks in total
50% of AS 50% of AS
Three compulsory sections:

• Section A has 10 multiple choice questions (MCQs) worth 10 marks

• Section B has short answer questions worth approximately 20 marks

• Section C has two data response stimuli

with questions worth approximately

25 marks.

One compulsory case study consisting of approximately seven questions.

 

A2 Level (year 13) will be assessed using the following papers:

Paper 1: Business 1 Paper 2: Business 2 Paper 3: Business 3
Areas 1-10 assessed Areas 1-10 assessed Areas 1-10 assessed
Written exam: 2 hours Written exam: 2 hours Written exam: 2 hours
100 marks in total 100 marks in total 100 marks in total
33.3% of A-level 33.3% of A-level 33.3% of A-level
Three compulsory sections:

• Section A has 15 multiple choice questions (MCQs) worth 15 marks.

• Section B has short

answer questions worth

35 marks.

• Sections C and D have

two essay questions

(choice of one from two

and one from two) worth

25 marks each.

Three data response compulsory questions worth approximately 33 marks each and made up of three or four part questions.

 

One compulsory case study followed by approximately six questions.

 

Digital Learning

The world of Business is a fast paced and constantly changing environment. One of the best things about teaching Business Studies is that the subject changes on a daily basis. We use iPads to help us to keep up to date with the changing external environment. At A Level Students are expected to read news articles regularly and we frequently have ‘latte lessons’ where everyone will bring along an article that interested them and we discuss and debate the details……the coffee is optional!

It is imperative that students learn how to learn. In my experience this involves reading and carrying out research. When students do research they learn the skill of synthesis which is imperative to study at a higher level. In Business Studies we use the iPads to encourage students to seek out information and also to deliver teaching materials and peer teaching sessions.

There are many useful websites available and all students are issued with a list of sites and apps that they will find useful day to day and also for revision purposes. A few examples:

www.tutor2u.net

www.businessed.co.uk

www.aqa.org

www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/

www.s-cool.co.uk

www.beebusinessbee.co.uk

Enrichment

It is very important to be able to put the theory of Business Studies in to a real world context. Annually we organise a trip to a large organisation to help students to contextualise the work we do in the classroom. In recent years we have run trips to Cadbury’s World, Cummins and to Nissan.

We have had a number of students who have left Teesside High School with A Levels in Business Studies and/or Economics and have gone on to start up their own successful companies or to take on management roles. These students come back and visit us and deliver inspirational talks about their experiences. We have enjoyed hearing from Kelly Bird of Stunt Drive North East.

Kelly Bird – Stunt Drive North East Ltd.

“I am the company director of Stunt Drive North East Ltd. trading as Stunt Drive Experience. We are the UK’s first and only purpose built stunt and precision driving arena and we are the only company of its kind to be open 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year. We are a stunt driving experience day company where you get to do the driving. We work with individuals from the general public, the corporate and events sector, and the private sector including stag and hen parties. We teach stunts from handbrake turns and donuts right through to j turns and even driving on two wheels in BMW Z3’s and MINI’s! I am also the leader of the UK’s only female led stunt and precision driving display team, where we travel throughout the UK doing these displays. I have also been the stunt driver double in films and on TV, I have worked with the likes of BBC One and Discovery Canada. At our venue we also run our Young Driver Experience, teaching 14 to 17 year olds the basics of driving before being let loose on the roads. We teach everything from clutch control, starting and stopping to steering, changing gear and manoeuvres”

Enterprise as an Extra-Curricular activity

Annually we take part in externally organised enterprise competitions. We believe that it is incredibly important to challenge our students by pitting them against other students nationally. It is a competitive world that we live in and it is healthy for our students to have to think on their feet and problem solve in a pressured environment……and it is fun too! Please see our pages on the Young Enterprise programme and the Tycoons in Schools competition for more information.

Business Studies clinic

If you have any problems or questions then just pop along to Business Studies clinic and one of our staff will be happy to help. You might want to work through an exam question or go over some homework – we can tailor the session to meet your needs.

Why take Business Studies?

Business Studies is a well-respected course and is useful if you are exploring careers in a variety of areas including Banking, Law, Human Resources, Accountancy or Business Management. You require literacy and numeracy skills to excel in Business Studies and this makes it a very appealing subject for universities and employers.