Business Studies

Head of Department: Mr G King: gking@kingalfred.somerset.sch.uk

 

Why take Business Studies?

Do you want to gain knowledge and skills which are valued and respected no matter what job you want to do?
Do you want to do a subject which is relevant to your life NOW?
Are you interested in a subject which is changing every day?
Are you curious about who calls the shots in business and government?
Do you enjoy watching Dragons’ Den and The Apprentice?
Do you want to try something new?
If you can answer “yes” to some of these questions then Business Studies may well be the right choice for you!


 
What's it all about?

Before you can make money in business you need to understand how business works!
Even if you haven’t previously studied business, as shoppers, savers, or workers you will already know a lot about how the economy works. In the news every day you hear about new products being launched, firms being taken-over, unemployment, inflation, interest rates, the exchange rate, the stock market, and a wide range of other subjects.
We look at all these and more during the Business Studies A Level Course. The AS units focus on small to medium-sized businesses operating in national markets and the A2 units build on this by considering more complex business scenarios.
Do you have an investigative mind that wants to know why things happen?  

  

What do we study?

In Business Studies we follow the AQA specification (7131/7132) which can be found here: http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/business-subjects/as-and-a-level/business-7131-7132

 

Subject content (first teaching Year 12 September 2015)

  • 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)

 

How is it assessed?

AS: Two written exams taken in May/June of Year 12, equally weighted, each lasting 1 hour 30 minutes and each covering topics 1-6 from the specification above.

A Level: Three written exams taken in June of Year 13, equally weighted, each lasting 2 hours and each covering the whole specification. 

  • Please note that the AS qualification is a stand-alone award and does not contribute towards the A Level qualification.

 

What are lessons like?

Business Studies is a living subject. Every day there will be something reported on the television or in the newspapers that provides a subject for discussion and study. As such we look at how real businesses work using a variety of resources:

  • Articles from newspapers, magazines and the internet
  • Case studies of real businesses such as Virgin, Coca Cola, Cadbury, BP and Microsoft
  • DVD & TV
  • Worksheets and practical activities covering the most up to date theories and examples

 Lessons include a combination of pair-work, group-work and independent study.

 

What GCSE grades do you need?

You would need 5 good GCSE passes (C grades and above) or equivalent including English and maths. However there is flexibility so if you are unsure speak to a Business Studies teacher to check.

 

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