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Business

Subject: Business

Subject/Curriculum Leader: Mr G Atkinson

Our business programmes give students the opportunity to explore real business issues and how businesses work. At Key Stage 4 (GCSE) and Key Stage 5 (A Level), students will be taught key business knowledge and how to apply this to a range of different business contexts. These will range from small enterprises through to large multinationals operating in local, national and global contexts. These programmes will equip students with the knowledge and skills required to understand how these contexts impact on business behaviour and decision-making.

When students are learning about decision-making they will be taught to understand:

  • The interdependent nature of business activity and the internal and external influences on business decision-making
  • The role of the four business functions of human resources, operations, marketing and finance
  • How businesses use quantitative and qualitative data to support decision-making

Throughout these programmes, students will be taught to draw on their knowledge and understanding to use business terminology to identify and explain business activity. They will be given opportunities to apply business concepts, theories and models to unfamiliar contexts and develop problem solving and decision-making skills relevant to the wider world of business. Students will be required to investigate, analyse and evaluate business opportunities and issues as well as make justified decisions selecting and interpreting quantitative and qualitative data.

Key Stage 4

At Key Stage 4, students follow the AQA GCSE Business (9-1) specification. Students will have 5 hours of taught lessons over their fortnightly timetable. Overall, there are 6 topics taught throughout the two-year programme. There are:

Topic 1 – Business in the real world

Topic 2 – Influences on business

Topic 3 – Business operations

Topic 4 – Human resources

Topic 5 – Marketing

Topic 6 – Finance

 

Year 10

In Year 10 students are taught knowledge and skills from topics 1, 2 and 3.

 

Autumn term

Topic 1 – Business in the real world

The purpose of business activity, the role of business enterprise and entrepreneurship, and the dynamic nature of business.

 

Spring term

Topic 2 – Influences on business

The importance of external influences on business and how businesses change in response to these influences.

 

Summer term

Topic 3 – Business operations

The interdependent nature of business operations, human resources, marketing and finance, as well as what business operations involve and their role within the production of goods and the provision of services. This includes:

  • Methods of production
  • Efficiency in production
  • The role of procurement
  • The concept of quality
  • Good customer service

 

Year 11

In Year 11 students are taught knowledge and skills from topics 4, 5 and 6. 

 

Autumn term

Topic 4 – Human resources

The interdependent nature of business operations, human resources, marketing and finance, as well as the purpose of human resources, its role within business and how it influences business activity.  This includes:

  • Organisational structures
  • Recruitment and selection of employees
  • Motivating employees
  • Training

 

Spring term

Topic 5 – Marketing

The interdependent nature of business operations, human resources, marketing and finance, as well as the purpose of marketing, its role within business and how it influences business activity.  This includes:

  • Identifying and understanding customers
  • Segmentation
  • The purpose and methods of market research
  • The elements of the marketing mix

 

Summer term

Topic 6 – Finance  

The interdependent nature of business operations, human resources, marketing and finance, as well as the purpose of the finance function, its role within business and how it influences business activity.  This includes:

This includes:

  • Sources of finance
  • Cash flow
  • Financial terms and calculations
  • Analysing financial performance

Key Stage 5

At Key Stage 5, students follow the AQA A Level Business specification. Students will have 8 hours of taught lessons over their fortnightly timetable. Overall, there are 10 topics taught throughout the two-year programme. There are:

Topic 1 – What is business?

Topic 2 – Managers, leadership and decision making

Topic 3 – Decision making to improve marketing performance

Topic 4 – Decision making to improve operational performance

Topic 5 – Decision making to improve financial performance

Topic 6 – Decision making to improve human resource performance

Topic 7 – Analysing the strategic position of a business

Topic 8 – Choosing strategic direction

Topic 9 – Strategic methods: how to pursue strategies

Topic 10 – Managing strategic change

 

Year 12

In Year 12 students are taught knowledge and skills from topics 1 to 6. 

 

Autumn term

Topic 1 – What is business?

  • Understanding the nature and purpose of business
  • Understanding different business forms
  • Understanding that businesses operate within an external environment

 

Topic 2 – Managers, leadership and decision making

  • Understanding management, leadership and decision making
  • Understanding management decision making
  • Understanding the role and importance of stakeholders

 

Spring term

Topic 3 – Decision making to improve marketing performance

  • Setting marketing objectives
  • Understanding markets and customers
  • Making marketing decisions: segmentation, targeting, positioning
  • Making marketing decisions: using the marketing mix

 

Topic 4 – Decision making to improve operational performance

  • Setting operational objectives
  • Analysing operational performance
  • Making operational decisions to improve performance: increasing efficiency and productivity
  • Making operational decisions to improve performance: improving quality
  • Making operational decisions to improve performance: managing inventory and supply chains

 

Summer term

Topic 5 – Decision making to improve financial performance

  • Setting financial objectives
  • Analysing financial performance
  • Making financial decisions: sources of finance
  • Making financial decisions: improving cash flow and profits

 

Topic 6 – Decision making to improve human resource performance

  • Setting human resource objectives
  • Analysing human resource performance
  • Making human resources decisions: improving organisational design and managing the human resource flow
  • Making human resources decisions: improving motivation and engagement
  • Making human resource decisions: improving employer-employee relations

 

Year 13

In Year 13 students are taught knowledge and skills from topics 7 to 10.   

 

Autumn term

Topic 7 – Analysing the strategic position of a business

  • Mission, corporate objectives and strategy
  • Analysing the existing internal position of a business to assess strengths and weaknesses:
    • Financial rati analysis
    • Overall perfrmance
    • Plitical and legal change
    • Ecnomic change
    • Scial and technological
    • The cmpetitive environment
    • Investment appraisal

Topic 8 – Choosing strategic direction

  • Strategic direction
  • Strategic positioning

 

Spring term

Topic 9 – Strategic methods: how to pursue strategies

  • Assessing a change in scale
  • Assessing innovation
  • Assessing internationalisation
  • Assessing greater use of digital technology

 

Summer term

Topic 10 – Managing strategic change

  • Managing change
  • Managing organisational culture
  • Managing strategic implementation
  • Problems with strategy and why strategies fail