• Business

Business Studies

Head of Department: Mr N Mills


The department is housed in a dedicated Business Centre which is furnished and decorated to business standards. Each classroom is fully equipped with computers, flat-screen monitors, an interactive whiteboard and ceiling-mounted ICT projector; the department also has a set of laptops.

The department offers a wide range of courses at Key Stages 4 and 5, offering students continuity and progression.  Teachers in the department have a good mix of teaching and industry experience.

The department offers the following courses:

GCSE Business

Cambridge Nationals in Enterprise and Marketing

GCE A level Economics

GCE A level Business

BTEC National Extended Certificate Business

Curriculum Enrichment

The Business Studies Department is proud of its curriculum enrichment programme. The curriculum is enhanced by visits to businesses, competitions and visiting speakers. Recent visits include:

  • Chelsea Football Club – The business of football
  • Coca Cola – The operation of a manufacturing and distribution plant.
  • Calloway Golf – Product innovation and production
  • The Bank of England – Interest rates and the economy


This year sees the return of department’s bi-annual visit to New York. Students soak up the cultural side of life in the Big Apple and receive business presentations by key personnel from Macy’s, Madison Square Gardens, Madame Tussaud’s, the Federal Reserve Bank and JoMart Chocolates, an independent “Candymaker” in Brooklyn.

The department offers Enterprise to year 12 students as part of the Sixth Form Wednesday afternoon enrichment programme. Students set up and run a social enterprise either selling products or running events. All “profits” generated are donated to a local charity.

Year 12 students also act as Business Advisors to local primary school students during the Card Shark days in the summer term.


GCSE and Cambridge Nationals course

GCSE Business Studies 
GCSE Business Studies is a challenging and engaging subject that gives students the opportunity to develop a greater understanding of the world in which they live. The students learn how to apply business concepts and theories to specific businesses in a real-world context.

GCSE Business (9-1)

Theme 1: Investigating small business (Paper code: 1BS0/01)

● Enterprise and entrepreneurship

● Spotting a business opportunity

● Putting a business idea into practice

● Making the business effective

● Understanding external influences on business

Theme 2: Building a business (Paper code: 1BS0/02)

● Growing the business

● Making marketing decisions

● Making operational decisions

● Making financial decisions

● Making human resource decisions

Assessment overview

Both papers will be in the form of a written examination of 1 hour and 30 minutes. Each paper will consist of a range of questions totalling 90 marks and will be worth 50% of the qualification.

Each paper is divided into three sections:

Section A: 35 marks

Section B: 30 marks

Section C: 25 marks.

The paper will consist of calculations, multiple-choice, short-answer and extended-writing questions.

Questions in Sections B and C will be based on business contexts given in the paper


Cambridge Nationals Enterprise and Marketing level ½ (J819)

The department offers an alternative level 2 qualification, which is assessed through a mix of coursework and examination. This course, known as Cambridge Nationals in Enterprise and Marketing, is equivalent to one GCSE at grades 1-9.

There are three mandatory units

  • Unit R064: Enterprise and marketing concepts
  • Unit R065: Design a business proposal
  • Unit R066: Market and pitch a business proposal


The course is assessed via a combination of centre assessed tacks (OCR Moderated) and an external exam for Unit RO64.




Useful Websites for Key Stage 4






Students should also utilise the CORPORATE websites of local, national and international businesses, where they will often find information relating to the businesses aims and objective, business strategy, and finances.

Exam Boards Used

GCSE Business Studies - Edexcel

Cambridge Nationals in Enterprise and Marketing  - OCR

A Level Course(s) Overview

Business Related Courses at Key Stage 5 
The Business Studies Department offers a range of courses to suit students with a range of skills and areas of interest. At Advanced level the department offers GCE A’ level Economics,  GCE A’ level Business and BTEC National in Business.

GCE in Economics 

Economics is about choice and the impact of our choices on each other. It relates to every aspect of our lives, from the decisions we make as individuals or families to the structures created by governments and firms.

The A Level is structured into four coherent themes to support teaching and learning:

• Theme 1 introduces students to markets and market failure.

• Theme 2 introduces students to the UK economy, focusing on performance and policies.

• Theme 3 explores business behaviour and the labour market.

• Theme 4 considers a global perspective.

Through their studies students will be encouraged to think like economists. This will involve identifying the problem; analysing it organising, absorbing, building, analysing and evaluating both qualitative and quantitative data; criticising the data by looking at its real-life context; and finally suggesting solutions for the problem, realising the limits as well as its productivity.

Assessment Format

The A Level is assessed by three externally-marked, written papers. Each paper comprises 100 marks and is two hours in duration. Questions range from short answer (including multiple-choice), data response and extended open response.

Students with Advanced GCE Economics have access to a wide range of possible careers and higher education opportunities. Students will learn and use a variety of transferable skills throughout the course, including analysing and evaluating business and economic information from different sources, developing written communication skills and learning how to solve problems. Such skills are in great demand and are recognised by employers, universities and colleges as being of great value. This subject combines well with a range of social science and humanities subjects to lead to higher education courses in areas such as law, business, accounting, geography or politics.

GCE Business

In A level Business students get introduced to key business areas: marketing, operations, finance and human resource management. There is a special focus on students becoming good decision makers and students learn the techniques that help them become analytical problem solvers. These skills are highly sought after and valued in a wide range of careers.

Year 12 Topics:

1. What is business?

2. Managers, leaders 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

Year 13 Topics:

7. Analysing the strategic position of a business

8. Choosing the strategic direction

9. Strategic methods: how to pursue strategies

10. Managing strategic change

Assessment format:

The A level has three two hour written exams and is taken at the end of year 13. Each exam is worth a third of the A level qualification. All three papers draw on material from the whole course, and feature a range of question styles including multiple choice questions, short answer questions, essay questions, data response questions and case studies.

BTEC National Extended Certificate in Business

The BTEC National is a practical, work-related course that is equivalent to one A level. Students learn by completing projects and assignments that are based on realistic workplace situations and activities. Employers and higher education establishments (universities and colleges) value BTEC National Awards.

To take this course students will normally need to have at least five GCSEs at grades A*-C (or four and a level 2 BTEC at merit or distinction grade).

The students complete four units of study, including:

1. Exploring Business

2. Developing a Marketing Campaign

3. Personal and Business Finance

4. Recruitment and Selection Process

Assessment Format

The BTEC is assessed through assignment (set and marked internally), through a controlled assessment task (set and marked by the examination board) and through a written examination (set and marked by the examination board).

With a BTEC National Extended Certificate, students can work in a range of different industries and occupations. Alternatively, students can go to university or college and take a degree in a business-related subject.

Exam Boards Used

GCSE – Pearson (Edexcel)

Cambridge Nationals  – OCR

A Level Economics – Pearson (Edexcel)

A Level Business – AQA

BTEC Business – Pearson (Edexcel)

September 2019