Head of Department: Mr S Grimes
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:
BTEC Level 2 Business
GCE A level Economics
GCE A level Business
BTEC National Extended Certificate Business
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
- Thorpe Park – Marketing of a tourist attraction
- Coca Cola – The operation of a manufacturing and distribution plant.
- Calloway Golf – Product innovation and production
- House of Fraser – Customer service and retail merchandising
- The Bank of England – Interest rates and the economy
This year sees the department’s 10th anniversary 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 enters students into several regional and national competitions.
- A level Business students take part in a marketing challenge organised by Surrey County Council.
- GCSE and A level students take part in the IFS Student Investor Challenge.
- Year 12 Economics students take part in the Bank of England Target 2.0 Interest Rate competition.
We have links with the Speakers for Schools organisation, who provide visiting speakers covering a range of topics in a range of subjects.
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. Last year’s enterprise, The Giving Gift Company, made and sold gifts for both the Christmas and Easter markets, raising over £400 for The Lily Foundation.
Year 12 students also act as Business Advisors to local primary school students during the Card Shark days in the summer term.
GCSE and BTEC 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 (New 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
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
The department offers an alternative level 2 qualification, which is assessed through a mix of coursework and examination. This course, known as BTEC Business, is equivalent to one GCSE at grades A* - C.
Students complete units including:
- Enterprise in the Business World (coursework)
- Finance for Business (examination)
- Principles of Marketing (examination)
- Principles of Customer Service (coursework)
The students investigate real businesses, producing assessments covering a range of styles including business reports, business presentations, guidebooks, leaflets and role playing exercises.
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
BTEC Business - Edexcel
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.
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.
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
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
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)
BTEC Level 2 – Pearson (Edexcel)
A Level Economics – Pearson (Edexcel)
A Level Business – AQA
BTEC Business – Pearson (Edexcel)
About the subject
The L2 Extended Certificate course is made up of eleven units, two mandatory and nine specialist units. Each unit will cover a specific topic area and you will complete all eleven units during the year. The units covered provide the students with an introduction to how businesses work and the different types of businesses which exist. All but the Finance and Marketing units will be assessed through coursework. An assignment will be set by the teacher allowing you adequate time to complete it. These are assessed internally and moderated externally. The L2 Extended Certificate is equivalent to 3 GCSE’s.
Students will be involved in a variety of different working situations including working in groups, working independently on individual assignments, delivering presentations and visiting local businesses. Independent and group research is also encouraged. Teachers will use a variety of different strategies to help students learn, including videos, guest speakers, role-plays and provision of educational visits.
Routes to Apprenticeship
The qualification provides a basis for progression to the study of Business Studies at advanced level or on to a employment, apprenticeship or employment with training.
Subject Modules and Assessment
The student will be assessed through assignment work set for each unit.
The student will be awarded a Pass, Merit or Distinction grade based on the performance in each of the units they complete. The units covered in the course are likely to be as follows:-
Unit 1 Enterprise in the Business World
Unit 4 Customer Service
Average GCSEs of Grade 3. Minimum of 4.0 average GCSE score
(3 in English and Maths essential)