Business & Economics

Curriculum Leader: Mr G Maloy

 

The Business and Economics Department consists of a team of 3 highly skilled and enthusiastic teachers who deliver KS4 and 5 Business / Economics courses and is housed in a suite of 4 classrooms, one of which is a fully equipped IT room.

 

We are a successful and dynamic department, committed to providing high quality courses which reflect the ever changing nature of the subjects taught. We use up to date case studies, visits to companies, invite guest speakers from local businesses into school as well as employ a wide range of learning and teaching strategies in order to engage students in a relevant and highly contemporary curriculum.

 

At KS4, students can choose to study either AQA GCSE Business or the BTEC Tech Award in Enterprise. Students can subsequently extend their study in Business at KS5 by following the AQA A Level Business course or can opt to take the OCR A Level Economics qualification.

GCSE Business – AQA

The GCSE Business course has been designed to give students the opportunity to explore real life business issues and gain an understanding of how businesses operate in an increasingly complex external environment. Students are initially given a grounding in the different functional areas of business including Human Resources, Marketing, Business Operations and Finance. As well as gaining an understanding of the work that takes place in these functional areas, many of the themes touched on the TV programme Dragons’ Den are explored. Various ingredients to business success are covered such as the importance of knowing the market in which an organisation operates in, the development of effective employee-employer working relationships and the use of modern supply chain management to meet customer demand. Another major facet of the course centres on how organisations are affected by external factors such as globalisation, competition and changes to government policies. Major recent events such as The Covid-19 pandemic and the UK’s decision to leave The European Union are two recent examples of influences outside a business organisation’s immediate control that will be explored. How businesses adapt to their changing external environment is a key element of the course. Assessment is via two examination papers as shown below:

Further information on subject content can be accessed via the link below

http://filestore.aqa.org.uk/resources/business/specifications/AQA-8132-SP-2017.PDF

 

Year 10 GCSE Business

Current year 10 students followed a foundation course in year 9 before starting their formal qualification. They learned about the types of business organisation that can be set up by an entrepreneur including sole trader, partnership, private limited company and franchise as well as touching on the main political, economic, social and technological influences that affect business organisations. Students then went onto study two of the GCSE Business units below:

  • Unit 3 Business Operations covering topics such as methods of production, total quality management and mass customisation that enable a business organisation to create a competitive advantage
  • Unit 4 The use of Human Resource Management in order to attract, train and retain the best employees in an organisation so that a business organisation can continue to operate successfully. Topics covered include the recruitment, selection, training and motivation of employees

In their Year 10 course, GCSE Business students have 5 lessons per fortnight and study two further units as follows:

  • Unit 1 Business in the Real World – topics include enterprise, types of business ownership, the aims and objectives of organisations, business stakeholders and planning
  • Unit 2 Influences on Business – topics include technology, ethics and the environment, economic influences, globalisation and government legislation

Overall Curriculum Plan for current Year 10 students

 

Year 11 GCSE Business

Year 11 GCSE Business students continue to receive 5 lessons per fortnight and study two further units as follows:

  • Unit 5 Marketing – topics include market segmentation, methods of market research, the marketing mix and e and m commerce
  • Unit 6 Finance – topics include sources of finance, cash flow forecasting and management, break even analysis and the financial performance of a business

Overall Curriculum Plan for current Year 11 GCSE Business students

 

EDEXCEL BTEC TECH AWARD IN ENTERPRISE

Year 10 Level 2 BTEC Tech Award in Enterprise

Level 2 BTEC Tech Award in Enterprise students followed a foundation course in year 9 before starting their formal qualification in year 10. This gave them a grounding in business theory and the opportunity to learn the basics of business so they gain an appreciation of the functional areas of a business. Topics covered include:

  • The types of business organisation that can be set up by an entrepreneur including sole trader, partnership, private limited company and franchise
  • A brief introduction to the main political, economic, social and technological influences that affect business organisations
  • The main marketing techniques that are used by a business including market research, the 4 p’s of price, product, place and promotion and market segmentation
  • The main HR strategies used by businesses to optimise business performance including recruitment and selection, training and development as well motivation strategies to improve workforce performance

After completing their year 9 Foundation Course, BTEC students follow the Level 2 Tech Award in Enterprise course where they are taught for 5 lessons per fortnight. The course is designed to allow students to gain an appreciation of the enterprise skills and qualities required to set up and subsequently run a real enterprise. The following units of work are covered:

  • Unit 1: Exploring Enterprises (Internal Assessment – 30% of total marks awarded)
  • Unit 2: Planning for and Pitching an Enterprise Activity (Internal Assessment – 30% of total marks awarded)  
  • Unit 3: Promotion and Finance for Enterprise (External Assessment– 40% of total marks awarded)

2 out of the 3 units involve students learning about a particular aspect of enterprise activity and then completing an assignment that is internally set and assessed by teachers. In addition, there is one externally set test lasting two hours that is marked by external examiners. This can be retaken once by students if required. The emphasis, however, is very much centred on active learning where students develop the practical skills required to run an enterprise and the course would be an ideal grounding for any student who would like to run their own business. Depending on their progress throughout the course, a student can gain a grade ranging from a pass to a distinction.

 

Further information on subject content can be accessed via the link below:

https://qualifications.pearson.com/content/dam/pdf/btec-tec-awards/enterprise/2017/specification-and-sample-assessments/BTEC_L12_TechAwd_Enterprise_Spec_Iss3.pdf

 

Overall Curriculum Plan for current Year 10 BTEC Tech Award in Enterprise students

KS5 students have a choice of specialising in A Level Business and/or Economics to suit their area of interest.

 

A Level Business Studies – AQA

The Business Studies course is an exciting subject that examines the increasingly dynamic and complex environment in which organisations operate. A major focus centres on the implementation of different strategies that enable businesses to be successful in the marketplace whilst also giving an opportunity to gain a critical perspective of business behaviour through the study of topics such as corporate social responsibility and business ethics and values. Students will gain both important practical business skills used in the world of work as well theoretical knowledge, using a range of business models, theories and techniques to support analysis of current business issues. The course is very much holistic in nature, where the inter-related nature of business and strategic decision making is covered. Topics such as digital technology, globalisation and the development of new markets are covered throughout the course emphasising the increasing importance of these developments on the business world. Both small and large scale UK focused and global multinationals are studied allowing an appreciation of key issues in a number of different contexts.

Additional information on course content/specification can be accessed via the link below:

http://filestore.aqa.org.uk/resources/business/specifications/AQA-7131-7132-SP-2015.PDF

Overall Curriculum Plan for Year 12 and 13 A Level Business students

 

A Level Business assessment

 

A Level Economics – OCR

Economics is very much a subject for students who wish to explore real life issues. The course enables students to develop an appreciation of economic concepts & theories through a critical consideration of current issues & problems that affect everyday life. Recent examples of topics covered include:

  • Will the implementation of the recent “sugar tax” be effective? What are the pros and cons of its implementation?
  • Should we pay to use motorways through tolls or renationalise the railway network in order to improve UK transport provision?
  • Should there be intervention to make housing more affordable to local residents in major cities such as London and UK tourist hotspots?
  • On balance, will Brexit deliver improved economic performance in future years?

Additional information on course content/specification can be accessed via the link below:

https://www.ocr.org.uk/Images/536455-specification-accredited-a-level-gce-economics-h460.pdf

Overall Curriculum Plan for Year 12 and 13 A Level Economics students

 

A Level Economics assessment

The department has a range of extra-curricular activities on offer. Every year, KS5 Business and Economics students visit London where they have the opportunity to access organisations linked to their subject specialism. Recent visits have included Sainsbury’s and Google headquarters as well as The Olympic Regeneration site and commercial organisations in The City of London and Canary Wharf financial districts.

 

To support KS4 courses, students visit local business organisations. In the past students have visited The Grand Hotel in York as well as Coca Cola Enterprises in Wakefield. We encourage new local business links and have recently worked with Blueyonder market research agency in Leeds and ex Fulford student Hannah Rogers in particular, to further update and enliven our delivery of marketing in all our Business courses.

 

A large number of students across all years are given the opportunity to take part in the ifs Student Investor competition where small teams of students try to maximise the value of their share portfolios across a six-month time frame. Last year, a sixth form team in Fulford finished in the top ten out of all competing schools across the UK. Other enrichment opportunities include year 13 Economics students competing in The Bank of England’s prestigious Target 2.0 competition and year 12 Business students participating in The Young Enterprise Company Programme.