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  • Flexible Learning Area

There are no Business courses in Year 9.  All start at Key Stage 4.

Business Studies GCSE - Course Leader: Mr Green

Course Description

This course is designed to provide you with an introduction to the world of business. It will introduce you to issues concerning the setting up and operation of a business. It explores the activities of a business, the reasons for success or failure, the different functional areas of a business and the ways that businesses can grow. 

Successful completion of this course will provide you with the opportunity to progress onto one of a range of business-related courses in sixth form including A Level Economics, A Level Business Studies, A Level Accounting and Level 3 BTEC Business as well as preparing you for any future employment. You will work in a variety of ways including in groups, independently, using real life business case studies, internet research, visits or activities relating to real businesses. You will develop a variety of skills including presentation skills, writing business documents such as reports, plans and financial statements and teamwork.

It is hoped that all students following Business Studies will have the opportunity to be involved in at least one business-related visit and will also take part in some business simulations.

The course is made up of three main units of study:

Unit 1 - Setting up a Business    
Unit 2 - Growing as a Business    
Unit 3 - Investigating Businesses

Whilst studying these units you will learn about:

  • Starting a Business
  • Growing a Business
  • Marketing 
  • Finance
  • People in Business
  • Operations Management


There is only one tier of assessment. The course will be assessed in the following ways in Year 11:

Unit 1 - Setting up a Business

Written paper (1 hour) 60 marks / 40%

Unit 2 - Growing as a Business
Written paper (1 hour) 60 marks / 35%

Unit 3 - Investigating Businesses 

Controlled assessment 40 marks / 25%

The controlled assessment task will be set by the exam board and will be related to one of the above areas of study. You will be informed in advance of the assessment title and will be required to carry out an investigation of the specified business. You will carry out research and planning that will be used during the controlled assessment period of 3 hours where you will write up your findings and present a final report. The controlled assessment replaces coursework in this subject.  

This GCSE will be graded A*-G.

Business BTEC First Award - Course Leader: Mr Green

Working in business can mean different things.  This course gives you a chance to see and understand exactly what business is all about and the opportunity to apply what you learn to the real business world.

The school has strong links with local businesses in a range of different sectors and industries including John Lewis, Starbucks, Warburtons, Northern Rock, Sunderland University, Blue Reef Aquarium, One Best Way and Jet2. It is hoped that all students will be given the opportunity to work with these businesses at some point during the course.

Course Description

This course will give you a sound understanding of many of the key areas of a business.  It is made up of 4 units of work, each focusing on a different aspect of business.
Successful completion of the course provides you with the real opportunity of continuing your studies post-16 where you could choose one of the business-related courses available such as Business Studies, Accounting, Economics and in particular BTEC Level 3 in Business.  Equally it will help you to prepare for any other future training or employment in any area of business.

Two units make up the compulsory core.  These are:

Unit 1 – Enterprise in the Business World (internally assessed)

In this unit students will investigate how trends and the current business environment (such as economic factors, political changes, local factors) may impact on a business.  They will plan an idea for a new business and put together and present a business model for the new business start-up.

Unit 2 – Finance for Business (externally assessed)

In this unit students will learn about the costs involved in business and how businesses make money.  They will also investigate how businesses plan for success and how they measure success. They will finally look at how businesses can identify areas for improvement.  It is likely that this unit will be assessed via an online test.

In addition students will complete two further units.  These will be internally assessed through a mixture of coursework and also by demonstrating vocational business skills.  These will be chosen from a range of optional units which include:

Specialist Units

Unit 3 - Promoting a Brand 
Unit 4 - Principles of Customer Service
Unit 5 - Sales and Personal Selling
Unit 6 - Introducing Retail Business
Unit 7 - Providing Business Support
Unit 8 - Recruitment, Selection and Employment

Assessment and Grading

For the Level 2 Award students will complete four units of work of equal weighting.  Three of these are internally assessed through coursework projects and the demonstration of vocational business skills in practical tests.  The finance unit is externally assessed with students completing a one hour online test and gaining a score out of 50.

This Level 2 BTEC qualification is graded at four levels, each of which has GCSE equivalence: Pass (C), Merit (B), Distinction (A) and Distinction* (A*).

Business - V Cert Level 1 Certificate in Business & Enterprise - Course Leader: Mr Green

This course is for anyone who wants to gain an introduction to business and enterprise. It will help you learn more about what business is as well as giving you practical experience of taking part in enterprise activities. Whether you want to set up your own business, move into employment or progress onto further study this course will give you lots of useful skills for the future. 

The school has strong links with local businesses in a range of different sectors and industries including John Lewis, Newcastle United Football Club, Sunderland University, and Blue Reef Aquarium. Our courses are structured to take advantages of this links and give you a real experience of the business world.

Course Description

The course is studied over two years and has a mixture of practical units as well as coursework units.  By doing this you will have a better understanding of how businesses work and how to work in a business. 

There are four units on the course. These are:

Unit 1 – Introduction to business and enterprise

This unit gives you an outline into what business and enterprise are and how they work. You will learn about local businesses and entrepreneurs as well as finding out about business risk and reward.

Unit 2 – Marketing for business and enterprise

In this unit you will learn about marketing, methods of market research and the marketing mix. 

Unit 3 – Finance for business and enterprise

Every business needs to manage their money. In this unit you will learn how businesses make sure you look after their finances, learning about funding, cash flow, budgets and tax.

Unit 4 – Plan, outline and take part in a business or enterprise project

This practical unit will give you a chance to experience what it is like to take part in an enterprise project. As a group you will work together in an enterprise activity learning lots of key skills such as team working, problem solving and communication skills.

Assessment and Grading

The course is graded at four levels: Pass, Merit, Distinction and Distinction*. Your overall grade will depend on how well you do in each of the four units. Each unit is assessed internally through a portfolio of evidence. If you are very successful on the Level 1 course then there may be an opportunity to attempt the Level 2 which involves similar units and an externally assessed unit.