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GCSE Business Studies

Mathematics - Year 7

Click here to return to our Business Studies curriculum overview

Below you will find more specific information about the curriculum in Business Studies for students who have chosen this subject for GCSE, explaining to you what students will learn, when, why and how. There is also information about how parents/carers are able to support students in their learning, extra-curricular opportunities in this subject and how it links to other subjects and the wider world.

Subject Key Concepts

 #1 Functional Areas           #2 Business Language           #3 Evidence Base         

 #4 Balanced Argument          #5 Decision Making         #6 Communication Skills         

 #7 Make Full Connections      #8 Beyond the Classroom and Me – Am I thinking Smart?

 Please click here for Subject Key Concepts.

Curriculum Overview for the Autumn Term

Year 10

Topic / Key Concepts

Specific Knowledge

Specific Skills

Autumn

Topic 1.1 Enterprise and entrepreneurship

1.1.1         The dynamic nature of business

Why new business ideas come about:

·         Changes in technology.

·         Changes in what consumers want.

·         Products and services becoming obsolete.

·         How new business ideas come about:

o   Original ideas

o   Adapting existing products/services/ideas

 

1.1.2         Risk and reward

The impact of risk and reward on business activity:

·         Risk: business failure, financial loss, lack of security

·         Reward: business success, profit, independence

 

1.1.3         The role of business enterprise

The role of business enterprise and the purpose of business activity:

·         To produce goods or services.

·         To meet customer needs.

·         To add value: convenience, branding, quality, design, unique selling points.

The role of entrepreneurship:

·         An entrepreneur: organises resources, makes business decisions, takes risks.

 

Through studying these topics students will:

·         know and understand business concepts, such as SMART targets, break-even and business objectives, the integrated nature of business activity and the impact of business on individuals and wider society

·         apply knowledge using case studies of different types and sizes of businesses in local, national and global contexts

·         develop as enterprising individuals and understand the risks and rewards of becoming an entrepreneur with the ability to think commercially and creatively to demonstrate business acumen, and draw on evidence to make informed business decisions and solve business problems

·         investigate and analyse real business opportunities and issues to construct well-argued, well-evidenced, balanced and structured arguments, demonstrating their depth and breadth of understanding of business using data in case studies and financial information to calculate business revenues, costs and profits

·         apply knowledge and understanding to different business contexts. Understanding the importance of market research and being able to conduct their own research as either a group or independently

·         use business terminology to identify and explain business activity

 

·         AO1 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of business concepts and issues

·         AO2 Apply knowledge and understanding of business concepts and issues to a variety of contexts

·         AO3 Analyse and evaluate business information and issues to demonstrate understanding of business activity, make judgements and draw conclusions.

Topic 1.2 Spotting a business opportunity

1.2.1 Customer needs

Identifying and understanding customer needs:

·         What customer needs are: price, quality, choice, convenience.

The importance of identifying and understanding customers: generating sales, business survival.

 

1.2.2 Market research

The purpose of market research:

·         To identify and understand customer needs.

·         To identify gaps in the market.

·         To reduce risk.

·         To inform business decisions.

 

1.2.2 Market research

Types of market research:

·         Methods of primary research: survey, questionnaire, focus group, observation

·         Methods of secondary research: Internet, market reports, government reports

·         The use of qualitative and quantitative market research data

The role of social media in collecting market research data.

The importance of the reliability of market research data.

 

1.2.3 Market segmentation

How businesses use market segmentation to target customers:

·         Identifying market segments: location, demographics, lifestyle, income, age

·         Market mapping to identify a gap in the market and the competition

 

1.2.4 The competitive environment

Understanding the competitive environment:

·         Strengths and weaknesses of competitors based on: price, quality, location, product range and customer service.

The impact of competition on business decision making.

 

Topic 1.3 Putting a business idea into practice

1.3.1 Business aims and objectives

What business aims and business objectives are.

Business aims and objectives when starting up:

·         Financial aims and objectives: survival, profit, sales, market share, financial security

·         Non-financial aims and objectives: social objectives, personal satisfaction, challenge, independence and control

Why business aims and objectives differ between businesses.

 

1.3.2 Business revenues, costs and profits

The concept and calculation of:

·         Revenue

·         Fixed and variable costs

·         Total costs

·         Profit and loss

·         Interest

 

1.3.2 Business revenues, costs and profits

·         Interpretation of break-even diagrams:

·         The impact of changes in revenue and costs

·         Break-even level of output

·         Margin of safety

·         Profit and loss

Year 11

Topic / Key Concepts

Specific Knowledge

Specific Skills

Autumn

Topic 2.1 Growing the business

2.1.1 Business growth

Methods of business growth and their impact:

·         internal (organic) growth: new products (innovation, research and development), new markets (through changing the marketing mix or taking advantage of technology and/or expanding overseas)

·         external (inorganic) growth: merger, takeover.

The types of business ownership for growing businesses:

·         public limited company (plc).

Sources of finance for growing and established businesses:

·         internal sources: retained profit, selling assets

·         external sources: loan capital, share capital, including stock market flotation (public limited companies).

 

2.1.2 Changes in business aims and objectives

Why business aims and objectives change as businesses evolve:

·         in response to: market conditions, technology, performance, legislation, internal reasons.

How business aims and objectives change as businesses evolve:

·         focus on survival or growth

·         entering or exiting markets

·         growing or reducing the workforce

·         increasing or decreasing product range.

 

2.1.3 Business and globalisation

The impact of globalisation on businesses:

·         imports: competition from overseas, buying from overseas

·         exports: selling to overseas markets

·         changing business locations

·         multinationals.

Barriers to international trade:

·         tariffs

·         trade blocs.

 

2.1.3 Business and globalisation

·         How businesses compete internationally:

·         the use of the internet and e-commerce

·         changing the marketing mix to compete internationally.

 

2.1.4 Ethics, the environment and business

The impact of ethical and environmental considerations on businesses:

·         how ethical considerations influence business activity: possible trade-offs between ethics and profit

·         how environmental considerations influence business activity: possible trade-offs between the environment, sustainability and profit

the potential impact of pressure group activity on the marketing mix.

Through studying these topics students will:

·         know and understand business concepts, such as Business growth, ownership, aims and objectives and the integrated nature of business activity and the impact of business on individuals and wider society

·         apply knowledge using case studies of different types and sizes of businesses in local, national and global contexts

·         develop as enterprising individuals and understand the ways an entrepreneur can grow and develop by thinking commercially and creatively to demonstrate business acumen, and draw on evidence to make informed business decisions and solve business problems

·         investigate and analyse real business opportunities and issues to construct well-argued, well-evidenced, balanced and structured arguments, demonstrating their depth and breadth of understanding of business using data in case studies and assessing other countries as potential markets for trade.

·         apply knowledge and understanding to different business contexts. Understanding the importance of globalisation and the marketing mix on a business’s success

·         use business terminology to identify and explain business activity

 

·         AO1 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of business concepts and issues

·         AO2 Apply knowledge and understanding of business concepts and issues to a variety of contexts

AO3 Analyse and evaluate business information and issues to demonstrate understanding of business activity, make judgements and draw conclusions.

 

Topic 2.2 Making marketing decisions

2.2.1 Product

The design mix:

·         function, aesthetics, cost.

The product life cycle:

·         The phases of the product life cycle

·         extension strategies.

The importance to a business of differentiating a product/service.

 

2.2.2 Price

Price:

·         pricing strategies

·         Influences on pricing strategies: technology, competition, market segments, product life cycle.

 

2.2.3 Promotion

Promotion:

·         appropriate promotion strategies for different market segments: advertising, sponsorship, product trials, special offers, branding

·         the use of technology in promotion: targeted advertising online, viral advertising via social media, e-newsletters.

 

2.2.4 Place

Place:

·         methods of distribution: retailers and e-tailers (e-commerce).

 

2.2.5 Using the marketing mix to make business decisions

How each element of the marketing mix can influence other elements.

Using the marketing mix to build competitive advantage.

How an integrated marketing mix can influence competitive advantage.

 

Useful documents:

Please click here for a PDF of curriculum overview for Year 10.    
Please click here for a PDF of curriculum overview For Year 11.  
Please click here for a PowerPoint presentation of Success in Edexcel GCSE Business.

While this information covers a broad range of areas, please do get in touch with the Subject Leader Miss McGuigan if you have any questions.

Please click on the questions below to find out more.

Which exam board will students be examined by?

Edexcel

How are groups organised?

Classes are of mixed ability.  Students have five, one hour lessons per fortnight, with weekly homework tasks

What characteristics does a successful student have in this subject?

Students undertaking this subject will have a flare for Business and have ideas on how to develop a product or service over time, working in a more practical way.

How will students learn at this level?

Through teacher led lessons offering; theory, real life case studies, calculations, demonstrations and research tasks, using a variety of resources such as the internet, text books, revision guides, magazines, quizzes, games and revision apps. 

How will students’ learning be assessed at this level?

Exams will take place in the summer of Year 11.

Paper 1 – Theme 1 - Written examination: 1 hour and 30 minutes

50% of the qualification, 90 marks

The 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.  Calculators may be used in the examination.

Paper 2 – Theme 2 - Written examination: 1 hour and 30 minutes

50% of the qualification, 90 marks

The 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.  Calculators may be used in the examination.

When do key assessments take place?

TBC by exam board in 2021.

In class assessments points will follow school calendar comprising of course work tasks and mock exam style tasks.

How can parents/carers support students’ learning?

  • Encourage your child to watch and engage with Business related TV shows such as; Dragons Den, Inside the factory and The Apprentice, as well as watching the National and Local news on a regular basis.
  • To talk about the experiences you have had within Business, the roles you have worked in and the jobs you have had.
  • Provide access to reading materials such as newspapers’ or magazines.

What equipment do students need for this subject?

Essential school equipment

Access to a computer and the internet outside of school

How does this subject link to other subjects?

  • English - Reading of case studies and independent reading outside of the classroom
  • Development of definitions of key terms
  • Maths - Formula for finance concepts and use of graphs in market mapping.

What websites or resources may be helpful to support students’ learning?

https://www.tutor2u.net/business

https://www.businessed.co.uk/

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business

https://qualifications.pearson.com/en/qualifications/edexcel-gcses/business-2017.html

What extra-curricular or enrichment opportunities are available for students in this subject at this level?

Business catch-up in SB6 every Tuesday and Friday lunch time

What sort of careers can this subject lead to?

The GCSE Business offers students a wide choice of progression options into further study (Level 3 Cambridge Technical or Apprenticeships), training or relevant employment in all areas of the Business.

What does student work look like in this subject at this level?

Examiner reports with exemplar work:

https://qualifications.pearson.com/en/qualifications/edexcel-gcses/business-2017.coursematerials.html#filterQuery=Pearson-UK:Category%2FExam-materials

How does this subject support a broad and balanced curriculum, meeting the needs of all students, and developing traditional core skills?

  • This subject links to a wide range of other subjects, students can apply their knowledge using skills gained across their curriculum.
  • We have mixed ability classes, so students gain teacher and peer support. In addition, students can show a range of abilities through practical and written work.
  • Traditional core written skills are applied during lesson tasks and the writing of exam answers 

How does this subject promote creativity, critical thinking, practice, perseverance and resilience, and making links?

  • Use of ICT and presentation skills, students design their own product/service, adapt existing products.
  • Students must analyse and evaluate their work on a regular basis, using data and research to conclude their findings
  • Students will practice tasks in class before submitting core tasks along with practicing their exam knowledge and skills.  Students are encouraged to develop and improve their work
  • Links to most other core and non-core GCSE and technical subjects

How does this subject encourage enrichment and the development of cultural capital, deep learning, and inclusivity?

  • Enrichment and Cultural understanding imbedded with the research of small local businesses and how they and big business cater for different consumers and adhere to different Law and regulations. For example: beliefs, religion, diet, environment and sustainability issues.
  • Deep learning and knowledge is embedded by students having the opportunities to practise their knowledge and skills, helping them to then write an evaluation of the outcomes
  • The subject is inclusive of all students from all backgrounds. Students are able to share their experiences