St Peter's School

Business

BusinessThe Course

Do you fancy yourself as the head of a successful business? Have you got some great ideas for new products? 90% of graduates work in a business of one form or another, from Oxfam to Facebook. Business aims to give pupils a practical understanding of how the real world of business works and helps pupils develop critical thinking and analytical skills which will be useful throughout life. Whether you want to sell home-made cupcakes or start your own e-company and give Richard Branson a run for his money, you will need to know about the bottom line, profit. It’s all here.

Over the A Level course, pupils study a variety of key distinct areas, from setting up a business, the skills needed by entrepreneurs, raising finance for a business start-up, to managing strategic change in the largest of multinational corporations. Within this spectrum, pupils will look at financial issues such as cash flows and profits, to HR issues such as how firms recruit, select and motivate the workforce. Other topics for investigations include methods to ensure quality products and customer service, with special reference to existing market conditions and competitiveness on both a national and global scale. Real-life case studies provide a crucial platform upon which pupils can apply their problem solving and decision-making skills. From small local firms based in York to the world’s biggest multinational companies; decision on hiring and firing, the entrepreneurship behind new ideas, product launch with advertising campaigns and the financial accounting requirements behind business success; pupils will really get to see what businesses require to be successful in the modern world.

The focus is for pupils to appreciate how to improve business performance and how to make tactical and strategic decisions. We welcome ‘real-life’ experience, from pupils who have held part-time or summer jobs to those who can discuss family, local or well-known businesses; this is a relevant real-life subject and many of our pupils go on to study Business, Management or Finance related disciplines at undergraduate level and beyond.

Assessment

  • Paper 1
    Marketing, people and global business 35%
  • Paper 2
    Business activities, decisions and strategy 35%
  • Paper 3
    Investigating business in a competitive environment 30%

Examination Board: Edexcel

Additional Notes

In recent years pupils have enjoyed visits to Nestle, Jaguar, Alton Towers and Coca Cola to observe the practices of major organisations from the manufacture for different markets to logistics and marketing. There are also trips closer to home to look at smaller start-up firms in and around York and to listen to budding entrepreneurs.

You will be expected to have an enquiring mind and an interest in what makes the world go round whilst opportunities are provided in the form of entry into the IFS (Institute of Financial Services) Student Investor Challenge and internal and external essay competitions.