Understanding Business and Economics will help you to make informed decisions when facing important life choices, whether you’re choosing a career or a political party to vote for. Both subjects are popular with our students; Business is studied at Key Stage 4 and Economics is studied at A-level.
In Business Studies, students think and act as if they were already entrepreneurs, using their learning to make critical decisions in lessons. For example, if they were going to start a business what would it be? And how would they be sure they were producing something people wanted? And even if the product was viable, would they be confident that they would make a profit? By the end of the course students are not only equipped with the skills to succeed in their exams - they will be confident in developing and running their own business. This is an increasingly important skillset in a rapidly changing economy.
In Economics students use the theories they learn to evaluate the challenges we currently face as a global society. How damaging a president is Donald Trump to world trade? What impact will Brexit have on our standards of living? Would more state intervention under a Corbyn government actually lead to a fairer society? All of these questions relate to the essential Economic problem: what is the best way of distributing our planet’s scarce resources? Lessons involve a range of approaches, including debates, competitions and role-plays.
Enrichment and Extra-Curricular Activities
Economists from the Ministry of Justice come into A-level economics lessons, giving practical tips on economic analysis and how to enter the profession. Talks and networking opportunities are arranged for the students with various members of the professional services; we recently spent an hour with the CEO of top Management Consultancy who gave out his business card before we left. We also take part in student conferences, and were privileged to be invited to a lecture led by the Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, who fielded questions from our students on current economic issues. We visit the bank itself at the end of year 12.
Key Stage 4 Business (Edexcel)
The course consists of two topics. Each is assessed by a 90 minute exam.
Topic 1 – Investigating Small Business
● Topic 1.1 Enterprise and entrepreneurship
● Topic 1.2 Spotting a business opportunity
● Topic 1.3 Putting a business idea into practice
● Topic 1.4 Making the business effective
● Topic 1.5 Understanding external influences on business
Topic 2 - Growing the business
● Topic 2.1 Growing the business
● Topic 2.2 Making marketing decisions
● Topic 2.3 Making operational decisions
● Topic 2.4 Making financial decisions
● Topic 2.5 Making human resource decisions
Key Stage 5 Economics (Edexcel)
The course consists of 4 themes and is assessed by 3 papers, all 2 hours long.
Paper 1 will assess microeconomics and questions will be drawn from Themes 1 and 3.
Paper 2 will assess macroeconomics and questions will be drawn from Themes 2 and 4.
Paper 3 will assess content across all four themes.
Theme 1 - Introduction to markets and market failure
This theme focuses on microeconomic concepts. Students will develop an understanding of:
● the nature of economics
● how markets work
● market failure
● government intervention.
Theme 2: The UK economy – performance and policies
This theme focuses on macroeconomic concepts. Students will develop an understanding of:
● measures of economic performance
● aggregate demand
● aggregate supply
● national income
● economic growth
● macroeconomic objectives and policy.
Theme 3: Business behaviour and the labour market
This theme develops the microeconomic concepts introduced in Theme 1 and focuses on business economics.
Students will develop an understanding of:
● business growth
● business objectives
● revenues, costs and profits
● market structures
● labour market
● government intervention.
Theme 4: A global perspective
This theme develops the macroeconomic concepts introduced in Theme 2 and applies these concepts in a global
context. Students will develop an understanding of:
● international economics
● poverty and inequality
● emerging and developing economies
● the financial sector
● role of the state in the macroeconomy.