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Business Studies & Economics

Introduction

The aim of the Waingels Business and Economics department is to engender entrepreneurial, economic and commercial thinking amongst our students. We want them to understand the importance of the economic and business environment on individuals, businesses and the economy on a local, national and international scale.  We encourage students to develop their research skills, to analyse and evaluate logically and apply business and economics understanding, theories and skills to solve problems.  In addition, we aim to support students in developing transferable employability skills such as communication and teamwork.

We offer a range of courses to suit the different needs, learning styles and interests of students.   Vocational courses like VCert Certificate in Business and Enterprise (KS4) and BTEC Foundation Diploma in Business (KS5) are portfolio based with a strong element of continual assessment and a focus on extended projects involving, at different times independent research, group projects, presentations and report writing. Our other courses (GCSE and A Level Economics and Business Studies) are totally exam based with a focus on rigorous exam technique. 

Years 10 & 11

Both Business and Economics are optional subjects at KS4.  Students have a choice of VCert Business and Enterprise or GCSE Business Studies (students chose one or the other) and Economics GCSE.  Some students take both Business and Economics and find that the courses complement each other. 

Economics in particular demands strong mathematical ability as well as a good command of English.  Both the GCSE courses require students to have a detailed knowledge and understanding of a wide curriculum. Students need to be able to recall this knowledge and apply it to a range of contexts. Year 10 and 11 are planned in great detail so that we ensure students have enough lessons for structured revision and to work on exam technique building up the exams at the end of the two years.  VCert Business and Enterprise, whilst covering a similar content to the GCSE Business course, is assessed one unit at a time, allowing students more time to work on the material but at the same time demanding good ability to manage time effectively and meet deadlines.

Assessment:  GCSE students will have regular assessments in addition to the formal mock exams. VCert Business and Enterprise will have an external exam in Y10 and thereafter are assessed continually through their portfolio work.

Specifications: 

GCSE Economics (AQA):  This is a new specification, starting in September 2017.  http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/economics/gcse/economics-8136/introduction

GCSE Business Studies (AQA):  This is a new specification, starting in September 2017.  http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/business-subjects/gcse/business-8132/introduction  

VCert Certificate in Business and Enterprise https://www.ncfe.org.uk/media/829485/l2-business-and-enterprise-qualification-specification-issue-6.pdf

Preparing for exams and portfolio assessments:  A weekly clinic runs throughout the academic year.  Students who may find a particular topic a challenge, who would like some additional revision or some additional support on portfolio work can attend. This is staffed with subject specialists and is an excellent opportunity to have more one to one time with a teacher.

Careers and future study:  Business Studies can lead to a wide variety of potential careers.  Students will gain insight into marketing, production management, accounting and finance, personnel and general management.  All of these may lead into related employment in a range of careers from accountancy to marketing and from personnel management to running their own business. 

Economics is of great value and interest and can be linked with arts, science and language courses.  At university it can be studied as a single or combined subject.  In business, knowledge of Economics is invaluable for most jobs and professions.

Sixth Form 

Both Business and Economics are very popular, with a number of students studying both subjects.  Many of these students then go on to study business- or economic-related degrees   such as business management, marketing, finance and accounting, international business, economics and politics, personnel management and a lot more. We offer a range of extra-curricular opportunities including work experience, guest speakers and participation in enterprise activities. 

At KS5, students have a choice between a vocational course, BTEC Foundation Diploma in Business (equivalent to 1 ½ A levels) and the exam based courses of Business Studies A Level and Economics A Level.  Students who take A Levels in both Business and Economics find that they complement each other. 

Economics A Level:  The course applies economic concepts and theories in a range of contexts to explain real world phenomena.  It helps students to see how Economics contributes to the wider political and social environment; to develop an understanding and ability to use a range of concepts as well as to develop an understanding of current economic issues, problems and institutions that affect everyday life.  Students will learn to analyse, explain and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the market economy and the role of government within it. http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/economics/as-and-a-level/economics-7135-7136/introduction

Business Studies A Level:  Anyone with a general interest in business structures, ethics, the economy, finance, marketing, human resources or management will enjoy the course.  It helps students: develop a critical understanding of organisations, the markets they serve and the process of adding value; become aware that business behaviour can be studied from the perspectives of a range of stakeholders; acquire a range of skills including decision-making and problem-solving and be aware of the current structure of business and business practice. http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/business-subjects/as-and-a-level/business-7131-7132/introduction

BTEC Foundation Diploma in Business:  BTEC Business covers aspects of business such as business structures, ethics, the economy, finance, marketing, human resources and management, giving a broad picture of how businesses work in the real world. The transferable business skills that students will develop include teamwork, working independently, planning, time management, problem solving, and the effective use of I.T. http://qualifications.pearson.com/content/dam/pdf/BTEC-Nationals/Business/2016/specification-and-sample-assessments/9781446938225_BTECNationals_Bus_FDip_Spec_Iss3C.pdf

Careers and future study:  Business Studies can lead to a wide variety of potential careers.  Students will gain insight into marketing, production management, accounting and finance, personnel and general management.  All of these may lead into related employment in a range of careers from accountancy to marketing and from personnel management to running their own business. 

Economics is of great value and interest and can be linked with arts, science and language courses.  At university it can be studied as a single or combined subject.  In business, knowledge of Economics is invaluable for most jobs and professions.

Subject Leader: Ms I Rowley

Staff: 

Dr P Kaur – Economics and Business Studies

Miss J Marshall – Business Studies

Mrs J Shepherd – Business Studies