Business Studies

Principles and Purpose of Business Curriculum

Students deserve a curriculum which prepares them for the economic and digital realities of the fast-paced world in which they live.  Business Studies as a subject equips young people with the skills and knowledge to engage positively within the dynamic world of business and beyond. 


Business Studies at BCCS aims to inspire students to understand the importance of enterprise and the nature of the world of business. It is designed to spark imagination and inspire commercial thinking.  Students will leave the classroom enriched by a broad and balanced perspective of business, as well as being inspired to pursue  success and a passion to support their own communities.  


The Business Studies curriculum at BCCS is designed to give all students the necessary knowledge and skills required to succeed in the commercial  world in which we live.  Students take a journey that develops their ability to evaluate the actions of both local and national businesses, as well as wider external influences. Teaching and learning focuses on contemporary business context, marrying theory and practical aspects of business and enterprise to engage students both inside and outside the classroom.  Through the use of business ideas, themes and context, we seek to develop astute and informed young adults, influence the way they see the business world and prepare them for their futures.  Students learn about the impact of businesses in the real world through exploring a range of diverse case studies and come to appreciate how businesses operate in a multicultural society, as well as understanding the constantly evolving nature of business.  The Business Studies curriculum enables students to learn how products and business systems work, the skills that businesses require to thrive, as well as the ICT & digital technologies they rely upon. BCCS Students will have the ability to think commercially and creatively, demonstrating business acumen through a variety of in class activities, presentations and project based tasks.Teaching will provide opportunities to develop confident students with high expectations who can demonstrate the key entrepreneurial skills of creative thinking, resilience, team working and determination.  Students will learn and develop these skills and understand how they can help improve the world around them to become a valued member of our economic, digital society. 


At KS5 we specifically strive for academic excellence, character development and a wider view of students' role in society.  We aspire to develop subject knowledge, but also habits and traits, that not only support students in their study of the subject, but also success in the real business world immediately and beyond their time at BCCS.

Why this, why now?

GSCE Business Studies is an optional subject at KS4.  As such students join us with a vastly different understanding/awareness of Business Studies, accompanied by a wide range of starting points in terms of the knowledge and skills required for success.  Consequently, careful consideration has been given to early curriculum sequencing. This is to ensure that learners are quickly engaged and opportunities to establish core knowledge and skills are maximised.  Hereafter  curriculum is coherently planned and sequenced over two years in order to introduce ideas, concepts, skills and terminology of the business world.  There is clear logic to the sequencing and the order in which content is taught to ensure all students learn the essential Business Studies key knowledge and skills.  The department has a clear plan for what students should know and be able to do in Business by the end of both KS4 & KS5. Students are expected to be able to talk and write knowledgeably about business, enterprise and the economy, using subject specific language accurately and confidently. They should be able to utilise Business specific skills such as making links between different units of work; analysing and interpreting business case studies and understanding financial information and language.  As a formal Level 2/Level 3 examined subject, students must also be fully aware of key assessment objectives a.  As such considerable time is dedicated to learning and development of examination technique, which is also sequenced into the curriculum early to allow for deliberate practice across the two years.

Business Studies Curriculum 

Teaching the Business Curriculum

Business Studies is currently taught by a department of one specialist teacher (GCSE and A-level) and two non-specialist teachers (GCSE only).


Lessons are delivered under whole school pedagogical principles, which are inspired by the EEF’s ‘5-a-day’.  The introduction of new content is  delivered via explicit instruction, before developing knowledge/understanding by engaging students in a variety of tasks to support deeper learning as well as the development of critical thinking and assessment fluency.


A diverse range of teaching strategies are adopted within the classroom to promote engagement and learning.  New topics are taught through the use of student friendly issues and up to date news/real world examples, including the use of both local and national business examples. All of this helps bring the Business Studies curriculum to life. Targeted open and closed questioning is utilised to probe understanding as well as encourage discussion and explore curiosities.  Content heavy elements of the Business Studies curriculum are delivered in a variety of approaches to support engagement as well as the development of vital employability skills e.g. student presentations, independent research tasks, class debates and decision making games.  Where appropriate and possible, technology and media (video clips/documentaries/social media etc) are utilised to support learning and ensure the subject is both current and relevant. 


Consideration of all learners is made in the teaching of Business Studies.   There is a requirement for strong literacy and numeracy skills for success in Business Studies and although the majority of students who choose the subject at KS4 and KS5 have the necessary prior learning and skill set to be successful, often a small minority require additional support.  As such appropriate teaching strategies (targeted questioning, greater scaffolding of resources and chunking of topics, one to one support, additional exemplars and explicit vocabulary instruction explicitly taught) are adopted   proactively avoiding common misconceptions and ensuring success for all learners.

A two year curriculum at both KS4 & KS5 demands students are regularly and routinely revisiting prior learning to reinforce learning. Teaching in Business Studies ensures that students are enabled to remember for the long term.  Most lessons will recap prior learning incorporating regular low stakes quizzes/multiple choice questions. Students are encouraged to make use of knowledge and understanding from across the specification when planning and writing practice examination answers. It is also made clear to students that the learning in Business Studies is sequential and underpinned by initial learning, hence students must be continually reinforcing and embedding prior learning.

Assessing the Business Curriculum

At both KS4 and KS5 the Business Studies curriculum is assessed purely through examination.  It is therefore fundamental that students are not only aware of methods used to assess them summatively, but also the road map for formative methods of assessment that provides the platform for examination success.  As such, students at both KS4 and KS5 Business Studies are assessed regularly. Lesson starters and in class questioning, both verbal and written, along with low stakes multiple choice questions and formula testing allows identification of misconceptions/gaps in understanding which can be remedied at the time or future lessons adjusted to address gaps in learning.  Verbal feedback is given throughout lessons, using  questioning, live marking and one to one conversations as appropriate.  At both KS4 & KS5 Students complete regular homework, including the use of Seneca Learning (an online learning platform which gives immediate feedback to students). This  allows teachers to further identify and give feedback on areas of weaknesses/misunderstanding. Each half term students across KS4 & KS5 complete a formal summative assessment to test content covered that term, feedback is then given both as whole class, and individually, and where appropriate redrafts are required.  Progress/mock exams are completed, as per the whole school calendar, providing a distinct opportunity to replicate final examinations.  Once completed whole class feedback is delivered along with one to one conversations to discuss performance including targeted actions for development and identification of weaknesses in examination technique.  At KS5 folder checks for quality/organisation are also undertaken once per term.

Progression in the Business Curriculum

KS4 Curriculum (Edexcel GCSE Business Studies): By the end of the first year of the course students will understand the key business concepts, issues and skills involved in starting and running a small business. The learning will provide a framework for students to explore core concepts through the lens of an entrepreneur setting up a business.  As the course progresses students will examine how a business develops beyond the start-up phase. The learning focuses on the key business concepts, issues and decisions used to grow a business, with an emphasis on aspects of marketing, operations, finance and human resources. It also considers the impact of the wider world on the decisions a business makes as it grows.  Students will also cover all exam skills necessary to complete both examination papers; skills are taught in Year 10 to allow for development and practice throughout Year 11. Specific key themes per year are: Year 10: Enterprise and entrepreneurship; Spotting a business opportunity; Putting a business idea into practice; Making the business effective; Understanding external influences on business. Year 11: Growing the business; Making marketing decisions; Making product decisions; Making financial decisions; Making human resource decisions.

KS5 Curriculum (WJEC Eduqas Business Studies GCE): Eduqas A Level Business introduces students to the dynamic business environment and the importance of entrepreneurial activity in creating business opportunities and sustaining business growth.  Similar to the GCSE qualification the first year focuses on key business concepts, issues and skills involved in creating and running a start-up business.  As the course progresses the learning focuses on growing business and the tools/external influences that affect Business strategic decision making.  Throughout the course students will have the opportunity to develop a wide range of essential skills required for both higher education and employment. Specific key themes for learning across the KS5 curriculum are: gaining an holistic understanding of business in a range of contexts; developing a critical understanding of organisations and their ability to meet society’s needs and wants; understanding that business behaviour can be studied from a range of perspectives; generating enterprising and creative approaches to business opportunities, problems and issues; being aware of the ethical dilemmas and responsibilities faced by organisations and individuals; acquiring a range of relevant business and generic skills, including decision‐making, problem‐solving, the challenging of assumptions and critical analysis; applying numerical skills in a range of business contexts.