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Business Studies A Level at Cirencester College

Course description

The first year A level topics cover:

  • What business are and how they are formed
  • The role of managers, leaders and decision-making
  • Marketing and decisions to improve it
  • Operations and decisions to improve them
  • Finance and decisions to improve it
  • Human Resource management and decisions to improve it

These topics focus on small to medium sized businesses, operating within national, as opposed to, international markets. Students are encouraged to participate in the Young Enterprise scheme to give them a realistic experience of the Business world. A level Business Studies students will also be offered the opportunity to apply for the College’s prestigious Business Academy to enrich their understanding of business and develop employability skills.

The second year topics cover:

  • Analysing the strategic position of a business
  • Choosing a strategic direction for a business
  • Strategic methods – how to pursue strategies
  • Managing strategic change

These topics are a natural progression from year one and involve more complex business scenarios. Students look at business from a more strategic perspective and are expected to evaluate and provide opinions on how companies should run themselves. They will also undertake research into real companies so that they can apply their learning to the real world of business today.

Entry requirements

Grade 5 in Maths GCSE.


A level assessment is through 3 equally-weighted exams which are all taken at the end of the second year.  The subject matter for each exam can come from any part of the syllabus and the exams are made up as follows:

Paper 1 (2 hours) – a mixture of multiple choice, short answer and essay questions

Paper 2 (2 hours) – data response questions

Paper 3 (2 hours) – a case study

Future opportunities

Employment – having studied how businesses operate, many students are well equipped to secure a job with a business straight from college.  Participation in the Business Academy can be a useful way of developing the employability skills that employers look for in young people when they apply for a job or an apprenticeship.

Self-employment – Business Studies equips those with entrepreneurial ambitions with the knowledge of how businesses are set up and the key areas of decision making. Participation in the Young Enterprise programme can be particularly helpful for these students.

Apprenticeships – Cirencester College offers a wide variety of apprenticeship programmes for those who want to ‘earn while they learn’.  This is increasingly common as a step into employment and as an alternative to higher education.

Substantial numbers of our students still progress on to higher education, studying degrees in subjects like:

·         Business Management

·         Economics

·         Law and Business

·         Mathematics and Business

·         Computing and Business

A number of more specialist degree options are also available which often include Year in Industry or Year Abroad options.  These are very useful to enhance future employment prospects.  These specialist degree programmes include:

·         Marketing

·         Logistics

·         Supply Chain Management

·         I.T.

·         Human Resources

Finally some students choose to study toward a Foundation Degree in Business which can then be ‘topped up’ to a full Honours degree.  This is often a cheaper option for higher education and can involve study locally.  Cirencester College itself offers a Foundation Degree in Business and Rural Enterprise in association with the Royal Agricultural University (RAU)

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Cirencester College directly.

Last updated date: 27 January 2017
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