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Business Studies - GCSE


Why study business?

Business studies at Forge Valley is an increasingly popular option choice for GCSE for a number of reasons:

  • The subject provides pupils with essential knowledge of how businesses operate and respond to changes within their external environment. An understanding of factors, such as the economy and how changes in this significantly impact businesses performance and strategy, will help equip pupils for life beyond school, whether that be within the world of work or within life in general.
  • The diversity of the theory covered during the course provides a solid foundation for a wide variety of career choices including the following: marketing and advertising, public relations, human resource management, retail and sales, accountancy and finance to name a few.
  • Opportunities will be provided throughout the course to develop transferable skills which will ensure that pupils are fully equipped to thrive within the dynamic world of work. Examples of these skills are: Communication, problem solving, organisation, presenting and leadership.
  • Great effort is made to reduce the attainment gap between disadvantaged groups and other groups of students with the use of a variety of techniques, which includes the provision of data - informed learning opportunities and support in the classroom and beyond.
  •  Many students go on to study business at Key stage 5 and our A level course is currently one of the most popular here at Forge Valley.
Subject overview

 The first two units, studied in the initial year, Business in the Real World and Influences on Business,  introduce us to business basics, including: business structures, the factors affecting location choice and the many methods used to grow a business. This is followed by an investigation into the many external factors which impact businesses and how they perform. The second year of the course is focussed on the following topics: finance, marketing, operational management and human resources.  Knowledge and the skills gained throughout the two years will allow pupils to confidently gather and analyse evidence and based on this information, make and justify strategic decisions.

Departmental Approach- How is this achieved?

Our approach to ensuring success within the subject area is to deliver a curriculum that is inclusive, challenging, interesting and relevant to all pupils. This is achieved through the utilisation of a wide variety of learning strategies allowing for the needs of all learning styles to be catered for.

 As a department, great efforts are made to bring the subject to life. Up-to-date, real-life examples of the activities of local, national and global business organisations are utilised to ensure that the theory studied in lessons is contextualised. Students are also given the opportunity to enter business related competitions, such as the Big Challenge.

Key Stage 4 Curriculum Content

This term’s work – Year 11

January / February 2022


Sources of Finance

Investigating the different sources of finance available to businesses.

Making decisions on the appropriateness of these different sources to a variety of business situations.


The importance of cash to a business

How to interpret cash flow forecasts

The difference between cash and profit

Financial Terms and Calculations

Basic Financial Terms

Basic financial calculations

Calculating average Rate of return

Calculating breakeven

Analysing the Financial Performance of a Business

The purpose and components of financial statements (statement of financial position and income statements)

How to interpret data on financial statements


This Term’s Work - Year Ten

Unit Two – Influences on Business


Digital technology and e-commerce and their impact on business

Ethical and Environmental considerations

Environmental considerations to include: traffic congestion, re-cycling, disposal of waste and noise and air pollution.

Sustainability including: global warming and using of scares resources

The Economic Climate

Interest rates, levels of employment and consumer spending


The ways in which businesses compete abroad

The impact of changing exchange rates


Employment, health and safety and consumer law and the impact on business

The Competitive Environment

The impact on business of operating in a competitive market

Uncertainty and the risks faced by businesses