Business Studies GCSE and A Level

The Curriculum Purpose

Business Studies allows students the opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of the world around them. At The Compton School, we believe that it’s important that students are informed about the latest developments in the subject and this is something which is incorporated into lessons to make it relevant to students as it is a subject which is constantly evolving.

The subject is first taught at KS4 which means that students come with different levels of background knowledge. We have carefully designed a rich knowledge-based curriculum which helps students to build on what they have learnt over time. We have identified key areas and links between our Year 10 and Year 11 curriculum to help build in opportunities for retrieval practice to ensure that students make learning stick. A lot of this is then re-capped and further developed at KS5 where we offer both A-level Business and the BTEC National Diploma in Business.

Whilst students are studying the subject, they will look at the areas of human resources, marketing, finance and operations. These are the fundamental areas which make up the subject area and it’s important for students to develop a good understanding of all of these. Each of these areas require different skills which allows students to develop their skillset whilst studying the subject. For example, when studying finance students will develop their numeracy and problem-solving skills whilst areas such as marketing allows students the opportunity to think creatively. Developing a range of different skills allows students to develop their love of learning for the subject as they are able to acquire expertise in a range of areas.


Key Concepts that underpin Business Studies

KS4 Business Studies – GCSE

At The Compton School, we follow the Edexcel GCSE Business Studies specification. In Year 10, students cover Theme 1 which looks at the following areas:

1.1 – Enterprise and Entrepreneurship

1.2 – Spotting a Business Opportunity

1.3 – Putting a Business Idea into Practice

1.4 – Making the Business Effective

1.5 – Understanding the External Influences


In Year 11, students cover Theme 2 which looks at the following areas:

2.1 – Growing the Business

2.2 – Making Marketing Decisions

2.3 – Making Operational Decisions

2.4 – Making Financial Decisions

2.5 – Making Human Resource Decisions


KS5 Business Studies – A-level

At The Compton School, we follow the Edexcel A-level Business specification. In Year 12, students cover Theme 1 and Theme 2 which looks at the following areas:

1.1 – Meeting Customer Needs

1.2 – Market

1.3 – Marketing Mix and Strategy

1.4 – Managing People

1.5 – Entrepreneurs and Leaders

2.1 – Raising Finance

2.2 – Financial Planning

2.3 – Managing Finance

2.4 – Resource Management

2.5 – External Influences


In Year 13, students cover Theme 3 and Theme 4 which looks at the following areas:

3.1 – Business Opportunities and Strategy

3.2 – Business Growth

3.3 – Decision Making Techniques

3.4 – Influences on Business Decisions

3.5 – Assessing Competitiveness

3.6 – Managing Change

4.1 – Globalisation

4.2 – Global Markets and Business Expansion

4.3 – Global Marketing

4.4 – Global Industries and Companies (Multinational Corporations)  


What you will see in Business Studies lessons?

  • Adaptive teaching for all students
  • High expectations of all students
  • Engagement and participation by all
  • Paired discussions to give students opportunities to think collaboratively
  • Explicit teaching of subject specific vocabulary
  • Dual coding using the PowerPoint slides to help all students develop their understanding of the subject
  • Reading of texts by the teacher to help make learning accessible to all
  • Opportunities for students to develop their exam technique by answering past paper questions to help themselves prepare for their exams
  • Modelling by teachers to help students develop their understanding
  • Scaffolding and support to help all individuals succeed in the subject


What will you see in student folders?

All students are given a folder which they put all of their work and resources into. These are organised into the different subtopics within a Theme. Students are given a copy of the PowerPoint in each lesson to ensure we meet the needs of all learners. In these PowerPoints, you will find the key content of the lesson as well as any activities students have had to complete on their PowerPoint slides or worksheets. Students are encouraged to annotate their packs each lesson where necessary to ensure they have useful notes which they can use to help them revise.

Students are given a key terms booklet when studying GCSE Business Studies. These booklets are used to copy down key terms and can then be used as a revision tool as subject specific terminology is extremely important in the subject. Students are then assessed on their understanding of these key terms are regular intervals throughout the year.

All GCSE students are given a knowledge organiser at the start of each unit of work to introduce them to the topic area. These knowledge organisers cover all of the content for that unit and also have a range of exam questions at the end which students may wish to attempt once they have started to cover the content of that topic. This is to help them develop their exam technique and better prepare them for their exams.

All assessments are placed in students folders at the end of a unit once they have set an end of topic test. These will be annotated in green pen during dedicated DIRT time to help address misconceptions and gaps in knowledge. Some content may be re-taught during this time if there are common misconceptions amongst all students.

At both GCSE and A-level, students will have structure sheets in their folders. These sheets focus on exam technique and help students as they can use these as writing frames whilst answering questions in class or at home when completing homework tasks.

Finally, you will see marked work with clear feedback for students so they know how to improve on their work. Students will respond to this feedback in green pen during DIRT time.


What formative assessment will you see in Business Studies?

  • Questioning – students will be cold called so teachers have an understanding of what students know. These questions will be targeted towards specific students to ensure teachers have a good understanding of whether or not there are any gaps in student knowledge.
  • Low stakes quizzes – students are set quizzes to complete on Satchel One as part of their revision for end of topic tests which allows teachers to identify any topic areas where individuals or the class are struggling.
  • Key terms tests – GCSE students are assessed on their knowledge of key terms once they have covered a topic area. 
  • Exam practice – students are regularly given exam questions in lessons to help them develop their exam technique and expose them to different ways they could be assessed.
  • End of topic tests – students are regularly assessed throughout each year so we can monitor their progress and introduce any necessary interventions.


Page Downloads Date  
A Level Business Studies Long Term Curriculum Plan 05th Jul 2022 Download
GCSE Business Studies Long Term Curriculum Plan 05th Jul 2022 Download
Sample A Level Business Studies Medium Term Planning Document 25th Jan 2024 Download