Business Studies

 

A Level Accounting

 

There are no specific entry requirements for A Level Accounting beyond the general requirements for entry to the Sixth Form, except for a B grade or above in Mathematics.  You will, however, need to use both numerical and literacy skills throughout the course.  While the subject involves the simple manipulation of numbers, it does not involve any advanced mathematics.  Anyone with a ‘B’ in Mathematics at GCSE or above would have no trouble with the arithmetic involved.

The course is divided into four, equally weighted units, covering both the financial and management aspects of accounting.  The first two units, leading to AS level, are each assessed by means of a one-and-a-half hour written examination.  The final two units, studied in the second year, are each assessed by a two-hour written examination, and draw on knowledge and understanding gained across the two years of study.

 

You will need to work towards this qualification in a consistent manner throughout the course.  You will need to develop organisational, research, time management and assertiveness skills.  It is useful if you have a sense of humour.  Accounting can be fun!  There is plenty of material for discussion and much of accounting relates to live issues in the news.

An Accounting AS or full ‘A’ level is a very flexible qualification.  It combines usefully with practically any other ‘A’ level subject.  That is because accounting skills are needed in the working environment in virtually all jobs.  Especially close and useful combinations would include Business Studies and Mathematics.

Most lessons will be structured along the lines of:

Ten minutes’ teacher input followed by discussion; then a problem or a number of short accounting questions will be set which you will work on individually or in pairs or groups.  Having completed this task there will be a class feedback session, and finally a ‘winding up’ by the teacher.  Most of what you will do will be ‘hands on’.  There will be some lessons in the computer room, some visits and some visitors too.  Homework will be set on regular basis and its completion will be crucial for success on the course.

 

There are many career opportunities both locally and nationally for those with a qualification in accounting and these tend to be relatively well-paid.  A level accounting is an excellent launching pad from which to embark on a career in Business or Management and will prepare you well should you wish to progress to university.

 

AS and A Level Business Studies

AS and A Level Business wants to captivate the imagination of students so that when they leave the classroom, they’ll want to explore and read around the subject further. The Business specifications at both AS and A Level also provides opportunities for stretch and challenge, to extend students’ understanding of the business world.
 
At the heart of the Business course will be its relevance to the modern world; its topicality will engage students and facilitate an understanding of their role in society. The stimulating specification content will encourage them to develop their skills as independent learners, critical thinkers and decision-makers – all personal assets that can make them stand out as they progress to higher education and/or the workplace.
 
Central to both the AS and A Level qualifications will be developing the knowledge and understanding of the key aspects of business decision-making and the impacts these have on the business and its stakeholders. Each course will look at different types of business ranging from small and medium enterprises to national and international organisations. The emphasis will be on what is important for businesses, what the consequences of their actions are and why these differ depending on size.
 
No prior study of Business is required for taking either the AS or A Level qualification.
 
Many other subjects supplement the study of Business, which prides itself on being cross-curricular. Other Social Sciences such as Sociology and Psychology engage the student to think about their personal circumstances and their role in society. History, Geography, Economics, Critical Thinking, Mathematics and the Sciences can be taught cohesively and also complement the study of Business. The study of any of these subjects can stand students in a good spot to progress to higher education and employment.
 
Entry Requirements - Maths and English at grade B and three further grade C’s. We need good skills in Maths and English because you will be required to use numerical skills and be able to write fluently, using a wide vocabulary, throughout the course.   
 
Changes to assessment - A Levels from 2015 will be fully linear so assessment of a student’s knowledge and understanding of the whole course takes place at the end of two years of study.
 
The new AS Level qualifications won’t count towards the final grade of an A Level, but will be separate, standalone qualifications in their own right.
 
A Level Business will be assessed entirely through written examinations that are externally marked.
 
All examinations will be mandatory and take place at the end of the course (one year for AS Level and two years for A Level) in June. The assessment contains no coursework. The exams are three, two-hour examinations at the end of the A Level course; with the AS course having two examinations of one and a half hours each.  Each exam comprises synoptic assessment, so students will have a wide learning experience. 

Expectations of students - A level Business cannot be considered an ‘easy’ option.  If you opt for the subject you must be prepared for a challenging yet enjoyable 2 years.  The ideal Business student is somebody who is well organised, well informed, well read, and who enjoys a good discussion.
 
Style of lessons - If you opt for Business you should be prepared to study in a variety of ways.   You will be learning through doing your own research and presentations, discussion forums and research projects, mixed with traditional teaching methods.  You will be asked to take part in a considerable amount of group work which will help you to develop important team work and presentation skills.

 

Certificate in Financial Studies

 

What will I learn?
 
The Certificate in Financial Studies (CeFS) has been designed to encourage individuals to be inspired to meet their lifestyle aspirations. This will be achieved by teaching them to apply the appropriate solution(s) from the wide range available within the evolving financial services marketplace.

Students who wish to learn how to make informed and confident decisions regarding their finances should consider the Certificate in Financial Studies. It will help students to become responsible borrowers, sensible savers and have an appreciation of the need for financial planning throughout their life. 

You will learn about managing your money, how it will impact on your life and the choices that you will have to make. Financial services products (such as credit cards, loans and mortgages) will be explained to you along with how they can help you meet your individual lifestyle needs. 

Unit 1:
This unit highlights the importance of financial capability in meeting immediate and short-term financial needs. It introduces students to the financial services industry by focusing on the interaction between money, personal finance and the financial services market place. Students will gain an understanding of cash flow to meet immediate and short-term financial needs through balancing income against expenditure and will also gain an appreciation of the differentiation of financial products for savings and the key features of interest and charges on borrowing. Students will understand their key responsibilities in terms of earning, income tax, National Insurance and other personal financial considerations depending on the stage of their life cycle whilst also gaining an appreciation of why money is important through focusing on what money is; attitudes to it; and how it can affect life choices.

Unit 2:
This unit highlights the importance of planning for medium- and long-term financial needs, with particular reference to the importance of the need to budget for future aspirations and life events. It introduces students to the features of risks and reward in managing personal finances. Students will consider the changing priorities attached to needs, wants and aspirations as individuals progress through the personal life cycle and the role of financial services in assisting lifelong financial planning and will gain an understanding of the personal approaches that individuals take towards risk and rewards and the impact of foreseen and unforeseen influences on financial budgeting. Students will understand the features of different types of financial services product, how to make informed choices about these financial services products, and when, where and how they can get financial help and advice whilst gaining an appreciation of the differentiation of financial products for investment and borrowing, and the charges attached to them. Students will gain insight into Islamic banking and will also consider the validity of data and information as a means of assisting in the financial decision-making process.

What can I do next?
This qualification will clearly give you a head start to a career in the financial services industry. However rather than focusing on any particular career, this qualification is intended to teach you what you need to know about managing your money. If you are worried about becoming financially independent at university or when you start fulltime work this could be the course for you. 

Summary
Level: IFS Level 3 Certificate (AS equivalent) 
 
Duration: 1 year

Qualification: CeFS - IFS Level 3 Certificate in Financial Studies 

Entry Requirements: Five Level 4 grade GCSEs, including English and Maths. 

Further course content
The Certificate in Financial Studies is graded A*-E and can attract up to 28 UCAS tariff points which contribute towards university entry.

Certificate in Financial Studies: Assessment
Unit 1 - Financial Capability for the Immediate and Short Term. A two paper examination: Part A 35 multiple choice questions [45 mins] and Part B consisting of questions based on a pre-release case study requiring essay responses to 5 questions [1 hr 45 mins],

Unit 2 - Financial Capability for the Medium and Long Term. A two-paper examination: Part A 35 multiple choice questions [45 mins] and Part B consisting of questions based on a pre-release case study requiring essay responses to 5 questions [1 hr 45 mins].

Grading 
The overall qualification will be graded A*- E. To achieve a pass, students must achieve a pass of 40% in all four units. Units will be graded with pass / fail only. 

Resits 
Students are allowed one resit attempt for each component of a unit in accordance with the published qualification regulations

How do I get more information about the course?
If you have any questions or wish to discuss the course contact me via the school on 01379 642424 ext.207 or via e-mail on; 

 

Business Studies

Diss High School

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