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Examination board: AQA
Business A level first examination in June 2017

The world of business affects each of us in our daily lives in all sorts of ways: when we buy, when we sell, when we travel, when we bank, and, of course, when we work. Business provides the tools needed for today’s young adults to embrace the challenges of life in the real world with confidence and excitement. It teaches skills that no ambitious, aspirational student can afford to be without. Business provides a good grounding in many topics and provides a breadth which enables students to embark on a range of careers including those in public relations and law. For many Business students, however, the traditional pathways hold strong appeal, including specialisation in banking, financial sectors, consultancy, human resources, and marketing roles.

A level Business aims to develop a critical understanding of the objectives, management, and decision making of public and private sector enterprises. Students will learn about the social, economic and technical environments which constrain an organisation’s actions and provide opportunities for growth and profitability. In the Lower Sixth the course covers the key functions of business – finance, marketing, operations management, and human resource management – and their influence on stakeholders and society. In the Upper Sixth, students will acquire a more holistic approach to problem-solving and decision-making through developing strategies to solve complex business problems and manage strategic change. The A level equips students with a range of important transferable skills, for example in presenting arguments, making judgements, conducting research, and manipulating data – all relevant to future life and decisions.


What will I learn?

The subject content is divided into ten teaching units, delivered over two years:

Lower Sixth

  1. What is business?
  2. Managers, leadership, and decision making.
  3. Decision making to improve marketing performance.
  4. Decision making to improve operational performance.
  5. Decision making to improve financial performance.
  6. Decision making to improve human resource performance.

Upper Sixth

  1. Analysing the strategic position of a business.
  2. Choosing strategic direction.
  3. Strategic methods: how to pursue strategies.
  4. Managing strategic change.

A minimum of grade B in Maths GCSE is highly preferable.


Assessment involves a total of six hours of written exams split over three examination papers (two hours each) taken at the end of the two-year course. A wide range of question types include multiple choice, short answer, and data response questions.

Paper 1 (2 hours – 100 marks) 33.3% of A level weighting
Paper 2 (2 hours – 100 marks) 33.3% of A level weighting
Paper 3 (2 hours – 100 marks) 33.3% of A level weighting

Business students from Fine Arts have progressed onto Business and Management courses at a range of universities including Leeds, Birmingham, Nottingham, and Manchester. They have combined business elements with many other areas of interest, such as Fashion, Graphics, Real Estate Management, Retailing, Media/Communications, and Music.

About Fine Arts College

Hampstead Fine Arts College is one of the foremost Arts colleges in London. learn more about us, our staff and where our students fit in.