University of Chester

Programme Specification
International Business BA (Hons) (Single Honours)
2014 - 2015

Bachelor of Arts (Single Honours)

International Business

International Business (KDU)

University of Chester

KDU

KDU

Undergraduate Modular Programme

Full-time and Part-time

Classroom / Laboratory,

3 Years

7 Years

Annual - September

N121

N120

No

17a. Faculty

17b. Department

Business and Management Business and Finance

Business and Management

Business Management and Strategy

Tuesday 20th May 2014

To provide a broad, analytical and integrated study of business and management that enables students to develop an understanding of contemporary business theory and practice across a range of international industry sectors and organisational contexts.In particular, the programme focuses on the:

  • study of international business organisations and industries, their management and the changing external environment in which they operate;
  • enhancement of lifelong learning skills and personal development to contribute to society at large.
  • development of disciplines and methodologies of business and management
  • critical awareness of the factors contributing to dynamic change in the world of international business and its interrelationship with international societies and economies.
  • acquisition and use of a range of generic (transferable), cognitive, intellectual, personal and interpersonal skills required for effective undergraduate study and future vocational needs.
  • establishment of an appropriate base for access to further study or professional qualifications by encouraging the knowledge, skills and attitudes to become life-long learners who recognise the need to engage in Continuous Personal and Professional Development.
  • preparation of students for post-university employment and careers in a wide variety of organisations and sectors.


Knowledge and Understanding

  • The various processes, procedures, competencies and practices associated with effective international management.
  • The management and development of international resources and operations.
  • The diverse nature, purposes, structures, governance, operations, processes and management of organisations.
  • Types of corporate behaviour and the internal and external factors which impact upon this behaviour.
  • The development and operation of international markets and the management of customer expectations.
  • The sources, use and management of international finance.
  • The development, management and exploitation of information systems and their use in effective decision making.
  • The use of relevant information technologies and their applications to global business and management.
  • The development of relevant, effective and appropriate management policies and international strategies.
  • The contemporary challenges and issues that face managers in the modern international business environment and the organisations in which they operate.

Thinking or Cognitive Skills

Students should be able to demonstrate:

  • cognitive skills of critical thinking, analysis and synthesis. This includes the capability to identify assumptions, evaluate statements in terms of evidence, to detect false logic or reasoning, to identify implicit values, to define terms adequately and to generalise appropriately
  • effective problem solving and decision making using appropriate quantitative and qualitative skills including identifying, formulating and solving international business problems.
  • The ability to create, evaluate and assess a range of options together with the capacity to apply ideas and knowledge to a range of situations
  • self reflection and criticality including self awareness, openness and sensitivity to diversity in terms of people, cultures, business and management issues. Also, the skills of learning to learn and developing a continuing appetite for learning; reflective, adaptive and collaborative learning.

Practical Skills

Students should have developed and be able to demonstrate:

  • effective communication, oral and in writing, using a range of media which are widely used in business such as the preparation and presentation of business reports
  • numeracy and quantitative skills including data analysis, interpretation and extrapolation. The use of models of business problems and phenomena
  • effective use of communication and information technology for international business applications
  • effective self-management in terms of time, planning and behaviour, motivation, self-starting, individual initiative and enterprise
  • effective performance, within a team environment, including leadership, team building, influencing and project management skills
  • interpersonal skills of effective listening, negotiating, persuasion and presentation
  • ability to conduct research into global business and management issues, either individually or as part of a team for projects/dissertations/presentations. This requires familiarity with and an evaluative approach to a range of business data, sources of information and appropriate methodologies, and for such to inform the overall learning process


    Transferable Professional Skills

    Reflection, self- awareness and openness to life-long learning opportunities.

Key Skills

  • Communication
  • Application of Number
  • Information Literacy and Technology
  • Improving own learning and performance
  • Working with others
  • Problem solving

 

  • Communication - verbal and written communication skills developed through a range of activites and assessment methods (eg presentations and written reports)
  • Application of Number - research methods and finance
  • Information Literacy and Technology - use of information technology and an appreciation of its application in international management and business.
  • Improving own learning and performance - lifelong learning skills and continuous personal and professional development.
  • Working with others - group work tasks and activities
  • Problem Solving - experience developed of solving problems and decision making in a variety of contexts

The programme is designed to prepare students to become competent and knowledgeable in a range of business disciplines and competences, with a particular emphasis on the dynamics and challenges of international industries, markets and business organisations. It aims to provide students with the knowledge, skills and understanding to successfully embark upon a career in business and management. Its content and structure have been informed by the QAA’s Benchmark Statement for General Business and Management, but is designed to provide a stronger focus on the experience of international businesses and the dynamics and challenges of the global environment. The subject curriculum of the programme is designed to cover and incorporate the following cognate areas:

  • international markets - the development and operation of markets for resources, goods and services (Level 4 TM4001, BU4003: Level 5 BU5302, TM5001 or TM5003: Level 6 BU6302, TM6003)
  • global customer orientation - customer expectations based on cultural differences, service and orientation (TM4003) (BU5303)
  • international finance - global money markets, world financial centres, global use and transfer of finance; the use of accounting and other information systems for trans national managerial applications (BU4002, BU5004, BU6303)
  • people across boundaries - the management and development of people within trans national corporations (BU4001, BU5003, BU6302)
  • international operations - the management of resources and operations across global multi site organisations(TM4003, BU5001, BU5303, BU6302)·
  • global information systems - the development, management and exploitation of information systems and their impact on international organisations (BU4004, WB5001, BU6009)
  • development of an awareness of ‘real’ global issues through international experience: (WB 5101).
  • communication and internet technology - the comprehension and use of relevant communication and internet technologies for application in business and management (BU4004, BU5303)
  • global business policy and strategy - the development of appropriate international, national and local policies and strategies within a changing environment, to meet stakeholder interests ( BU6302) (BU5303)(BU6305)
  • pervasive issues - sustainability, globalisation, corporate social responsibility, diversity, business innovation, creativity, enterprise development, knowledge management and risk management (BU5302, BU6302, BU6305)
  • additionally in this programme, specific subject modules addressing the international operations and industry contexts of international business organisations (BU4003) (BU5302) (BU5303) (BU6302) (BU6301) (BU6303) (BU6305) (TM6003)

Progressive extension, integration and reinforcement in these cognate areas is further available in level 6 options.

Level 4

Level 4 At Level 4 students develop an understanding of the key concepts and business functions, that business professionals have to be aware of, in order to operate successfully in the modern international business environment. Level 4 reinforces the principle that the foundation of International Business is business. In addition participants begin to develop some of the skills necessary to be an effective student and manager.

Level 5

At level 5, students expand and progress into the major contextual study of globalisation and business and in the major functional area of international business. Students expand their exploration of the relationship between functional areas and real international industries and organisations. Students develop their appreciation of the contemporary context of globalisation and market integration in which international businesses operate. For example, the management of international business operations, logistics and supply/value chains are explored. Level 5 studies are supported by optional choices from the level 5 generic functional subjects (including Work Based Learning, WB 5101).

Within WB 5101 activities students can apply real organisation practice, and augment their knowledge, understanding and skills for international business. The placement further develops the vocational, practical and experiential aspects of the taught modules from level 5. It provides the opportunity for students to acquire and develop transferable skills and to gain an insight into the running of an international organisation. Students are supervised and formally monitored during their placement and construct a reflective portfolio to demonstrate the personal and professional development acquired during the placement. This is viewed as a valuable activity, providing students with good opportunities to apply theory to practice, learn practical skills, network, enhance employment and careers prospects, and to further develop their understanding of theoretical input on return to the classroom.

Level 6

Level 6 enables students to develop an understanding of how well the internal resources and business functions of international business organisations are managed to interact with their external environment. At the same time, students are enabled to build on prior learning to specialise in aspects of business theory and international management practice that are of particular interest to them. Specialisation is achieved by the range of core modules cited above and the completion of an individual dissertation which focuses on an appropriate international business-related issue. A key feature at this level is that a major emphasis is placed on embedding and analysing conceptual knowledge in the experience and understanding of real industries and organisations; for example the focus on the global auto industry in BU6302. Progression into specialised international business subjects expands so that international business core subjects account for two thirds of the programme with possible extension through selective options to 100%. Options will only run when sufficient number have signed up for the modules.

Mod-Code Level Title Credit Single
BU4001 4 Managing People and Organisations 20 Comp
BU4002 4 Finance for Managers 20 Comp
BU4003 4 Business Environment in the International context 20 Comp
BU4004 4 Information and Communication in the Workplace 20 Comp
TM4001 4 Marketing Principles 20 Comp
TM4003 4 Managing Customer Service 20 Comp
BU5001 5 Management Decision Making 20 Optional
BU5003 5 Human Resource Management 20 Optional
BU5004 5 Managerial Accounting 20 Optional
BU5302 5 Globalisation and Business 20 Comp
BU5303 5 International Business Operations 20 Comp
TM5001 5 Marketing Planning in Action 20 Optional
TM5003 5 Marketing Research 20 Optional
WB5101 5 Enhancing your Employability through Work Based Learning 20 Optional
BU6006 6 Strategic Finance and Accounting 20 Optional
BU6007 6 Managing Employee Performance 20 Optional
BU6008 6 Leadership and Change Management 20 Optional
BU6009 6 Management Information Systems 20 Optional
BU6301 6 International Business Research Project 40 Comp
BU6302 6 International Strategic Management 20 Comp
BU6303 6 International Financial Management 20 Optional
BU6305 6 International Business Law 20 Optional
TM6003 6 International & Global Marketing 20 Comp
TM6004 6 Marketing Communications 20 Optional

Level 4 : 120 Credits
Level 5 : 120 Credits
Level 6 : 120 Credits
Total: 360 Credits

Applications to the programme are to be made through UCAS Route A. The typical applicant will have a minimum of 220 UCAS points, of which 200 points must be obtained from GCE A2 Level or Vocational A Level (6 or 12 unit) awards, including a grade C in one subject. The remaining points may be achieved from GCE A2/AS Level, Vocational A/AS Level awards, or from Level 3 skills certification. BTEC National Certificate/Diploma applicants will have a minimum of a Merit profile. Applicants will not be required to attend an interview. Consistent with the University’s commitment to widen access and participation, the Business School has a flexible admissions policy, and encourages applications from mature students and from groups normally under-represented in higher education. The general policy is to look for a good level of literacy, together with proven interest and/or experience in an appropriate subject.

QAA Subject Benchmarks Statements for General Business and Management 2007This subject benchmark statement is for general business and management honours degree programmes only. The purpose of general business and management programmes is threefold:

  • study of organisations, their management and the changing external environment in which they operate
  • preparation for and development of a career in business and management
  • enhancement of lifelong learning skills and personal development to contribute to society at large.

'Organisations' should be understood throughout this text to include a wide range of different types including, for example, public, private and not-for-profit, together with a comprehensive range of sizes and structures of organisations. Similarly, the term 'business' should be interpreted generically. 'Preparation for business' should be taken to mean the development of a range of specific business knowledge and skills, together with the improved self-awareness and personal development appropriate to graduate careers in business with the potential for management positions and to employability in general. This includes the encouragement of positive and critical attitudes towards change and enterprise, so as to reflect the dynamism and vibrancy of the business environment. Not every student will engage subsequently in a business and management career, or will have entered directly from secondary education. Therefore, lifelong learning skills should be understood to include the development and enhancement of a range of general transferable intellectual and study skills, which, while being highly appropriate to a career in business and management, are not restricted to this. While there is a clear expectation that all such general degree programmes should cover these three purposes, the actual balance will vary among individual higher education institutions and may also reflect the requirements for recognition by professional bodies. The particular balance being delivered should be explicable and demonstrable in terms of the specified learning outcomes of particular programmes.

Knowledge and understanding

There is an expectation that degree programmes covered by this subject benchmark statement should provide a broad, analytical and highly integrated study of business and management. Students should be able to demonstrate relevant knowledge and understanding of organisations, the external environment in which they operate and how they are managed. This core aim is augmented by a close study of globalisation and the application of generic benchmark concepts to the specific challenges and contexts of international business. There is likely to be an emphasis upon understanding and responding to change and the consideration of the future of organisations and the external environment in which they operate. The interrelationships among and the interconnectedness between these areas are very important within the overall student learning experience, and should be demonstrated in the capabilities of successful students from all modes of delivery.Organisations - this encompasses the internal aspects, functions and processes of organisations including their diverse nature, purposes, structures, governance, operations and management, together with the individual and corporate behaviours and cultures which exist within and between organisations and their influence upon the external environment. External environment - this encompasses a wide range of factors, including economic, environmental, ethical, legal, political, sociological and technological, together with their effects at local, national and international levels upon the strategy, behaviour, management and sustainability of organisations. Management - this encompasses the various processes, procedures and practices for effective management of organisations. It includes theories, models, frameworks, tasks and roles of management together with rational analysis and other processes of decision making within organisations and in relation to the external environment. Within the framework of these three main areas, it is expected that students will also be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding in the following areas:

  • international markets - the development and operation of markets for resources, goods and services
  • global customer orientation - customer expectations based on cultural differences, service and orientation
  • international finance - global money markets, world financial centres, global use and transfer of finance; the use of accounting and other information systems for transnational managerial applications
  • people across boundaries - the management and development of people within transnational corporations
  • international operations - the management of resources and operations across global multisite organisations
  • global information systems - the development, management and exploitation of information systems and their impact on international organisations
  • communication and internet technology - the comprehension and use of relevant communication and internet technologies for application in business and management
  • global business policy and strategy - the development of appropriate international, national and local policies and strategies within a changing environment, to meet stakeholder interests
  • pervasive issues - sustainability, globalisation, corporate social responsibility, diversity, business innovation, creativity, enterprise development, knowledge management and risk management

Skills

Business and management degrees are strongly related to practice and therefore there should be a strong link between the development of skills and employability of graduates. Students should be able to demonstrate a range of cognitive and intellectual skills together with techniques specific to business and management. Students should also be able to demonstrate relevant personal and interpersonal skills. These include (not in any particular priority order):

  • cognitive skills of critical thinking, analysis and synthesis. This includes the capability to identify assumptions, evaluate statements in terms of evidence, to detect false logic or reasoning, to identify implicit values, to define terms adequately and to generalise appropriately
  • effective problem solving and decision making using appropriate quantitative and qualitative skills including identifying, formulating and solving business problems. The ability to create, evaluate and assess a range of options together with the capacity to apply ideas and knowledge to a range of situations
  • effective communication, oral and in writing, using a range of media which are widely used in business such as the preparation and presentation of business reports
  • numeracy and quantitative skills including data analysis, interpretation and extrapolation. The use of models of business problems and phenomena
  • effective use of communication and information technology for business applications
  • effective self-management in terms of time, planning and behaviour, motivation, self-starting, individual initiative and enterprise
  • effective performance, within a team environment, including leadership, team building, influencing and project management skills
  • interpersonal skills of effective listening, negotiating, persuasion and presentation
  • ability to conduct research into business and management issues, either individually or as part of a team for projects/dissertations/presentations. This requires familiarity with and an evaluative approach to a range of business data, sources of information and appropriate methodologies, and for such to inform the overall learning process
  • self-reflection and criticality including self-awareness, openness and sensitivity to diversity in terms of people, cultures, business and management issues. Also, the skills of learning to learn and developing a continuing appetite for learning; reflective, adaptive and collaborative learning.


It is recognised that all programmes covered by these standards need to address issues at the European and international business levels. Where specific emphasis is placed upon this, for example, in the title or in requiring study and or work abroad, then appropriate business and cultural understanding and, where appropriate, foreign language capability should be developed and demonstrated by graduates.

The methods of learning and teaching are geared to progression and integration through the levels of the programme. The individual module descriptors provide details of learning outcomes as well as methods of teaching and learning. The major forms of teaching methods will be lectures, seminars and workshops. Other methodologies will be employed as appropriate. These may include; field trips, visits, directed reading, interactive learning via the University computer network, case study analysis, individual research, group learning activities, reflective log/portfolio (e.g. utilising student progress files in relation to personal development planning) and presentations. Industry practitioners will also be used wherever possible, as repositories of up to date, expert knowledge in their specialist or functional areas. Interim and end of module reviews will be carried out in accordance with the University regulations to continuously improve the programme.

The Department seeks to deliver varied, high-quality learning experiences, teaching and assessment in order to develop appropriate knowledge and understanding, and to enhance a variety of key/transferable skills. This is facilitated through the outcome-directed nature of learning, teaching and assessment, in a student-centred environment, which provides incremental opportunities for independent and autonomous learning.The introduction of the new modules has enabled the students to experience more innovative assessment modes compared with the generic programmes. An assessed debate will form an element of assessment in BU5302 Globalisation and Business at level 5 and a legal moot in BU6305 at level 6.It is the policy of the programme that any group-based assessments be individually assessed with a peer review mechanism to feed in on individual contributions to the activity.The assessment strategy for this degree will serve three purposes:

  • To test the level of knowledge and skills acquired, measured against the specified learning outcomes, and applied within a relevant event;
  • To promote teaching to learning, which will assist students in the achievement of academic goals and imbue them with skills and attitudes which will assist in life-long learning.

Assessment will follow the university model of a 4,000 word equivalency per module. Each module will be summatively assessed by a minimum of two assessments, with formative assessment also employed throughout. Student assessment will employ rigorous, objective testing to ensure that learning outcomes are met. Assessment tasks will grow in sophistication and complexity as a student progresses on the programme. For example:

  • at Level 4 a student may be asked to describe, discuss, compare, and outline;
  • at Level 5 a student may be asked to evaluate, analyse, justify, and differentiate;
  • at Level 6 a student may be asked to criticise, synthesise, appraise, formulate.

However, it is expected that students will begin to use and develop critical skills from the beginning of the programme. Students will be assessed in a number of ways, including essays, industry-related reports, presentations, debates, assessed seminars, reflective reports and examinations. The departmental assessment strategy has been created in accordance to the University's Teaching, Learning & Assessment strategy.

Students completing the BA International Business Single Honours programme should meet the QAA’s Benchmark document’s standards on knowledge and understanding, skills and the assessment strategies. The outcome of level 6 should be a graduate student who will be able to offer added value to the market place by meeting the expectations of employers via the application of acquired transferable, integrated skills, and the developed body of knowledge gained from the programme. In addition the graduate will have amassed valuable life skills such as self-awareness, creative problem solving, and autonomy, which could be applied in a wide variety of circumstances which they will face. They will have been instilled with a positive attitude towards reflection, self- awareness and will possess openness towards seeking out life-long learning opportunities, which may be translated into the pursuit of professional qualifications. A typical international business graduate will:

  • have a wide knowledge and understanding of the broad range of areas of business and management and the detailed relationships between these, their international application and their importance in an integrated framework
  • consistently demonstrate a command of subject-specific skills including application of knowledge, as well as proficiency in intellectual skills
  • have a view of international business and management which is influenced by a variety of learning sources including guided learning, team work and independent study
  • be distinguished by their enhanced capacity to develop and apply their own perspectives to their studies, to deal with uncertainty and complexity, to explore alternative solutions, to demonstrate critical evaluation and to integrate theory and practice in a wide range of situations.

Consistent with the University’s commitment to widening access and participation, the Department has a flexible admissions policy, and encourages applications from mature students and from groups normally under-represented in higher education. The general policy is to look for a good level of literacy, together with proven interest and/or experience in an appropriate subject. The Department has considerable experience in successfully addressing the practical and learning needs of a wide range of students. This includes mature students, those entering education with a non-standard academic background and those with a wide range of disabilities. Equality and diversity issues are embedded and addressed in all departmental modules.

Students studying on the programme will benefit from both the operational and academic experience of staff in international business. Where necessary students will be directed towards the Learning Support Services for advice and guidance.

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