Module Code:


Module Subject: Understanding the Business and Economic Environment

The performance of students is assessed by the assessment method – ‘Individual Coursework’ as appropriate to the level and learning outcome of the assessment protocol. The individual coursework constitutes 100% assessment weighting for this module. Students are required to write an individual coursework/essay (1450-1500 words) by discussing the following questions.

  • Identify one industry from the UK Standard Industrial Classification (SIC 2007) and choose a UK public limited company (PLC) from the industry. [5 Marks]
  • One of the most important and influential elements of the business environment is the structure of the industry. Briefly discuss the structure of your chosen industry. [5 Marks]
  • Briefly discuss the business organisation and its nature of your chosen company (a UK PLC) in relation to the structure of the industry. [5 Marks]
  • Use the Social, Technological, Economical, Environmental, Political, Legal and Ethical (STEEPLE) analysis to analyse the external business environment of the chosen company over the last 5-10 years. Students are expected to discuss each factor separately, for example, consider in what ways technology (T) might influence the organisational structure of a business. Students must discuss the four bullet points listed as below for the microeconomic and macroeconomic factors, and are allowed to extend their discussions beyond the four bullet points:

Social factor analysis [10 Marks]

Technological factor analysis [10 Marks]

Environmental factor analysis [10 Marks]

Political factor analysis [10 Marks]

Legal factor analysis [10 Marks]

Ethical factor analysis [10 Marks]

Economical factor analysis (see the suggested marks from the bullet points below)

    • Identify the microeconomic factors that affect the demand for goods and/or services of your chosen company and the factors for the market demand. Draw a demand curve diagram to illustrate your answer. [5 Marks]
    • List the determinants of the supply of the business and identify what would cause the supply of goods and/or services to fall/rise. Draw a supply curve diagram to illustrate your answer. [5 Marks]
    • Discuss the competitiveness of the UK market and its impacts on the future of the business. [5 Marks]
    • Give some examples of ‘random shocks’ that could undermine the UK government’s fiscal policy and discuss if there is any fiscal policy could have an impact on the UK’s economy and the business of your chosen company. [5 Marks]
  • Research and discuss the business problems and challenges the chosen company faces and criticise on the external effects of a business decision on themselves/customers/employees/rivals and on the public at large. [5 Marks]

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