International Business BA (Hons)
BA Hons International Business
Global markets, a worldwide supply chain, an international talent pool – the business world crosses national boundaries and provides many opportunities to travel, and experience and understand different cultures.
On this professionally accredited BA (Hons) International Business degree course, you’ll learn to meet the challenges facing global business managers and customers. You’ll experience living, working and studying at 1 or 2 of our international partner institutions in locations such as America, Canada, Europe, the Far East and Australia. You'll also learn about global markets and form an international network of contacts, which will enhance your CV.
This course is a springboard to pursue a global career overseas or with an internationally focused UK organisation. Roles you could take on include commercial officer, corporate financial specialist, account director, project manager, data analyst and more.
This degree shares a common first year with several other business courses. This gives you the flexibility to transfer to another course if you develop an interest in a different subject area.
This course has EFMD Programme Accreditation System accredited by EPAS, recognising its quality in relation to internationalisation and corporate engagement.
EPAS accreditation is provided by the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD), a global non-profit membership driven organisation dedicated to developing management skills. For this course to be awarded this accreditation it has to go through an in-depth review of its design, delivery, programme outcomes and quality assurance.
This means the skills and knowledge that you pick up on this course will be in demand by employers, and ensure you're ready to jump straight into work in the global business community.
95% Graduates in work or further study (Unistats data on DLHE 2017)
91% Overall student satisfaction (NSS, 2018)
What you'll experience
On this degree course, you’ll:
- Get experience of another culture by studying for a year at a partner university in the USA, Canada, Australia, Europe or the Far East
- Tailor your degree by choosing units that match your interests and career ambitions
- Deal with topics that affect international business today, such as developing businesses across borders, dealing with business issues on an international basis, and cross-cultural management
- Have the opportunity to do a paid year-long work placement abroad in year 3
Careers and opportunities
When you finish the course, our Careers and Employability service can help you find a job that puts your skills to work in the industry. You'll be particularly suited to work in multinational organisations.
Previous students have gone on to work in:
- business consultancy
- international project management
- international sales
- financial risk analysis
- regional management
Roles our graduates have taken on include:
- commercial officer GKN Westland
- corporate financial specialist for Accenture Ltd
- account director for UMD Media in Finland
- pilot for Astraits Ltd
- stock loss project manager for Excel Ltd
Other graduates have continued their studies at postgraduate level or set up successful businesses with help and support from the University.
After you leave the University, you can get help, advice and support for up to 5 years from our Careers and Employability service as you advance in your career.
My favourite aspect of the course was my time abroad at a US university. I strongly believe it gave me an advantage in securing my placement at IBM.
What you'll study on this BA (Hons) International Business course
Each unit on this course is worth a certain number of credits.
In each year, you need to study units worth a total of 120 credits. For example, 4 units worth 20 credits and 1 unit worth 40 credits.
Core units in this year include:
- Business Accounting
- Business Innovation Development Project
- Business Operations and Systems Management
- Economics for Business
- Managing People in Organisations
- Marketing Principles and Practice
- Quantitative Methods and Data Analysis
- International Exchange Workshops
There are no optional units in this year.
You'll spend this year at a partner University, which you'll bid for in a ‘tender response’ style. Once nominated, you'll select and agree a suitable portfolio of units at the partner university to complete.
You can decide (at the partner institution's discretion) whether this year is taught and assessed in English or the language local to the area.
Locations of partner universities include:
On this course, you can do an optional work placement year between your 2nd and 3rd years to get valuable experience working in industry.
We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your situation and ambitions. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.
Core units in this year include:
- Strategic International Management
- Business Consultancy Project*
*Compulsory for students who did not take a placement year.
Options to choose from in this year currently include:
- Advertising and Public Relations (Business)
- Business Ethics
- Business Intelligence
- Business Forecasting and Data Analysis
- Contemporary issues in Product and Service Development
- Cross Cultural Awareness for Business
- Management Accounting for Strategic Analysis
- Management and Information Systems
- Money, Banking and Finance
- Operations Strategy and the Supply Chain
- Sales Management
- Project Management for Enterprise
We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.
Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional units may not run every year. If a unit doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative unit.
After your second year, you can do an optional work placement year in the UK or abroad to get valuable longer-term work experience in the industry. This will also help you stand out from other candidates when you apply for jobs after the course.
Previous students have completed work placements at:
We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your aspirations. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.
Find out about the amazing opportunities Emine has taken advantage of as part of her studies, and what she plans to do next.
Work experience and career planning
To give you the best chance of securing a great job when you graduate our Careers and Employability service can help you find relevant work experience during your course.
We can help you identify placements, internships and voluntary opportunities that will complement your studies and build links with employers at home and abroad.
As well as support by faculty teaching staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK).
ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:
- academic writing
- note taking
- time management
- critical thinking
- presentation skills
- working in groups
- revision, memory and exam techniques
If you have a mental or physical disability, the Additional Support and Disability Centre (ASDAC) can give you help, support and advice so you can reach your potential.
Teaching methods on this course include:
- practical sessions
Teaching staff profiles
These are some of the expert staff who'll teach you on this course.
Dr Alan Leonard, Deputy Course Leader
Alan has worked and studied across Europe as an economist, teaches International Economics, and is regularly involved in global recruitment and outreach activities.
His job is to help re-integrate students into the University when they return from studying abroad and work placements
Dr Alan Tait, Lecturer
Alan has a keen interest in all things strategic but, in particular, the practicalities involved in how strategy is made. He brings extensive experience and enthusiasm to his research, teaching, and his external engagement activities with organisations in the media, the electronics industry, health care and the public sector.
Dr Francisco Romera, Lecturer
Francisco lectures in Strategy, Enterprise and Innovation. Thanks to an International Erasmus Grant he completed his first degree in Colombia, and has also worked in the Confucius Institute at University of Valencia, and for Oxfam (international ONG).
Dr Sianne Gordon-Wilson, Course Leader
Sianne has worked in brand and innovation management internationally for Delacre in France; Iglo and AEG in Germany; Electrolux in Sweden; and Felix, Buxton Mineral Water, Maltesers and McVities in the UK.
Dr Georgiana Busoi
Georgiana provides support to international students coming to study at the University. Within her role, she draws on her own experience as a student who came to study in the UK from overseas.
She has extensive experience working around the world, and her current research focuses on the tourism industry, organisational behaviour and services marketing.
Watch this video for answers to questions such as 'How will a placement benefit me in terms of my future studies?' and 'Why would you recommend that someone comes to Portsmouth to study international business?'
How you'll spend your time
Each academic year is divided into 2 teaching blocks and 2 assessment periods:
- September to December – teaching block 1
- January – assessment period 1
- January to May – teaching block 2 (includes Easter break)
- May to June – assessment period 2
Most teaching takes place during the day, Monday to Friday. You may occasionally need to go to University and course events in the evenings and at weekends.
There’s usually no teaching on Wednesday afternoons.
How you're assessed
You’ll be assessed through:
- analysis of topical case studies
- written reports and essays
- practical projects, such as small websites or systems
The way you’re assessed may depend on the units you select. As a guide, students on this course last year were typically assessed as follows:
- Year 1 students: 58% by written exams and 42% by coursework
- Year 2 students: 17% by written exams, 8% by practical exams and 75% by coursework
- Year 3 students: 17% by written exams and 83% by coursework
Qualifications or experience
- 112-120 points to include a minimum of 3 A levels or equivalent.
English language requirements
- English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.
- Applicants will be required to attend an interview.
Tuition fees (2019 start)
- UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 per year (may be subject to annual increase)
- International students – £13,900 per year (subject to annual increase)
Additional course costs
These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.
Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.
You’ll study up to 6 units a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each unit.
You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.
In your second year, for your placement abroad, you’ll need to fund the costs of travel, transport and accommodation. The exact costs will depend on the destination. Depending on the location of your placement, there may be further costs for communication or specialist clothing.
You’ll be eligible for a discount if you spend your second year abroad at one of our exchange partners. In the 2016/17 academic year, this discount amounted to 90% of the year’s fees.
If you’re an Erasmus programme participant, you could receive contributions towards extra costs of around €200–400.
To start in 2019 you need to apply through UCAS. You’ll need:
- the UCAS course code – N123
- our institution code – P80
You can start your application now and submit it later if you want.
Not quite ready to apply?
Come to an Open Day to explore our course facilities, tour the campus and have a look around our halls of residence.
If you’re new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.
If you're from outside of the UK, you can apply for this course through UCAS (see the 'How to apply' section above for details). You can also apply directly to us or you can get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.
To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section.
- Subject area
- Business, Management and Marketing