international business students
UCAS Code
N123
Mode of Study
Full-time, Full-time sandwich with work placement
Duration
3 years full-time, 4 years sandwich with work placement
Start Date
September 2020
Accredited
Yes

Overview

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.

Accredited by:

This course is accredited by the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD) Programme Accreditation System (EPAS). 

95% Graduates in work or further study (Unistats data on DLHE 2017)

TEF Gold Teaching Excellence Framework

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 modules 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.

What can you do with an International Business degree?

Previous students have gone on to work in:

  • business consultancy
  • international project management
  • international sales
  • financial risk analysis
  • regional management

What jobs can you do with an International Business degree?

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.

If you're interested in setting up your own business while you study, you can get support on this course from the Entrepreneurs in Residence programme. Our Entrepreneurs in Residence are experienced business professionals who work with us to deliver group workshops and 1-to-1 drop-in clinics to help you plan and market your business idea.

What you'll study on this BA (Hons) International Business degree

Each module on this course is worth a certain number of credits.

In each year, you need to study modules worth a total of 120 credits. For example, 4 modules worth 20 credits and 1 module worth 40 credits.

Year 1

Core modules

What you'll do

As well as getting an overview of the main financial principles and conventions of business accounting, you'll learn how to interpret annual reports and other related documentation.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Discuss the purpose of accounting in the financial management of a business entity
  • Interpret an annual report for a quoted company
  • Describe the main financial principles and conventions
  • Identify and use budgeting, basic costing principles, concepts and cost classifications
  • Identify and use costing techniques and methods for analytical and managerial problem-solving purposes
Teaching activities
  • 23 x 1-hour lectures
  • 23 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 154 hours studying independently. This is around 5 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a set coursework exercise (20% of final mark)
  • a portfolio (20% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (60% of final mark)

What you'll do

The group project will culminate in an informed recommendation of a new business venture idea, addressing a current social/ecological issue.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Explore your role in, and experience of, a ‘simulated working group’ with diverse membership
  • Understand and contribute to small scale research, analysing your findings and delivering them appropriately to your target audience
  • Offer a supporting case for the success of a business innovation, in the context of the subject disciplines you studied in year 1 and your knowledge of the business world
  • Demonstrate co-operative working, with effective use of communication, problem solving and team working skills
  • Reflect on your personal experience, skills and performance to develop ‘actions’ for the future
  • Use key academic skills relating to the creation of original content
Teaching activities
  • 23 x 1-hour lecture
  • 23 x 1-hour seminars
  • 2 x 1-hour tutorials
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 1,000-word written assignment (20% of final mark)
  • a 15-minute oral assessment and presentation (50% of final mark)
  • a 1,500-word written assignment (30% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll study concepts, principles, decision frameworks and practices that relate to major aspects of operations management.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the concepts, principles, decision frameworks and practices of operations and systems management in business
  • Understand the contribution of operations and systems management to the performance and sustainability of businesses
Teaching activities
  • 24 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 140 hours studying independently. This is around 4 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • project output (20% of final mark)
  • coursework (30% of final mark)
  • a 60-minute written exam (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll engage in problem-based learning and expand upon the use of economic and financial theory to evaluate a range of relevant and contemporary issues.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Examine the key concepts of economics
  • Explain topical economic issues and Government policy decisions
  • Define and explain basic financial principles
Teaching activities
  • 23 x 1-hour lectures
  • 23 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 154 hours studying independently. This is around 5 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a business innovation development project (20% of final mark)
  • 8 quizzes (20% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (60% of final mark)

What you'll do

On this module you'll develop the skills and knowledge to transform into a more employable global student. In the first semester you'll get assistance when applying for your study abroad year. In the second semester you'll prepare to leave the exchange and get the required skills to apply for a placement.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Successfully apply for a suitable partner institution for your study abroad period
  • Evaluate your personal employability skills through the preparation of a CV
  • Develop your interview techniques, ready for the placement period
  • Access the placement office online facilities to enable full usage when abroad
Teaching activities
  • 24 x 1-hour lectures
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 24 hours studying independently.

Assessment

On this module you'll be assessed through:

  • a bid application at the end of the first semester (0% of final mark) - this is an informal assessment but a prerequisite for your study abroad year and must include your suitability for the country and partner, your research and preparation, the skills you'll develop and any risk and how you'll overcome them

What you'll do

You'll learn to apply theories, identify key issues and develop appropriate recommendations for action. You'll reflect on your experiences of working in organisations, being managed, and managing others, and explore this within the context of effective management and the achievement of individual and organisational goals.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Explain the nature of work and management in organisations with diverse membership
  • Consider equality, diversity, cross-cultural and ethical issues in the management of people
  • Select and apply a range of appropriate theoretical and conceptual frameworks in the analysis and potential resolution of management issues within an organisational context
  • Identify and apply key activities in people management practice, and consider their potential impact in achieving organisational goals, and the role of line managers in their implementation
  • Review and discuss contemporary issues in managing people in organisations and identify the implications of these for managers and other employees
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 40-minute oral assessment and presentation (30% of final mark)
  • a project (20% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute exam (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll get to know key concepts and case studies in lectures, and engage in problem-solving activities in seminars.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Show a basic understanding of numerical methods and calculations
  • Utilise mathematical and statistical techniques to analyse data
  • Interpret analysis results and communicate to a range of different audiences
  • Formulate and build a basic model of management and business problems
Teaching activities
  • 24 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 1-hour seminars
  • 24 x 1-hour tutorials
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 116 hours studying independently. This is around 4 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a Business Innovation Development project (20% of final mark)
  • a 6-hour portfolio (20% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (60% of final mark)

Year 2

Optional modules

What you'll do

You'll study the current and most widely cited research, and develop and demonstrate the ability to critically assess the strengths and weaknesses of work being done in the field.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Understand the current issues in the fields of entrepreneurship and new business creation
  • Apply your academic skills to research scholarly literature, synthesise writings from diverse perspectives, and draw theoretical and practical conclusions in the field of entrepreneurship
Teaching activities
  • 11 x 2-hour lectures
  • 11 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study project

We recommend you spend at least 167 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 100-word piece of coursework (10% of final mark)
  • a 25-minute oral presentation (30% of final mark)
  • a 2,000-word piece of coursework (60% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll learn how use a CRM system to reinforce sustainability and profitability in a business. You'll use a commercial CRM software package to support business analysis, marketing strategies, customer segmentation and customer retention measures.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Demonstrate critical knowledge and understanding of operational, analytical and strategic issues associated with CRM initiatives
  • Show independent, analytical and creative thinking when integrating business information, stakeholder requirements, and business processes into a coherent CRM deployment
  • Locate, access and critically engage with information to produce a CRM deployment suitable for a given scenario
  • Demonstrate appropriate use of digital technologies
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 1,500-word coursework exercise (50% of final mark)
  • a 1,500-word coursework exercise (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll discuss HRM in theoretical and workplace contexts and how effective HRM can add value to an organisation.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Demonstrate an awareness of current issues in HRM practice, from both the HR and line manager perspective, including reference to ethical practice, and how this applies to the workplace
  • Examine and apply concepts and frameworks to practical workplace situations, both real and simulated, to evaluate how HR can add value to an organisation by attracting, retaining and developing employees to enhance organisational performance
  • Be able to perform as a self-managing professional and collaborative member of working groups and teams
  • Understand the function of Human Resources and be able to select and apply appropriate resources to identify HRM issues and propose relevant solutions
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 1-hour lectures
  • 12 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
  • 12 x 1-hour tutorials
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • an 11-week portfolio (20% of final mark)
  • a 2,500-word written assignment (80% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll examine how innovation can be managed by firms, including recognising that innovation cannot be separated from the wider national system, as well as the role played by intellectual property, technology transfer and strategic alliances.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Compare and contrast the issues and factors involved in the management of innovation
  • Critically evaluate how the successful management of innovation can lead to strategic advantage and corporate success
  • Critically evaluate the important role played by intellectual property, technology transfer and strategic alliances in the management of innovation
Teaching activities
  • 11 x 2-hour lectures
  • 11 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 167 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a portfolio (20% of final mark)
  • a 1,000-word coursework exercise (20% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (60% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll review, discuss and critically evaluate analytical techniques for studying economic issues and problems.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Articulate and explain core principles of economic theory at an intermediate level
  • Use appropriate theoretical and analytical techniques to solve economic problems
  • Develop appropriate economic models for the analysis of international economic issues
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 2-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 2,000-word coursework exercise (50% of final mark)
  • a 2,000-word report (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll get a detailed overview of the global business environment, and the factors that effect it.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Discuss the major factors and issues affecting the development of international/global business
  • Demonstrate an appreciation of the international/global context within which businesses operate
  • Recognise the impact of social, economic, cultural and other factors on the global business environment
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how geographical and institutional forces shape international/global trade
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 1-hour lectures
  • 12 x 4-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 140 hours studying independently. This is around 8.5 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 30-minute oral assessment and presentation (25% of final mark)
  • a report (25% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll get an introduction to public policy towards private firms and organisations, among other topics.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Understand issues relating to corporate social responsibility and how it might influence decision making within organisations
  • Review academic literature relating to managerial and decision economics in order to make policy recommendations
  • Compare and contrast different theories that managers use when making decisions in the firm and interpret their effectiveness in an international context
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 2-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 5 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 60-minute in-class exam (40% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (60% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll analyse the key issues regarding purchasing, sourcing and supply chain management, and learn the key tools and techniques for effective management of procurement and supply chains.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Interpret and review the main principles of procurement and supply chain management
  • Apply tools and techniques for effective procurement and supply chain management
  • Analyse and critically evaluate the key issues related to purchasing, sourcing and supply chain management
Teaching activities
  • 24 x 2-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 15-minute oral assessment and presentation (10% of final mark)
  • a 1,000-word coursework exercise (40% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll also develop practical and transferable selling skills.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Evaluate and apply the communications techniques appropriate in professional selling
  • Understand and analyse potential ethical issues at the supplier-customer interface
  • Discuss and reflect upon professional selling and the management of major customers using appropriate theoretical models and frameworks from academic literature
  • Prepare and deliver a professional sales approach in a real-world scenario
  • Reflect upon the behaviour and strategies of professional buyers
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
  • 12 x 1-hour lectures
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 164 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 2,000-word report (50% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

Among other elements, you'll learn how PR plays a role in managing stakeholder relationships in a responsible and ethical manner.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Explain the role of PR in the business environment
  • Examine campaign planning issues
  • Identify and appropriately use the tools and techniques of PR to communicate with stakeholders
  • Explain the role of PR in managing stakeholder relationships in a responsible and ethical manner
  • Understand how to evaluate the effect of PR effort
  • Construct a public relations plan
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 164 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • an oral assessment and presentation (20% of final mark)
  • a 2,500-word report (80% of final mark)

Year 3

Core modules

What you'll do

You'll explore theory and practice, and get an overall picture of what it means to be a sustainable business in today's global economy. You'll also get a critical appreciation of the strategies and practices that companies can use to contribute to the achievement of UN Sustainable Development Goals.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Critically evaluate the main characteristics, ideologies and debates shaping the economic, political and socio-ecological context in which global sustainable business take place: including the foundations of market economies, good governance and theories linking economic growth with environmental and social outcomes
  • Critically evaluate the challenges and opportunities for business and sustainable development arising from globalisation
  • Communicate your findings in a professional manner
  • Analyse from sustainability, ethical and business perspectives
  • Compare, contrast and critically assess strategies for developing innovative business models to advance progress towards sustainable development goals
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 1-hour lectures
  • 12 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 176 hours studying independently. This is around 11 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 90-minute written exam (60% of final mark)
  • a 1,500-word written assignment (40% of final mark)

What you’ll do

You'll study strategy, through formulation and implementation, and through practice with strategic activities and tools. You'll learn to diagnose strategic issues, analyse the industry a company is competing in as well as a firm's capabilities, and synthesising ideas into creative strategy insights, strategic issue selling, and reflecting upon their practice as strategists.

What you’ll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Analyse the strategic environment of an international company and use the findings to design creative strategic solutions
  • Evaluate strategic options and communicate appropriate recommendations
  • Critically reflect upon strategic practice of practitioners, practices, and activities involved in strategy creation
  • Critically appraise 'strategy-as-practice' literature, based on the experience of engaging in strategic activities
Teaching activities
  • 22 x 1-hour lectures
  • 9 x 1 hour seminars
  • 2 x 2 hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 164 hours studying independently. This is around 5 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 35-minute oral assessment and presentation (40% of final mark)
  • a 2,500-word written assignment (60% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll complete a placement portfolio over the duration of the placement and improve your professional skills such as self-reflection, networking, evaluating progress and using the portfolio. You'll have support from the Placement Office (PO) and a Placement Tutor, to plan, and during, your placement including a visit from your Placement Tutor.

Successful completion of the placement will be recognised in your transcript of achievement and your degree certificate will state 'in the sandwich mode'.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Use the skills you've developed in the workplace, e.g. communication, time management, IT skills
  • Identify personal areas for improvement or training to enhance future employability
  • Use your record of experiences and training gained on placement to reflect on your skill and progress
  • Link what you learned on the rest of your undergraduate degree course to what you learn on placement
  • Understand your options regarding career planning, and future professional development
Teaching activities
  • a full time work placement
  • 1 x placement day
  • meetings with your placement tutor
Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 2,500 word portfolio (100% of final mark)

Optional modules

What you'll do

These organisations are small to medium size, or a local unit of a larger organisation, from the private, public or third sector (such as charities, not-for-profits and community organisations).

You'll first competitively bid against other teams for specific client project briefs, such as developing a business case for expansion, increasing sales or improving internal processes. Some briefs may feature a combination of business goals.

Once your group has been assigned to a specific project, you'll spend 40–50 hours a week working on the project as a team (depending on team size). You'll probably spend a fair bit of time off campus, liaising with your client, and meeting key stakeholders to conduct tasks such as surveys and interviews.

Over the duration of this module, you'll develop essential graduate skills, including teamwork, project management and consultancy, and learn how to integrate business concepts from your degree studies.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Work effectively in a consultancy project team whilst developing your skills in communications, cross-cultural competence, creativity and conflict resolution
  • Build effective relationships with a client and other stakeholders
  • Develop and manage a consultancy project, using relevant problem-solving and project management methods
  • Critically apply business and management theories and concepts, to analyse a client's situation, research and evaluate solutions and develop sustainable recommendations with an outline implementation plan
Teaching activities
  • 11 x 1-hour lectures
  • 11 x 2-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 167 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 2,000-word essay (70% of final mark)
  • a 1,000-word essay (30% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll also get an understanding of the basic principles of business forecasting.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Implement schemes of business analysis
  • Distinguish the important and relevant information necessary to undertake a research project
  • Interpret quantitative evidence and research findings
  • Articulate findings effectively
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
  • 152 hours of guided independent study
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 2,000-word report (50% of final mark)
  • a 2,000-word report (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll develop your knowledge and understanding around the application of ideas, methodologies, processes and techniques for improving and sustaining organisational performance.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Critically discuss the nature and evolution of continuous improvement
  • Evaluate the use and application of high performance and continuous improvement methodologies, tools and techniques
  • Evaluate the use and relevance of various business change and improvement systems, models and techniques
  • Analyse and discuss cultural, human and behavioural factors contributing to the successful implementation and continuation of business improvement
  • Critically assess the creative environment and use a range of tools and techniques to enhance organisational and employee creativity and problem-solving
Teaching activities
  • 24 x 1-hour lectures
  • 24 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 5 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a portfolio (50% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute exam (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll examine how you can extract data from enterprise resource planning systems into both a data warehouse such as SAP BW and an in-memory database such as SAP HANA. You'll look into areas such as query design, selecting data warehousing software, data mining and visualisation, and text mining and sentiment analysis.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Provide a critical academic analysis of a contemporary issue
  • Make a convincing argument when answering research questions
  • Understand how methodology and methods contribute to answering research questions
  • Draw sound conclusions based on what you've found
  • Reflect on the process of writing and researching your project
Teaching activities
  • 6 x 1-hour lectures
  • 14 x 1-hour seminars
  • 1 hour of project supervision
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 379 hours studying independently. This is around 11 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 2,000-word portfolio (20% of final mark)
  • a 6,000-word report (80% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll compare information systems (IS) theory against real-world practice through case study analysis and, where applicable, visits to employer sites.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Identify and evaluate contemporary issues shaping information systems theory and practice
  • Use digital technologies to locate and engage with appropriate materials
  • Demonstrate knowledge of and critically analyse the evidence and arguments available to support or challenge the claimed impact of business systems
  • Engage constructively in activities to generate and evaluate knowledge of contemporary and future information systems trends and developments
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 1-hour supervised time in studio/workshops
  • 12 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • an oral assessment and presentation (30% of final mark)
  • a portfolio (70% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll also focus on the critical issues associated with managing these processes. You'll get an introduction to product/service development, as well as issues impacting on the development of new products and services.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Evaluate product and service development management theories, models and concepts
  • Compare and contrast key decisions and tools used inn product and service development projects
  • Compare and contrast emerging external factors that influence product and service development
  • Critically evaluate product and service development in light of ethical and environmental sustainability issues
Teaching activities
  • 11 x 1-hour seminars
  • 11 x 2-hour lectures
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 164 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 2,000-word portfolio (20% of final mark)
  • a 20-minute oral assessment and presentation (80% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll critically engage with and explore applications of competing theories in traditional and contemporary areas of leadership. You'll also develop your personal leader/leadership profile and development plan.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Evaluate debates of leader versus leadership and management versus leadership
  • Evaluate arguments, assumptions and theoretical differences in traditional and current leadership research
  • Compare, contrast, and critically evaluate leadership theories
  • Identify and justify links between theory and practice in leadership
  • Develop self-awareness of your leader/leadership ability
  • Formulate action plans to develop your potential
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour seminars
  • 12 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through: 

  • a 2,500-word essay (60% of final mark)
  • a 1,500-word portfolio (40% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll take a high level, in-depth look at the impact and importance of culture in selected areas of business activity.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Examine what is meant by culture and its influence on the individual’s behaviour
  • Analyse the nature of differences in workplace behaviour, in a cross cultural context
  • Articulate the need to develop cross cultural competence as a business attribute
  • Justify the significance of the cross cultural dimension in the increasingly multicultural globalised working environment
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 1-hour lectures
  • 12 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
  • 12 x 1-hour tutorials
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 30-minute oral assessment and presentation (40% of final mark)
  • a 2,000-word written assignment (60% of final mark)

What you’ll do

You'll engage in empirical research in an organisational setting. You'll also get direct experience of undertaking primary research and the experience of coordinating and managing a research project.

What you’ll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Select a suitable topic for investigation, appreciate its relationship with current developments in the respective subject area(s)
  • Define clear research objectives or questions
  • Critically evaluate a range of appropriate literature, pertinent to the study
  • Select appropriate research methods
  • Systematically organise and interpret data obtained in the course of the empirical research project
  • Extract relevant conclusions and recommendations from the research findings and discuss in relation to the relevant literature
  • Demonstrate an awareness of research ethics and safeguard the welfare of all subjects potentially affected by the research project
Teaching activities
  • 5 x 1-hour lectures
  • 395 hours of independent study
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 395 hours studying independently. This is around 12 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 8,000-word dissertation (100% of final mark)

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Describe and assess the use of financial statements in evaluating a company’s financial position
  • Apply and analyse knowledge of financial analysis techniques to explain items in published financial information
  • Evaluate and synthesise information on the theoretical developments of financial analysis in relation to items in publicly available financial data
Teaching activities
  • 24 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 5 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 1,500-word report (40% of final mark)
  • a 1,500-word report (40% of final mark)
  • an oral assessment and presentation (20% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll learn more about how to achieve a competitive advantage and manage the decision making process using information systems.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Appreciate the need for a strategic approach to information systems
  • Understand how information systems may be applied to achieve a competitive advantage
  • Understand the role and nature of information systems in the management decision making process and its contribution to organisational knowledge
  • Understand the implications of the internet and e-business
  • Understand the management issues associated with managing IT services and an IT project
Teaching activities
  • 11 x 2-hour lectures
  • 11 x 2-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 156 hours studying independently. This is around 9.5 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a coursework exercise (50% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll develop a critically informed understanding of the extent of inequality and discrimination at work. You'll also learn about the factors that contribute to workplace disadvantage and the interventions designed to alleviate it.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Critically evaluate theoretical and conceptual perspectives of equality and diversity
  • Apply knowledge and understanding of equality and diversity issues in the workplace
  • Collect and synthesise relevant information related to equality and diversity issues
Teaching activities
  • 33 hours of practical classes and workshops
  • 6 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 161 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 1,500-word written assignment (20% of final mark)
  • a 2,500-word written assignment (80% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll also develop an understanding of key concepts and trends associated with these markets.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Examine key features of monetary and financial markets and the banking sector
  • Evaluate trends in monetary and financial markets and the banking sector, either orally or in writing
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 1,000-word report (30% of final mark)
  • a 1,000-word essay (30% of final mark)
  • a 1,500-word coursework exercise (40% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll examine how the significance of the supply chain can alter and contribute to the overall strategy of an organisation.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Demonstrate critical and reflective knowledge of global supply chains, their environment and their impact on wider society
  • Investigate and analyse international supply chain case studies, using theoretical problem solving techniques
  • Evaluate opportunities for supply chain development and improvement
  • Research and analyse the wider supply chain environment
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour lectures
  • 6 x 2-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • 5 x online tests (10% of final mark)
  • a 1,500-word portfolio (40% of final mark)
  • a 2-hour set exercise (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll learn about HR planning, talent acquisition and talent management in a legal, ethical and business focused framework. You'll further develop your knowledge and understanding of human resource management (HRM).

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Understand key contemporary labour market trends and their significance to organisations
  • Undertake core talent planning activities and know how to contribute to the development of resourcing strategies including managing and planning recruitment and selection activities effectively, within the expectation of the law and best practice
  • Understand the development of performance management in organisations and evaluate the theoretical and conceptual frameworks that contribute to high performance organisations
  • Critically evaluate the key perspectives, principles, policies and practices that inform decision making
  • Apply knowledge and understanding regarding how to manage grievance, discipline, dismissal and redundancy effectively, ethically and lawfully within the workplace
  • Demonstrate understanding of people resourcing and talent management and be able to select and apply appropriate practitioner and academic resources to identify people resourcing and talent management issues and propose relevant and realistic solutions
Teaching activities
  • 12 hours of lectures
  • 24 hours of practical classes and workshops
  • 12 hours of tutorials
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a portfolio (20% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (80% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll learn about methods of project management for enterprise (business), and the tools and techniques for scheduling and planning projects.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Differentiate between the characteristics of projects and ongoing tasks
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of planning tools to plan, monitor and control projects
  • Communicate, lead and/or participate in project teams
  • Apply the fundamental aspects of a methodology (e.g. PRINCE2 or Agile)
  • Develop and deliver meaningful project schedules, using software such as Microsoft Project
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 3-hour workshops
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 2,000-word written assignment including essay (30% of final mark)
  • a 1,000-word coursework project (50% of final mark)
  • a 1-hour exam (20% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll explore the responsibilities and boundaries of businesses in a range of contemporary environmental and social issues, and in the context of differing ethical frameworks. You'll also investigate how areas such as business ethics, law, politics, economics, strategy and management affect our understanding and practice in regards to responsible and sustainable business.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Identify ethical, social and environmental issues that arise within today’s global business environment
  • Present an analysis of the ethical, social and environmental issues in business, from more than one point of view
  • Suggest appropriate responses to ethical, social and environmental issues in business
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 1-hour lectures
  • 12 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
  • 12 x 1-hour tutorials
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 152 hours studying independently. This is around 9 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 20-minute oral assessment and presentation (40% of final mark)
  • a 90-minute written exam (60% of final mark)

What you'll do

This is a practical module you and you'll take an active role in each seminar session. You'll develop "whole picture" thinking when pursuing your career.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Use appropriate models and frameworks to critically assess different aspects of sales management within an organisation
  • Present solutions to shortfalls in sales performance in a professional manner
  • Critically evaluate the significance of sales management and leadership, and recognise how to manage a sales force efficiently and effectively
  • Analyse ethical issues within the sales arena
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 1-hour lectures
  • 12 x 2-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 164 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 1,500-word professional report (20% of final mark)
  • a 15-minute group presentation (30% of final mark)
  • a 1-hour written exam (50% of final mark)

What you'll do

You'll go to practical workshops and learn to draw on marketing theory learned in other modules. You'll consider the implication of different technological innovations for the consumer and for organisations.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Develop a critical awareness of current and future trends in technology
  • Develop an awareness of the impact of technology on sustainable, ethical and responsible marketing
  • Critically appraise the impact of current and future technology trends on marketing activity and decision making
  • Synthesise and disseminate research findings and implications
Teaching activities
  • 12 x 2-hour lectures
  • 12 x 1-hour seminars
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 170 hours studying independently. This is around 10 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a coursework project (20% of final mark)
  • a 2,500-word report (80% of final mark)

What you'll do

The project you developed for your employer on placement will be the basis for this module. You'll agree a learning contract with your employer and module coordinator. This contract will identify key academic themes, deliverables, timelines and learning activities. You'll also construct a critical academic commentary, evaluating the use, application and relevance of research/academic literature, in the context of the completed project.

What you'll learn

When you complete this module successfully, you'll be able to:

  • Work independently to develop ideas and realistic, practical responses to complex situations
  • Work and communicate effectively in a mixed disciplinary team including leadership on a project (or part thereof)
  • Apply critical and reflective knowledge and understanding to your learning, and the contexts and outcomes of a project
  • Examine, assess and make judgements on issues which affect the development of your project, including identifying key deliverables, practical implications and project planning
  • Critically evaluate the suitability, relevance and application of current research, key academic models and frameworks, to three or four key themes relevant to the project and its development
Teaching activities
  • 8 x 1-hour tutorials
  • 4 x 2-hour practical classes and workshops
  • 10 x 1-hour project supervision
Independent study time

We recommend you spend at least 374 hours studying independently. This is around 11 hours a week over the duration of the module.

Assessment

On this module, you'll be assessed through:

  • a 3,000-word portfolio (40% of final mark)
  • a 6,000-word coursework project (60% of final mark)

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 modules may not run every year. If a module doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

How you're assessed

You’ll be assessed through:

  • examinations
  • analysis of topical case studies
  • written reports and essays
  • presentations
  • practical projects, such as small websites or systems

The way you’re assessed may depend on the modules 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

Placement year

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:

Microsoft
GE Aviation
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)

We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your aspirations. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.

Emine's story
"It was a great opportunity for me to meet other people..."

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.

Teaching

Teaching methods on this course include:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • tutorials
  • workshops
  • practical sessions

You can access all teaching resources on Moodle, our virtual learning environment, from anywhere with a Web connection.

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.

 

Ask me anything about BA (Hons) International Business
An 'ask me anything' session with BA (Hons) International Business Course Leader, Sianne Gordon-Wilson.

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

One of the main differences between school or college and university is how much control you have over your learning.

At university, as well as spending time in timetabled teaching activities such as lectures, seminars and tutorials, you’ll do lots of independent study with support from our staff when you need it.

A typical week

We recommend you spend at least 35 hours a week studying for your Law and Business degree. In your first year, you’ll be in timetabled teaching activities such as lectures, seminars and workshops for about 15 hours a week. The rest of the time you’ll do independent study such as research, reading, coursework and project work, alone or in a group with others from your course. You'll probably do more independent study and have less scheduled teaching in years 2 and 3, but this depends on which modules you choose.

Term times

The academic year runs from September to early June with breaks at Christmas and Easter. It's 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

Extra learning support

The amount of timetabled teaching you'll get on your degree might be less than what you're used to at school or college, but you'll also get face-to-face support from teaching and support staff when you need it. These include the following people and services:

Personal tutor

Your personal tutor helps you make the transition to independent study and gives you academic and personal support throughout your time at university.

You’ll have regular scheduled meetings with your personal tutor. They’re also available by appointment if you want to chat with them about anything that can't wait until your next meeting.

Student engagement officers

In addition to the support you get from your personal tutor, you’ll also have support from student engagement officers. They can give you confidential, impartial advice on anything to do with your studies and personal wellbeing, and refer you to specialist support services if you need extra help or support.

Study support tutors

You'll have help from a team of faculty study support tutors. They can help you improve and develop your academic skills and support you in any area of your study.

They can help with:

  • improving your academic writing (for example, essays, reports, dissertations)
  • delivering presentations (including observing and filming presentations)
  • understanding and using assignment feedback
  • managing your time and workload
  • revision and exam techniques

Academic skills support

As well as support from faculty 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
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques

If you have a disability or need extra support, the Additional Support and Disability Centre (ASDAC) will give you help, support and advice.

Library support

Library staff are available in person or by email, phone or online chat to help you make the most of the University’s library resources. You can also request one-to-one appointments and get support from librarians who specialise in business and law.

The library is open 24 hours a day, every day, in term time.

Entry requirements​

BA (Hons) International Business degree entry requirements

Qualifications or experience
  • 112-120 points from 3 A levels or equivalent.

See the other qualifications we accept

English language requirements
  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

See alternative English language qualifications

If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

What skills and qualities do I need for this international business degree course?

As well as meeting the entry requirements, the skills and traits that will set you up for success on this course include flexibility, adaptability, resilience, open-mindedness and a global mindset.

How can I prepare for an international business degree?

To prepare for this international business degree, stay aware of what's happening in business globally. 

You could also think about and research what countries you'd like to live in or work with when you start your career.

​Course costs

Tuition fees (2020 start)

  • UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 per year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £14,300 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.

Additional costs

Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.

You’ll study up to 6 modules a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module.

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 are an Erasmus program participant there may also be opportunities to receive contribution towards extra costs of between 200 - 400 euros.

Common questions about this subject

Can't find the answer to your questions about this course or anything else about undergraduate life? Contact us

Common international business questions 

The term international business relates to the trade of goods, services and capital across 2 or more international countries and the communications that allow this to happen effectively.

Many businesses operate globally. Completing a degree in international business help you understand how businesses operate in different markets and gives you an understanding of different regions' consumers.

Working in international business gives you access to a broader employment market and diverse experiences that make you more employable.

Apply

How to apply

To start this course in 2020, apply through UCAS. You’ll need:

  • the UCAS course code – N123
  • our institution code – P80

If you’d prefer to apply directly, use our online application form.

You can also sign up to an Open Day to:
  • tour our campus, facilities and halls of residence
  • speak with lecturers and chat with our students 
  • get information about where to live, how to fund your studies and which clubs and societies to join

If you're new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.

How to apply from outside the UK

If you're from outside of the UK, you can apply for this course through UCAS or apply directly to us (see the 'How to apply' section above for details). You can also 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. 

If you don't meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to our terms and conditions as well as the University’s policies, rules and regulations. You should read and consider these before you apply.

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