About the course
What makes an effective manager? How does management theory relate to practice?
On this course, you learn what’s involved in managing organisations in an increasingly complex world. We look at the enduring patterns in how people, groups, organisations, economies and societies function and interact. By understanding these behaviours, you can manage them effectively in times of significant change.
With BSc Business Management, you gain a rich understanding of how organisations operate – what they do, how they develop strategies and why.
- management, innovation and new technologies
- the international business environment
- organisational behaviour
- operations and supply chain management
- human resource management
Your first year also introduces you to accounting, finance, marketing and economics to provide you with the essential business knowledge needed for a successful career.
In your final year, you have the opportunity to put your knowledge into practice by completing an in-depth, independent research project or dissertation. This will give you the chance to further develop vital employability skills in areas of research, time management and critical thinking.
This course is taught at Essex Business School, ranked in the UK’s top 25 for research excellence (REF, 2014).
We champion responsible management and ethical business practices; you join a school not just committed to excellence in business education and social science research, but an intellectual community working to make business better. We don't just prepare you for a successful career; we'll help you shape the kind of world you want to live in.
BSc Business Management can also be taken with an optional study abroad or placement year.
“I chose Essex Business School because of its reputation and choice of modules. I spent my third year on a placement with Samsung Electronics in the product management team. The experience has been invaluable and will put me in a better position when I graduate.”
Lauren Finbow, BSc Business Management (to be awarded 2017)
The four-year version of our BSc Business Management enables you to spend your third year studying abroad, while otherwise remaining identical to the three-year course. You will not be charged tuition fees during your year abroad (2017 entry).
We give you the opportunity to study abroad with one of our exchange partners in the United States, Europe, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Latin America, the Middle East, Hong Kong and Japan.
By studying in another country, you can show future employers that you are outgoing, dedicated and flexible by taking the time to experience other cultures and languages.
Alternatively, you may prefer to take on a placement during your third year to gain relevant work experience within an external organisation. A placement can provide you with valuable experience to add to your CV.
The Essex Business School Placements Manager can offer bespoke support throughout the process of researching, applying and interviewing for placements. However, it is your responsibility to apply, prepare for and secure your own role. You will not be charged tuition fees during your placement year (2017 entry). In recent years, our students have gained placements with organisations such as BMW, Samsung and Cummins.
Our expert staff
Our highly qualified and enthusiastic team blend strong academic backgrounds with industry experience. Our academics have a wide-range of research interests. Their teaching is informed by research to ensure your education is always up-to-date with the fast-changing world of business.
Our staff join us from all over the world and specialise in areas including:
- historical aspects of management
- issues of diversity, such as gender and ethnicity
- cultural production
Our BSc Business Management is based at our Colchester Campus.
You experience the UK’s first zero carbon business school building. Set around a lush winter garden, the Eden-style dome gives the building its own micro-climate.
Our superb facilities and services include:
- a state-of-the-art trading floor with Bloomberg Financial Market Labs, giving you hands-on experience of dealing in stocks and securities
- modern lecture theatres
- study pods and innovation booths for group working
- networking opportunities with visiting businesses
- a café with an adjacent sun terrace
- academic writing and study skills services
Our Colchester building is located on the University’s Knowledge Gateway, home to a cluster of innovative SMEs operating from our on-campus Parkside Office Village. As well as providing start-up space for student entrepreneurs, the Knowledge Gateway can provide valuable opportunities for business networking, placements and internships.
A degree from the University of Essex can help you to secure your dream job by providing you with the business skills employers are looking for; in 2015, 84% of Essex Business School undergraduates and 98.6% of our international (non-UK/EU) undergraduates were in graduate level work or study within six months of graduating (DLHE 2015 leavers).
Our students progress to work in a range of sought-after careers, including financial analysis, management, public administration and accountancy.
Our recent graduates are employed by high-profile companies including:
- John Lewis Partnership
- WeFarm, a social enterprise helping farmers out of poverty
- Footprint Digital, a fast-growing digital marketing agency
Many have also started their own successful businesses. Recent examples include:
Whether you’re looking for a job or placement to combine with your studies, a voluntary position, or are seeking a graduate job, the University’s Employability and Careers Centre can help. Essex Business School also offers a range of employability support, including advice on securing placements and access to employer talks.
We offer a flexible course structure with a mixture of compulsory modules and options chosen from lists. Below is just one example of a combination of modules you could take. For a full list of optional modules you can look at the course’s Programme Specification.
Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore all modules listed are subject to change.
Discover the nature and role of accounting, discussing who uses accounting information and for what purposes. You learn about the processes used to record, summarise and present accounting data, using the computerised accounting package MyAccountingLab. You also investigate the development and role of regulation in governing accounting practice.
Discover the applications of quantitative techniques in accounting, finance and management. You explore maths revision, the time value of money, rates of change, probability and statistics, making extensive use of Excel for applying statistical techniques. You also study the financial system, instruments and markets and ideas about finance concepts and problems. The topics covered include investment companies, return and risk, and behavioural finance.
Explore the most significant issues in management theory and practice. You draw out some of the connections and disjunctures between management theory and management practice. You also consider the ethics of managing, and how to balance a business’s priorities with the organisation's wider responsibilities to society and other stakeholders.
How are firms organised? What are the economic implications of this? And how does it affect the markets in which they operate? Develop an understanding of the central concepts of economics, then learn how to apply these principles to economic problems.
This module encourages you to become an active, independent learner, with the ability to reflect on business situations and form your own opinions. We cover areas designed to help you adjust to a university business education so you can perform to your full academic and professional potential. We explore the importance of referencing, constructing a coherent argument and developing writing skills for a variety of purposes, such as academic essays, exams and reports. We develop your analytical skills, critical thinking, presentation and communication skills to help you get the most from your time at university.
This compulsory module aims to help you excel in your academic studies by introducing you to effective study techniques and tools, including the study skills support and resources available to you within Essex Business School. You receive guidance on your academic progress, as well as your personal and professional development. These sessions offer you the opportunity to meet and develop networks and connections within the School and provide key support throughout your first year by helping you to develop the skills and learning strategies needed throughout your degree.
Management accounting enables you to provide three key areas of information to any business: costing, decision-making, and planning and control. In this module you focus on costing, but also see how this area overlaps with the other two, as all three areas always interact. You also develop your knowledge and understanding of management accounting and the context in which it operates.
This module builds on your understanding of management, work and organisation, exploring how these concepts have evolved over time and how they are understood now. You look at how management theory relates to organisational practice, examine the social dynamics underpinning the field of organisation studies and analyse some of the most important themes affecting management today.
Operations Management is concerned with how organisations produce goods and/or services. Since the production of goods and/or services is the reason why organisations exist, it is clear that the effective and efficient management of operations is a central concern for all managers, regardless of the size or sector location of their organisation.
This module outlines the stages involved in creating a marketing plan and explains the tools and concepts used by marketing managers when developing strategies. To apply your learning, you undertake a consultancy project for a real-world business in response to a marketing brief. You demonstrate your grasp of segmentation, targeting and positioning, as well as a range of marketing communications tools.
Gain a more advanced understanding of the international context which helps to shape the strategies and operations of organisations, and explore some of the current issues and challenges facing organisations within the international business environment. In particular, you focus on international political economy, covering the major economic systems in the world, and tracing the historical evolution of the global order.
The business world is increasingly global, complex and fast changing. While some organisations are consistently successful over a long period of time, many fail and are forgotten forever. In theory it should become consecutively easier to imitate the strategies of winning companies and dissipate their profits. In practice, however, only a few firms become long-term leaders. In this course, you explore why that is.
This module introduces key theories, principles and practices of retail management, using real-world case studies to explore current issues in the retail industry. Topics include ownership types, merchandising, consumer behaviour, the retail life cycle and customer communications. You gain a broad introduction to both e-retailing and physical retail outlets, including their relationships with consumers and the infrastructure underpinning the industry. We also explore the trends shaping the future of retail, such as virtual realities and product rental.
This module introduces quantitative and qualitative methods used in management and marketing research and demonstrates how they are applied in different settings. We explore the methodological, ethical and practical elements of designing business research and learn how to gather, review and analyse data from a variety of sources. You develop your presentation skills and learn how to plan, organise, manage and share research projects.
This module links subject understanding to employability, ensuring you’re prepared to take advantage of graduate opportunities at the point they’re advertised. You gain an understanding of the graduate labour market and recruitment processes, as well as timelines for recruitment and interview and assessment centre techniques. You also learn about options for postgraduate study.
This compulsory module equips you with effective study practices to excel in your second year at Essex Business School. It gives your guidance on how to use feedback effectively to improve and develop your academic skills and improve your performance. It provides the opportunity to create an action plan for your personal and professional development whilst at university.
This module aims to develop your understanding of leadership in organisations. You explore a range of traditional and current leadership theories and relate these to business and managerial practice. You also examine business ethics and develop your team working, critical thinking and problem solving skills.
Since the 1980's, Human Resource Management (HRM) has promoted the view that it is the people (rather that the technology, products or marketing strategies) of the organisation that are the key to organisational success. You question the assumptions made within HRM as a philosophy and practice, and how this approach has implications for the way that employees are conceptualised, managed and treated within organisations.
This module builds on your understanding of management and organisation by considering the ethics of business activity. You are introduced to the origins, practice and theory of business ethics and corporate social responsibility (CSR). You consider a range of perspectives and use business literature to critically examine organisational ethics and analyse its constraints.
This module evaluates the opportunities and challenges of conducting businesses online. You develop your critical and analytical skills by exploring key concepts in ecommerce and electronic business and examining their effects on society and the economy. Topics include e-business infrastructure, online revenue, payment systems, digital marketing and online security. You also debate the ethical, moral and legal issues of trading online, including areas such as spatial unboundedness, ‘the digital divide’, privacy and security breaches.
Discover the psychology of organising. You investigate the role of the individual in the organisation, the construction of meaning, bureaucratic and technological consciousness, organisational socialisation and secondary adjustments, and the significance of organising principles such as time, gender and motive. Use film and video material to explore the issues raised and to provide contextual support for the ideas, including feature films such as GI Jane, She Stood Alone and Vertigo.
Gain an insight into the relationship between management, the innovation process and the development, application, and use of new technologies. You focus primarily on process innovations, building upon your knowledge of operations management and the process of producing and delivering goods and services.
Discover the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), an internationally recognised model of personality. You learn about the fundamental structure and concepts used in the MBTI, as well as developing an understanding of their own personality type according to the theory, and exploring how this theory can be applied to a variety of work issues.
This module offers the chance to put your knowledge into practice by undertaking an independent research project on a management or marketing issue. You develop your research skills, time management and critical thinking ability to prepare you for the world of work beyond graduation.
On a placement year you gain relevant work experience within an external business or organisation, giving you a competitive edge in the graduate job market and providing you with key contacts within the industry. The rest of your course remains identical to the three-year degree.
On your year abroad, you have the opportunity to experience other cultures and languages, to broaden your degree socially and academically, and to demonstrate to employers that you are mature, adaptable, and organised. The rest of your course remains identical to the three-year degree.
- Teaching includes a combination of lectures, seminars and computer-based lab sessions
- Modules delivered by experts in the field as well as guest speakers
- Contribute and interact in lectures through the use of smart technology
- Lecture presentations and notes are uploaded online beforehand to help you prepare in advance
- Complete your final-year project in consultation with a personal supervisor
- Assessed through traditional methods of end-of-year exams and multiple choice questions in class tests and essays
- Plus more innovative and creative assessments include laboratory work, poster presentations, real-business case problems and group presentations
- Your first year marks do not count towards your final degree
UK entry requirements
GCSE: Mathematics C
IB: 30 points, including Standard Level Mathematics or Maths Studies grade 4, if not taken at Higher Level. We are also happy to consider a combination of separate IB Diploma Programmes at both Higher and Standard Level. Please note that Maths in the IB is not required if you have already achieved GCSE Maths at grade C or above.
Exact offer levels will vary depending on the range of subjects being taken at higher and standard level, and the course applied for. Please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for more information.
Entry requirements for students studying BTEC qualifications are dependent on units studied. Advice can be provided on an individual basis. The standard required is generally at Distinction level.
International and EU entry requirements
We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries.
for further details about the qualifications we accept. Include information in your email about the
high school qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.
English language requirements
English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 6.0 overall. Different requirements apply for second year entry, and specified component grades are also required for applicants who require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK.
Other English language qualifications may be acceptable so please contact us for further details. If we accept the English component of an international qualification then it will be included in the information given about the academic levels listed above. Please note that date restrictions may apply to some English language qualifications
If you are an international student requiring a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK please see our immigration webpages for the latest Home Office guidance on English language qualifications.
If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.
Applications for our full-time undergraduate courses should be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). Applications are online at: www.ucas.com. Full details on this process can be obtained from the UCAS website in the how to apply section.
Our UK students, and some of our EU and international students, who are still at school or college, can apply through their school. Your school will be able to check and then submit your completed application to UCAS. Our other international applicants (EU or worldwide) or independent applicants in the UK can also apply online through UCAS Apply.
The UCAS code for our University of Essex is ESSEX E70. The individual campus codes for our Loughton and Southend Campuses are ‘L’ and ‘S’ respectively.
Business Taster Day
Visit us on Wednesday 5 July 2017 to meet our students, tour our campus and find out what it's like to study business at Essex.
Applicant Days and interviews
Resident in the UK? If your application is successful, we will invite you to attend one of our applicant days. These run from January to April and give you the chance to explore the campus, meet our students and really get a feel for life as an Essex student.
Some of our courses also hold interviews and if you’re invited to one, this will take place during your applicant day. Don’t panic, they’re nothing to worry about and it’s a great way for us to find out more about you and for you to find out more about the course. Some of our interviews are one-to-one with an academic, others are group activities, but we’ll send you all the information you need beforehand.
If you’re outside the UK and are planning a trip, feel free to email email@example.com so we can help you plan a visit to the University.
Our Colchester Campus events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex. In 2017 we have three undergraduate Open Days (in June, September and October). These events enable you to discover what our Colchester Campus has to offer. You have the chance to:
- tour our campus and accommodation
- find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
- meet our students and staff
Check out our Visit Us pages to find out more information about booking onto one of our events. And if the dates aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.
If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tour allows you to explore the Colchester Campus from the comfort of your home. Check out our accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.
Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.