Module Details

BE857-7-AU-CO: Business Strategy

Year: 2016/17
Department: Essex Business School
Essex credit: 10
ECTS credit: 5
Available to Study Abroad / Exchange Students: No
Full Year Module Available to Study Abroad / Exchange Students for a Single Term: No
Outside Option: No

Supervisor: Patrick Hitchen
Teaching Staff: Patrick Hitchen, Christina Volkmann
Contact details: Room: 5NW.4.4C Phone: 01206 873854 E-mail:

Module is taught during the following terms
Autumn Spring Summer

Module Description

This module is designed to encourage students to reflect on the nature of business strategy; the approaches to strategy development; the implications of strategic choices; stakeholder interests and the wider context of strategy. In particular the module encourages students to evaluate many of the aspects of strategy and strategic thinking that are not usually reflected upon. This module provides students with an insight into the nature of business strategy and its implications which go beyond what might be expected in the standard text book. Consequently, the module offers an insight into a range of current business issues, management dilemmas, ethical considerations, and general governance issues relating to the strategic direction of organizations. Overall, the module provides an introduction to strategy and a critical examination of its application in practice.


The main aim of the module is to enable students to have an understanding of the nature of business strategy and to evaluate its meaning and implications in practice.

At the end of this module the student should be able to:
1. Recognise and understand the many varied principles, practices and perspectives involved in business strategy making;

2. Demonstrate advanced knowledge and understanding in relation to issues underlying mainstream interpretations of strategic processes;
3. Understand the importance of ideological positions and ethical principles in relation to strategic aspirations and to demonstrate an understanding of the complicated governance issues involved in strategic decision making
4. Critically evaluate the different tools and techniques used in strategy making

Learning and Teaching Methods

The following learning and teaching methods will be used to inform the pedagogic structure of the module:
Discussion of case studies
Discussion of journal articles
Class exercises
Group work
Personal Guidance
Signposting to other support

The lectures will be developed around the key concepts as mentioned in the indicative module content and will use a range of live examples and cases from business practice to demonstrate the application of theoretical concepts.

The seminars will focus extensively on business case studies, current events and newspaper reports and journal articles. Cases will be used to isolate and analyse key strategic concepts and to examine their application in practice. The seminars will provide students with the opportunity to examine strategic decision making from selected example and to apply these concepts to their own work situations and different cases and contexts.

Class exercises will consist of individual and group work based on self-assessment questions and on group exercises to provide students with the opportunity to develop critical and practical problem skills.

Personal guidance will be provided to assist student to develop specific knowledge and skills relative to their academic work and to their work experience and organizational needs.


100 per cent Coursework Mark


Assessment will be by one piece of coursework (100%); a 2,500 word essay which requires the student to address a specific question set by the module teaching staff.

Other information




Further information