Business Strategy

The details
Essex Business School
Colchester Campus
Undergraduate: Level 5
Thursday 03 October 2024
Friday 13 December 2024
14 December 2023


Requisites for this module
BE400 or BE401 or IA711



Key module for

BSC N200 Business Management,
BSC N201 Business Management (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N202 Business Management (Including Year Abroad),
BSC N204 Business Management (Including Placement Year),
BA NR19 Business Management and Modern Languages,
BA N1R9 Business Management with a Modern Language,
BSC N2N5 Management and Marketing (Including Foundation Year),
BSC NN25 Management and Marketing,
BSC NN2M Management and Marketing (Including Placement Year),
BSC NNF5 Management and Marketing (Including Year Abroad),
LLB MN00 Law with Business,
LLB MN01 Law with Business (Including Year Abroad),
LLB MN02 Law with Business (Including Placement Year),
LLB MN03 Law with Business (Including Foundation Year),
BA N19R Business Management and Language Studies,
BSC N344 Finance and Management,
BSC N345 Finance and Management (Including Year Abroad),
BSC N346 Finance and Management (Including Placement Year),
BSC N347 Finance and Management (Including Foundation Year),
BA LN10 Business Economics,
BA LN11 Business Economics (Including Year Abroad),
BA LN12 Business Economics (Including Placement Year),
BA LX10 Business Economics (Including Foundation Year),
MMANNN35 Marketing and Management,
MMANNN36 Marketing and Management (Including Placement Year),
MMANNN37 Marketing and Management (Including Year Abroad),
BA L215 Politics with Business,
BA L216 Politics with Business (Including Placement Year),
BA L217 Politics with Business (including Year Abroad),
BSC LL25 Politics with Business,
BSC LL26 Politics with Business (Including Placement Year),
BSC LL27 Politics with Business (including Year Abroad),
BSC N260 Business and Human Resource Management,
BSC N261 Business and Human Resource Management (including Placement Year),
BSC N262 Business and Human Resource Management (including Year Abroad),
BSC N263 Business and Human Resource Management (Including Foundation Year),
BA N29RCO Business Management with Language Studies

Module description

This module is designed to encourage students to reflect on a variety of issues relating to business strategy, such as: 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 textbook. 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 organisations. Overall, the module provides an introduction to strategy and a critical examination of its application in practice.

Module aims

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, i.e.
1. To provide an overview of the different approaches to strategy, introduce you to the different tools used in the business strategy analysis, and to discuss issues related to the management of business strategy.
2. To enable you to connect business strategy and strategic management issues to business situations.
3. To train you in strategic thinking as well as in analysing and making sense of the complexities of the business world around you.
4. To enable you critically to analyse and work with different aspects of business strategy and strategic management, especially in view of your own future managerial practice relating to strategy, either in terms of your own strategic decision-making or in terms of dealing with strategic decisions made in the upper echelons of organisations.

Module learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:
1. Recognise and understand what ‘strategy’ is.
2. Understand the different tools that strategists use to create a strategy.
3. Understand the issues that strategists might face when using these tools.
4. Link a specific case to general theoretical issues and approaches.
5. Make sense of a business situation, analyse it using relevant models and develop a strategy.

Module information

Skills for Your Professional Life (Transferable Skills - reflecting the skills mapping recently undertaken in EBS)
A1 Synthesis and bringing together concepts and ideas
A2 Critical thinking
A3 Evaluation of evidence
A4 Creative problem solving
A5 Recognise rival conceptual ideas

D2 Analysing qualitative data
D4 Analysing academic literature
D6 Desk research/netnographic skills

S4 Showing own initiative
S5 Demonstrating motivation to succeed

C1 Writing a business report
C3 Expressing ideas for business purposes
C5 Argumentation/Essay writing skills

T1 Core IT skills (word, excel, Powerpoint, outlook)

R3 Using different research methods appropriately
R4 Reporting research findings
R6 Understanding plagiarism and referencing

BM2 Ability to identify significance and effects of HRM practices
BM3 Ability to develop greater sensitivity and awareness around implied and explicit ethical assumptions and beliefs

Module Information
The module leader is Dr James Fowler who will be supported by a team of academic colleagues. Staff teaching on the module will be available to support your learning both during the formal learning and teaching sessions as well as during weekly Academic Support Hours, the details of which are available centrally online.

Learning and teaching methods

The module consists of ten weekly lectures and nine weekly seminars. The lectures introduce you to key strategic management concepts and theories. The seminars are aimed at demonstrating the application of the concepts to contemporary business practice. Lecture slides will be posted on Moodle. During the lectures, seminar tasks will be set. These can be based on case-study exercises and/or relevant readings. The seminar material will be broadly related to material covered in the lectures, but it will usually also introduce you to something new.


The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course.
The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students.
Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   BE431 Summer Assessment     
Coursework   Report    30% 
Exam  Main exam: Remote, Open Book, 24hr during Summer (Main Period) 
Exam  Reassessment Main exam: Remote, Open Book, 24hr during September (Reassessment Period) 

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
30% 70%


Coursework Exam
30% 70%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Jamie Woodcock, email:
Dr Jamie Woodcock, Dr Malte Jauch & Dr Nicos Moushouttas



External examiner

No external examiner information available for this module.
Available via Moodle
Of 147 hours, 147 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s), module, or event type.


Further information
Essex Business School

* Please note: due to differing publication schedules, items marked with an asterisk (*) base their information upon the previous academic year.

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