module specification

BA5F01 - Business Decision Making (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Business Decision Making
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 30
School Guildhall School of Business and Law
Total study hours 300
112 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
188 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   Individual business report (2,500 words)
Seen Examination 50%   Exam - seen and closed book (essay style questions in a 2.5 hour exam)
Running in 2017/18 No instances running in the year

Module summary

Business Decision Making (Module code BA5F01GN) develops techniques required to solve problems in a business context.  It provides students with analytical and communications skills relevant to understanding business decision making with an emphasis on research and problem-solving.  It also encourages the development of skills in data collection; storage; creation and presentation of information.

Module aims

This module aims to enable students to:
• Identify business problems and collect both primary and secondary data.
• Use different types of quantitative information and apply statistical tools to assist decision making.
• Develop skills in information and communication technology (ICT) in order to produce spreadsheets for data analysis.


• Survey methodology (data collection for a given business problem & questionnaire design).
• Statistical tools (representative values, measure of dispersion and calculation).
• Creating and interpretation of graphs using spreadsheets.
• Project management techniques (CPM and Gantt Charts).
• Financial tools (NPV, IRR and discounted cash flow).
• Presentation and report writing.

Learning and teaching

This module will be delivered in weekly teaching and learning sessions of 3-hour duration.  This will be comprised of lectures delivered over 12 weeks and computer-based lab classes.

The students will be required to collect primary data on a topic approved by the lecturers. The group for the field work should not have more than 5 students. 

Students will receive materials which include weekly lecture/seminar notes and copies of PowerPoint presentations of the lectures.  Students will develop useful transferable skills with the opportunity to practise delivering oral presentations, written communication, IT, teamwork, undertaking research and problem solving.

Industry experts from recognised accredited professional bodies and successful  business entrepreneurs
with relevant student workshop experience will be invited as guest speakers during the one workshop session with a focus on career skills, employability issues and emerging trends.

Learning outcomes

On completing the module students will be expected to be able to:
1. Collect and analyse primary and secondary data for decision-making.
2. Use statistical tools and techniques for problem analysis and business decision-making.
3. Use project management tools and techniques.
4. Present the findings in a business report format.

Assessment strategy

The module will be formally assessed by an open-book examination (2.5 hours) and an individually-completed business report (2,500 words).

Regular in-class tests will be used to evaluate progress, help to identify gaps in learning and encourage students to read and study the learning materials.  Students will pace their work evenly throughout the semester.

The closed-book examination will use essay style questions to cover various topics covered in this module. The students will see the questions a few weeks prior to the exam date and students will not be allowed to bring any materials into the exam hall.

The individual piece of coursework requires students to produce a business report that will demonstrate their ability to collect relevant data on a business problem and apply a set of statistical techniques focusing on solving a business-related problem.


Core Textbooks:
• Zikmund, G., Babin, B., Carr, J., and Griffin, M., (2013), Business Research Methods, 9th ed, Cengage
• Oakshott, L., (2012), Essential Quantitative Methods for Business Management and Finance, 4th ed, Palgrave Macmillan

Recommended Textbooks:
• Weetman, P., (2011), Financial and Management Accounting,  5th ed,  FT Prentice Hall
• Swift, L., and Piff, S., (2010), Quantitative Methods for Business, Management and Finance,3rd ed, Palgrave
• Taylor, S., (2007), Business Statistics for non-mathematicians, 2nd ed, Palgrave