BA (Hons) Business Management (Stellenbosch)

We encourage applications from students who have completed a University of Stellenbosch – Executive Development's (USB-ED) open enrolment Senior Management Development Programme (SMDP), which is recognised by the University of Lincoln for 240 credits. 

Students may register with the University of Lincoln for the outstanding 120 credits (total 360 credits).

BA (Hons) Business Management (with pathways) degree is a Work Based Distance Learning (WBDL) programme which offers the opportunity to gain a recognised University qualification whilst remaining in employment. BA (Hons) Business Management degree is dual accredited with Chartered Manager status from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI). This means students will automatically receive a second professional qualification upon successful completion of their programme.

BA (Hons) Business Management programme offers students the opportunity to advance their career through engaging in personal and professional development, potentially increasing management competence and enhancing overall employability. The aims of the degree programme are to enable students to:

• Develop their management skills and knowledge within a work based context.

• Acquire and demonstrate the skills, knowledge and understanding required of a graduate.

• Provide a route to Chartered Manager status.

The WBDL programme offers the following key features:

• A blended learning approach, drawing on University of Lincoln expertise in delivering on-line programmes to part time students in employment;

• An innovative and creative approach in teaching, learning and assessment, drawing on a range of digital and technological learning tools;

• A learning experience, offering students a wider critical perspective on the consequences of individual decisions and actions and on the ethics of being socially responsible, including corporate social responsibility, reflecting PRME (Principles of Responsible Management Education).

Thus, BA (Hons) Business Management programme presents a framework within which students may engage in personal and professional development by integrating the acquisition of knowledge, skills and experience, whilst simultaneously contributing to organisational effectiveness. This programme is flexible and dynamic enough to reflect and absorb change and facilitate the student’s acquisition of a range of skills and knowledge that may be needed to rise to the challenges of the contemporary workplace.

BA (Hons) Business Management degree has been designed to allow students to develop the management skills required for successful management within the workplace. The majority of students hold level 5 qualification or equivalent in a management or business related subject, and due to this it is expected most students will APEL for direct entry to the final level.

On successful completion (120 Credits at level 6) of the course students will receive:

  • a BA (Hons) Business Management
  • Chartered Management Status

The programme offers core modules and elective modules. This flexible learning programme can be tailored to individual needs/circumstances and provides an academically rigorous learning environment within which students have the opportunity to extend skills, expertise, knowledge, vision and develop personal/career development.

Modules

Critical Enquiry Skills

Module Synopsis

This module aims to equip students with appropriate knowledge and skills to enable them to engage critically with their Level 3 studies, and the Independent Research Project in particular. Students will have been introduced to the nature of academic research and writing through the precursor modules at Levels 1 and 2.

This module builds on existing student understanding of enquiry methods and academic writing in order to enhance competency in argumentation and capability in research design. Students are introduced to core skills of literature review: critical thinking, organisation, reflection and evaluation. Literature reviews serve a variety of purposes but are often the starting point in the arguments of discovery and advocacy associated with enquiry and investigation. The RAE (2008) definition of research can be used as a starting point : ‘Research is to be understood as original investigation undertaken in order to gain knowledge and understanding’. The ‘Student As Producer’ definition (User Guide, 2010-2011, 6) directs that progressively ‘What matters is that in certain research-engaged teaching and learning situations is less the originality of the research outcome than the manner in which it is acquired’.

In the context of WBDL it is important to recognise the value of multi-modal ‘texts’ and settings, both as integral to the research environment and sources of valid information. Moreover, students will build a critical understanding of different research designs in order to evaluate existing knowledge as well as inform their own investigations.

Enquiry is presented as a ‘messy’ rather than prescriptive process involving a series of choices and dilemmas, including those associated with ethics and responsible management. Whilst students are introduced to the range of research designs, the module places particular emphasis on those relevant to work based research enquiry: case study, mixed method, action research and systematic review. Progressively, in line with ‘Student As Producer’ principles and practices of discovery, evaluation and uncertainty, the new student will gain a legitimate contribution to the research process in Higher Education, and an authentic experience.

Assessment

The assessment comprises a portfolio of work which may include: a short written evaluation of relevant published academic research; annotated bibliographic work; problem identification tasks and outline research designs; resolution of ethical dilemmas.

The portfolio will be the equivalent of 3000 words (+/- 10%)

Integrating Leadership and Management Experience

Module Synopsis

This module is designed to develop and assess the students’ ability to reflect critically on leadership and management professional practice and experiences. The expectation is that academic theory and literature will be critically reviewed and applied to the professional experience and organisational context to allow for personal development planning.

Reflection as a technique for aiding and reinforcing learning is a powerful tool in professional development and a wide range of other learning situations and environments. Reflective practice is essentially about learning and developing through examining own perceptions of what happened and considering how the event may be perceived by others. At an organisational level, critical reflection is the basis for maintaining the appropriate alignment of an organisation with its environment and as such, forms the basis for strategic planning and organisational change. It can, if used correctly, act as a catalyst for continual development in the essential management disciplines of: people, resource, performance, conflict, and change, in a rapidly changing leadership and managerial environment.

There are many different approaches to reflection. This module will utilise the format of a structured Reflective Learning Log as a useful tool for reflective practice. A Reflective Learning Log is more than a simple diary of events: it is intended to chart progress, thinking and development, and knowledge construction. The thought and discipline associated with the writing and production of the Reflective Learning Log, supports the overall aim of learning through reflection

Assessment

This module requires a written report of 6000 words (+/- 10%) comprising 4000 words in the main body of the report and a 2000 word Reflective Learning Log in the report appendices. The achievement and assessment of all the module learning outcomes will be through the submission of the one report. The Reflective Learning Log offers the opportunity for critical reflection of the student's leadership and management professional practice and provide opportunity for development of a professional development plan. The main body of the report will be based on management themes arising from the 2000 word Reflective Learning Log. The submission should demonstrate the student's ability to understand, analyse and apply academic theory and thinking to a practical leadership and managerial environment, evidenced by appropriate academic rigour.

Finance for the Non-finance Manager

Module Synopsis

Management of finance is a core element of business activity, thus, this module aims to apply academic theory and thinking to the student’s own organisation and linking finance to other functions within the organisation. Regardless of professional background or discipline, all managers become accountable for using corporate resources and senior managers expect a level of financial skill and knowledge to be applied. Students will be studying financial and management accounting as they need to understand the financial needs of external stakeholders to satisfy regulatory bodies, as well as the use of management accounting to manage the internal business. A manager should understand and have knowledge of the use of financial information and management of finance to make informed judgments and decisions, and understand the consequences of management decisions.

Assessment

The assessment of this module is a portfolio. The portfolio of 3000 words will typically include two elements: a 1500 word (+/- 10%) Report, and a 1500 word (+/- 10%) Business Case. The portfolio will be expected to have academic underpinning and critical review of financial information within the student’s own organisation (or an organisation that the student is familiar with, of their own choice). The assessment will cover topics covered on the syllabus and learning programme.

Digital Communications in a Business Environment

Module Synopsis

The landscape of business communication has evolved due to emerging technology and changing business operations. Business practitioners and decision makers need to acknowledge the radically changing relationship of customers and stakeholders with digital technology and consider how this may impact upon their expectations and experiences of business communication. To help businesses remain competitive and further develop, it is important to understand what digital communication tools are available and to analyse the digital communications activities businesses engage with. To have an effective digital communication strategy also requires critical evaluation, both at operational and strategic level, on how connectivity using digital communication can impact on decision-making and business growth. This module aims to introduce students to the concept of digital communication and its components, and provoke the thought process of digital communication to enable the effectiveness and sustainability of businesses. Drawing upon a variety of concepts and propositions on digital communication in business contexts, students will focus on the structure of the digital communication set-up within their own organisation and will have the opportunity to acquire knowledge, experiences and skills on using digital communication to exchange information, to facilitate effective management. Through the robust learning and application of concepts underpinning digital communication, students will have the opportunity to gain a better understanding of the relevance of digital communication in the scaling of the activities of organisations in order to attain set organisational goals.

Assessment

The assessment comprises a digital portfolio which will contain theory and practice, with evidence of reflection. Learning artefacts within the portfolio could include: an individual presentation supported by visual aids/digital story-telling, reflective learning accounts, online discussion (such as a blog), academic essay. The portfolio will be the equivalent of 3000 words (+/- 10%) and will be focused on application within the student's organisation (or an organisation of the student's choice).

Coaching and Mentoring

Module Synopsis

This module introduces the student to coaching and mentoring as an approach to organisational performance improvement. Coaching can be understood as facilitating someone to reach their own potential to maximise their own performance: it is helping them learn rather than telling them. Whereas mentoring is the sharing of knowledge from an experienced colleague with a colleague less experienced in a relationship of mutual trust.

Students will need to understand the implications of managing internal and external stakeholders, as coaching and mentoring can bring many benefits to an organisation, if implemented correctly. For example, if coaching and mentoring is introduced as a tool for underperformance, it is unlikely to be embraced by staff. However, if senior management promotes ‘non-directive’ leadership it has the opportunity to improve skills, efficiency, motivation and staff retention, leading to overall successful organisational performance.

There is expectation of practical application of theory, where coaching or mentoring will take place in the student’s own workplace or an organisation of their choice. Critical reflection on practical application aims to provide valuable insight, understanding and knowledge of a range of coaching models and tools to support effective coaching and mentoring.

Assessment

The assessment of this module is a portfolio of evidence which typically could include a 1500 word (+/- 10%) written report and 1500 word (+/- 10%) reflection, including coaching notes on practice within the student’s own workplace or an organisation of their choice. The portfolio will be expected to have academic underpinning and critical review of coaching or mentoring within the student’s own organisation (or an organisation of the student’s choice). The assessment will cover topics covered on the syllabus and learning programme.

Managing Projects

Module Synopsis

Within the context of modern business changing rapidly, tools and techniques are developing, being implemented and changing. Change has to be project-managed when the emphasis in business is on flexible, rapid response to customer demands. Managers require a technical competence with a project-based management style that cuts across traditional functional roles throughout the project life-cycle. Business Project Management is considered an important management philosophy for the way in which organisations manage changing business environments.

All projects have to be managed to a successful conclusion, which relies on complex and important decisions being made through phases of planning, monitoring and controlling. The module focuses on themes of planning, organisational, procedural, systematic and financial management so as to create a project management structure to achieve competing objectives in a modern business context.

Students have the opportunity to gain a solid foundation in the theory and best practice of project management and develop the practical skills of how to plan, implement and control projects. The module provides students with an understanding of the system perspective on management and a practically-oriented introduction to the nature, purpose and standards of project management and its key functional objectives (scope, time, cost, quality, risk and flexibility). The role and qualities of the project manager and the composition of the team are also evaluated.

The material and approach in the module aims to incorporate current and emerging world-wide best practices from Professional bodies, the PMI Body of Knowledge, APM Body of Knowledge and PRINCE2, thus providing a common ground and concentrating on the underlying principles, rather than specifics of any given framework.

Assessment

The assessment for this module consists of a 3,000 word (+/- 10%) report to a Senior Project Manager within the student’s organisation.

The student will select an appropriate problem within the organisation which is affecting performance objectives. Through the application of appropriate project management and risk management methodologies, procedures and techniques, together with associated critical analysis, the report will develop and justify possible solutions.

The report will recommend ways in which the performance objectives could be achieved to cope with future requirements and challenges.

Venture Creation

Module Synopsis

On successful completion of this module students will be able to use entrepreneurial skills gained through the study of both theory and practice and be able to pursue careers in a range of industries. It encourages the application of free thinking to contemporary situations so as to apply a conceptual environment to a number of business situations. The module examines modern day success stories of contemporary businesses and traces their origins and reasons for successful accomplishments. It will reflect the entrepreneurial learning process which informs how entrepreneurs learn from previous mistakes.

This module does not confine students to issues around starting a business. Instead it aims to examine how and why businesses operate, why certain people start businesses and others do not and finally, why some are successful and others are not. The module explores venture creation within different contexts such as the rise in popularity of third sector organisations and the role of the social entrepreneur. It supports the full development of entrepreneurial skills and sensitivities for use in existing organisations, to facilitate the management of change and/or the achievement or organisational goals. In addition, it will aim to prepare the student for involvement in inter-organisational relationships and joint ventures requiring the mobilisation of entrepreneurial skills and knowledge.

Assessment

The assessment is based in alignment with the concept of the student as a producer as they have to research and formulate a business idea and produce it in the form of an individual Business Plan. Students are asked to formulate business ideas and evaluate them against given criteria, as a result students learn different aspects of business creation, customer requirements, business finance and marketing and operational aspects. Students have to engage in careful time management plan to develop key parts of their plan throughout the duration of the module.

Assignment: 100% of 4000 (+/- 10%) words.

Logistics and Supply Chain Management

Module Synopsis

The function of effectively implementing a modern logistics approach, is important for companies who are dedicated to keeping service levels at the highest levels, despite change within the logistics and business environments. To that end the goal of any formal logistics or supply chain approach is to make sure that organisation are delivering to their customers what they want; and ensuring that it is delivered when they want it. With this backdrop of efficiency and reliability; the supply chain process should be developed and implemented with the notion that financial cost as part of the decision making. By following these guidelines, it could be interpreted that the logistics are aligned with customers' needs, satisfy company’s inventory targets, and cost reduction goals.

This module aims to introduce students to the key concept of managing a Logistics and Supply Chain, and to build a framework within which they can critically analyse the performance of these functions. In practice Logistics and Supply Chain Management (SCM) is about the way in which organisations deliver outputs in support of the organisation’s intended objectives. By exploring factors and functions of a supply chain in terms of Operational, Structural and Functional context, the student will be able to critically analyse the internal and external factors required to create and maintain market stability and the potential to grow and maintain profitability. In essence, this module is designed to guide and develop the Student/Manager in the principles required in order to supply outputs economically, efficiently and effectively whilst understanding their customer’s requirements.

Assessment

The assessment will be in the form of a 3000 word Academic Report. The Report should be developed as a briefing to the Owner/Management Board with regard to the operational efficiency of the SCM/Logistics Function, with recommendations on how to improve upon the current performance.

Independent Research Project

Module Synopsis

The dissertation is the capstone project of the programme. It provides the student the opportunity to apply, integrate, and deepen the knowledge, insights, and skills that have learned throughout the programme of study. The student will have the opportunity to demonstrate their capacity to work independently on a major project, the nature of should be negotiated with their Programme Leader and Dissertation Coordinator. However, the focus of this project should be a real-world issue or a research topic, executed in a manner consistent with the core philosophy and values of Lincoln International Business School (LIBS). Moreover, the student will work under supervision of an academic tutor to research, develop and present their study for assessment following an agreed format. Whilst it is envisaged that most students will complete a work-based research project, in keeping with the ethos of a LIBS programme, this module seeks to enable and facilitate innovation and creativity. Therefore, the format of the final assessment can be negotiated with the supervisor, Dissertation Coordinator and Programme Leader.

Assessment

A Learning Plan will be agreedbetween students and tutors, which will ensure mutuality of intent, process, practice and format of assessment.

The module will be assessed by:

  • The initial project plan and proposal (coursework) will be the equivalent of 1000 words (10%) and will form the basis of an agreed Learning Plan.
  • The project submission will be equivalent 10,000 words (90%). Within the final submission there will be a reflective piece of 1000 words that addresses the CMI questions relating to learning gained from studies.

For further details or to apply, please contact wbdladmin@lincoln.ac.uk