BA (Hons) Business Management

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The BA (Hons) Business Management 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.


Module 1 - Critical Enquiry Skills

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.


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%)

Module 2 - Integrating Leadership and Management Experience

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


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.

Module 3 - Digital Communications in a Business Environment

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.


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).

Module 4 - Finance for the Non-finance Manager

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.


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.

Module 5 - Elective


The elective module affords students the opportunity to tailor their programme to their interests and choose a specific management function to study as their penultimate module, with elective modules  exploring areas of personal and professional development, occupational health, managing project, strategy and supply chain. All electives include an assessment of a 3000 word portfolio. The following elective modules are available:

  • Managing Operations
  • Managing Projects
  • Coaching & Mentoring
Module 6 - Independent Research Project

Independent Research Project

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.


A Learning Plan will be agreed between 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.

What We Look For In Your Application

Work-based Distance Learning students need to be in employment and have some management responsibilities, this can be management of people or resources. You will need to have completed a Senior Management Development Programme at USB:ED within the last 5 years in order to be eligible.


The current fees are £4,050 for the full two year programme. 

Entry Requirements

Each programme is designed to meet the needs of students in any business who want to upgrade their operations skills and progress their qualifications to degree level. To qualify for direct entry we request the completion of a Senior Management Development Programme at USB:ED within the last 5 years, and on-going employment in a relevant field to the course subject area in order to qualify.

Application Deadlines and Programme Start Dates

Application Deadline Enrolment Deadline Online Induction W/C Course Start Date (First day of teaching)
08 January 2024 12 February 2024  12 February 2024  19 February 2024 
15 April 2024  13 May 2024  13 May 2024   20 May 2024 
23 September 2024  21 October 2024  21 October 2024  28 October 2024 

AACSB Business Education Alliance Member

Lincoln International Business School is a member of AACSB, a global nonprofit association, connecting educators, students, and business to achieve a common goal: to create the next generation of great leaders.

Find out more about AACSB.