7 tips for BUSS4 pre-release - AQA BUSS4 Research topic 2014 - China - business review

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Volume 20, Number 1, September 2013
Student notes
Seven tips for the BUSS4
pre-release
Phil Waterhouse
There are a lot of new key terms and concepts to learn in year 13. One of the main
differences from AS is that the focus is now on large national and multinational businesses,
meaning you need to be aware of how firms operate in the global marketplace.
Your knowledge of global business will be crucial to your research for the BUSS4 pre-
release. This year's theme of China provides a large and varied topic for you to research and
investigate. You are probably already aware of the growing strength of China in the world
marketplace and now the challenge is for you to learn about the country in more depth and
look at how different businesses trade and operate within the Chinese market.
1 Aim higher
Given that you have a whole school year to investigate the major issues, your research will
need to be of a higher standard than in previous BUSS4 papers, where students only had 3­
4 months to look into the pre-release topic. This places you under greater pressure and
getting the right amount and type of research is crucial. The standard of students' research
has declined across the past few BUSS4 papers. Responses that simply describe what is
going on do not score well. The danger with a topic such as China is that you might only
learn the general arguments about doing business in China and fail to develop arguments
that show real insight and evidence of independent research.
2 Filter your research
Knowing how to search effectively for the right sort of information is vital. You will not only
need independent research skills for the BUSS4 exam, but also for higher education and
adult life. It is important that you learn to filter the information that you gather and are given
by your teachers -- it may seem like all the answers are only a Google search away, but
when 1,000+ search results come back you need to know what is useful and what is not.
3 Quality not quantity
A common question that students ask about the pre-release theme is: `what is the minimum
number of businesses that we need to research?' This is the wrong attitude to adopt,
especially when your standard of research will need to be so much higher this year. The
questions you should be asking yourself are `what research will make me stand out from the
other students?' and `which examples will be seen as "Good" application?'
Philip Allan Publishers © 2013 1

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I can confidently predict that examiners will be reading lots of answers featuring Apple
products being produced in China by Foxcom, as well as Nike and Primark products being
made in China. While these common examples can be used effectively, they do not
showcase a student's substantial independent research.
In contrast, you might use the example of A.…read more

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