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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Business School : Business Studies

Undergraduate Course: Thinking about Business (BUST08045)

Course Outline
SchoolBusiness School CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 1 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryTHIS COURSE IS RESTRICTED TO YEAR 1 STUDENTS. The course will address contemporary issues facing business, through the lenses of different disciplines (ways of thinking). The menu of disciplines may include popular culture, literature, evolutionary biology, psychology, anthropology, politics, history, religion and statistics. Students will leave the course with an understanding of how to think creatively about business and how to think critically about propositions within it.
Course description This course brings different ways of thinking to bear on contemporary business questions. AI and other data technologies place a premium on the insights that can only come from human creativity, and success in the workplace will increasingly depend on the capacity to create such insights by drawing on many perspectives and ways of thinking. Each discipline will explore business from its particular perspective, and will draw on expert academics in each field to evaluate the ways in which business is conceptualised and identified. The tutorials will explore the discipline in more detail and address the applicability and validity of the examples proposed to contemporary business problems.

The course will draw upon a range of disciplines (or lenses) and these may vary according to student demand and academic expert supply. Typically, each discipline would be explored for 2 weeks, and the course would seek to understand aspects of business using an illustrative example: either a work or a body of work, or a business case study viewed through the lens in question. Lenses are likely to include::
- Popular culture, art and literature: business as understood and represented in popular music/video/TV/film/visual art/design/drama/novels/poetry
- Politics: how political ideas shape business and the business environment
- Religion: how religious belief shapes business practice and business ethics
- Anthropology: cultures and sub-cultures in business and how aspects of business can be understood through them
- Psychology: psychological interpretations and explanations of business activities and practices
- Statistics: how statistics can be used in different ways to present business 'facts' and interpret them, and how this can affect business decisions
- Philosophy: how philosophical perspectives can be applied to the business context particular within the realm of ethics and social responsibility
- History: how the history of markets shapes our understanding of the contemporary industries
- Evolutionary biology: how theories of evolutionary biology have been applied to business, suggesting that competition is part of the evolutionary process, or that markets operate according to evolutionary principles.

Student learning experience:
This course is designed to allow you to question business behaviour from many perspectives. A key requirement is to debate and interrogate the artefacts presented within the disciplines and evaluate their validity in contemporary business problem solving. You need to be confident in wishing to identify different sources of material from within the disciplines and to engage in group discussions on a weekly basis. You will be expected to undertake prescribed reading and both digital and live lecture materials, and engage in weekly 2 hour live tutorials. You will be assessed in 3 ways. You will be required to complete a short individual presentation which evaluates a particular discipline's perspective in relation to business, and this will take place in the tutorials. You will complete a longer essay which will critically evaluate the role of interdisciplinary analysis in aiding contemporary business issues. Finally, you will complete a short reflective account which will allow you to evaluate your personal learning journey on the course.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements THIS COURSE IS RESTRICTED TO YEAR 1 STUDENTS
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2022/23, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  300
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 20, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 10, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 2, Formative Assessment Hours 2, Revision Session Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 160 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 80 %, Practical Exam 20 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Individual essay 2500 words (80%)
Individual presentation 5 mins (20%)
Feedback Formative: You will receive feedback throughout your tutorials.

Summative: The reason for the presentation is firstly to ensure that tutors can assess that you understand how to evaluate business through an alternative disciplinary lens. This way you can get early feedback to ensure you are ready for the main assessment - the essay. You will be provided with comprehensive feedback on your essay through audio/video and written tutor responses. You will have the opportunity for one-to-one feedback with tutors if desired.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate an understanding that there are many ways to think about business behaviour through various alternative disciplines.
  2. Identify different ways of thinking about business issues and how to solve them through a range of communication methods.
  3. Evaluate the validity of various disciplines to contemporary business practice.
  4. Reflect on how different disciplines can contribute to learning about business.
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills 1. Ethical, Responsible and Sustainable Business Behaviour
- work with a variety of organisations, their stakeholders, and the communities they serve - learning from them, and aiding them to achieve responsible, sustainable and enterprising solutions to complex problems
2. Appropriate Communication
- convey meaning and message through a wide range of communication tools, including digital technology and social media; to understand how to use these tools to communicate in ways that sustain positive and responsible relationships
3. Creative and Entrepreneurial Practice
- apply creative, innovative, entrepreneurial, sustainable and responsible business solutions to address social, economic and environmental global challenges
4. Intellectual Curiosity
- identify, define and analyse theoretical and applied business and management problems, and develop approaches, informed by an understanding of appropriate quantitative and/or qualitative techniques, to explore and solve them responsibly.
Keywordsinterdisciplinary; creativity; problem-solving; decision-making; cross-cultural; decolonisation
Course organiserDr Marta Bernal Valencia
Tel: (0131 6)50 8074
Course secretaryMr Sean Reddie
Tel: (0131 6)50 8074
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