Business and Finance - BA (Hons)

UCAS Code:
Full Time (3 years), Sandwich (4 years)
September 2016

Please choose how and when you would like to attend the course...

See the UCAS website for help and guidance with your application.

Our joint honours business and finance degree gives you the chance to get specialist training in finance, as well as a great practical grounding in business management. You’ll learn how finance can affect the success of a business and develop a fantastic portfolio of relevant skills and knowledge to impress potential employers.

Our reputation for excellence is why many of our students have found work across the globe in companies such as Virgin Media and Ocean Finance.

What's covered in the course?

On this course you’ll learn how the theory and numbers behind finance can be practically applied to real business situations. You’ll look at different business environments and analyse how finance can impact on these.

We give you the flexibility to develop in the areas that interest you and learn through group and individual projects, such as business plan pitches, current case studies and industry presentations.

Our students have worked with organisations like the Uprising Leadership Programme and have the opportunity to take part in many industry competitions. One student spent valuable time in Mexico teaching English after his funding bid won him a travel scholarship, helping him experience a new culture and make overseas contacts.

Before your final year you have the opportunity to do a placement year with no extra tuition fees. This means you can gain a whole year of relevant work experience and jump ahead of the competition when it comes to getting a graduate job. Our students have worked with the likes of Volkswagen, Audi and Bentley.

You’ll be taught and supported by expert staff with strong global industry links and experience. They’ve worked all over the world, from France to Dubai and Cadburys Schweppes to the third sector.

“The University has provided me with more than an education, with all the extra activities, events, competitions and societies available. Birmingham City University has helped me gain more employability skills and made me more confident as an individual.” Navdeep Dhillon

Why Choose Us?

  • No one can give us better feedback than our students - 100 percent of students were satisfied overall with this course [Source: National Student Survey, 2014].
  • You’ll get to hear from high-profile guest speakers who’ll share their wealth of experience and industry insights with you. Previous speakers include Sir Ranulph Fiennes, Apprentice finalists, the Chairman of Unilever and Chief Executive of the world's leading beverage company, Diageo.
  • We have been granted Platinum Level Tuition Provider status by ACCA. As one of the few universities in the UK to have this qualification, it attests the quality of our teaching and assures you that you’ll be receiving the highest level of teaching.
  • Because of our fantastic industry links and our practical, hands-on style of teaching, our students are sought after by businesses. We have an excellent employment record and our students have gone on to work all over the world for people like Jaguar Land Rover, HMRC and Ocean Finance.
  • You’ll be part of Birmingham City Business School, making you be eligible for a range of extra-curricular activities. This includes our Employability Challenge Weeks, as well as our Leadership Challenge programme. Both give you the chance to apply your skills to innovative and exciting projects, industry talks and workshops.
  • Studying for this course takes place at our latest cutting-edge facility, The Curzon Building, part of our burgeoning City Centre Campus. This puts you in the heart of Birmingham’s thriving business atmosphere.
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Grants and Scholarships

Want to join us in September 2016? UK undergraduates can receive up to £4,000* in non-repayable financial support.

Grants for UK students

International undergraduate students can recieve scholarships worth up to £1,500*

Grants for international students

*(criteria will apply)

This course is open to International students

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work with companies such as:

  • Exclusive Cars
  • Jaguar Land Rover

And in jobs such as:

  • Marketing Assistant
  • Purchasing Graduate

Entry Requirements

We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.

UK students

At the point of enrolment you must have GCSE English Language and Mathematics at Grade C or above. Equivalent qualifications will be considered.

280 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level with a minimum of 2 A Levels

Typical Offers
UK Qualification Requirements 2016/17
GCE A Level/ AS Level 280 UCAS Tariff points from a minimum of 2 A Levels (BBC offer made in grades). This may also include General Studies and Critical Thinking. Remaining points can be made up with AS Levels in different subjects. AS Level in the same subject of an A Level will not be accepted.
Access to Higher Education Diploma 45 Credits Level 3, 15 credits Level 2 including Level 2 English Language and Maths for all programmes
BTEC National Diploma (12-units not including early years) D*D* or combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 280 UCAS points
BTEC Extended Diploma (18-units not including early years) DMM - 280 UCAS points
BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/ National Award (6-units not including early years) Combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 280 UCAS points
International Baccalaureate Diploma 28 points overall
Irish Leaving Certificate Minimum of 280 UCAS points
Scottish Higher/ Advanced Higher Minimum of 280 UCAS points
Welsh Baccalaureate (core plus options) 120 tariff points combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 280 UCAS points
Other qualifications
If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS.

Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.
EU/International students
EU/Non-EU (International) Qualifications Requirements 2016/17
IELTS 6.0 overall with 5.5 minimum in all bands
International Baccalaureate Diploma (or equivalent, including internationally accredited Foundation courses). 28 points overall
Country-specific entry requirements and qualifications.


International students who cannot meet the direct entry requirements can begin their degree studies at Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC).

Non-standard entry

The programme welcomes applications from students who have significant relevant work or life experience but who may not necessarily meet all of the published academic requirements for their chosen course. The University must be satisfied that your work or life experience is equivalent to the qualifications that other applicants will be studying. We want all of our students to succeed and will only offer a place where we believe that an applicant is capable of completing their chosen course with a strong final degree classification.

The admissions team will be pleased to discuss individual circumstances with prospective students.

From A/AS Level with a minimum of 2 A Levels

Unconditional Offers

Unconditional Offers

If you are a full-time undergraduate applicant for the 2016/17 year, and show particular potential, we may be able to make you an unconditional offer if you make us first choice and satisfy certain criteria.

To be considered you must hold, or be predicted to achieve:

280 tariff points or above from three A levels (equivalent to grades BBC or above)
be predicted DMM profile at BTEC level

Learn more about unconditional offers >>

New UCAS tariff

The UCAS tariff is changing

If you're considering applying for this course to start in September 2017 onwards, it's important to know that the UCAS tariff system is changing.

UCAS tariff points – the points system most universities use to compare different qualifications – will be introducing a new system on how points are calculated.

More about the new tariff

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BA (Hons) Sep 2016 FT 3 years £9,000 per year Apply via UCAS
SW 4 years £9,000 per year Apply via UCAS

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BA (Hons) Sep 2016 FT 3 years £12,000 per year Apply via UCAS
SW 4 years £12,000 per year Apply via UCAS

The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.

Additional costs

There are no compulsory additional costs or charges associated with studying on this course. While you may choose to purchase personal copies of text books, all our key text books are available from our library or online (subject to normal library loan and online access arrangements).

Based on the past experience of our students, you might find it helpful to set aside about £50 for each year of your studies for your personal stationery and study materials. All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

Guidance for UK/EU students


UK and EU students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.

Applying through UCAS
 Register with UCAS
 Login to UCAS
 Complete your details
 Select your course
 Write a personal statement
 Get a reference
 Pay your application fee
 Send UCAS your application

Non-EU (International) students

There are three ways to apply:

1) Direct to the University

You will need to complete our International Application Form and submit it together with scan copies of your original academic transcripts and certificates.

2) Through a country representative

Our in-country representatives can help you make your application and apply for a visa. They can also offer advice on travel, living in the UK and studying abroad.

3) Through UCAS

If you are applying for an undergraduate degree or a Higher National Diploma (HND), you can apply through the UK’s Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).

You can request a printed form from your school or nearest British Council office.You will be charged for applying through UCAS. Birmingham City University’s UCAS code is B25 BCITY.

Your personal statement

Your personal statement is a highly important part of your application. It gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Course choice

Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?

Career plans

If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.

Work experience

Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.

School or college experience

Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.

Non-accredited skills or achievement

eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

This course is not available part-time

Got any questions?

Search our Frequently Asked Questions for a range of information about our courses and studying here.

Loans and Grants

Financial Support

We offer further information on possible undergraduate financial support. This includes the type of loans, grants and scholarships available both from the government and from Birmingham City University.

Grants and Scholarships

Want to join us in September 2016? Undergraduate students can receive up to £4,000* in non repayable financial support.

*(criteria will apply)

First year

In your first year you’ll study core modules in economics, marketing, accounting, finance and management. These will give you a grounding in general finance principles and how businesses operate effectively.

Your first year is a common first year for all Business School joint degree courses including Business and Management, and Economics and Finance.

Accounting and Finance
30 credits

This module provides an introduction to cost classification, cash budgeting and financial statement analysis. You’ll also look at the modern financial system and its importance to individuals and business organisations.

Managing Organisations People and Self
30 credits

The module is designed to offer you the opportunity to develop and gain management skills and knowledge about yourself, about others and about organisations. It’s a hands-on module which seeks to relate theory to practice through a range of individual and group activities. You’ll be required to work individually, in groups and in action learning sets to critically analyse and evaluate aspects of your own and your group’s development from a management perspective.

Economic Environment (Autumn term)
15 credits

The module provides an opportunity for you to investigate and develop an understanding of the complexity and operation of the external environments within which businesses operate. You’ll gain an understanding of how markets operate and how those markets are influenced by both the businesses themselves and national governments. This includes both the competitive behaviour of businesses in the management of their markets as well as the decisions made by government agencies both from an economic perspective.

New Venture Creation
15 credits

This module is concerned with you identifying, understanding and responding to business opportunities.

Second year

The second year allows you to explore a range of modules that will improve your financial decision-making, negotiation of business issues and the challenges contemporary businesses face. You’ll also delve into the idea of the business entrepreneur and learn how building your own business could work for you.

Tax and Financial Planning
30 credits

You’ll learn how to discriminate between a variety of personal tax situations, how to prepare and explain a range of computations and appropriate supporting schedules. You’ll undertake case studies and develop skills in the construction, understanding and evaluation of personal investment portfolios.

Creative Problem Solving
15 credits

This module will critically examine the subject of creativity and approaches that purport to encourage and develop creative thinking. This will be applied to the context of creativity in resolving business problems.

Business Operations and Logistics
15 credits

Business Operations and Logistics provides you with a conceptual and practical background into the understanding and evaluation of logistics and supply chain management in various organisations and their operations.

Business Finance Decisions
15 credits
The Business Entrepreneur
15 credits

This module will investigate the factors which underpin successful entrepreneurship activities for small and medium-sized organisations.

Contemporary Business Issues
15 credits

Contemporary Business Issues investigates the current issues that impact upon business organisations. You’ll assess the major legislative changes and their implications for business, financial markets and credit availability, corporate social responsibility and the critical changes facing key market sectors.

Financial Markets - Risk and Returns (Spring term)
15 credits

You’ll learn how to evaluate the different competing financial objectives of the firm, and discuss the agency problem between shareholders and managers in publicly listed companies. You’ll be able to appraise simple investment projects using discounted cash-flow techniques, all through tutorials, lectures and group work.

Final year

You’ll have the opportunity to spend your third year in a paid work placement, developing a greater understanding of the business world, picking up key transferable skills, and putting theory into practice.

Your final year looks at how businesses operate worldwide in the global economy. You’ll also get to pick which path you follow with optional modules. This means you can tailor your learning to the areas within which you may wish to work.

To support your dissertation, you’ll also undertake either a management consultancy project, business start-up project, undertake a placement or conduct a research project.

In the final year you undertake a choice of modules totalling 60 credits from the list below. (The modules stated as 'core' are compulsory).

International Business Strategy (core)
30 credits

This module draws together all the core aspects of a business degree and contextualises the strategic decisions that organisations make within both rational and non-rational frameworks. The rational frameworks that the module addresses are concerned with the economic, market, finance and resources based constraints that affect this decision-making process.

Financial management (core)
30 credits

We’ll encourage you to follow financial media coverage and share your experiences with the group in this module, where you’ll learn how to understand the broader context in which corporate financial decisions are taken. You’ll also gain knowledge in the underlying theories affecting key corporate financial decision making.

Making sense of organisations
15 credits

You’ll apply key organisation concepts and theories to specific organisations in order to identify organisational issues, as well as evaluating the interconnections between apparently diverse organisational activities.

Comparative Financial Systems
15 credits

You’ll be able to demonstrate a critical understanding of the structures and functioning of national and international capital markets, as well as the economic and political environment, including exchange rate regimes. You’ll also examine the 2008 global financial crisis and discuss the consequences it had on the global economy.

Statistical Decision Making
15 credits

With the aid of commercial computer software, you’ll use a range of statistical decision-making techniques and meaningfully interpret the results of such analysis, before presenting them in the form of a technical report.

Business Operations and Systems
15 credits

This module encourages you to develop an in-depth understanding of the analysis and re-design of business operations and processes, and the systems that support the contribution of these core processes to the core vision of the business.

International Corporate Finance
15 credits
Statistical Modelling
15 credits

The aims of this module are to promote good practice in the presentation and analysis of business-type data. You’ll use a range of statistical modelling techniques to build and test relevant accountancy, business, economic and financial regression models, all the time developing highly marketable job skills.

The modules below run across both terms. Only one can be chosen.

Business Start Up Project
30 credits
Management Consultancy Project
30 credits
30 credits

The dissertation is an opportunity for you to conduct some in-depth study in a topic that particularly interests you. It will entail extensive research and a lot of studying in your time, but you’ll also receive support from an assigned tutor.

Placement project
30 credits

The placement project provides an opportunity for a self-directed in-depth work-based study of a topic of interest from the body of knowledge appropriate to the named degree and the placement experience.

Course Structure

Around half of your assessments will be based on course work, including portfolio work, case studies and reports. The rest will be a combination of conventional written exams and practical assessments such as presentations.

You’ll spend an average of 11 hours a week attending lectures and seminars. You’ll have the opportunity to discuss lectures, exams and coursework in group seminars and individually with your tutors.

Trips and visits

There are a number of student projects, challenges and competitions that you can take part in.

Local opportunities include our Leadership Challenge, which sees students boost their skills with briefs from established, real-life companies. You could help to improve big local brands through a ‘Birmingham Made Me’ project or even take on paid project work.

You’ll also have the chance to get involved with the nationwide Uni Popshop challenge. Recently, a group of Birmingham City Business School students went to London’s bustling Spitalfields Market to trade goods for a social enterprise project. Students attend every year and have the chance to win great prizes, as well as learn valuable accounting skills.

Teaching breakdown

37 Time in lectures, seminars and similar MidnightBlue
63 Time in independent study RoyalBlue

Assessment breakdown

33 Written exams DarkOrange
49 Coursework FireBrick
18 Practical exams #fece5a

Erasmus scheme

If you are interested in undertaking part of your studies abroad, the Erasmus scheme may be of interest to you. It allows higher education students to study for part of their degree in another European country.

It is open to undergraduates in their second year (or above) and offers a unique opportunity to enhance your CV and experience new cultures. If you study with us you will have access to an Erasmus co-ordinator, who can provide information about which institutions we have links with.

Find out more

Further Study

To delve deeper into the areas that interest you, you could stay with us to study MSc Accountancy and Finance or MSc Management and Finance. Or you could take a look at our range of MSc, MA, MBA and research courses - these include subject areas like leadership, marketing and management.

Student stories Uzair Delair

Took Part in Uprising Leadership Programme

Studying at the University opens up lots of opportunities as current undergraduate student Uzair Delair discovered when he took part in the Uprising Leadership Programme, which gives talented 19 to 25-year-olds the skills, experience and confidence to create positive change in their communities.

Due to the part time nature of the Uprising Programme, Uzair was able to fit the project work around his university studies, and have gained valuable skills, contacts and experience from the work they have done.

Enhancing employability skills

By studying business and finance together, you’ll understand how management, administration and accounting impact a successful business. We also teach you how businesses operate within their environment and how global decision making affects business and finance.

Many of our modules involve group evaluations, presentations, reports and business plans to help you strengthen your communication and teamwork, as well as your problem-solving, creativity and data analysis.

From the grounding in theory to applying practical skills, you’ll have the knowledge and experience that employers are after.

You’ll also be able to use our Trading room, which will help you put your skills into action. You’ll benefit from learning with students in a real-world interactive finance environment.

Our alumni have an excellent employment record, with many successfully completing professional examinations following their degree. Our graduates have secured jobs as auditors and data analysts – as well as more diverse roles such as business development managers, purchasing graduates, sales executives and investment administrators.


As a Business School student you have the option of doing an extra placement year with no extra tuition fees. This means you experience structured, hands-on work experience before starting your career.

We use our industry links and dedicated Placements Office to find you outstanding placements. Our students find it invaluable to apply all the skills and knowledge they’ve learnt to a real work environment. They held placements with fantastic companies like Volkswagen, Audi and Bentley.

If taking a year’s placement isn’t for you, we can also help to find your shorter placements within a business. You can study while you do your placement, or complete them during the holiday periods.

More about our placement opportunities...


OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

Graduate jobs

This course sets you up for fast-track training and entry-level management jobs because of its roots in business. The roles you’ll be qualified for are varied and you can tailor your third year modules to support your career.

For example, one of our recent graduates progressed on to a marketing assistant role for Enterprise Cars, while another became a purchasing graduate for Jaguar Land Rovers.

International Students

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

We welcome students from all over the world, but our course is very popular with students from China, Vietnam and Hong Kong.

Our emphasis on international finance issues, policies and environments means that the course is relevant to students wanting to work anywhere in the world. We look at how businesses operate in a global economy, because what’s happening internationally affects all businesses.

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.


BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

Popular home countries

Our students come from around the world but our business and finance course is most popular with international students from:

Curzon facilities eatery
Curzon facilities staircase
Curzon facilities student hub

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities. It’s no surprise that the Complete University Guide placed us in the UK top 10 for spending on facilities in both 2012 and 2013.

The Curzon Building

This course will be held at our newest facility, The Curzon Building, part of our City Centre Campus.

The £63 million building provides you with a unique learning space, featuring plenty of informal ‘break out’ areas available, creating an open, sociable atmosphere. There is also a new home for the Students’ Union, with its location moving to the restored Victorian pub The Eagle and Ball. Both City North and Millennium Point libraries have moved to the new building.

The dedicated social learning spaces ensure you’ll have the perfect facilities to work independently and confidently, having the time and support you need.

All this ensures that The Curzon Building is a vital support hub and a true central location for students in Birmingham City Centre.

Dora Hancock

Dora Hancock

Senior Lecturer in Finance

After her degree in Maths, Dora trained as a Chartered Accountant with KPMG and then took a PGCE in further and higher education. Since then she has taught at a number of institutions including Leeds Metropolitan University and Birmingham City University for nearly 30 years.

Dora has taught undergraduates, postgraduate and professional students and has been a personal tutor for the Business and Finance degree for the last 10 years. Her main teaching interests are international finance and comparative financial systems. She wrote a book on tax for several years.

Dora's main academic interests are current issues in finance, including the global financial crisis and banking scandals, and canal restoration. She particularly enjoys dissertation supervision and has supervised many hundreds of dissertations throughout her career.

Michael Gubbins

Consultant/Business Analyst at SampoMedia / Guest Speaker

Michael Gubbins is a consultant and business analyst at SampoMedia and the chair of the Film Agency for Wales.

He is an experienced journalist and is the former editor of 'Screen International', 'Music Week' and business technology journal 'Computing'.

His work at SampoMedia has been focused on understanding the development of film and film businesses in an on-demand era, with particular expertise in new financial and economic models and understanding audience behaviour. It works with businesses, film and media bodies and governments around the world. Clients have included BFI, Swedish Film Institute, Curzon Film World, Film London, Media Business School and Film 4.

He has led the Film Agency for Wales through a period of successful restructuring, working to maximise the potential of new on-demand trends.

Gubbins has written influential reports on business change for businesses, industry organisations and government bodies around Europe. He's also a frequent speaker at industry events around the world, particularly focused on digital and audience-driven change; and he chairs major events, including Europa Cinemas and the European Audiovisual Observatory conference in Cannes.

He is a member of the British Screen Advisory Council, on the advisory board of Met Film School and Power to the Pixel, and a lecturer at the Media Business School.

UK prospective students:

UK enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5595

+44 (0)125 350 2917

EU / International prospective students:

International enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5389


Already applied?

Email the applications team

+44 (0)121 331 6295