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AQA Business Studies Unit 2 (BUSS2) Revision thread.

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    So I thought I would start a thread for those of us sitting the unit 2 paper in June.

    I personally see it as the most important business studies paper as it is worth the biggest percentage of the whole A level even though it is much easier then units 3 and 4.
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    Here are some of my summary notes on budgets to get us started. They aren't great, just some basics to jog my memory.

    Key Terms:
    • Income Budget - This shows the predicted and planned income of a business over a period of time.
    • Expenditure Budget - This is the agreed, planned cash outflows of a business over a period of time.
    • Profit Budget - This is the predicted amount the business expects to make over a stated period of time.
    • Variance - The process of investigating any difference in the forecast data and the actual figures.


    What is the budgets role?
    - Control financial matters of the firm.
    - Limits the risk to the business.

    Budget Benefits and Drawbacks:
    • Established priorities, provided direction and coordination, assigns responsibility, motivates staff, improves efficiency, encourages forward planning
    • There could be incorrect allocations, may not take full account of external factors, will not work as well if there is poor communication within the business.



    Favourable Variance:
    - When the difference between the predicted and the actual results in higher profits for the firm.
    - Could result from: actual wages being lower, costs being lower, economic boom which has resulted in higher sales growth throughout the economy.

    Adverse Variance:
    - When the difference between the predicted and the actual result in lower profits for the firm.
    - Could result from: Economic down turn, competition introducing a new product or having a successful marketing campaign, unaccounted for fule prices increasing.

    Ways to try and resolve adverse variance:
    - If sales revenue was less then planned:
    - Improve company image.
    - Cut prices (depends on the PED)
    - Seek new, currently untapped markets at home and abroad.
    - Expand or update the product range.
    - Increase advertising and promotion

    - If expenditure was higher than planned:
    - Cut wages/increase labour productivity.
    - Seek cheaper raw materials.
    - Reduce waste.



    Ideas for analysis:
    - Show the implications of the budget variance (good and bad)
    - Explain the benefits to a firm of producing a budget.
    - Highlight the difficulties and issues associated with budgeting.
    - Asses the extent the limit put on budgets as a result of them being a prediction of what is to come.

    Ideas for evaluations:
    - Identify the key cause of variance (good and bad)
    - Asses the best solutions to adverse variance.
    - Judge the usefulness of budgeting and the difficulties associated with predicting.
    - Discuss the feasibility of fixing problems, for example cutting jobs, although this would decrease costs, it may also decrease moral and may lead to a reduction in productivity which may lead to a decrease in out put and may end up pushing up prices again.
    - Budgets imply control - you may want to assess the type of manager needed to support these issues.
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    (Original post by MaccyG)
    Unit 4 is actually seeming pretty easy two 40 mark essays in 1hour 45 mins. And you have a pre release for one so you know what area you need to know.

    I am doing unit 4 as well and it's not that easy. They don't give you a case study, just six points which you have to research around. You also have to research into other areas for the other question which is completely unseen.
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    (Original post by MaccyG)
    Yeah but if you look at previous papers and see what was in it in January you can have a pretty good assumption what is in it. I just like the fact that I now know that I must base all the research I get and factor in how the recession affected it and stuff.
    There is only one previous paper (other then the practise one AQA put up) which I can't find anywhere online

    I just don't like essays so two 40 mark ones is like hell for me :p:
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    (Original post by dime_piece)
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    How have you been revising for it the exam?
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    ALL THE BLOODY UNITS FOR AQA BUSINESS STUDIES ARE HARD!!!! :eek3:
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    (Original post by Magic Dust)
    How have you been revising for it the exam?
    Comment removed because ive been neg-repped! Sorry for any offence caused!
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    (Original post by Magic Dust)
    Here are some of my summary notes on budgets to get us started. They aren't great, just some basics to jog my memory.

    Key Terms:
    • Income Budget - This shows the predicted and planned income of a business over a period of time.
    • Expenditure Budget - This is the agreed, planned cash outflows of a business over a period of time.
    • Profit Budget - This is the predicted amount the business expects to make over a stated period of time.
    • Variance - The process of investigating any difference in the forecast data and the actual figures.


    What is the budgets role?
    - Control financial matters of the firm.
    - Limits the risk to the business.

    Budget Benefits and Drawbacks:
    • Established priorities, provided direction and coordination, assigns responsibility, motivates staff, improves efficiency, encourages forward planning
    • There could be incorrect allocations, may not take full account of external factors, will not work as well if there is poor communication within the business.



    Favourable Variance:
    - When the difference between the predicted and the actual results in higher profits for the firm.
    - Could result from: actual wages being lower, costs being lower, economic boom which has resulted in higher sales growth throughout the economy.

    Adverse Variance:
    - When the difference between the predicted and the actual result in lower profits for the firm.
    - Could result from: Economic down turn, competition introducing a new product or having a successful marketing campaign, unaccounted for fule prices increasing.

    Ways to try and resolve adverse variance:
    - If sales revenue was less then planned:
    - Improve company image.
    - Cut prices (depends on the PED)
    - Seek new, currently untapped markets at home and abroad.
    - Expand or update the product range.
    - Increase advertising and promotion

    - If expenditure was higher than planned:
    - Cut wages/increase labour productivity.
    - Seek cheaper raw materials.
    - Reduce waste.



    Ideas for analysis:
    - Show the implications of the budget variance (good and bad)
    - Explain the benefits to a firm of producing a budget.
    - Highlight the difficulties and issues associated with budgeting.
    - Asses the extent the limit put on budgets as a result of them being a prediction of what is to come.

    Ideas for evaluations:
    - Identify the key cause of variance (good and bad)
    - Asses the best solutions to adverse variance.
    - Judge the usefulness of budgeting and the difficulties associated with predicting.
    - Discuss the feasibility of fixing problems, for example cutting jobs, although this would decrease costs, it may also decrease moral and may lead to a reduction in productivity which may lead to a decrease in out put and may end up pushing up prices again.
    - Budgets imply control - you may want to assess the type of manager needed to support these issues.
    To add to these great notes on budgeting:

    Zero-based budgeting
    A system of budgeting where no money is allocated for costs or spending unless they can be justified by the fund holder (they are given a zero value).
    This approach is different to the common practise of extrapolating from past costs. It encourages the regular evaluation of costs & helps minimise unnecessary purchases. When choices are made firms try to minimise opportunity cost and other costs.

    Advantages of ZBB:
    The allocation of resources should be improved;
    A question attitude is developed which will help to reduce unnecessary costs & eliminate inefficient practises.
    Staff motivation might improve because evaluation skills are practised and a greater knowledge of the firm’s operations might develop.
    It encourages managers to look for alternatives.

    Disadvantages of ZBB:
    It is time consuming because the budgeting process involves the collection and analysis of quite detailed information so that spending decisions can be made.
    Skilful decision making is required. Such skills may not be available in the organisation. In addition, decisions may be influenced by subjective opinions.
    It threatens the status quo. This might adversely affect motivation.
    Managers may not be prepared to justify spending on certain costs. Money, therefore may not be allocated to spending which could benefit the business.

    Please add more notes if you can!
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    Hi guys Just a bit of advice from an A2 business student . From past experience , my whole group thought this unit would be easy because of how easy unit 1 was. However this was not the case . We found it hard. This was because they had changed the weighting in the different assessment objectives. It's weighted heavily towards Analysis and Evaluation. Whereas Unit 1 was more knowledge based.

    So anyone taking Unit 2 , my advice is to analyse and evaluate everything. Every mark counts


    Also Unit 4 is a killer , Evaluation is the major thing , also Analysis is too . All you get is a theme and some bullet points to research around. You have to include your own research in your answers . From what I've seen in the specimen paper is that the questions are pretty open ended especially in section B.

    And A final note : GOOD LUCK TO EVERYONE
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    (Original post by charmed1309)
    Hi guys Just a bit of advice from an A2 business student . From past experience , my whole group thought this unit would be easy because of how easy unit 1 was. However this was not the case . We found it hard. This was because they had changed the weighting in the different assessment objectives. It's weighted heavily towards Analysis and Evaluation. Whereas Unit 1 was more knowledge based.

    So anyone taking Unit 2 , my advice is to analyse and evaluate everything. Every mark counts


    Also Unit 4 is a killer , Evaluation is the major thing , also Analysis is too . All you get is a theme and some bullet points to research around. You have to include your own research in your answers . From what I've seen in the specimen paper is that the questions are pretty open ended especially in section B.

    And A final note : GOOD LUCK TO EVERYONE
    Thanks for the advice, could you please remind me what evaluating & analysis is.

    I think evluating is when you weigh up both sides & come to a conculsion. Also the questions usually start with: To what extent.
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    (Original post by dime_piece)
    Business studies for me is a subject i just get (scrapped a B without revising unit 1) but im aiming for an A* overall so ive just been writing notes on everything and reading over the notes.

    My main revision technique is to link all the chapters together and bullet pointing my answers to exam question (i have a short attention span :p: ). The only thing i find hard is memorising all the key terms.

    NB: do we need to memorise all the key terms at the end of each chapter or are there specific ones.
    That's like me with economics A level last year. I got a B with doing zero work... So now I have to retake to get an A haha.

    I have been doing the bullet point thing too, but mainly because I have 6 exams and can't be bothered to loads of full essays for all of them.

    I have a list of loads of key terms that I got from a revision day which I will upload
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    (Original post by charmed1309)
    Hi guys Just a bit of advice from an A2 business student . From past experience , my whole group thought this unit would be easy because of how easy unit 1 was. However this was not the case . We found it hard. This was because they had changed the weighting in the different assessment objectives. It's weighted heavily towards Analysis and Evaluation. Whereas Unit 1 was more knowledge based.

    So anyone taking Unit 2 , my advice is to analyse and evaluate everything. Every mark counts


    Also Unit 4 is a killer , Evaluation is the major thing , also Analysis is too . All you get is a theme and some bullet points to research around. You have to include your own research in your answers . From what I've seen in the specimen paper is that the questions are pretty open ended especially in section B.

    And A final note : GOOD LUCK TO EVERYONE
    Thank you for the advice :yep:
    This unit is good if you do it well because it's worth 30% of the whole A level so it takes off so my stress from A2 if you do really well.
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    (Original post by dime_piece)
    Thanks for the advice, could you please remind me what evaluating & analysis is.

    I think evluating is when you weigh up both sides & come to a conculsion. Also the questions usually start with: To what extent.
    Someone has posted a list of the key ways you can evaluate and analyses here: http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show...80&postcount=1

    I have an essays structure I can post if you want?
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    (Original post by Magic Dust)
    Someone has posted a list of the key ways you can evaluate and analyses here: http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show...80&postcount=1

    I have an essays structure I can post if you want?
    Thanks for the link, and if you could upload the essay structure that would be :awesome:
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    I glad to be of use , any other questions you want to ask , ill answer them if I can

    Unit 2 is a good one to get right as you said its a huge chunk of the A Level, just remember though Unit 3 and 4 are only 5% less . So you've got to get them right too But don't worry about that till you get there. Then you can tackle them.


    Also dime_piece Analysis is where you look at the situation you've been given and look how it can be resolved or how it occurred. For example say a business was losing profits, you would look at why and how they are. These could include external and internal influences. In the evaluation you would recommend the best solution to the problem. You need to make a reason judgement.

    I hope that helps
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    (Original post by dime_piece)
    Thanks for the link, and if you could upload the essay structure that would be :awesome:
    17 out of the available 80 marks are for evaluation, so that's nearly 1/4 of the whole paper.

    An essay structure might go something like this:

    Intro - Define what the key term. Then explain how it links to the company in the case study - That way you are getting the knowledge and application marks straight away. It also helps me to focus on what the question is I am answering.

    Then have 2 to 4 paragraphs with a similar structure to this:

    POINT
    EXPLAIN/EVIDENCE
    EVALUATE.
    LINK

    Point - make a relevant point to the question. Make sure it directly links to what you are being asked.

    Explain - this will get you into the analysis marks as long as you apply your answer. So if I was writing about labour turn over, I would explain what the data shows and how that would effect the business specifically. You have to make sure your answer is only applicable to the business in the case study, because if you are able to substitute any business in then you aren't applying your knowledge.

    Evaluate - Basically you have to give your own opinion. You could use linking words/phrases such as:
    - It depends on
    - However
    - But
    - Because of this, something else might happen.

    Link - End on a sentence you can link into your next paragraph so that it flows nicely.

    Nearly all the business decisions have implications on functional areas, for example if a business decided to invest in training, this would have an implication on the operations of the business and also the finances of the business. A good way to get evaluative marks is to explain what effect this would have... Such as:

    "Training the staff in Travel Tavern would probably lead to a rise in productivity as a result output for the firm would increase. An increase in productivity could raise the profit levels of the company which may enable them to invest in other things, such as renovating the hotels so they are more up to date to enable them to compete with more modern brands such as Premier Inn. Training could also raise morale levels with the staff which could effect customer satisfaction as if the staff are happier then they will deliver better service, for example when people check in. However, training staff may be expensive and as the company is already in debt it probably cannot afford to invest in what most companies see as a non-essential investment, especially when there is a lot of demand for hotel staff and so there is a high risk to Travel Tavern that is they were to invest in training their staff might leave, this is echoed by their high staff turnover."

    Leaving the paragraph like that then enables me to link in the next paragraph with staff turn over.

    Evaluation is just meant to make the essay balanced. Also, if you evaluate throughout the essay it flows better then doing it at the end and it is less rushed as you're not trying to fit it in before time runs out.

    Even if you don't have many paragraphs, it doesn't matter as long as they are quite long because you're probably getting more marks for them then you would for short underdeveloped paragraphs.

    Conclusion - as you have been evaluating through out this should be a summary of the points you have already made. You should come to a decision. Refer back to the question, if it says how far, make sure you say how far you think it is! You may want to say which point is most relevant and why.



    (Sorry about my shoddy paragraph, it was the first thing I turned too in my notes :P
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    Also here is a link to loads of tutor2u's key terms. I don't think we need to know all of them, there is so many :erm: but most are common sense based

    Clicky
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    Are you guys A2? or AS, couse im A2 and resiting this paper..on 25th may.
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    (Original post by Swimmer)
    Are you guys A2? or AS, couse im A2 and resiting this paper..on 25th may.
    I am sitting the whole course this June.

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Updated: June 3, 2013
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