Business Management and Leadership BSc (Hons)

Full-time undergraduate (3 years, 4 years with foundation year, 4 years with placement)


January, September

At ARU we’re committed to giving you the best outcomes from your degree. We have some exciting changes being made to the course from 2020 to reflect the needs of our graduates. These include refreshed modules and new ways of teaching. We’ll be publishing the new modules soon but in the meantime,


If you choose the 4 year extended degree, the first year of your study will be delivered by our partner, Cambridge Ruskin International College (CRIC) on our Cambridge campus. In years 2 to 4 you'll study with us in Chelmsford.


You want to be a leader, the kind of leader people look up to and follow. And you know you’ll need cutting-edge business acumen and exceptional leadership skills to set you apart. We know what to do with this spark of potential. Our full-time Business Management and Leadership degree is accredited by the Chartered Management Institute. Specialist modules, and an optional placement year, will help you develop your business vision, strategy and focus. Become the kind of leader that makes change happen.

Full description

overall student satisfaction

National Student Survey results 2017


Management cuts across all businesses and all sectors, and there are myriad occupations and career opportunities for graduates. You’ll be able to apply the skills you’ve developed on our Business Management and Leadership degree to varied and interesting roles, from manufacturing to knowledge-based businesses, and from retail to public sector roles.

We work with employers to make sure you graduate with the knowledge, skills and abilities they need. They help us review what we teach and how we teach it – and they offer hands-on, practical opportunities to learn through work-based projects, internships or placements.

Through our Business School Intern programme, around 35 students each year get a business mentor, work experience, exclusive training and development, and a reference from our Dean.

Or you might choose to enhance your education and career prospects further still by taking a postgraduate degree, such as our MSc Management or MSc International Business.

Modules & assessment

Year one, core modules

  • Higher Education and Business Essentials for Leadership and Finance
    This module aims to equip you with the knowledge and skills that are essential for you to function effectively as independent self-learners within the higher education learning environment, with particular reference to the general area of business management and the specific subject matters of Finance and Leadership. The module aims to help you understand, develop and apply essential academic and business skills including; time management; research, critical analysis and critical writing; assessment awareness and strategy, learning style, protocols concerning the use and referencing of other people’s ideas and work, relevant information technology and associated software packages, presentation skills and teamwork.
  • Economics for Managers
    This module introduces you to the fundamentals of economics and focuses on applying key economic insights to business and management. First, the module focuses on microeconomics - the decisions and behaviour of individuals and firms. The economic principles underlying the determination of price and output, firm costs, industrial structure and market failures are outlined. Next, the module focuses on macroeconomics - the economy at national and international levels - and its impacts on business behaviour. You’ll learn how the key macroeconomic variables (inflation, unemployment, and so on) influence business activity and government macroeconomic policy.
  • Principles of Marketing
    This module will present you with a foundation in the core theories and models of marketing, from a bottom-up perspective. The module will instil in you an understanding of how marketing operates as a key functional area within business and how it critically interacts with other areas such as accountancy, human resource management and business management throughout all business sectors.
  • Business Analytics
    The module begins by reviewing various techniques for collecting and presenting data. Some important measures and techniques for making sense of raw data are then introduced which are widely used by businesses when analysing both their internal and external environments. This module builds on the introduction to spreadsheet packages previously encountered in semester one where you’ll be helped to develop further hands-on skills in using such packages in computer workshops. Careful attention is also paid throughout the module to the interpretation and application of the various quantitative methods and techniques to the solution of real-world business problems. Innovative video software is used to support you throughout the module.
  • Globalisation and Business Environment
    This module introduces students to the concept of globalisation and dominant environmental factors that facilitate or constraints the globalisation of economic and business activity. It explores the political, economic, social, legal, ecological and technological factors in the international business environment. Attention will be paid globalisation and its implications for competitive environment. Accordingly, the module will introduce students to the concept of globalisation and the key social, economic and technological changes that define and shape the contemporary global business environment. An understanding of contemporary trends in the global economy will be considered, as will the importance of country attractiveness, and its indicators such as foreign direct investment (FDI) and other forms Multi and Transnational organisational activity. The various factors that facilitate and/or constraint contemporary trends will be discussed and evaluated and so will the social implications of such trends and activities for national sovereignty. As such, the module will introduce students to the pros and cons of globalisation and debates around concepts such as Corporate social responsibility and social dumping. The cross-cultural focus onGlobal Business Environment will prepare students the global leadership approach that is covered at subsequent levels of the course. The module will be assessed by a 3,000-word assessment building upon the team-based learning assessments undertaken throughout the module.
  • Foundations of Leadership and Management
    ncreasingly, there is growing consensus that organisational success (regardless of type or sector), hinges people and the extent of their commitment to the goals of the organisation. The role of leadership in engendering commitment of, safe to say, unquestioned. However, the question of what constitutes leadership and management and, more importantly, effective leadership and management, remain to be contested. This module aims to achieve two goals. First, it aims to introduce students to core concepts about Leadership, Management and, the leadership and management functions. Second, it aims to familiarise students with core content of their course and, in that process, also introduce them to the academic staff that deliver their course and thus, strengthening course identity. Accordingly, in addition to covering basic theories and debates about the nature of Leadership, Management and their roles in organisation, the module will cover Leadership related business and organisational theories and issues that are covered in some of the compulsory modules at subsequent levels (Levels 5 & 6) of the course. The module will therefore introduce students to the history and theories of Leadership and Management and the Leadership and Management function in both business (for profit) and social (none-profit) organisational contexts. It will, as well, introduce students to business and organisational theories and issues that are relevant to understanding leadership, organisation and business. These will include topics such as: 3rd section organisation and leadership; Strategy and; crucially, Research methods in Business and Leadership studies. The module will be assessed by a mid-semester presentation and coursework submitted at the end of the semester which builds upon the team-based learning activities completed throughout the module.
  • Contemporary Issues in Work and Society
    Contemporary workplaces are increasingly complex: workers' roles are multifaceted and often difficult to define. As a result, supporting, developing and managing people at work is becoming more demanding. This module addresses this challenging context by considering work as consisting of the dynamics between people, work and society, and will encourage you to be critical by exploring theories and workplace practices through the lens of sociology and psychology. This module will explore the nature of work and society and will draw on theories associated with the nature of work, organisation and management. There will be a historical and critical review of schools of thought and key writers, which will introduce you to the tradition of social science theory and practice. You will be encouraged to think about issues associated with class, gender, race and identity and how these are linked to the notion of ‘work’. You’ll be able to explore what ‘work’ means; why do people work; and what are the different types of work that occur. The module will focus on issues of industrialisation, deindustrialisation, notions of career and identity and places and spaces of work. A major part of this module is the discussion of innovative and new ways of looking at work through the lens of sociology and psychology. You’ll explore sociological ways of seeing work and organisations and understanding the relationship between work, organisations and society more generally. As the module will focus on the wider context of work, and take into account the societal challenges associated with changing patterns of work, you’ll be prepared for the new realities of work. This includes working practices such as distributed, networked organizations; management consultancy, as well as more conventional organisational work practices.

Year two, core modules

  • Leadership Development
    The complex and volatile environment that organisations face and the need for flexibility and adaptation to change, make developing leaders and expanding their capabilities and skill set increasingly important. One of the fundamental debates of leadership theory and practice is the concept of whether leadership can be learnt. The premise of this module is that Leaders are not born; they are made, and it aims to introduce students to the purpose and practice of leadership development. This module will build on the Level 4 Foundations of Leadership and Management module, in considering the factors in learning and how learning from experience underpins leadership development. Core and related concepts of leadership development, such as the purpose, the methods, and the organisational factors will be explored, as well as contemporary theories and debates of the context of leadership development. Consequently, the module aims to introduce students to the purpose and practice of leadership development, the organisational conditions that facilitate its effectiveness and the future trends for developing leaders in an organisational context according to leadership and organisational research. The module will be assessed by a 3,000 word assessment building upon the team-based learning assessments undertaken throughout the module.
  • Leadership in Practice
    This self-managed, experience-based module requires you to engage with, and subsequently reflect upon and assess, your own learning and development in an on-going manner as demonstration of your commitment to continuing professional development as a leader. This module will investigate and evaluate classical and contemporary approaches to leadership theory, focusing on leadership at supervisory, middle and senior management level. There will be a strong emphasis on applying the theory to your own personal leadership with a view to enhancing leadership performance or potential for leadership/promotion to more senior management roles within the organisation. Developing leadership in others through coaching and mentoring will also be discussed and explored to build on the learning partnerships that were developed in the first year modules. The assessment requires you to critically reflect on your own effectiveness as a leader or potential leader, and to produce recommendations for your own personal leadership development. Feedback will be provided throughout the delivery to allow formative assessment of the emerging leadership competencies and evaluations. This will happen through the e-tivities and will be a mix of tutor, self and peer assessment. One of the main focuses for the design of this module has been the further development of relevant employability and professional skills. Such skills are implicit in the learning outcomes. Multiculturalism has been considered during the design of this module.
  • Business Economics
    This module is an introductory economics course designed to provide an introduction to the fundamentals of economics and focuses on applying key insights to business and management applications. Due to the nature of modern economics the approach of the module is necessarily analytical, but the analysis is non-technical and relies on verbal reasoning and graphical methods. The first part of this module focuses on microeconomics - the decisions and behaviour of individuals and firms, and of government within a single industry. The economic principles underlying the determination of price and output, firm costs, industrial structure and market failures are outlined. The second part of the module focuses on macroeconomics - the economy at aggregated national and international levels - and its impacts on business behaviour; covering the key macroeconomic variables and how they influence business activity and government macroeconomic policy.
  • Strategic Management
    Strategic Management is a fascinating discipline that studies the long-term purpose and direction of organisations, by looking at how to achieve a sustainable competitive advantage. The first part of the module focuses on core frameworks and analytical techniques that will enable you to assess the resources and capabilities of organisations in relation to the conditions of the industry and the macro environment, and stakeholder pressures. The module concludes with the evaluation of business-level and corporate-level strategies, providing a springboard to the Advanced Strategic Management module in the final year, focused on strategic implementation.
  • Business Research Methods
    This core module introduces you to the various methods of undertaking business research - vital tools for anyone hoping to pursue a career in business. The module covers a range of qualitative and quantitative research methods. It’s a practical module informed by theory and real-life examples, which’ll help you to explore the philosophical debates underlying business and management research and consider how they relate to our understanding of knowledge and business practice. You’ll be encouraged to develop your ability to critically assess both the theory and practice of business and management research and to reflect on your own learning and development. This module will help you think about a final project and give you confidence in using research methods.
  • Accounting for Decision Making
    The importance of the accounting function in any organisation cannot be understated. This function impacts on decision making across all departments and levels in all organisations. An understanding of the core principles and practices of finance is therefore essential for every manager. The purpose of this module is to encourage students to interact with accounting information and provide them with the skills to confidently participate in discussions relating to this function. The aims of this module will be achieved by focusing on both financial and management accounting concepts. Students will be introduced to a number of accounting techniques that can be considered useful for management planning, control and decision making. These include: interpretation of financial statements, costing, budgeting, short-term decision making and investment appraisal. Students will be expected to engage with the theory underlying each concept and explore the value of each technique to the organisation as a whole. The module will be assessed via a case study and a group presentation.

Year two, optional modules

  • Project Management
    Project management is a key skill for any future professional to acquire, at some stage in your career you will be involved in delivering or working on a project. This module focuses on providing a sound basis for managing or working on projects. In essence, the concept of managing a project hinging on one quite basic principle, managing the triangle of: quality of the project outcomes, cost and time. In practice, this is a complex juggling act. The module covers: the major process groups of the Project Management Body of Knowledge; the importance of stakeholder and risk management; scheduling and costing; monitoring and controlling techniques, including cost control, time management and resource optimisation; improving the success of projects; and the principles of agile project management. Assessment is by two pieces of coursework: a project schedule and discussion of stakeholders and risks, and a limited time case study problem.

Placement year (Optional)

  • Work Placement - L&M
    This module is to be carried out during the third year of your four-year sandwich degree. During your Work Placement Year you should spend a minimum of 38 weeks in a work placement (you may do more weeks than this if your placement(s) requires). The intention of the Work Placement Year is to provide you with an extended experience of working in organisational environment. During this period, you are expected to participate fully in the working life of the institution(s)/company(ies), on the basis of an agreed programme/contract. Because of the dual practical working organisational environment experience and academic purposes of module, you will have a Work Placement Tutor, who will be an academic member of staff in your department and, Work Placement Supervisor, who will be a member of staff, employed by the Placement Provider (company). The work placement tutor will support you with any questions you may have related to the placement year portfolio and mark the 5000 word module assessment portfolio. Your Work Place Supervisor, who will typically be your line manager, will be responsible for your day to day management, supervision, health and safety and support during your placement.

Year three, core modules, or year four with placement

  • Advanced Strategic Management
    This module introduces you to how an organisational strategy takes shape and what strategists actually do. The module is organised around five themes. Firstly, it focuses on the evaluation of strategic options in terms of suitability, acceptability and feasibility. Secondly, 'intended strategy development' versus 'emergent strategy development' is examined as two broadly different approaches of strategy development. The third theme covers the role of organisational structures and systems in strategy development. The fourth theme is the leadership of strategic change. Lastly, the module discusses the practice of strategy. You'll learn about practical examples associated with Strategic Management together with key problem-solving skills.
  • Career Development and Employability
    This innovative and exciting career-focused module will help you develop the employability skills and capabilities that are needed to compete successfully in the graduate labour market whilst seeking to provide you with knowledge, support and insight into the contemporary world of work and the business market. The module will also develop your skills and is therefore practical and engages you in case study exercise, real-life scenarios, audit and skills testing techniques and invites external guest speakers and employers to provide insight and input. The lectures and seminars will provide key inputs to help introduce you to fundamental employability concepts, insights and techniques, drawn from the world of business and management, but also from other disciplines such as sociology, social psychology and the humanities.
  • Practising Sustainable Business
    This module will explore a number of alternative approaches to business which stem from a broader outlook of business value, including social enterprises, and discuss the benefits of business coalitions and networks. This module encourages you to recognise the diverse nature of the current workforce and the advantages this diversity can offer to employers. You will explore both the ethical and social framework underlying the management of diversity and will explore why diversity is important, emphasising the benefits in terms of improving creativity as well as understanding the policies and practices that support the effective management of diversity and ethics within businesses. You will also address the importance of understanding and managing the natural capital within business. It will cover mechanisms for ‘valuing’ this capital within the financial framework of a business and how this can improve the resilience of a company to future environmental risks. It will include the issue of corporate reporting of social & environmental risks and impacts (and the debates about this, e.g. in the EU and around the Rio 2012 conference).
  • Leadership, Organisational Planning and Performance
    This module is designed to help you investigate contemporary business related issues and examine the connection between leadership, organisational planning and organisational performance. Focusing on theoretical constructs and debates you will be encouraged to realise the relationship between leadership and planning to drive organisational performance. Through the creation of a written report, such as a Consultant’s Report, you will firstly examine contextual issues of a case study or a real-life environment. You will then be able to formulate strategies and interventions in a final consultant’s report to address the contextual issues you’ve identified. This module will allow you to integrate your prior understanding of operational aspects of organisation, leadership and management developed at level 4 and 5 with the wider social contexts in which they occur. You’ll be able to investigate implications for organisational survival and performance by applying theory to real life issues. This is invaluable for anyone wishing to lead and manage a contemporary organisation.
  • Work-based Undergraduate Major Project
    This module allows you to engage in a substantial piece of individual research on a topic of your choice within the business and management field under the supervision and guidance of members of academic staff. You will develop a chosen topic into a specific project with your supervisor over the course of the final undergraduate academic year. Supervisors will discuss with you contemporary research problems and issues based on their research and practice. The main focus of this module is the development and enhancement of transferable skills which include the ability to manage a complex project, conduct extensive research, presentation and self-management skills. Such skills are imperative to a role in business.

Year three, optional modules, or year four with placement

  • International Intercultural Management
    In an increasingly global business environment, those involved in international business and management must develop the insights and skills to interact with customers and stakeholders in a culturally sensitive way. The module introduces and examines the work of important researchers in the field such as Hofstede, Hall, Watson, Tayeb, Holden, Hampden-Turner and Trompenaars. It explores the application of these theories to decision making at an organisation level. Presenting cultural diversity as a central element in the phenomena of business change and organisational development through the use of case studies and interactive scenarios. It draws on the diversity of the student group as a resource and attempts to generate dynamic learning experiences.

Optional modules available in years two and three

  • French
    Foundation French is perfect for complete beginners to the language, the course focuses on all four language skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing) in an integrated approach. It’ll introduce key structures and vocabulary relevant topics whilst providing you with an insight into the French society and culture. Intermediate: If you’ve already studied French but would like to take it further, this module will develop your focus on all four language skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing) further in an integrated approach. It’ll expand upon the key structures and vocabulary relevant topics whilst providing you with an insight into the French society and culture.
  • Spanish
    Perfect for complete beginners to the language, the course will focus on all four language skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing) in an integrated approach. It will introduce key structures and vocabulary relevant topics whilst providing you with an insight into the Hispanic society and culture.


You can expect an interesting mix of coursework, essays, exams and activity-based assignments. Your coursework could include problem-solving activities, consultancy projects, presentations, and group or individual reports. You'll also be able to access support materials supported by materials accessed through our learning management system (Canvas).

All assessment is designed to allow you to demonstrate what you’ve learned, and to make sure you’re developing the knowledge and skills you need to complete the course successfully.

This is a 3 year programme (or 4 years with placement)

Alongside your core modules you will pick a number of optional modules. Please note that modules are subject to change and availability.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

You have a highly active mind and see opportunity everywhere. Now you need theory and life-changing skills to sharpen your approach to management. At the Faculty of Business & Law, you will immerse yourself in a multicultural environment where technology blends with teaching to create a dynamic and innovative learning environment. An environment to help you gain those skills.

Where can I study?

Tindal Building on our Chelmsford campus

Our striking, modern campus sits by the riverside in Chelmsford's University and Innovation Quarter.

Explore our Chelmsford campus

Placement year

We want to make sure that you’re fully prepared for an increasingly competitive job market, so we offer a four-year degree option which includes a work placement in the third year. It’s an opportunity to apply and enhance your skills while developing new ones. You’ll also build valuable professional networks.

It could be that you have one placement during Year 3, or you could have two or three, giving you the chance to experience different organisations and working practices. Many of our students find that their placement company hires them when they graduate. We have a specialist team to help you find a placement and support you during this year. You might work in the UK or go abroad: our students have worked at leading organisations such as PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC), Bosch, BMW, Airbus, BskyB and KPMG. This period of work experience can help set your final-year studies in context and may well help with your dissertation topic. All in all, it’s a fantastic way to stay ahead of the competition.

Studying abroad

You could broaden your horizons by spending time living and studying abroad. This could be a short study visit or a semester spent in Europe, Canada, the USA or Malaysia. It will look great on your CV and help you take advantage of opportunities in the international job market.

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK & EU students starting 2019/20 or 2020/21 (per year)


International students starting 2019/20 (per year)


International students starting 2020/21 (per year)


Placement year (UK, EU, international students)


Fee information

For more information about tuition fees, including the UK Government's commitment to EU students, please see our UK/EU funding pages

How do I pay my fees?

Tuition fee loan

You can take out a tuition fee loan, which you won’t need to start repaying until after your graduate. Or alternatively, there's the option to pay your fees upfront.

Loans and fee payments


We offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships, which provide extra financial support while you’re at university. Some of these cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Explore ARU scholarships

International students

You must pay your fees upfront, in full or in instalments. We will also ask you for a deposit or sponsorship letter. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees

Funding for UK & EU students

Most new undergraduate students can apply for government funding to support their studies and university life. This includes Tuition Fee Loans and Maintenance Loans. There are additional grants available for specific groups of students, such as those with disabilities or dependants.

We also offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships, which provide extra financial support while you’re at university. Find out more about eligibility and how to apply.

Funding for international students

We offer a number of scholarships, as well as an early payment discount. Explore your options:

Entry requirements

Loading... Entry requirements are not currently available, please try again later.

Important additional notes

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements. Other equivalent qualifications may be accepted for entry to this course, please email for further information.

We don't accept AS level qualifications on their own for entry to our undergraduate degree courses. However for some degree courses a small number of tariff points from AS levels are accepted as long as they're combined with tariff points from A levels or other equivalent level 3 qualifications in other subjects.

International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for postgraduate courses.

Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry onto a degree course.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

Similar courses that may interest you

Business Management

Full-time, full-time with placement undergraduate (2 years, 3 years, 4 years with foundation year, 4 years with placement)

Chelmsford, Cambridge


International Business Management

Full-time, full-time with placement undergraduate (2 years, 3 years, 4 years with foundation year, 4 years with placement)



Business with Finance*

Full-time, full-time with placement undergraduate (3 years, 4 years with foundation year, 4 years with placement)



Apply now

UK and EU students

Apply through UCAS

UCAScode: N690, N693

Apply via UCAS

International students

Applicants from outside the UK and EU, apply to ARU

Apply direct

Get more information

UK & EU applicants

01245 68 68 68

Enquire online

International applicants

+44 1245 68 68 68

Enquire online