Department Background

Our aims are:

  • to give students the best opportunity to achieve the highest grades at Business Studies and Economics
  • to develop their understanding of how the economic and business world works
  • to develop their ability to investigate and discuss current economic issues
  • to support them in becoming efficient independent learners

Business Studies and Economics is a popular option at GCSE and Economics at A Level and students have consistently achieved outstanding grades at both subjects. Many students also take advantage of the wide range of enrichment activities the department offers to enhance both their learning and enjoyment of the subjects.

Results for 2017-18

A* A* - A A* to B
A-level Economics 32.5% 65% 95.0%
AS Economics N/A 53.3% 77.6%
GCSE Business Studies 33.9% 69.5% 91.5%

Results for 2018-19

A* A* - A A* to B
A-level Economics 12.1% 60.6% 93.9%
AS Economics N/A 41.7% 75.0%
9 9 - 8 9 - 7
GCSE Business Studies 10.6 38.3% 61.7%

Year 7 - 9

Economics and Business Studies are not formally taught in years 7-9 but students will come across concepts, such as budgeting and enterprise, in their PSHE and Citizenship lessons. Students are given a presentation on the GCSE Business Studies course in Year 9 to inform their options choices. Students of all year groups are also welcome to attend events organised by the economic society throughout the year.

Year 10 - 11

The school offers GCSE Business (Edexcel GCSE 9 - 1) Students have the option to study Business Studies at GCSE. The year 10 course covers the starting up and running of small businesses and students will be given the opportunity to show their creative and enterprise skills throughout the first year.

In Year 11, students gain a broader appreciation of how to build up a business and how large businesses operate. They will cover areas such as marketing, making operational decisions, effective financial management and effective people management.

Students have two external examinations: Theme 1 (Investigating Small Business) and Theme 2 (Building a Business)

Year 12 - 13

The school offers Economics (Edexcel) in Y12 and Y13.

In Year 12 students study:

Theme 1: Introduction to markets and market failure

This theme focuses on microeconomic concepts. Students will develop an understanding of:

  • the nature of economics
  • how markets work
  • market failure
  • government intervention.

Theme 2: The UK economy – performance and policies

This theme focuses on macroeconomic concepts. Students will develop an understanding of:

  • measures of economic performance
  • aggregate demand
  • aggregate supply
  • national income
  • economic growth
  • macroeconomic objectives and policy.

In Year 13 students will cover:

Theme 1: Business behaviour and labour market

This theme develops the microeconomic concepts introduced in Theme 1 and focuses on business economics. Students will develop an understanding of:

  • business growth
  • business objectives
  • revenues, costs and profits
  • market structures
  • labour market
  • government intervention.

Theme 2: A global perspective

This theme develops the macroeconomic concepts introduced in Theme 2 and applies these concepts in a global perspective. Students will develop an understanding of:

  • international economics
  • poverty and inequality
  • emerging and developing economies
  • the financial sector
  • the role of the state in the macro economy.

Students have three external examinations: Paper 1 (Markets and business behaviour) and Paper 2 (The national and global economy) and Paper 3 (Micro and Macroeconomics)

Activities and Recent Highlights


The Economics and Business Studies department offers a wide range of extra-curricular activities:

  • The LSESU Economics Society Essay Challenge 2017

  • Young Enterprise gives all Year 12 students the opportunity to come up with a business project which they have the opportunity to develop with the support of an entrepreneur

  • Target 2.0 gives Year 13 Economists the chance to compete against other schools by investigating and presenting their views on the UK economy in order to inform the Bank of England the best direction for interest rates.

  • Economics Society is run to provide activities such as economic games, book club, debating to encourage students to explore this exciting subject in a creative way.

  • Economic Enquiry provides an opportunity for students to research and deliver a presentation on a topic of their choice to their peer group.

  • Voice Magazine: a student-run economics and current affairs magazine publishing articles written and edited by students.

  • Programme of this year’s economic conference

Recent Highlights

Saturday 9th November SOAS University:
Who pays for our infrastructure? An interdisciplinary investigation.

On Saturday, 9th of November year 12, 13 Economics students and year 11 Business students travelled to SOAS university to see a lecture on infrastructure by Dr Kate Bayliss, Dr Ben Bowles and Dr Elisa Van Waeyenberge. The professors specialise Interdisciplinarity, Anthropology and Economics respectively and started by introducing their areas of expertise.

In the morning, Dr Ben Bowles introduced us to anthropology, which is the study of human societies, cultures and their development and consists of cultural, physical and linguistic anthropology as well as archaeology. He explained his focus on social anthropology and briefly touched on the “immersion method”, which involves going away to live with and like a different culture to learn about it and that anthropologists view cultures in their own merit. This is called cultural relativism. Dr Elisa Van Waeyenberge discussed the assumptions made in economics, including the ideas that all consumers make wholly rational decisions and that consumers will always seek to improve their own welfare. She explained that these assumptions are made because it is easier to understand humans as a collective as opposed to individuals, especially when viewing them as factors of an economy. Dr Kate Bayliss then detailed how the differing agents of economics and anthropology can be used to examine the question, “who pays for our infrastructure?”, through an interdisciplinary approach.

Before approaching the question, Dr Kate Bayliss defined what infrastructure is as well as the differences between financing and funding. We learnt that infrastructure is the basic system and services that are necessary for a country or organisation to operate effectively. It can refer to electricity, transport and in this particular lecture, we looked at water. Financing refers to the money that has to be raised upfront to pay for the construction and operation of infrastructure, whereas funding relates to how you pay for infrastructure over its lifetime. Financing can either be public (this involves raising the country’s debt) or private (through project finance). For instance, the government can take out a loan from an intergovernmental bank to publically finance new infrastructure and fund it through taxes.

Interestingly, the government chooses to privately finance the UK’s infrastructure. This is although the private sector has greater financing costs than the public sector due to the interest on debts. This allows the government to avoid increasing fiscal deficit, which they tend to use to promote themselves, especially during general elections. However, since financing costs are greater, the infrastructure will require greater funding, so taxes must be raised.

Dr Bayliss explained that most infrastructure investment goes to transport (about 80% of the government’s money is invested in that industry) and it’s mainly privately funded and financed because we’re directly charged for it. Social infrastructure, such as schools, are publicly funded by the central government. However, utilities, like water and electricity are privatised, so we pay a user charge (such as water rates) to use them.

Water infrastructure was privatised from 1989, and today it’s a monopoly: the infrastructure is only owned by 10 large private regional companies in England and Wales. Privatisation has led to 26.8% of water companies net profit going to shareholders as dividends. While we learnt that we pay for the infrastructure to provide water, we question whether the continuation of a private water industry was justified. Is it right that few companies can set the price of water, while a ⅓ of households still struggle to pay for water?

Overall, our experience at SOAS taught us the interdisciplinary approach towards infrastructure and the policies it involves. We learnt about the distinction between funding and financing; the effects of different methods of funding and financing and why the government chooses certain approaches.

Thursday 19th December

Thursday 19th December 2019, ex-Latymer student, Rachel Soyode, visited the economics society to talk about the steps to success scholarship program offered by Credit Suisse. This is a two year social mobility program for which you should:

  • Be able to demonstrate leadership and teamwork skills

  • Have an AAA grade prediction

  • He verified by your head teacher/of year

  • Have a record of high achievement in and outside of academia

  • Have an interest in financial services Each year has a cohort of five students The program involves:

  • Training (Soft Skills/Industry/Excel/PowerPoint)

  • Speaker series with senior management

  • Mentoring and buddy scheme

  • Objective and review process

  • Intern Project

  • Networking Breakfasts/Lunches Year 1: 4 week paid internship in Global markets or investment banking and capital markets Year 2: 6 week paid internship in everything that wasn’t covered in year 1 Recruitment process:

  • Upload CV and cover letter

  • Telephone interview Jan/Feb

  • Assessment centre Feb/Mar

Apply online at

Deadline Jan 5 2020