IGCSE Business Studies-0450 Handbook 

Table of contents

Course Description

Cambridge IGCSE Business Studies is accepted by universities and employers as proof of an understanding of business concepts and techniques across a range of different types of businesses. Learners will be able to:

They will also gain lifelong skills, including:

Our programmes balance a thorough knowledge and understanding of a subject and help to develop the skills learners need for their next steps in education or employment.

Syllabus Overview

The aims describe the purposes of a course based on this syllabus.

The aims are to enable students to:

Content Overview

This section introduces the underlying ideas and concepts of business and includes the purpose and nature of business activity and how businesses can be classified. Enterprise and entrepreneurs, and why some businesses grow while others remain small are further important issues. How business size can be measured, types of business organisation, business objectives and stakeholder objectives are the concluding topics.


The focus is the functional area of human resources and includes the importance and methods of motivating a workforce. How businesses are organised and managed and the methods of recruitment, selection and training of employees are also considered. Finally, the section covers the importance and methods of effective internal and external communication.

This section includes the role of marketing, the distinctions between niche and mass markets and the techniques of market segmentation. The methods and importance of market research are covered. The central role of the marketing mix, i.e. the four Ps, is made clear. Marketing strategies to influence consumer decisions at home and in new foreign markets are the final topics in this section.

The focus is the functional area of production and includes the meaning and methods of production and how productivity can be increased. The different costs of production and break-even analysis are covered. The section concludes with the importance and methods of achieving quality in the production process and location decisions of businesses.

This finance and accounting section covers the need for and sources of business finance, cash-flow forecasting and working capital. Simple income statements are covered as well as statements of financial position and the analysis of accounts including why and how accounts are used.


This section focuses on different external influences on business activity and how these impact on a business. It includes government influences on economic, environmental and ethical issues and how they impact on the functional areas of businesses. In addition, the international economy including globalisation and its effects on businesses and governments, multinational businesses and exchange rates are important issues. Legal constraints are an external influence to be considered but these influences are covered in the relevant functional areas above, as well as in this last section.

Assessment Overview

All candidates take two papers.


All candidates take:

Assessment Objectives

The assessment objectives (AOs) are:

demonstrate knowledge and understanding of facts, terms, concepts, conventions, theories and techniques commonly applied to or used as part of business behaviour.

apply knowledge and understanding of facts, terms, concepts, conventions, theories and techniques.

distinguish between evidence and opinion in a business context order, analyse and interpret information in narrative, numerical and graphical forms, using appropriate techniques.

Weighting for assessment objectives

The approximate weightings allocated to each of the assessment objectives (AOs) are summarized below.

Assessment objectives as a percentage of the qualification

Question paper - Component 1 


Question paper - Component 2