BA (Honours) Business Studies
On this page
How do businesses develop strategies, handle risk and take decisions? What’s involved in essential business functions such as marketing, accounting and finance? This degree in business studies provides an innovative and accessible introduction to the world of business, and helps you relate your studies directly to your own workplace. You’ll investigate how organisations think and work, how they’re managed, and the external world in which they operate. You’ll also gain a general understanding of business organisations and their key elements; wider considerations such as environments, markets and processes; and how all these work together. This degree course includes flexible options, enabling you to specialise in an area of business studies – for example, accounting – or you can combine business studies with another subject and study for a BA (Hons) Business Studies with Economics, Environment, French, International Development, Law or Spanish.
Fees and facts
Where will you be resident whilst you study?
If your country isn’t shown here, please visit our website for
Choose country above to see fee and ways to pay.
Flexible, part-time study through
Undergraduate or bachelors degrees are nationally recognised qualifications consisting of academic study designed to help you gain a thorough understanding of a subject.
For a degree in a named subject, such as business studies or humanities, you'll study mainly in your chosen subject, although you may be able to include some modules from other subjects.
With The Open University you could also study an Open degree where you can combine a range of modules from similar or different subjects to suit either your particular career or personal interests.
You can use a degree to:
change careers or progress your current career gain an in-depth knowledge and understanding of a subject you are interested in gain professional recognition go onto postgraduate study, such as a diploma or masters degree.
There are no formal entry requirements to study this degree.
Career relevance and employability
The skills and knowledge you’ll develop by studying this degree in business studies will equip you to follow a number of career paths, and are recognised by employers as having great value for work in management and business. They can also lead to opportunities in specialist areas concerned with offering guidance to managers – such as management consultancy or business journalism.
This degree course will contribute to your career development by:
developing your cognitive skills – critical thinking, analysis, paraphrasing and evaluation
improving your ICT and presentation skills, and your basic numeracy
developing your understanding of the function and contribution of specialisms like marketing, HR, operations and finance.
There is more information about how OU study can improve your employability in the
OU’s Employability Statement from our Careers Advisory Service. You can also read or download our publication and look at our OU study and your career subject pages to find out about career opportunities.
Choose a pathway and register
Pathways allow you to specialise or choose particular topics that interest you. You will need to choose a pathway before registering.
You can choose from a number of different pathways depending on whether a broad-based degree in business studies suits your interests and career aspirations or if you want to focus on either a particular business-related topic or a modern language.
Credit for previous study elsewhere
If you have already completed some successful study at higher education level at another institution you may be able to transfer credit for this study and count it towards this qualification. If you wish to apply to transfer credit you must do so as soon as possible, and before you register for this qualification.
If you are awarded credit for study completed elsewhere, you may find that you need to study fewer OU modules to complete this qualification. This may also mean that the next start date and the maximum time limit for this qualification are different to those shown above.
Credit Transfer site for more information and details of how to apply for credit transfer.
The learning outcomes of this qualification are described in four areas:
Knowledge and understanding
Practical and professional skills
Read more detailed information about the learning outcomes, and how they are acquired through teaching, learning and assessment methods.
Classification of your degree
On successful completion of the required number and type of modules you will be awarded a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) Business Studies degree. if you choose to specialise - for example in economics, your degree title will be BA (Hons) Business Studies with Economics.
Your honours degree will be classified either as first-class honours, upper second-class honours, lower second-class honours or third-class honours. The class of degree is determined by the best grades you achieve in a minimum of 120 and up to 240 credits from modules at Levels 2 and 3, 120 of which must come from modules at Level 3.
As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the following regulations:
These regulations are also available on our
Essential Documents website.
If you have a disability
Choosing the qualification that’s right for you is very important. Depending on your disability, long-term health condition, mental health disability or specific learning difficulty, you may need to consider any challenges posed by:
the learning objectives: for example, to gain an honours degree in a language you must be physically able to speak the language
how the modules are taught: for example, some of our science qualifications require that you complete laboratory work
any work-based competency requirements.
Choosing the right qualification can be a complex mix of the subject requirements and the support you may need. To help you assess whether the qualification you are interested in will work for you, further advice is available from:
You will need a computer with internet access to study for this qualification. For most OU qualifications a Microsoft Windows (new since 2007),
Apple Mac (OS X 10.6 or later) or Linux computer should be adequate. However, some qualifications require more specific IT equipment, in which case you
will need additional software to use an Apple Mac or Linux computer. A detailed technical specification for your modules will be made available when you
register. Please note, technical specifications do change over time to match computer developments and the way we teach.
The Open University is the world’s leading provider of flexible, high quality distance learning. Unlike other universities
we are not campus based. You will study in a flexible way that works for you whether you’re at home, at work or on the move.
As an OU student you’ll be supported throughout your studies – your tutor or study adviser will guide and advise you, offer detailed
feedback on your assignments, and help with any study issues. Tuition might be in face-to-face groups, via online
tutorials, or by phone.
For more information read
Distance learning explained.