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Unit 3 - Investigating Businesses
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This unit is a controlled assessment unit. The work must be each candidate’s own individual response and must be produced under controlled conditions.
 
Task Setting
 
All controlled assessment tasks will be set by AQA.
Tasks will be replaced each year and will only be available for one assessment opportunity.
AQA will provide centres with pre-released material which will require candidates to undertake a business investigation.
 
Task Taking
 
• Preparation
 
Before candidates carry out their investigation of the business, centres should prepare them by covering the relevant section(s) of the specification. During this phase, centres should ensure that candidates are familiar with the skills which will be assessed, especially the need to evaluate their findings.
 
• Research and Planning
 
It is suggested that between five and eight hours should be allocated for candidates to research the business. During the research and planning phase, teachers may give feedback to individual candidates to support them in their learning, but this assistance must be recorded.
Candidates may work with others during the research and planning stage. Each candidate must, however, produce an individual response to the tasks.
 
Final Presentation
 
Candidates should spend up to three hours writing up their findings. (Additional time can be given for candidates with special assessment requirements). This time may be divided into more than one session, provide that the teacher collects all materials at the end of each session, keeps them under secure conditions and returns them to candidates at the beginning of the next session. Centres are not allowed to give feedback to candidates during this time.
When completing their work, candidates must work independently under teacher supervision.
 
Task Marking
 
Centres must mark all controlled assessments using the marking criteria shown on the next two pages. The work will be moderated by AQA according to the procedures outlined in section 7 of this specification.
 
Level
AO1 (12 marks)
AO2 (14 marks)
AO3 (14 marks)
4

12–10 marks

The candidate selects relevant and detailed data/information from a wide range of sources. Appropriate methods are used to organise and communicate the data/information effectively.

The candidate demonstrates substantial knowledge and understanding of relevant
business concepts, issues and terminology.

 

 

 

14–11 marks

The candidate demonstrates theability to apply effectively and consistently skills, knowledge and understanding when:

• thoroughly planning and carrying out the investigation;

• successfully completing key parts of the investigation.

14–11 marks

The candidate draws a range of appropriate conclusions based on:

• an analysis of the selected data/information to produce key findings;

• an evaluation, supported by a reasoned justification, of the significance of the key findings.

Ideas are well structured and organised in a clear and appropriate form. Spelling, punctuation and grammar are used accurately. Specialist terms are used frequently and effectively.

3
9 –7 marks
The candidate selects relevant data/information from a range of sources. Some appropriate methods are used to organise
and communicate the data/information.
 
The candidate demonstrates good knowledge and understanding of relevant
business concepts, issues and terminology.
10 –7 marks
The candidate demonstrates the ability to apply skills, knowledge and understanding when:
 
• planning and carrying out the investigation;
 
• completing aspects of the  investigation.
10 –7 marks
The candidate draws some appropriate conclusions based on:
 
• a partial analysis of selected data/information to produce some findings;
 
• a judgement, with some justification, of the significance of the findings. Ideas are organised in an appropriate form. Spelling, punctuation and grammar are used with reasonable accuracy. Some appropriate use of specialist terms is evident.
 
2
6 – 4 marks
The candidate selects data/information from a limited range of sources. A limited
attempt is made to organise the data/information.
 
The candidate demonstrates a basic knowledge and understanding of some
relevant business concepts, issues and terminology.
6 – 4 marks
The candidate demonstrates some ability to apply skills, knowledge and understanding when:
 
• carrying out the investigation;
 
• attempting to complete aspects  of the investigation.
6 – 4 marks
The candidate reaches some simple conclusions based on:
 
• a review of selected data/information in order to identify results from the
investigation;
 
• a basic judgement, based upon limited evidence, of the significance of the investigation’s results.
 
An attempt to organise and structure ideas in an appropriate form. Spelling, punctuation and grammar are used with some accuracy but there are some errors. Specialist terms are used occasionally.
1
3 –1 marks
The candidate has collated data/information from a limited range of sources. The data/information is presented without any attempt to organise it.
The candidate demonstrates limited knowledge and understanding of some
business concepts and issues. There is little use of business terminology.
3 –1 marks
The candidate attempts to apply skills, knowledge and understanding when:
 
• carrying out the investigation;
 
• describing some outcomes of the investigation.
3 –1 marks
The candidate states some conclusions based on:
 
• collected data/information;
 
• unsupported judgements.
 
Ideas are presented in a way that isadequate to convey meaning. The rules of spelling, punctuation and grammar are not fully understood and there are frequent errors. Few or no specialist terms are used.
0
0 marks
The candidate presents no relevant data/information nor demonstrates any knowledge and understanding of business
concepts, issues and terminology.
0 marks
The candidate presents no relevant data/information nor demonstrates any knowledge and understanding of business
concepts, issues and terminology.
0 marks
The candidate presents no relevant data/information nor demonstrates any knowledge and understanding of business
concepts, issues and terminology.
 
 

 

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