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Durham University

Postgraduate Module Handbook 2021/2022

Archive Module Description

This page is for the academic year 2021-22. The current handbook year is 2022-23

Department: Management and Marketing

BUSI421JN: Strategy

Type Tied Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Not available in 2021/22
Tied to N2P109J Management (commencing in January) (suspended for 21/22)
Tied to N2P209J Management (Finance) (commencing in January) (suspended for 21/22)

Prerequisites

  • None.

Corequisites

  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.

Aims

  • Strategy seeks to explain firms' success or lack of success. Strategy is concerned with matching a firm's resources and capabilities to the opportunities that arise in the external environment. The emphasis of the module is on two themes: 1) the interface between strategy and the external environment, and 2) the interface between strategy and the internal environment of the firm - more specifically, with the resources and capabilities of the firm.

Content

  • Concepts of strategy.
  • Strategic purpose.
  • Environmental and industry analysis.
  • Analysing resources and capabilities.
  • Sustainable Competitive Advantage - including sources of advantage (cost and differentiation) and sustainability.
  • Corporate strategy - including vertical, horizontal and international scope, methods of development and managing synergy.
  • Corporate culture and strategy.
  • Strategic management processes.
  • Managing strategic change.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • By the end of this module students will:
  • Have a critical appreciation of the contribution strategy can make to successful performance;
  • Be able to recognise the multiple roles that strategic management plays within organisations;
  • Be able to identify structural features of an industry that influence competition and profitability, but also critically analyse competition in order to identify opportunities for competitive advantage within an industry;
  • Have a critical appreciation of the role of resources and capabilities as a basis for competitive advantage;
  • Be able to distinguish and analyse the primary types of competitive advantage;
  • Be able to understand the challenges of managing complex, multi-business organisations, including the relative merits of linking businesses and the alternative approaches available to the corporate centre;
  • Have a critical appreciation of the challenge of managing strategic change.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • By the end of this module students will:
  • Be able to apply a range of relevant strategic analysis tools to assess complex business cases;
  • Be able to evaluate differing strategic options.
Key Skills:
  • Written communication;
  • Planning, organising and time management;
  • Problem solving and analysis;
  • Using initiative;
  • Computer literacy.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • The learning outcomes will be met through a combination of lectures, guided reading, individual exercises and seminars.
  • The assessment of the module, by individual written assignment, is designed to test students’ knowledge and understanding of the subject-matter and their ability to apply academic knowledge to real-world case-based business problems.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 10 weekly 2 hours 20
Seminars 4 1 hours 4
Preparation & Reading 126
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Individual Written Assignment Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Individual assignment 2,500 words 100% Same

Formative Assessment:

Group presentation based on case analysis


Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University