*Rewritten version before reversion: Core courses on the Tripos

Core courses

Organisational Behaviour is concerned with how work is structured and the experience of work within organisations. The philosophy behind the course is that academic concepts can be used as an “intellectual toolkit” – a collection of frameworks and ideas that can be used to critically analyse organisational situations, thereby gaining a better understanding of “what is going on” in order to take appropriate action. The application of concepts and the development of analytical skills are emphasised in the course.

Quantitative methods provide vital input into decision-making in business and management.

Topics covered include:

  • Basic statistics, confidence intervals, and hypothesis testing
  • Monte Carlo simulation
  • Simple and multiple regression analysis
  • Decision tree analysis
  • Optimal resource allocation
  • Machine learning

The course shows how business economics may be used to explain and predict phenomena relating to markets and firms, and explores some of the possible uses of business economics in the analysis of management problems and in managerial decision-making. The course covers basic microeconomics and introduces macroeconomics.

Topics covered include:

  • The basic concepts of economics as they relate to firms
  • The analysis of strategy choices facing firms
  • The impact of government policy on business

This course provides an introductory understanding of financial reporting and decision-making by companies.

Topics covered include:

  • Fundamental accounting concepts
  • How to construct and interpret company accounts, a critical source of information to outside investors
  • The capital budgeting decisions of how the company should invest
  • The financing decisions of how the company should raise the investment capital
  • The payout decisions of how the company should compensate its shareholders

Understanding operations means understanding processes. This course first examines some of the key elements of processes, be they in either the manufacturing or the service realm, including capacity, quality and variation, and how processes manage them. You then study what it takes for processes to become productive. The course concludes by looking at some important strategic aspects of operations, including issues of supply chain management. In Week 7 there is a field trip where we will visit a manufacturing operation to see the concepts of lean production in practice.

The course examines how marketing contributes to business strategy, specifically how marketing plans are developed, implemented and evaluated over time. The course also helps you in developing the conceptual, technical and interpersonal skills marketing managers need to communicate effectively in the business world.

Topics covered include:

  • The nature and role of marketing: the marketing concept, market orientation and the marketing mix
  • Marketing plans and marketing information
  • Customer decision-making: segmentation, targeting and positioning
  • Product and brand management
  • Competitor analysis and positioning
  • Pricing decisions
  • Channel management and electronic commerce
  • Marketing communication
  • Marketing and growth


Core courses are assessed by University Examination after the beginning of Easter Term. The examination consists of 2 x 3-hour papers, one in Quantitative Methods and Operations Management, and the other in Economics with Accounting & Finance. The core courses Organisational Behaviour and Marketing are each assessed by a single, take-home, week-long coursework assignment.