Module code: ENGM180

Module Overview

The module provides students with a theoretical and practical understanding of how business strategy can be formulated in the light of environmental and internal conditions with a particular emphasis on the international context of strategy making. The module equips students with a framework for understanding international business strategy as an interdisciplinary activity within the context of international and competitive markets, leading to corporate decision-making.

Module provider

Mechanical Engineering Sciences

Module Leader

ROCKLIFF NJ Dr (Mech Eng Sci)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

JACs code: H390

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Module Availability

Semester 1

Module content

Indicative content includes:

Concepts of Strategy
Processes of Strategy
Strategy and the External Environment
Organisational Perspective on Strategy
The Resource Based View of Strategy
Strategic Decision Making and Strategic Choice
Strategy and Leadership

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Examination EXAMINATION 2 HOUR 50

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment tests two things. First, theory. The assignment tests understanding of a range of different theories of strategy through a critical review of a leading article in strategy. To do well, students will have to understand the strategic underpinnings of the article and place it in a wider context of strategy. The exam further tests understanding of theory across all of the main themes of the module. Second, practice. The exam tests ability to apply strategy models and theory to a case study in order to develop robust conclusions.

 The assessment of the module combines a range of activities from the teaching of the module, the guided reading of the module, participation in SurreyLearn activities and independent learning. To do well, students will have to demonstrate a wide understanding of both strategy and their own learning skills and talents. Feedback on the assignment is deliberately designed around students being proactive in developing their own understanding of strengths and weaknesses of their work and using it as springboard to improve their performance in the exam.

 Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

·         A 1,000 word critical review of a seminal article in the field of strategy. Students will be expected to demonstrate an understanding of where the article is positioned in the wider field of strategy and to identify the key strengths and weaknesses of the article.

Individual assignment           [Learning outcomes 1-3]       20 hrs          {50%}

·         The end of module exam requires students to answer two questions. One prescribed question on a pre-released case study and one on theory.

Examination                          [Learning outcomes 1-5]         2 hrs            {50%}

  Formative assessment and feedback

 This module adopts an enquiry based approach to feedback where the emphasis is on providing resources to students which allow them to identify their own strengths and weaknesses in order to develop learning strategies which will allow them to improve their performance

Prior to the assignment, lecture time will be spent discussing the assignment and feedback process;
A detailed marking scheme which provides guidance on how marks will be awarded for each element of assessment. This marking scheme has benefits for both staff and students. For staff it allows for consistency of marking between markers and for rapid and rigorous marking. For students it makes it absolutely clear what is expected of them. Students will receive a mark for each element of the assignment which they can reference to the marking scheme for detailed individual feedback;
Generic feedback which explains what students did well and did less well overall. This will take two forms. In the first lecture after submission, time will be spent explaining the key learning issues from the assignment and, once marking is completed, students will receive detailed generic feedback via SurreyLearn including a statistical breakdown of marks so that they can place their own performance into that of their cohort;
Examples of excellent practice – students will be provided with over 20 examples of assignments which achieved marks of 70 or higher in order that they have a number of points of comparison for their own work;
Action Plans – students will be encouraged to produce action plans which demonstrate that they have engaged with the feedback resources and which identify their strengths and weaknesses and form the basis of a learning strategy for the end of module exam.

 Generic feedback will also be provided for work undertaken in the seminars.

Module aims

  • Enable students to understand theoretical approaches to the formulation, selection, implementation, and control of an international business strategy
  • Enable students to develop understanding of how to apply theoretical concepts of international business strategy to real business contexts;
  • Enable students to critically understand the methods, difficulties and limitations of formulating, implementing and controlling an international business strategy;
  • Enable students to appreciate the importance and contribution of business strategy to organisational success.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 To identify and classify different business practices of strategy formulation, implementation and control into relevant theoretical frameworks KC
2 Apply the relevant theoretical frameworks of strategy formulation, implementation and control in real business contexts KC
3 Analyse the strategy of any given corporation drawing on sources of publicly available information KCT
4 Develop an understanding of a range of business problems that a corporation in any given industry may face KC
5 Exercise judgement over a range of strategic solutions available in order to overcome such problems PT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 117

Lecture Hours: 33

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

The teaching and learning strategy is designed to give students the opportunity to gain knowledge and understanding of the relevant theory and business practices and problems which are pertinent to the topics of strategy formulation, implementation and control.

The teaching and learning methods are based around the delivery of lectures and seminars. Whilst the lectures are mainly designed to illustrate and explain theoretical concepts and models of business strategy, the seminars illuminate the theoretical concepts and models by reference to and explanation of a range of specific case studies. Seminars are, therefore, designed to develop a practical view of business strategy. The lecture precedes the seminar. Prior to attending the seminar, students are required to undertake the essential reading of the theory and relevant case study assigned in the relevant lecture which precedes the seminar.

 The learning and teaching methods include:

Formal lectures
Interactive lectures
On-line discussions
Enquiry Based Learning

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list


Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Aerospace Engineering MEng 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Automotive Engineering MEng 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Mechanical Engineering MEng 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2018/9 academic year.