MAX International Business Studies Course 0450-01-02

MAX International Business Studies Course 0450-01-02

Sources for MAX International Business Studies Course 0450-01-02

  • Cambridge IGCSE Business Studies 0450 Past Year Exam Papers 2010-17
  • Cambridge IGCSE Business Studies 0450 Syllabus 2022
  • CIE website:
  • Images: Free Images from Google search engine.

Courses offered

MAXINTBUS01 – Understanding Business Activity 0450-01-02
MAXINTBUS02 – People in Business 0450-01-02
MAXINTBUS03 – Marketing 0450-01-02
MAXINTBUS04 – Operations Management 0450-01-02
MAXINTBUS05 – Financial Information and Decisions 0450-01-02
MAXINTBUS06 – External influences on Business Activity 0450-01-02
MAXINTBUS07 – International Business Studies Summary 0450-01-02

Interactive club(s)

MAX The Young Entrepreneurs Club
MAX Mission Based Learning [MBL]

Teaching, learning and examination resources

MAX Business Studies Important Exam Topics 01-02

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Our Business Studies Section contains wealth of resources to prepare learners for Cambridge IGCSE Business Studies 0450.

These include:

  • Complete set of theoretical notes for Paper 1 & 2
  • Exemplar exam questions and case studies for exam revision
  • Exercises and activities for conducting regular Business Studies lessons
  • Homework assignments
  • Online assessments and quizzes
  • Past year exam papers with marks schemes
  • Videos and multimedia for interactive learning
  • Summary of all important topics
  • Teaching resources: Exam papers for the entire academic year, long-term plans, medium-term plans and short-term plans
  • Presentations of more than 1400 slides with videos, images and text for conducting effective Business Studies lessons in your classroom
  • Comments bank
  • Conducting a Mission Based Learning / IB CAS activity with Grade 9-12 students
  • All resources are compatible with MAC, windows and Google Apps


  • Compatible with International Curriculum such as the University of Cambridge Assessment International Examinations IGCSE, A & O Levels syllabus.
  • It is equally compatible with MAX Certification and Bachelor programs.

Difference between Economics and Business Studies

Economics is a social science that attempts to explain how the actions and decisions of firms, consumers and workers and governments affect the operation of the economy.  It plays a huge role in our daily lives; it has links to international affairs and politics and is a subject that is often debated and discussed.  It requires a fair deal of analysis and includes topics such as supply and demand, growth, inflation, globalization and exchange rates.

Business studies is more concerned with the actions and decisions taken by firms and focuses on topics such as marketing, staff in the organization, accounting and finance, management, strategy and production methods.   Business studies students will also have to cover some Economics, as it affects how businesses operate in their external environments.

[1] The Importance of Business Studies as a subject

Some portions of text taken from Cambridge IGCSE Business Studies 0450 Syllabus 2022 (

Whether you want to start your own business or work for a major international company, the study of how businesses operate, make decisions and affect our welfare, will provide you with the knowledge, understanding, and critical thinking skills you need to succeed.

The Cambridge IGCSE Business Studies syllabus develops learners’ understanding of business activity in the public and private sectors, and the importance of innovation and change. Learners find out how the major types of business organisation are established, financed and run, and how their activities are regulated. Factors influencing business decision-making are also considered, as are the essential values of cooperation and interdependence.

Learners not only study business concepts and techniques but also enhance related skills such as numeracy and enquiry. The syllabus provides both a foundation for further study at Cambridge International A Level and an ideal preparation for the world of work. (

[2] Lifelong Skills

By studying for Business Studies Course you will develop lifelong skills including:

  • understanding different types of business organizations, the environments in which they operate and different business function such as marketing, production and finance
  • appreciation of the critical role people play in making a business a success
  • confidence in using, calculating and interpreting business data including cost and revenue data
  • skills in business problem solving and the communication you need to present and support your ideas and arguments
  • the ability to analyse different business situations and reach sound decisions or judgements
  • the ability to make effective use of business terminology and ideas and to recognise the strengths and limitations of these ideas in business contexts
  • knowledge and understanding of how different types of businesses are organized, financed and operated, and how their relations with other organizations, consumers, employees, owners and society are regulated
  • knowledge and understanding of the major groups and organizations within and outside of businesses, and an appreciation of the ways in which they are able to influence business objectives, decisions and activities
  • the ability to apply your knowledge and critical understanding to current issues and problems to a wide range of business issues;
  • confidence in using, calculating, interpreting and presenting business data including financial data
  • the ability to distinguish between facts and opinions, and evaluate qualitative and quantitative data in order to help build arguments and make informed judgements
  • awareness of the nature and significance of innovation and change within the context of business activities.

This course will help you to quickly build these skills. It contains everything you need to master the content of the Cambridge IGCSE and O Level Business Studies course or MAX Certification and Diploma programs.

[3] Spiritual, moral, ethical, social, legislative, economic and cultural issues

The Business Studies syllabus has been designed in a way that includes, where appropriate, the spiritual, moral, ethical, social, legislative, economic and cultural dimensions of business studies.

  • Section 1 considers entrepreneurship, social enterprise and the role of stakeholder groups in business activity.
  • Section 2 includes understanding why people work, the benefits of trade union membership, redundancy and dismissal, and legal controls over employment contracts, unfair dismissal, discrimination, health and safety and minimum wage.
  • Section 3 includes legal controls over marketing, cultural differences between markets and the use of social networks for promotion.
  • Section 6 considers government control over the economy (including taxes, public spending and interest rates). It also considers environmental and ethical issues including global warming, external benefits/costs, sustainable development, pressure groups, legal controls over pollution, profits versus ethics, and child labour.

[4] Sustainable development, health and safety considerations and international developments

This syllabus offers opportunities to develop ideas on sustainable development and environmental issues, health and safety, and the international dimension.

  • Sustainable development and environmental issues. The syllabus includes consideration of the impact that business decisions can have on the environment.
  • Health and safety. The syllabus requires candidates to be able to demonstrate awareness of the importance of health and safety requirements.
  • The international dimension

The syllabus includes developing an appreciation of the opportunities and threats of globalization, why governments introduce tariff barriers and quotas, and the impact of exchange rate changes.

[5] Progression to Academic or Professional careers

Business activity affects our daily lives as we work, spend, save, invest, travel, and play. It influences jobs, incomes, and opportunities for personal enterprise. Business has a significant effect on the standard of living and quality of life of human, and on the environment in which they live and which future generations will inherit.

Eventually, all students will encounter the world of business, whether they work in urban or rural areas. They must be prepared to engage in business activity with confidence and competence. Young people need to understand how business functions, the role it plays in our society, the opportunities it generates, the skills it requires, and the impact it can have on their own lives and on society, today and in the future.

This subject will build a strong foundation for those who wish to move on to further study and training in specialized areas such as management, international business, marketing, accounting, information and communication technology, or entrepreneurship. It will also provide practical skills for those who wish to move directly into the workplace. Engaging in the world of business involves studying individuals, communities, and organizations, assessing their needs and problems, and generating solutions.

Business studies helps students to recognize the relevance of some subjects such as mathematics, science and technology, language, and social studies as they are applied in the world of business – for example, in the study of individuals and diverse communities; in helping people with their needs, challenges, and problems; and in creating products and services that help to improve the quality of life.

Business studies clearly demonstrates how a variety of areas of study can be combined in productive activity that affects the lives of millions of people. Courses in this discipline provide knowledge and skills that can help students make a successful transition to higher secondary education, training programs, and the workplace.

[6] Grading and reporting

Cambridge IGCSE results are shown by one of the grades A*, A, B, C, D, E, F or G indicating the standard achieved, A* being the highest and G the lowest. ‘Ungraded’ indicates that the candidate’s performance fell short of the standard required for grade G. ‘Ungraded’ will be reported on the statement of results but not on the certificate. The letters Q (result pending), X (no results) and Y (to be issued) may also appear on the statement of results but not on the certificate.

[5.1] Cambridge Percentage Uniform Grade Boundaries

The table below shows the percentage uniform mark range for each grade.

Grade Percentage Uniform Mark Range
     A* 90-100
     A 80-89
     B 70-79
     C 60-69
     D 50-59
     E 40-49
     F (Cambridge IGCSE only) 30-39
     G (Cambridge IGCSE only) 20-29

[7] Assessment at a glance

For Cambridge IGCSE Business Studies, candidates take two compulsory components, Paper 1 and Paper 2. Both question papers will draw on topics taken from the whole of the syllabus content. All candidates are eligible for grades A* to G.

At the end of the course of studies candidates should be able to take the following two examination papers.



1 hour 45 minutes

Written examination consisting of four questions requiring a mixture of short answers and structured data responses.Candidates answer all questions. There will be no choice of questions.

80 marks.

Externally assessed.

Four questions based on four different businesses requiring a mixture of short answers and structured data responses.
All questions must be answered.

PAPER 2   


1 hour 45 minutes

Written examination consisting of four questions based on a case study, provided as an Insert with the paper.Candidates answer all questions. There will be no choice of questions.

80 marks.

Externally assessed.

Four structured questions based on a business case study.
All questions must be answered

[8] Syllabus Aims and Assessment Objectives

 Syllabus Aims

The aims, which are not listed in order of priority, are to enable candidates to:

  • make effective use of relevant terminology, concepts and methods, and recognize the strengths and limitations of the ideas used in business
  • apply their knowledge and critical understanding to current issues and problems in a wide range of business contexts
  • distinguish between facts and opinions, and evaluate qualitative and quantitative data in order to help build arguments and make informed judgments
  • appreciate the perspectives of a range of stakeholders in relation to the business environment, individuals, society, government and enterprise
  • develop knowledge and understanding of the major groups and organizations within and outside business, and consider ways in which they are able to influence objectives, decisions and activities
  • develop knowledge and understanding of how the main types of businesses are organized, financed and operated, and how their relations with other organizations, consumers, employees, owners and society are regulated
  • develop skills of numeracy, literacy, enquiry, selection and use of relevant sources of information, presentation and interpretation
  • develop an awareness of the nature and significance of innovation and change within the context of business activities.

Teachers should note that not all of the above aims are necessarily subject to formal assessment.

Assessment Objectives

The four assessment objectives in Cambridge IGCSE Business Studies are:

AO1: Knowledge and understanding

AO2: Application

AO3: Analysis

AO4: Evaluation

AO1: Knowledge and understanding

Candidates should be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of facts, terms, concepts, conventions, theories and techniques commonly applied to or used as part of business behaviour.

AO2: Application

Candidates should be able to:

  • Apply their knowledge and understanding of facts, terms, concepts, conventions, theories and techniques.

AO3: Analysis

Candidates should be able to:

  • Distinguish between evidence and opinion in a business context
  • Order, analyse and interpret information in narrative, numerical and graphical forms, using appropriate techniques.

AO4: Evaluation

Candidates should be able to:

  • Present reasoned explanations, develop arguments, understand implications and draw inferences
  • Make judgements, recommendations and decisions.

Relationship between assessment objectives and components

The approximate weightings allocated to each of the assessment objectives are summarized below.

Assessment objective Paper 1 Paper 2 Weighting for qualification
AO1: Knowledge and understanding 40% 20% 30%
AO2: Application 30% 30% 30%
AO3: Analysis 15% 25% 20%
AO4: Evaluation 15% 25% 20%

[9] Business Studies Grade Descriptors / Rubrics / Assessment Criteria

A Grade A-G Cambridge IGCSE Business Studies candidate will be able to demonstrate:

Grade Business Studies

Key Stage 4 / Grade 9-10 / Year 10-11

Grade Descriptors / Rubrics / Assessment Criteria / Levels


Marks /



Percentage uniform marks

A* N/A 90-100
A /


Knowledge and understanding

  • an excellent ability to identify detailed facts, conventions and techniques in relation to the content of the syllabus
  • an excellent ability to de ne the concepts and ideas of the syllabus.


  • a thorough ability to apply knowledge and understanding, using terms, concepts, theories and methods effectively to address business problems and issues
  • a thorough ability to form conclusions from this information and to demonstrate these conclusions clearly and logically.


  • an excellent ability to classify and comment on information presented in various forms
  • an excellent ability to distinguish between evidence and opinion.


  • an excellent ability to make clear, reasoned judgements and communicate them in an accurate and logical manner.




C /


Knowledge and understanding

  • a sound ability to identify detailed facts, conventions and techniques in relation to the content of the syllabus
  • a sound ability to de ne the concepts and ideas of the syllabus.


  • a sound ability to apply knowledge and understanding, using terms, concepts, theories and methods appropriately to address problems and issues
  • a sound ability to draw conclusions, and to present these in a clear manner.


  • a sound ability to use and comment on information presented in various forms
  • a sound ability to distinguish between evidence and opinion.


  • a sound ability to evaluate and make reasoned judgements.




E /


Knowledge and understanding

  • a limited ability to identify speci c facts, conventions or techniques in relation to the content of the syllabus
  • a limited familiarity with de nitions of the central concepts and ideas of the syllabus.


  • a limited ability to apply knowledge and understanding, using terms, concepts, theories and methods appropriately to address problems and issues.


  • a limited ability to classify and present data in a simple way and a limited ability to select relevant information from a set of data
  • a limited ability to distinguish between evidence and opinion.


  • a limited ability to understand implications and make recommendations.
< 29




G N/A 20-29

[10] Tips for students about using Command Terms in Business Studies course

The first thing you need to do when you sit an exam paper is to read the instructions and each question carefully. Each question will be divided into a number of different parts. Each part is allocated a different number of marks and space in which you can provide your answer. The number of marks will give you an indication of how you should allocate your time.

Wherever possible, make sure you link your answers to the business activity, situation or examples in the data or case study provided with the questions. Doing so will help you to demonstrate your skills of application. Different words are used at the start of each question to tell you what you need to do, such as ‘identify’, ‘explain’ or ‘calculate’ or variations of these. The following command words and phrases are often used in short answer and structured questions. Each one requires you to answer them in a different way to demonstrate your knowledge and skills in application, analysis and evaluation:

Command term 1

What is meant by…?

What is meant by ‘a piece rate’? [2]

What is meant by a ‘business cycle’? [2]

What is required?

A short, accurate explanation of the term given to show you understand what it means. One or two short sentences will usually be enough.

For example, a good answer to the first question might be: ‘A piece rate is a fixed wage payment paid by a business to an employee or group of employees for each unit of output they produce or each task they complete’.

Command term 2


Calculate the profit margin for the business in year 1. [2]

Calculate the cost per unit if the output of the factory is 3 000 units per week. [2]

What is required?

A short mathematical calculation using the figures provided. Always show your workings.. Also remember to show the units you are using such as $, % or volume of output per period.

Command term 3


Identify two features of an ‘economic boom’. [2]

Identify two suitable sources of finance the company could use to finance its investment in automated machinery. [2]

What is required?

Short, written responses on the required number of points without the need for detailed explanation or discussion. For example, the answers to the second question shown might be: ‘(i) retained profits; (ii) a long-term bank loan’.

Command term 4

Identify and explain…

Identify and explain two possible advantages to the business of researching the market for its product. [4]

Identify and explain two advantages of being a multinational company. [8]

What is required?

These types of questions require you to explain the points you have identified. So, for example, the answers to the first question might be as follows:

‘Advantage 1: It can provide accurate and up-to-date information about market trends and consumer preferences. Greater awareness of customer requirements will help the business to adapt its products, pricing strategies and promotions to appeal to customers and persuade them to buy its products’.

‘Advantage 2: The business could ask consumers about how its product range, quality, prices and customer services compare to those of its competitors. The business can use this information to redesign all the elements of its marketing mix, including product features and prices, to improve its competitiveness’.

The second question follows exactly the same format but is allocated 8 marks. This means that that your explanation or discussion of each response will need to be more detailed.

Command term 5

Do you think…?

Justify your answer.

Do you think that the company should spend more money on improving health and safety in its factory? Justify your answer [6]

What is required?

These types of question require you to demonstrate your skills of application, analysis and evaluation. Your answer should identify at least two reasons for and two reasons against the proposal and give short explanations of each one. For example, one reason in support of the proposal might include: ‘Spending more on health and safety may increase costs initially but should reduce accidents and improve employee’s job satisfaction. This could help to improve their productivity, lower unit costs and improve profits in the long run’.

Based on the reasons or arguments you have written you must then decide whether or not you agree with the proposal and state why. The reasons for your decision must be given. For example, a good conclusion might include:

‘I do think it is sensible for the company to take actions to improve health and safety in its factory. This will reduce staff turnover and recruitment costs and make the factory a more attractive place to work. However, It may not have to spend a lot of money doing so. For example, the company could simply communicate better with it workers on health and safety procedures and use on-the-job training to improve the way they work’.

Command term 6



Given reasons for your choice / Justify your answer.

Consider three different methods that the company could use to increase motivation of its production workers and recommend which method you think will be the most effective. Justify your answer. [12]

Identify and explain three ways the company could raise capital to finance the construction of the new printing factory and purchase of machinery and other equipment. Which method would you recommend and why? [12]

What is required?

Like ‘Do you think…’ type questions any questions that ask you consider or recommend different actions a business could take in response to changes in the business environment or to solve a business problem requires you to clearly demonstrate your advanced business skills. You can do this by identifying and explaining the advantages and disadvantages of each method or option and by using examples or information provided in the examination paper to illustrate.

Finally, you need to weigh up all the advantages and disadvantages you have provided and decide which method or option you think is best or which one you would recommend in the business situation. As before, you will need to give reasons for your choice.

Command term Assessment
Objective [AO]
Analyse AO2 Break down in order to bring out the essential elements or structure.
Calculate AO1 Obtain a numerical answer showing the relevant stages in the working.
Compare AO2 Give an account of the similarities between two (or more) items or scenarios, referring to both (all) of them throughout.
Construct AO2 Display information in a diagrammatic or logical form.
Contrast AO2 Give an account of the differences between two (or more) items or situations, referring to both (all) of them throughout.
Define AO1 Give the precise meaning of a word, phrase, concept or physical quantity.
Describe AO1 Give a detailed account.
Discuss AO3 Offer a considered and balanced review that includes a range of arguments, factors or hypotheses. Opinions or conclusions should be presented clearly and supported by appropriate evidence.
Distinguish AO2 Make clear the differences between two or more concepts or items.
Evaluate AO3 Make an appraisal by weighing up the strengths and limitations.
Explain AO2 Give a detailed account including reasons or causes.
Formulate AO3 Express precisely and systematically the relevant concept(s) or argument(s)
Identify AO1 Provide an answer from a number of possibilities.
Justify AO3 Give valid reasons or evidence to support an answer or conclusion.
Outline AO1 Give a brief account or summary.
State AO1 Give a specific name, value or other brief answer without explanation or calculation.
To what extent AO3 Consider the merits or otherwise of an argument or concept. Opinions and conclusions should be presented clearly and supported with appropriate evidence and sound argument.

Critical Thinking – explanation, analysis and evaluation

These trigger words often signal critical thinking. The bold words are the key terms in the various criteria.

  • Explanation – Because, as a result of, due to, therefore, consequently, for example
  • Analysis – Furthermore, additionally, however, but, conversely, likewise, in addition, on the other hand, whereas, in contrast, as a consequence, similarly
  • Evaluation – My opinion, overall, although, despite, on balance, weighing up.

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