MMM042-Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management

Module Provider: Leadership, Organisations and Behaviour
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2021/2

Module Convenor: Mr Keith Heron

Type of module:

Summary module description:

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) represent a large share of our economies and a leading force in the economic development of nations. This module focuses on such enterprises and explores the distinctive features of management and entrepreneurialism in the SME environment. 

Growth in SMEs is an important factor and this module will examine how, via a case of an existing business, to understand the current situation and challenges and how to find an opportunity for that firm to grow. Your reasoning will be explained in a Business Growth Plan.


This module aims to provide students with an in-depth understanding of the distinctive features of management in the SME environment, its complexity, the additional challenges and risks related to the small dimension, but also its advantages.

Assessable learning outcomes:

Students should demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of the impact of size on the management of businesses, from their ability to raise finance to their ability to undertake R&D and innovate, to their marketing and internationalisation strategies. By the end of the module students are expected to be able to question relevant theories deriving from research on large corporations and apply this body of knowledge to SMEs. 


Intended lea rning outcomes: 

At the end of the module students are expected to be able to prepare and present a Business Growth Plan for a case study firm. Moreover they are expected to achieve a critical understanding of the importance of SMEs in contemporary economies, and their strengths and weaknesses as compared to large enterprises. 

Additional outcomes:

Students will have to work both independently, and in groups, leading to the development of time-management and team working skills. They should be able to organise material and articulate arguments effectively in writing, both under timed conditions and in assessed coursework assignments.

Outline content:

The module discusses the concept of entrepreneurship and the economic role of entrepreneurs; factors leading to new business formation, the contribution of those to economic development and the importance of the small business sector in our economies. Researching the viability of a business idea and preparing a Business Plan is an important component of the module.

Various strategic aspects of SME management will be discussed, such as finance, innovation, ma rketing, patterns of business organisation and managerial structures. The module is organised thematically and for each topic international comparisons are drawn.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The module consists of lectures (10x2) and seminars (2x2). The main topics of the syllabus are covered in the lectures. Students are encouraged to familiarise themselves with key readings and contribute to the lectures, sharing their ideas and relevant work experience.

Seminars enable students to work in groups on their Business Plans. Invited experts from the business world contribute to the programme by sharing and discussing their experiences of managi ng and growing small firms. 

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20
Seminars 4
Guided independent study:      
    Wider reading (independent) 40
    Wider reading (directed) 25
    Advance preparation for classes 16
    Preparation for tutorials 5
    Preparation for presentations 20
    Group study tasks 60
    Reflection 10
Total hours by term 0 200 0
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Report 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

Business Growth Plan (group work) of up to 4,000 words to be submitted by week 29.

40% weight in the module assessment. Maximum 4 in a group.


Individual report of up to 1,500 words to be submitted by week 31.

60% weight in module assessment.

Formative assessment methods:

Presentation based on the Business Plan (group work)

Penalties for late submission:

Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy. Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information:

Assessment requirements for a pass:

The pass mark is 50%+.

Reassessment arrangements:

Re-assessment is by individual project only.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Last updated: 22 November 2021


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