MQM1STR-Strategic Management

Module Provider: Business Informatics, Systems and Accounting
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring / Summer module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2020/1

Module Convenor: Dr Andrew Hull


Type of module:

Summary module description:

The module explores how and where firms create competitive advantage in their markets. In doing so, it will introduce students to strategy and strategic marketing. The module will introduce well established theories, frameworks and models used by strategists and also explore how they are applied in practice. However, strategy is contentious and in addressing the topic, the module will challenge students to answer core questions which face business leaders today: What is the purpose of an organisation – to maximise shareholder returns or to meet the broader needs of stakeholders? How are successful strategies created – are they the output of a planned approach or do they emerge from within the business? Should a firm’s strategy be a response to opportunities identified in the market or the exploitation of its resources and capabilities? What is value?


The module aims to develop students’ understanding of the concepts and principles underpinning strategy and marketing. Students will also be able to interpret and apply them within the context of their own business. By the end of the module students will be able to:


  • Explain the core arguments underpinning the shareholder and stakeholder perspectives on the purpose of a business.

  • Explain the related concepts of vision, mission and values and their relevance to the future direction of a firm.

  • Evaluate different types of strategy and strategy creation.

  • Apply models and frameworks to analyse the external environment and the industry in which a firm operates.

  • Apply models and frameworks to analyse a firm’s resources and capabilities.

  • Develop market strategies

  • Understand how firm’s realise strategy and the impact of organisational structures on strategy.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module the student will be able:


  • Explain an organisations strategy in the context of its objectives (including vision, mission and values)

  • Analyse the business environment and the industries and organisations that operate within it using relevant tools, concepts, theories and frameworks.

  • Analyse the resources and capabilities of a firm to understand where they may be able to create a competitive advantage.

  • Explain how strategy is created and realised within organisations

  • Reflect on their personal learning experience.

Additional outcomes:

Outline content:

This module has been designed to provide valuable practical and theoretical insights into key organizational issues and practices associated with strategy, its formation and marketing. Students will consider organizational contexts and how they may be analysed. Students will examine how organizations can respond to various opportunities. They will also consider theories and concepts around strategy and its formation, marketing, environmental and stakeholder analysis. They will be expected to apply learning to their work place and be able to assess individual and organizational practice in this area.

Global context:

The module focuses on international businesses and management

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The module will be taught using a blended learning approach. This will include directed self-study, workshops, group work, peer support, and other learning activities. During the module, students will follow a guided-learning path that will require them to read materials, access other core and optional learning materials and undertake a range of activities. In addition to the learning path, students will attend workshops. These are facilitated sessions that will help consolidate knowledge, ap ply it the workplace and develop higher order cognitive skills of analysis and evaluation. Students will be expected to relate their learning to their day-to-day work.


The contact hours are a guide and the terms taught will vary depending on the start date of the cohort.


Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Practicals classes and workshops 21
Work-based learning 90
Guided independent study:      
    Wider reading (independent) 18
    Wider reading (directed) 42
    Essay preparation 29
Total hours by term 200 0 0
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Report 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

Students will prepare a 3,500-word written individual report and supporting reflection on the development of a business idea/ strategy using the frameworks and theories that they have learnt during the module. This will be submitted soon after the completion of the third workshop (week 9 of the module). A -10% to + 20% word count tolerance margin applies.

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:

The below information applies to students on taught programmes except those on Postgraduate Flexible programmes. Penalties for late submission, and the associated procedures, which apply to Postgraduate Flexible programmes are specified in the policy “Penalties for late submission for Postgraduate Flexible programmes”, which can be found here:
The Support Centres will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

Assessment requirements for a pass:

The assignment / project / report must achieve a minimum mark of 50% to achieve a pass.

Reassessment arrangements:

Reassessment by 100% assignment (capped at 50%); to be submitted within 6 weeks of notification of module failure, date dependent on cohort entry and to be advised by the Programme Administrator.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

For Apprenticeship Levy students the cost of any additional textbooks or materials will be met by the University of Reading in accordance to applicable regulations. Amounts are indicative only.

Last updated: 29 October 2020


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