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BA (Honours) Leadership and Management

This degree course provides an innovative and accessible introduction to leadership and management in business, and explores their impact on organisations - including wider considerations in the external environment. You'll develop a range of analytical and problem-solving skills incorporating the management of functions such as marketing, human resources and finance, and leading change. You'll also examine how business organisations are shaped and changed, and how stakeholder behaviours and management decision-making contribute to the various organisational functions. This degree in leadership and management will help you gain essential and practical skills in communication; the use of IT; numerical interpretation; collaborative working; and reflective thinking. Alongside your compulsory studies in leadership, management and organisations you can choose an option which suits your particular professional or personal interest - such as ethics, business strategy and policy, innovation, entrepreneurship, inter-organisational collaboration or fundraising.

If you are considering starting this qualification in May we suggest you begin with An introduction to business studies (B120) or Working and learning: developing effective performance at work (BU130). Alternatively you can see a list of all our individual courses in Business and Management.

Study Mode

Online Education, Distance Learning & External study modes available

Key facts

Code: Q54 Made up of: 360 credits

There are no formal entry requirements to study this degree.

Fees: Our fees depend on where you are ordinarily resident. We have a range of funding options to help you with payment. When you apply to study we will tell you the fee and funding options that are available to you. Before you apply you can read What you can expect to pay.

Career relevance and employability

The skills and knowledge you'll develop by studying this degree in leadership and management will equip you to follow a number of career paths, and are recognised by employers as having great value for work in management and business. They're also recognised in specialist areas concerned with developing leadership and management skills, establishing new businesses and management/business consultancy.

This degree course contributes to career development through work-based learning as it builds cognitive skills - writing, critical thinking, analysis and evaluation - and ICT skills, presentation skills and basic numeracy. You'll explore the nature and practice of leadership and management, learning the skills of successful practice in both fields, and how to use these in your own working contexts. You'll also examine how business organisations are shaped, changed and influenced - developing your understanding of the contribution of stakeholder behaviours and management decision-making in the various organisational functions. You can take optional modules in strategy, innovation, entrepreneurship and subjects relevant to your work, which will further increase your knowledge and skills set.

There is more information about how OU study can improve your employability in the OU's Employability Statement from our Careers Advisory Service. You can also read or download our publication OU study and your career and look at our subject pages to find out about career opportunities.

Educational aims

This programme aims to provide you with:

  • a general understanding of organisations, their structures and cultures, wider considerations such as environments, markets and processes, and how all these inform leadership and management
  • an ability to analyse leadership behaviour and management decision-making in the workplace
  • an understanding of how you can contribute to and develop skills in leadership and management in your own working life
  • relevant and practical skills, in particular IT, numerical, study and thinking skills
  • the necessary skills to engage in a process of lifelong learning, including progression to higher awards, and to develop yourself as a reflective practitioner.

Learning outcomes

The degree provides opportunities for you to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, qualities, skills and other attributes in the following areas:

Knowledge and understanding

You will gain knowledge and understanding of:

  • the nature and purpose of business organisations; key concepts relating to their functioning, survival and success
  • the structure, culture and role of business organisations; the complex dynamics of organisational environments; how organisations understand and interact with their environments
  • the nature and development of leadership skills and behaviours; key concepts relating to leadership, influence and change within organisations
  • the nature and practice of management; key concepts and issues relating to the management of people, organisations, financial resources and marketing variables
  • your own learning; its development in the context of your studies; its role and impacts on your work/practice.

Cognitive skills

On completion of the degree, you will be able to:

  • critique established ideas, concepts and techniques drawn from your studies, and use your knowledge to examine a wide range of leadership and management problems, including in your own work/practice* arena
  • identify and critically assess different perspectives on and approaches to leadership and management issues, including in your own work/practice
  • critically reflect on, evaluate and apply your learning in differing work/practice contexts.

* Work/practice refers to the widest possible range of jobs, occupations and professions, including paid employment, self-employment, voluntary activity and other activities involving sustained physical and/or mental effort.

Practical and/or professional skills

On completion of the degree, you will be able to:

  • use and adapt relevant business knowledge and skills to practically engage with a range of problems and issues in your work/practice arena
  • use specific business knowledge and cognitive and key skills as a basis for significantly enhancing your work/practice and your future working life.

Key skills

On completion of the degree, you will be able to:

  • communicate information, ideas and arguments effectively using appropriate styles and language, to specialist and non-specialist audiences
  • read and interpret information presented in a variety of forms and perform relevant tasks of analysis and evaluation
  • apply ICT skills to search for, identify and present information appropriate to a variety of business/organisational activities
  • plan and manage your learning towards achieving established aims and objectives, including the recognition of knowledge limitations
  • engage in reflective, adaptive and collaborative learning.

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