The Business Management Curriculum Review document of March 2012 identified a significant change in the approach to programme delivery, rather than wholesale changes in content or assessment. The new programme guide is due to be published in January 2014. However, it will be useful to begin planning for the changes now. In particular, in terms of identifying and collecting resources and media suited to provide the stimulus for a more holistic approach to the programme.

The curriculum review identified six underpinning concepts that should be integrated and embedded throughout the syllabus. These are:

  • change
  • culture
  • ethics
  • globalisation
  • innovation
  • strategy

These six concepts will be assessed in the form of the extended response questions in section C of paper 1 for HL (replacing the strategy extension) and section C of paper 2 for both SL and HL. Although, the six concepts are already implicit in the current syllabus, embedding the concepts should ensure that students have a more holistic understanding of the subject.

The extended response questions will require that students have illustrations of the concepts, possibly presented through a case study of a firm or industry.

Example of a possible approach

Concepts: innovation, change and globalisation



Corning Glass produced a ‘Day Made of Glass’ back in 2011, which became a YouTube hit with over 22 million views. Technology advances quickly and at the time it was made, some of the applications identified had not been commercialised. Since that time many have – such as 3D interactive Google Glasses, for example, and folding screens. This video has been followed up by many more on YouTube – some by Corning and some not. Corning produced a part 2 in 2013 and a video with students discussing what they enjoyed about it.

The videos can stimulate discussion about the growing pace of innovation, change and new product development as well as considering PEST factors. There are distinct implications for global approaches to a range of activities. The videos examine shared medical collaboration and diagnosis. The implications for communication, education and leisure are profound.

Student Activities

Select two of the following three concepts: innovation, change or globalisation

Examine how these concepts influence Corning in:

  • New product design and development
  • Research and development
  • Branding
  • Promotion
  • Business planning
  • Recruitment

Possible question in section C:

With reference to one organisation that you have studied, discuss the importance of innovation and globalisation in new product development. 

After showing the videos to your students this can easily be adapted:

With reference to Corning Glass, discuss the importance of innovation and globalisation in their new product development.


The new guide will also seek to raise the profile of TOK and to encourage a more integrated approach by embedding TOK concepts more overtly in individual diploma subjects. TOK is not general studies, so care must be taken to ensure that the nature of the new TOK programme is reflected in any study undertaken in a Business class. If you are not inolved in TOK delivery, now may be the opportunity!

TOK link             

Using the Corning videos, discuss the role of creativity, imagination and emotion in a business context.