Business and Supply Chain Management

BSc (Hons)

Specialise in the industry that focuses on the efficient flow of goods and services from production to consumption in business operations.

Location: Aston University, Birmingham

Course type
Full-time
Entry requirements

BBB

Duration

4 years

UCAS code(s)

N1J9

Start date

Course overview

Our course combines the essential business theory and practice from Aston Business School with supply chain expertise to prepare you for an exciting career. Affiliated with the NOVUS Trust, you will receive professional mentoring, attend industry seminars, go on-site visits, and gain exclusive access to placement opportunities.

Daniel-Walsh-testimonial

“Aston’s teaching is tailored to the needs of industry, which sets you up well for a future career. There is also bountiful support available, so there is always someone on hand to help with any issues that may arise.”
 

Daniel Walsh
Procurement Graduate, BT

Why Business and Supply Chain Management at Aston University?

Tef_gold
Gold standard teaching
Aston University was awarded Gold- the highest possible rating for Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF, 2023)
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Novus Scheme
You will be guaranteed a job after graduation
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Excellent student experience
Building was ranked 1st in the UK for student experience 2023 Sunday Times

Course description

BSc (Hons) Business and Supply Chain Management

You will develop a thorough understanding of supply chain management and support companies to satisfy industry needs and wants. Our course combines the essential business theory and practice from Aston Business School with supply chain expertise to prepare you for an exciting career.

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What we will provide
We will offer you a unique blend of business principles and specialised supply chain expertise. With close ties to the NOVUS Trust, industry connections, and world-leading facilities, you'll gain the knowledge, skills, and opportunities needed for a successful career in this dynamic field.

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What you will provide 
You will be encouraged to find innovative solutions for optimising supply chain operations in a dynamic industry. Through dedication, continuous learning, and practical experience, you will enhance your ability to analyse data, identify patterns, and make strategic choices. 

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What skills we teach
You will learn the fundamental principles of supply chain management and the intricate processes involved in meeting customer demands and preferences effectively. This will enable you to delve deeper into the responsibilities of procurement, manufacturing, and logistics, while also exploring the essential aspects of planning, organisation, and resource management required to effectively oversee a global supply chain.

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Placement year
You will have the opportunity to undertake a placement year, gaining practical experience in the field. This valuable placement will enhance your understanding of business operations and supply chain management, while also strengthening your employability prospects.

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Career prospects
Our business and supply chain graduates are highly sought-after, and through our NOVUS scheme, after graduation, you could be employed with one of the 27 companies involved which includes Wincanton, Arla, Sainsbury’s, DHL or Kingfisher.

How you will learn

Our teaching and learning approach is diverse, with a strong emphasis on project-based learning. Industry guest lecturers regularly visit to share their real-world expertise and enrich your educational experience. You will be assessed through a variety of methods which includes coursework, presentations, and exams.

What you will learn

Driven by the needs of industry and individuals, our course provides you with a comprehensive understanding of key business and supply chain management concepts and an ability to critically analyse these, alongside the opportunity to specialise in areas of supply chain management that interest you.

First year

In your first year, you will develop your knowledge on various topics including study and research skills, building professional relationships, introduction to supply chain management, introductory accounting for business, introduction to organisational behavior, and law for business. 

Second year

You will continue to engage in topics such as quantitative tools for supply chain planning, purchasing principles for international supply chains, operations and process management, facilities and systems, land transport, and employee resourcing. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to choose an optional module, such as managing engineering projects, to further tailor your studies to your interests and career goals. 

Placement year

Mandatory placements will enrich your degree and knowledge, this immersive industry experience establishes connections and gains you a competitive edge for your career.

Final year

In the final year, you will focus on key areas such as supply chain and procurement strategy, strategic financial management and finance, and supply chain planning. You will also undertake a final-year project that allows you to apply your knowledge and skills to a real-world business challenge. 
 

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My Journey at GE Aviation Wales

Montserrat takes us on a journey at GE Aviation Wales where she completed her placement year

Facilities

Our lecture theatres and seminar rooms are available to provide you with theoretical content, while our computer facilities offer the necessary tools for data analysis, modeling, and software projects. You will have 24/7 access to our library which will be a valuable resource for you, offering a diverse range of digital and print materials such as textbooks, reference materials, academic journals, and online databases to enhance your learning.

Course objectives

  1. Provide you with the opportunities to realise your academic potential through appropriately conceived learning experiences.
  2. Provides you with an understanding of the physical and managerial processes involved with logistics generally, with specific reference to the integrated management of the end-to-end supply chain.
  3. Provides you with appropriately structured curricula, combining teaching in theoretical and knowledge-based principles with practical training skills.
  4. Ensures that development and modification of the programme prepare you to able to respond appropriately to the rapidly changing industrial environment.
  5. Prepares you with the specific academic and professional skills which are in demand by employers in UK and international business.
  6. Prepares you with the generic transferable skills to enable you to make a valuable contribution to business and society.
  7. Offers you the opportunity to obtain relevant industrial experience by providing the option of a sandwich year.
  8. Introduce you to the principles of the research process and their relevance to modern methods of management within the contexts of transport and the supply chain.
  9. Helps you create an awareness of self-development as a component of education and to develop the skills and attributes of lifelong learning.

Modules

Modules and learning outcomes

Year 1 modules

In your first year you will study the following core modules:

Module TitleCredits
Study and Research Skills15
Building Professional Relationships15
Introduction To Supply Chain Management15
Introductory Accounting for Business15
Introduction to Organisational Behaviour15
Law for Business15
Introduction to Marketing Management15
An Introduction to Business Economics15
Total120

Year 1 outcomes 

On successful completion of the first year, you will be able to:

  • Understand the basic principles of science and mathematics required for logistics and supply chain management.
  • Understand the fundamental concepts, technology and principles of logistics and supply chain management.
  • Be able to apply basic business, management and legal principles to an organisation and its operating environment.
  • Understand the role and responsibilities of the professional logistics and supply chain manager within their organisation, their industry and broader society.

 

Year 2 modules

In your second year you will study the following core modules:

Module TitleCredits
Quantitative Tools for Supply Chain Planning30
Purchasing Principles for International Supply Chains15
Operations and Process Management15
Facilities and Systems15
Land Transport15
Employee Resourcing15

You will choose one of the following optional modules:*

Module TitleCredits
Managing Engineering projects15
Air and Maritime Transport15
Business Operations Excellence15
Enterprise Systems15
Total120

*Availability of any optional modules will be subject to staff availability and a minimum number of students who express an interest in studying the optional modules.

Year 2 outcomes 

On successful completion of the second year, you will be able to:

  • Be able to source, organise and analyse relevant data to understand the current situation, predict how systems might change and recommend appropriate responses for the logistics and supply chain sector.
  • Be able to analyse a problem and to select appropriate analytical process(es), tools and techniques for problem solving and decision making.
  • Understand the political, social, environmental, economic and business environment within which the logistics and supply chain industry operates, evaluate and makeappropriate decisions.
  • Be able to apply core theories of resource management to given scenarios, decide upon actions and evaluate the effectiveness of those actions.

Placement year modules

You will spend your third year on placement. You will be fully supported throughout the process by our award-winning Careers and Placements team.

Placement Year

Module TitleCredits
EPS Placement Year
 
120

Placement year outcomes

On successful completion of the placement year, you will be able to:

  • Understand the relevance of the programme's discipline-specific and generic content to the world of work.
  • Understand the relevance of logistics and supply chain management and the environment within which it operates to the world of work.

Final year modules

In your final year, you will study the following core modules:

Module TitleCredits
Final Year Project30
Supply Chain Planning15
Supply Chain and Procurement Strategy15
Contemporary Issues in Supply Chains15
Strategic Management and Finance15
Theories and Practice of Leadership15

You will choose one of the following optional modules:*

Module TitleCredits
International Trade Law15
Performance and Efficiency Analytics15
Technology and Practice of eCommerce15
Global Marketing15
Innovation Retail Management15
Total120

*Availability of any optional modules will be subject to staff availability and a minimum number of students who express an interest in studying the optional modules.

Final Year Outcomes 

On successful completion of the final year, you will be able to:

  • Plan, conduct and report on a substantial programme of original research related to supply chain management, collecting and analysing data, finding and synthesising material, leading to an end outcome where conclusions are supported by appropriate evidence.
  • Apply a systematic understanding of key business and management theory and practices to the formulation of business and management strategy.
  • Apply necessary theoretical underpinning, tools and techniques to bring about sound analysis, design and delivery of sustainable supply chain management solutions.
  • Recognise and evaluate leadership, act appropriately in group activity to ensure effective leadership and achievement of group objectives in a professional andethical manner.

Entry requirements

  • A Levels

    BBB (standard offer)
    BBC if grade B achieved in EPQ or Core Maths
    BCC (contextual offer)

  • Contextual offers

    Aston Ready is our contextual offer scheme that could reduce your undergraduate offer by one or two grades. Assessed at the point of application, there are no additional forms to fill in.

Contextual offer criteria

  • Extended Diploma and National Extended Diploma: DDM
  • Extended Diploma in Advanced Manufacturing Engineering with an overall grade of Distinction
  • National Diploma and Diploma: DM plus 1 A-level at minimum Grade B
  • Diploma in Advanced Manufacturing Engineering with an overall grade Distinction plus an A-Level in any subject at grade C OR achieve an overall grade Distinction in BTEC Sub Dip/ Extended National Cert grade in any subject at grade Merit
  • Foundation or 90 credits Diploma: DM plus 2 A-levels at minimum grade B
  • National Extended Certificate or Subsidiary Diploma: M plus 2 A-levels at minimum Grade B
  • Certificate/ National Certificate Level 3: Not accepted
  • 31 points and above, with 5, 5, 5 in higher level subjects.

Access with at least 30 Distinctions and 15 Merits at level 3.

Non-standard qualifications

Degree:

Year 1 entry: We may consider applicants for year 1 entry who are undertaking a 1st year degree elsewhere. You must meet the GCSEs and A level (or equivalent) requirements as listed. In order to be considered you will need to submit a UCAS application as we do not accept direct applications and this must include an academic reference.

Year 2 entry: Please note that second year transfers are not part of the standard admissions process and is up to the discretion of the admissions team and tutor. Applications are only considered if there is space on that year of the programme.

Typically, applicants for second year entry must meet the GCSEs and A level (or equivalent) requirements as listed. Alongside this you must have gained (or be expected to gain) 65% overall and 120 credits on an equivalent programme at another recognised university.

The equivalency of the programme is reviewed by the Admissions Tutor and you will be required to provide an official copy of the programme specification of this. In order to be considered, you will need to submit a UCAS application as we do not accept direct applications and this must include an academic reference.

Year 3: We will not be able to consider any application for Year 3.

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and the whole application is reviewed which includes previous and predicted qualifications, any experience, references and motivation.

The following T levels are accepted qualifications for this course:

  • Accounting Grade D
  • Agriculture, Land Management and Production Grade D
  • Animal Care and Management Grade D
  • Building Services Engineering for Construction Grade D
  • Catering Grade D
  • Craft and Design Grade D
  • Design and Development for Engineering and Manufacturing Grade D
  • Design, Surveying and Planning for Construction Grade D#
  • Digital Business Services Grade D
  • Digital Production, Design and Development Grade D
  • Digital Support Services Grade D
  • Education and Childcare Grade D
  • Engineering, Manufacturing, Processing and Control Grade D
  • Finance Grade D
  • Hairdressing, Barbering and Beauty Therapy Grade D
  • Legal Services Grade D
  • Maintenance, Installation and Repair for Engineering and Manufacturing Grade D
  • Management and Administration Grade D
  • Media, Broadcast and Production Grade D
  • Onsite Construction Grade D
  • Health Grade D
  • Healthcare Science Grade D
  • Science Grade D

Additionally to our Level 3 requirement, you will also need to have achieved:

2 GCSEs grade C/4 or above including Maths and English 

International students

Aston University is a diverse, close community and welcomes international students on many of our undergraduate programmes. Students from over 120 countries choose to study with us every year. Based in the centre of Birmingham, Aston is not only a great place to study, it’s also a great place to live.

Qualifications in your country

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to provide evidence of an English language qualification.

English language requirements

International students can enter at Year 2 of this course having completed an undergraduate year one programme at the required academic level with approved teaching partners ONCAMPUS Aston or NCUK.

Aston University provides a range of opportunities for international students to join our community and study on our campus. A key part of our strategy is our relationships with teaching partners, providing multiple pathways to Aston.

Aston’s professional work placements can improve your chance of securing a graduate job. Placements give you experience, confidence and opportunities and, as an Aston student, you’ll be better prepared for your future career. One of the great things about Aston is our focus on employability. Our close links with businesses, industries and professions make this possible.

Find out more about applying

Post-study work visa

Aston University welcomed the creation of a new Graduate Immigration Route which enables international students to remain in the UK for two years after you complete your studies to find work. This new post-study work visa applies to international students completing full-time undergraduate and postgraduate courses.

Graduate Immigration Route

Fees and scholarships

Course fees

UK students
(2024/25)

Annual tuition fees:£9,250
During placement year:£1,250

International students
(2024/25)

Annual tuition fees:£18,150
During placement year:£2,500

More information on fees

For Home students: Tuition fees for UK/Home students may change in line with government policy.

For International students: The International students fee is a fixed annual fee for the duration of the Programme, except whilst on placement when a placement year fee applies.

Scholarships

At Aston University we are committed to supporting the most talented and hardworking students to achieve their potential by providing a range of scholarships to help lower tuition and living costs.

Explore our scholarships 

Assessment

Our teaching and learning approach is diverse, with a strong emphasis on project-based learning. Industry guest lecturers regularly visit to share their real-world expertise and enrich your educational experience. You will be assessed through a variety of methods including coursework, presentations, and exams.

Career prospects

As the retail and manufacturing industries continue to expand, graduates with business and supply chain management knowledge and skills are highly sought after. You will be equipped to pursue careers in supply chain management, purchasing and procurement, logistics analysis, and distribution management. With the opportunity to join the NOVUS scheme, you will be guaranteed employment with renowned companies like Wincanton, Arla, Sainsbury's, DHL, and Kingfisher. Previous graduates have secured positions with companies such as Jaguar Land Rover, L'Oréal, Caterpillar, Unilever, and GSK.

Graduation

Be part of our community

Once you have joined us at Aston University, you’ll always be part of our community, even beyond graduation.
 

Frequently Asked Questions

Why study Business and Supply Chain Management at Aston?

Combining input from both Aston Business School and the College of Engineering and Physical Science, you’ll get a rounded learning experience, getting you ready for a career where your skills will be in high demand.  

How will a placement year benefit me?

We think that the knowledge you gain through your studies are best applied to real life and the most effective way to do this is by working in a company. As well as the opportunity to apply what you’ve learned, you’ll also gain invaluable communication and team skills. 

We have excellent links with industry and will help to arrange this placement for you. 

Is Birmingham a good place to study?

Our campus is based in the centre of Birmingham, the youngest major city in Europe and a great place to live, work and study.

  • Great music and entertainment with a vibrant nightlife. Bars, clubs, pubs, live music, festivals, concerts. Whatever your tastes, there's something here for everyone.
  • Fantastic food. Birmingham's diverse community means you can try anything from the famous Balti triangle, the Chinese Quarter, high street chains, halal and vegan food, and Michelin-star dining.
  • World-class shopping. The Bullring and Grand Central is a shopper's paradise. From the world's biggest Primark to luxury brands at the Mailbox.
  • Arts and culture. Museums, galleries, theatres, concerts and Birmingham's art collection is as wide as it is impressive - not to be missed.
  • Green, open spaces. One of the greenest cities in Europe, Birmingham has hundreds of publicly accessible parks and green spaces across the city.
  • Sporting action. Birmingham has some of the most exciting venues for watching or participating in sport in the UK.

Discover Birmingham

Chat with our students

 

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