Business Enterprise Development MSc

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MSc Business Enterprise Development at Aston University

Simon Finley explains some of the main features of studying MSc Business Enterprise Development at Aston University

Course overview

  • Course level
  • Course type
    Full-time, Part-time
  • Duration
    1 year
  • Course options
    Internship / overseas study
  • School

Entry requirements

  • One of the following:
    A good UK honours degree (minimum lower second class) or equivalent overseas degree recognised by Aston University; OR at least 3 years work or entrepreneurial experience in combination with either BBC at A level or DDD at BTEC level, OR at least 7 years work experience with at least 5 GCSE’s at C and above, including English and Mathematics.
  • For International students:
    An official academic transcript, with official English translation, of your university grades to date. Students whose native language is not English also need to satisfy our English language requirements.
  • Full entry requirements
    See entry requirements below for full details
More information

Key dates

Course Overview

A course like no other. Our Business Enterprise Development MSc will see you create and run your own business, develop key entrepreneurial skills and gain invaluable start-up experience in the process.

With no lectures or exams, this innovative programme focuses on developing your business competencies through authentic, practical learning experiences.

This course is offered as either a full-time or part-time course, which gives you the time and flexibility for your personal or work commitments, making it the perfect stepping stone to embark on your entrepreneurial journey.

The course concludes with a Business Project; a substantial piece of work designed to provide you with an opportunity to analyse a business problem and practically apply the knowledge and skills developed during the course.

Course outline

The Business Enterprise Development MSc enables you to unleash your entrepreneurial potential.

This course is delivered as a full-time and part-time programme, which allows you to pursue your long-term career goals whilst balancing your other commitments. It is suitable for graduates of all disciplines, as well as people with professional experience but without an undergraduate degree.

With a focus on active, task-based learning through real-life business activities, this course offers a unique learning experience. There are no lectures or exams; this programme puts application and experience at its core. You’ll develop your entrepreneurial know-how as well as crucial teamwork and leadership skills by starting and running a business as part of a group of like-minded fellow students.

We enable you to put entrepreneurship and management principles into practice. From identifying business ideas, evaluating their commercial viability, conducting market research, pitching for investment and creating formal business plans, the programme covers the entire start-up journey in a practical way.

You’ll manage and take on a series of challenges to grow your business. This will enable you to learn about vital business tasks, such as marketing strategy and product or service development. These valuable experiences and insights will help you develop the commercial skills needed to build a successful business venture.

Our emphasis on teamwork and successful collaboration helps to emulate a key feature of successful businesses – their ability to create high-performing teams. You’ll work as part of a group throughout the course and we provide teams with regular, specialist coaching. These sessions are tailored to the needs of the group and individuals, providing a rich and unique learning experience. You’ll develop key teamwork, communication, management and leadership skills, all of which will be incredibly beneficial whether you choose to pursue your own business venture, a career in consultancy or management / leadership roles.

You’ll be supported by a select group of accomplished coaches, made up of leading academics from our teaching faculty, successful entrepreneurs and prestigious Aston alumni. Our coaches will pass on their valuable experiences and help to create a supportive environment from which you and your teams can work together effectively to solve challenges and establish a successful venture.

All our assessments involve practical business activities, such as pitching your business idea, creating a business plan as well as a market research project. Again, this is an opportunity to develop vital entrepreneurial competencies, gain valuable, first-hand business experience as well as receive feedback and support with your development.

So, if you’re looking to gain the skills, confidence and experience to set-up and grow your own business, look no further. Our Business Enterprise Development MSc will help you achieve your dreams of becoming a successful entrepreneur.

Entry requirements

One of the following:

  • A good UK honours degree (minimum lower second class) or equivalent overseas degree recognised by Aston University.


  • At least 3 years work or entrepreneurial experience in combination with either BBC at A level or DDD at BTEC level, or
  • At least 7 years work experience with at least 5 GCSE’s at C and above, including English and Mathematics

As well as:

  • Two professional references – at least one must be from an academic referee, an official academic transcript of your university grades to date, and a completed application form.

For International students:

  • An official academic transcript, with official English translation, of your university grades to date. Students whose native language is not English also need to satisfy our English language requirements.
  • For more information about qualifications view our Aston in your country webpage.

Part-time route

The part-time option is not available to international students due to visa restrictions.  

Why choose us?

We’re part of an elite group of business schools thanks to our triple accreditation from AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA. We boast a strong reputation and an impressive track-record for student satisfaction, teaching quality and employability.

With extensive industry contacts, an on-campus business incubator and an abundance of start-up support available, our Business Enterprise Development MSc is perfect stepping stone for your future career. Recent graduates have gone onto to set up successful enterprises in a variety of business sectors, whilst others have used their entrepreneurial skills to secure coveted graduate roles.

At Aston, we attract students from all over the world. This provides a wonderful opportunity to mix with people from different cultures and diverse backgrounds. In doing so, you’ll appreciate new perspectives, build a network of international contacts and gain experience working as part of a multicultural team.

Our courses offer a range of opportunities to gain practical experience through things such as, consultancy projects and entrepreneurial opportunities. Find out more here. 


Fees and scholarships

Fees 2020/21

UK/EU:          £ 10,550
International:  £16,650

Find out more about our scholarships here

Subject guide and modules

The Business Enterprise Development MSc has been designed to equip you with the skills and competencies needed to set-up and run a successful business venture.

Core modules include:

  • Enterprise Creation
  • Creating and Leading High-Performance Teams
  • Applied Research
  • Innovation and Entrepreneurship
  • Enterprise Management and Growth
  • Corporate Social Responsibility Challenge
  • Business Project

The course content is built around three key elements:

Enterprise Development and Growth
Giving you the chance to set up and grow a real-life business. You’ll experience the entire process of a starting a commercial venture, from generating business ideas to options to fund the grow of your venture.

Team Development and Growth
This will develop key teamwork competencies, allowing you build and maintain effective working relationships in a professional context. You’ll explore emotional intelligence, effective communication techniques and how to overcome cultural differences when working in a multicultural team.

Personal Development and Growth
Equipping you with the leadership capabilities and soft skills required of successful business leaders. You’ll become a skilled negotiator, develop an entrepreneurial mindset and enhance your managerial and leadership qualities by putting these skills into practice during practical business activities.

Learning, teaching and assessment

With no lectures or exams, our Business Enterprise Development MSc is a unique and innovative task-based learning experience.

Our approach is to put practice and teamwork at the heart of our teaching. Instead of being fed information by a lecturer, you’ll learn by actually setting up and managing a real business. This will help to develop key entrepreneurial skills and competences. It will also provide you with invaluable experience in enterprise development, which can help you to build a successful business in the future.

Businesses are rarely created in isolation. Therefore, teamwork is a key focus of this course. You’ll work as part of a group to develop a commercial or social enterprise. We work with groups to provide specialist coaching and support. These regular sessions can be tailored to the needs of the team and individuals, which enables you to collaborate effectively, develop your teamwork skills and learn through shared experiences.

Our assessments are all practical and involve authentic entrepreneurial tasks. These include activities such as, pitching for funding, personal reflection exercises, developing business plans, team and leadership activities, as well as a marketing research project. These assessment tasks will help you to develop crucial entrepreneurial skills and give you first-hand experience of key start-up business activities.

Teaching staff

Meet the team who deliver our Business Enterprise Development MSc, click on the links below to view each team members’ their biographies:

Simon Finley, Associate Dean – MBA, Apprenticeships and Online Programmes

Links to industry

We benefit from strong links across the business community, from start-ups to leading international firms, across a wide range of sectors. Our network can help you to make useful professional contacts.

Aston is one of a small number of specially selected University’s which helps to deliver the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses programme. This initiative provides support services to small businesses and social enterprises across the UK. Members of the Goldman Sachs programme as well as other local entrepreneurs often help to deliver our course content. They can provide you with a unique insight into the demands of new business ventures and offer valuable networking opportunities.

Recent graduates have set up their own businesses in a variety of sectors including, marketing, manufacturing and financial services. Others have gone onto to secure roles with leading multinational companies, such as Tesco, Deutsche Bank and Ernst & Young. Our Aston Alumni network can help you to make connections with former students working in any industry and many former students act as mentors to support you with your studies or venture plans.

You can also benefit from our on-campus start-up support programme, BSEEN, which provides help and guidance, networking opportunities, the free use of shared office space as well as a financial grant for new businesses.

Overseas opportunities

You’ll have the opportunity to visit other enterprise academies at some of our prestigious European partner institutions, which include some of the highest ranked business schools in the world.

With team academies in countries such as Italy, Spain and Finland, this is a fantastic chance to collaborate with aspiring entrepreneurs from other countries, gain a new perspective and build your international network of contacts.

Trips and visits

Thanks to our extensive links across the business community, you’ll benefit from guest speakers helping to deliver your course content. This will give you with the chance to hear from entrepreneurs about their experiences of starting a running their own businesses. You’ll gain a valuable insight into the challenges faced when embarking on a new business and hear about techniques to overcome these obstacles.

Our students have also had opportunities to visit prestigious companies, such as Jaguar Land Rover, Ford, Amazon and Aston Villa Football Club, as well as a number of small to medium-sized enterprises in order to appreciate the challenges faced by smaller firms.

Enterprise activities at Aston

Throughout the academic year many events around enterprise and entrepreneurship take place at Aston University. Students are encouraged to engage with these activities.

BSEEN (Birmingham Skills for Enterprise and Employability Network) is a business incubator located on the Aston University campus. It is available to students and graduates from Aston. BSEEN offer workshops and tailored business support, and also organise several enterprise events throughout the academic year. 

The personal development programme (PDP) runs throughout the year and is designed to build professional skills and confidence. Within the PDP students can opt to do a work placement, study abroad, business simulation game or an intensive workshop around enterprising skills. 

Find out more about enterprise and entrepreneurship activities at Aston University.

Register your interest