Module Descriptions

Higher Certificate in Business Studies (NQF5)

The programme comprises two study effectiveness modules and nine core business modules taught over 12 months.

Core Curriculum

The Higher Certificate in Business Studies is designed for completion within a minimum of one year and a maximum of three years, requiring a total of 124 credits. This program is delivered through distance learning.

Study Year 1 of 1 (NQF 5)

The purpose of this module is to provide students with the knowledge and skills they need to articulate their prior formal, non-formal and informal learning within an academic context; and in doing so to demonstrate that they have the necessary academic literacies to cope with the text-based practices of the Cornerstone programmes. In addition, the module provides students with the conceptual and procedural knowledge they require to substantiate an application for exemption based on the recognition of their prior experiential learning (RPL) and/or credit transfer (CAT) from prior formal qualifications recognised by the Senate of Cornerstone Institute.

Through this module, students will learn to use a computer for emails, internet, word processing, spreadsheet development and electronic presentation suites. This will enable students to access the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) known as Funda, which is used by Cornerstone for communication with lecturers and administrative purposes, as well as research and submission of assignments.

The objective of this module is to familiarise students with the field of Labour Relations and to expose them to the different role players in the South African Labour system. The various theoretical perspectives of conflict will act as a basis for developing the learner’s framework of thought when studying the dynamic nature of the tripartite relationship, roles and responsibilities between the state, employer and employee. Employee relations are an integral part of everyday business management in South Africa and the global marketplace.
This module enables the students to gain a fundamental understanding of financial accounting principles and concepts as they apply to the world of business. Students will learn and apply different accounting systems and business combinations that affect accounting entries and the financial accounting cycle. Students will develop sound financial literacy by being able to apply the accounting equation to basic transactions in recording accounting entries.
This module provides an overview of the management of people in the modern organisation. Students will learn about key elements of managing and building human capital including leadership, talent acquisition and optimisation, employee experience development, recognition & reward, diversity and organisational culture.
At the conclusion of the module students will be able to manage and support people to achieve optimally within dynamic, globally excellent companies.
This module explores the history, theory and processes of communication, and examines the importance of effective communication in the workplace and more broadly. Students will analyse different types of communication understand the essence of effective workplace communication including making presentations effective participation in meetings. The module further explores communications in multicultural environments and the new challenges brought about through digital communication technologies and social media. At the conclusion of the module students will have a sound understanding of communication best practices and will be enabled to communicate effectively with their managers and colleagues in the workplace. 
This module introduces students to the basic concepts in economics including demand, supply, trade-offs, production and allocation of resources. Students will acquire an understanding of different market structures, pricing, money, interest rates and exchange rates and how these relate to economic policy, international economic relations and economic growth Students will also gain an understanding of inflation, unemployment, poverty and inequality. Students will, through understanding these concepts and the South African reality, be challenged to think critically and practically about the distribution of wealth and the role of individuals, organisations and government in the economy.

This module introduces students to marketing theory and practices. Students will understand how to analyse the competitive landscape, identify the core competencies within a business,  recognise opportunities and assess risks, which are the building blocks of every marketing strategy. Students will further explore up-to-date marketing thinking in respect of the development and management of value-based customer relationships. At the conclusion of the module, students will be able to create a marketing plan;  position their brand and products; as well as  apply a marketing mix to be the preferred choice of customers.

This module introduces students to the basic concepts of business statistics. Students will learn about the role and importance of statistics in solving business problems, the categories of analytics, types of data, data collection methods, descriptive statistics, data visualisation, and probability. At the conclusion of the module, students will be able to select and apply appropriate statistical techniques, apply these techniques and interpret these results making appropriate inferences.

This module introduces students the development of entrepreneurship and its role in the economy in South Africa and internationally. Students will understand the drivers behind entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation theory, the development of entrepreneurial strategy as well as the challenges of business start-ups and franchising. At the end of the module students will be able to formulate a business plan for an enterprise whilst understanding the legal requirements that need to be considered.

This module is designed to help the student build an ethical framework that considers a holistic understanding of the human person (head, heart and hands). Students are exposed to ethical theories that enable them to reflect on ways in which to respond to current moral, intellectual and social questions. Students work to integrate ethical theory into their experience of life and explore how this contributes to the good of the world.

Cornerstone Institute
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