The heat was on in the tower block at the College of North East London (CONEL) recently. Four groups of learners had exactly one hour to prove their business management acumen. And the clock was ticking fast!

Their mission was to build a three dimensional scale model of a Business Studies class/resource room according to a 60 minute timed plan prepared in advance. In fact, two weeks planning and design work culminated in this short practical test that counts towards their BTEC National Award qualification.

This assignment allowed the learners to practice and reflect on some of the key management functions taught as part of their Business & Management unit; one of six units that make up the full award. In order to pass, each student needed to help build the model using their interpersonal and communication skills to work harmoniously and efficiently with their team-mates.

Assessment for this project was by means of tutor observation, a team discussion on how the exercise had gone and finally self-assessment. An integral part of the course is to foster better self-awareness so that they can build on their strengths and eradicate their weaknesses!

Bill Henson, Business Studies Tutor, was pleased with groups progress, but thinks practice will make perfect, there has been some excellent work done today, however some of the learners need to adapt more to time constraints by planning to finish the models in 45 minutes and using the remaining 15 minutes as extra time just in case they need to make any unforeseen adjustments!

So maybe Richard Branson need not worry yet but perhaps he should start looking over his shoulder in a couple of years!

For more information on the BTEC National Award or any of CONELs Business qualifications please contact the course information hotline on 020 8442 3055 or go to

Note to editors

Pictured from left to right are: Sakine Kara, Shermaine Edwards and Demmy Salawu

Enquiry Form

Please tell us your name

/ /

Please enter your date of birth

Please tell us your email address

Please confirm your email address

Please tell us your mobile number

Please tell us your enquiry

Invalid Input

Invalid Input

Invalid Input