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ACE3036 : Applied Farm Business Management

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Mr Simon Parker
  • Lecturer: Dr Jeremy Robert Franks
  • Owning School: Natural and Environmental Sciences
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 10.0


The module aims to
1. Develop a basic understanding of the principles of business management based on planning - control - monitoring - analysis - revision.
2 To develop the basic principles (taught in ACE2020) relating to the combination of resources to achieve efficient resource-use to develop a profitable farm business.
3 Teach the tools necessary to allow students to plan, control monitor, analyse and revise plans at the farm and enterprise level.
4 Develop an understanding of the factors which affect the efficient use of the principal fixed farm resources - land, labour, machinery and capital, and the role of enterpreneurship in creating profitable enterprise and farm businesses.
5. The use os workshops allow students to practise the use of various analytical tools (cash flow budgeting tools, partial and full farm budgets) to prepare enterprise and whole farm financial and management plans.
6. To develop the skills required to estimate the value of farm resources, and to be able to present in written form recommended valuations, financial and management plans and to compare and contrast alternative courses of action.

Outline Of Syllabus

1. Farm record lectures and workshops:
- enterprise records
- recording cash
- calculating profit
2. Forward Budgeting lectures and practicals:
- whole-farm profit budgets
- cash flow budgets
- partial budgetin
3. Valuation and depreciation lectures and workshops
4. Farm Planning
5. Accounts Analysis
6. Introduction to commercial farm management software involving accounts, budgeting and enterprise recording
7. Introduction to land tenure: tenancy agreements and rent assessment
8. Machinery planning, organisation and acquisition
9. Investment appraisal techniques
10. Personnel management; labour planning and organisation, and labour legislation
11. Farm finance: sources of farm finance.
12. Introduction to taxation: income tax, national insurance, capital taxation.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion310:0030:00Preparation of the 3 practical assessments (micro-computing; accounts exercise; tender for rental)
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture202:0040:00Lectures
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical23:006:00Farm visits (related to farm accounts exercise (sem 1) and tender for rental exercise (sem 2)).
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical22:004:00Computer assisted learning
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading201:3030:00Lecture follow-up using set texts and recommended papers
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study161:3061:30Review, compilation of notes and consolidation of lectures and workshops
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study118:3018:30Student research and reading beyond the taught material
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study52:0010:00The module has 5 workshops. These are completed in the student's own time for formative assessment
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures introduce the main concepts and principles of farm management (aims 1 and 2).
Lectures also introduce analytical tools that are used to monitor and control farm businesses and farm enterprises (aims 3 and 4).
In-class workshops allow students to practice the analytical tools that are taught in the lectures (aims 5). These workshops are undertaken as individual study and in small groups to help verbal communication of recommendations (aims 5 and 6).
The three main piece of assessed coursework allows students to use their imagination to construct an orriginal farm management tool (aims 4 and 5), to integrate enterprise husbandry knowledge within diverse farming systems (aims 2 and 6) and to understand the role of farm management and financial accounts in planning and control (aims 1, 2 and 6).

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Case study1M40The accounts exercise gives students an opportunity to tabulate financial accounts from cash flow and other information (6 pages).
Case study2M60The tender for rental, an individual exercise, requires students to construct a farm plan and estimate a rent for a farm (6 pages).
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

This is an applied subject in which techniques and concepts must be practised in problem-based assignment work. The micro-computing assessment (1 above) tests students understanding of analytical tools focused on enterprise and/or farm business management. The accounts exercise examines students understanding of lectures related to building a set of farm management and financial accounts to allow performance to be analysed and corrected (aims 4, 5 and 6). The tender for rental examines students understanding of tenure systems, the link between tenure and rental payments and their ability to estimate the value of farm resources and to present this understanding in written form (aims 5 and 6).

Reading Lists