Despite the growing importance of Business Studies within UK higher education issues concerning its curriculum have received little serious attention. This paper identifies a framework by which to understand the Business Studies degree and reports the results of a national survey into the attitudes of lecturers. The survey analysed the perceptions of lecturers toward the aims and knowledge structure of first degrees in Business Studies. Most lecturers hold divergent views concerning the appropriate aim of a Business Studies degree indicating that the widespread perception that such programmes are ‘vocational’ may be misplaced. There are also differences of perspective concerning the balance between humanities- and science-based knowledge. A range of teaching subjects within Business Studies provides the basis for distinct academic and professional traditions. Differences in the attitudes of lecturers toward both aims and knowledge appear to be closely linked to these traditions, and the institutional setting of such degrees. Copyright © 1997 Journal of Vocational Education and Training All rights reserved.