Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2012-2013 (archived)


Department: Business School (Business)


Type Tied Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Available in 2012/13 Module Cap
Tied to N1KE12
Tied to N2KE12
Tied to N2KF12


  • None.


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • To provide students with the opportunity to study key topics relating to organisational effectiveness at an advanced level.


  • Management and organisational principles, concepts and theories; structures and systems; individuals and work; work design; politics and power; knowledge management; teams and leadership; flexibility; chaos and complexity; new organisational forms.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Have an advanced understanding of key management principles, concepts and practices;
  • Have a critical appreciation of alternative organisational structures and systems and their relationship to performance;
  • Have a critical appreciation of the influence of power and politics in organisational life;
  • Have a critical appreciation of the role of individuals, teams, managers and the design of their work;
  • Have an advanced understanding of the characteristics of flexible organisations and the impact on business performance;
  • Have a critical awareness of the nature of chaos and complexity in organisations and their cost;
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Be able to apply the subject-specific knowledge identified above in the context of their own organisations.
Key Skills:
    Written communication; planning, organising and time management; problem solving and analysis; using initiative; computer literacy.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • The learning outcomes will be met through a combination of lectures, facilitated discussion sessions, group work and guided reading. Extensive use will be made of case studies and business simulations. All sessions have a high participation element, and an emphasis on action-learning.
  • Assessment of this module is by summative assignment, designed to: test the acquisition and articulation of knowledge; test conceptual understanding and skills of application and interpretation within the business context.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 9 hours in total
Group work 9 hours in total
Preparation & Reading 132
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Individual written assignment Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Individual written assignment 3,000 words (Max.). 100%

Formative Assessment:

Feedback on group and individual activities undertaken during contact hours. Feedback on learning set reflections and action points related to this module.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University