Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2014-2015 (archived)


Department: Business School (Business)


Type Tied Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Available in 2014/15 Module Cap
Tied to N1K017 Full Time MBA


  • None.


  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • To give students a critical understanding of the complex nature of contemporary organisations, and to facilitate the exercise of independent judgement in the analysis of organisational and managerial issues.


  • Introduction and the Nature of Management.
  • Leadership.
  • Organisational Culture.
  • Team and Group Dynamics.
  • Organisational Communication.
  • Human Resource Management and Performance.
  • Recruitment and Selection.
  • Performance Management and Development.
  • Motivation.
  • Reward Management.
  • The Changing Psychological Contract.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Upon successful completion of the module, the students will have:
  • knowledge of some of the behavioural issues and challenges facing contemporary organisations;
  • a critical appreciation of the assumptions, implications and limitations of a range of organisational/management theories;
  • a critical understanding of a range of contemporary processes and practices relating to human resource management.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Upon successful completion of the module, the students will have:
  • advanced skills in diagnosing organisational problems relating to employment management.
Key Skills:
  • Understanding ambiguous and indeterminate contexts.
  • Managing the process of change.
  • Building and developing teams.
  • Negotiating and persuading.
  • Reflecting and synthesising from experience.
  • Developing critical thinking.
  • Synthesising diverse perspectives.
  • Developing coherent and persuasive arguments.
  • Selecting appropriate modes of communication.

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

  • Learning outcomes will be met through a combination of lectures, groupwork, case studies and discussion, supported by guided reading.
  • The written examination will test students' acquisition and articulation of knowledge. The written assignment, in the form of an essay, will test students' understanding of relevant concepts and their ability to apply and interpret what they have learned to the analysis of a particular issue in depth.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Teaching blocks - combination of lectures, groupwork, case studies and discussion 44
Preparation and Reading 106
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Written Examination Component Weighting: 50%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Written Examination 2 hours 100% Same
Component: Essay Component Weighting: 50%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Essay 2500 words maximum 100% Same

Formative Assessment:

Group presentation

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