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Human Resource Management

PGDip or MA

Key facts


Start dates

September 2019 / September 2020

Course length

Part time: PG Dip: 20 months, MA: 24 months, MA direct entrants: 12 months

Department

Oxford Brookes Business School

Accreditation(s)

Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development

This course is not available to students classed as International for fees purposes.

  • Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development

Overview


Progress your career and enhance your HR professional practice with our Postgraduate Diploma in Human Resource Management and the MA in Human Resource Management.

You will develop core HR skills and knowledge. As well as the ability to understand and evaluate issues of strategic importance to Human Resource Management (HRM).

These part-time courses use a combination of on-campus and online learning. You will benefit from the flexibility of our virtual learning environment and face-to-face interaction with tutors and classmates.

In Year 2 you can choose to study for the full MA in HRM or opt for the Postgraduate Diploma in HRM. Both lead to Associate membership of CIPD and there is a full briefing during Year 1 to help you make this choice.

The programme is fully accredited by the CIPD against the Advanced Knowledge Standards. You will gain Associate membership of the CIPD on successful completion of your course.

How to apply


Entry requirements

Specific entry requirements

Applicants are normally graduates with at least one year's experience in a full-time HR role. Non-graduates require at least 3 years' experience in an HR role or a role with significant responsibility for people management.

For Direct entrants for the MA: A Postgraduate Diploma in Human Resource Management from a recognised institution.

Please also see the University's general entry requirements.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you will need to have the following level of English language competency:

  • IELTS minimum 6.0 (with a minimum of 6.0 in reading and writing and 5.5 in listening and speaking).

Please also see the University's standard English language requirements.

Pathways courses for EU students

We offer a range of courses to help you meet the entry requirements for your postgraduate course and also familiarise you with university life in the UK.

Take a Pre-Master's course to develop your subject knowledge, study skills and academic language level in preparation for your master's course.

If you need to improve your English language, we offer pre-sessional English language courses to help you meet the English language requirements of your chosen master’s course.

Terms and Conditions of Enrolment

When you accept our offer, you agree to the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment. You should therefore read those conditions before accepting the offer.

Application process

Tuition fees


Please see the fees note
Home/EU full time
N/A

Home/EU part time
£3,590

Home/EU distance learning
£3,590

International full time
N/A

Home/EU full time
N/A

Home/EU part time
£3,670

Home/EU distance learning
£3,670

International full time
N/A

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees


2019/20
Home/EU full time
N/A

Home/EU part time
£3,590

Home/EU distance learning
£3,590

International full time
N/A

2020/21
Home/EU full time
N/A

Home/EU part time
£3,670

Home/EU distance learning
£3,670

International full time
N/A

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:
+44 (0)1865 483088

Fees quoted are for the first year only. If you are studying a course that lasts longer than one year your fees will increase each year.

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course, if any, are detailed below.

Financial support and scholarships

For general sources of financial support, see our Fees and funding pages.

Additional costs

We offer an International Business in Practice Study Trip module. This study trip is voluntary and all costs associated with the trip will need to be funded by you.

The destination varies from year to year, so it is not possible to give a precise cost. As an example, the fee for the Boston USA field trip in July 2019 was £1580 and included: accommodation for 7 nights in the Boston area insurance company visits (e.g. Facebook, Dunkin Brands, Trip Advisor, Microsoft, Bank of America) group transportation for all activities and some of the meals. This fee did not include international airfare, visa application fee (if relevant), dinners and activities during your free time.

Learning and assessment


These courses will provide you with the knowledge, understanding and skills required for the challenging role of a human resource professional. Both are practice-based and academically rigorous.

The MA stage is a research-based programme that has been developed to help you progress to management roles or consultancy. Combining theory and practice, it gives you the opportunity to gain specific insights into organisational design. Then to focus on an area of HR that is of specific interest.

Student studying with laptop and headphones

Study modules

The modules listed below are for the master's award. For the PGDip award your module choices may be different. Please contact us for more details.

Taught modules

Compulsory modules

Leading, Managing and Developing People

You will become familiar with research evidence on employment and effective approaches to human resource (HR) and learning and development (L&D) practice. You will consider significant debates in leadership, flexibility and change management to help you become an effective manager and HR specialist. You will learn to manage others effectively and increase levels of engagement, commitment, motivation and performance.

Employment Law

It is essential for everyone working in HR to develop the knowledge, understanding and skills required to brief organisations on the consequences of current and future developments in employment law, and to give up-to-date, timely and accurate advice concerning the practical application of employment law in the workplace. Key principles that underpin UK and EU law, their purpose, the major defences that employers are able to deploy when defending cases, and the potential organisational costs and reputational risks associated with losing them, will be considered. We will also critically reflect on the application of the law from an ethical and professional standpoint and provide opportunities for continued professional development in this field.

Developing Skills for Business Leadership

Successful leaders have different approaches to their work, sharing a range of diverse personality traits. They are central to a manager's effectiveness and are developed over time and with an awareness of the differing cultural contexts. A key purpose of this module is to encourage you to develop a strong sense of self-awareness of your own strengths and weaknesses as a manager and colleague. In addition you will develop a range of definable skills which are pivotal to successful management practice. These include decision-making skills, team-working, interpersonal skills, accounting and budgeting, negotiating and others associated with developing personal effectiveness. You will develop your skills of reflexivity to explore the implications for professional practice and support career development.

Human Resource Management in Context

This will develop your understanding of the main internal and external environmental situations within which organisations operate. You will compare the role of the Human Resource (HR) manager with other functions to show how these integrate with general management and drive organisational success. You will examine how those in the HR function, and line managers with HR responsibilities, need to recognise this wider perspective. You will be aware that managers and HR professionals in different organisation types have opportunities and constraints when taking organisational and HR decisions.

Resourcing, Talent and Performance Management

A major objective of the human resources function is the mobilisation of a workforce. Organisations can only function if they are able to assemble teams of people with the necessary skills to meet their goals and retain effective performers. You will focus on the practical aspects of recruitment, selection, employee retention and exiting. You will develop the knowledge and skills required for resourcing and talent management within a global context. You will also gain an understanding of how performance management can support the strategic objectives of an organisation, how the performance of people can be enhanced and inspired by leadership, and how it contributes to high-performance work organisations.

Managing Employment Relations

This will develop your understanding of managing employment relations within a global business. Employment relations is a changing subject which is influenced by external factors (political and economic) and internal factors (management and management style). You will explore the impact of different national environments on employment and the roles of different stakeholders in employment relation systems. You will also critically review employment relations in an organisation and make suggestions to drive improvements to Human Resource Management. This module includes a practical skills workshop.

Management Research Report (PGDip only)

You will investigate a HR management or organisational practice issue using primary and secondary data, justified and supported by detailed reference to relevant theories and concepts from literature. You will make recommendations for implementation and practice. A number of skills workshops throughout the course are designed to develop your thinking and skills and you will be assigned an individual supervisor to support you. One of the key skills for professionals in HR is to be able to investigate, diagnose and report on relevant business issues and make practical recommendations for change or improvement within an organisation. During this module you will be taken through the key areas required to successfully complete the management research report. The applied nature of the report develops a critical evaluative approach, your empirical investigation and analysis skills, and your academic research and business report writing skills.

Understanding and Researching Organisations

You will develop a framework for understanding, analysing and researching organisations. In so doing, it contains both a (traditional) focus on core research methods but also ensures that you have a sound understanding of the organisational context in which management research takes place. The module draws on a range of perspectives from organisation theory and supports a critical awareness of organisations including such things as job design, internal processes, cultural dynamics and change. This awareness will be developed in a manner which prepares students for the completion of, high quality, rigorous and systematic management research required for a dissertation. As part of this, you will also develop an appreciation of the use of primary and secondary data common in organisational research as well as the full range of generic methodological issues, procedures and study skills.

Final project

Compulsory modules

Dissertation

This module is an in-depth research project into an organisational issue. You will generate high quality, rigorous and systematic applied research. You will reflect critically on the theoretical and philosophical assumptions, alongside the ethics of undertaking management research. Throughout your dissertation you should show sensitivity to the perspectives of others, and a willingness to try and put yourself in the shoes of others, seeing things from alternative perspectives. You will be assigned an individual supervisor to support you. One of the key skills for professionals in HR is to be able to investigate, diagnose and report on relevant business issues and make practical recommendations for change or improvement within an organisation. During this module you will be taken through the key areas required to successfully complete the management research report. 

Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from that shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.

Learning and teaching

You will be provided with:

  • highly structured, user-friendly written lecture and course materials
  • audio and video podcast materials recorded by course tutors
  • virtual tutorials, including in real time
  • discussion forums - student and tutor led.

Our teaching staff are from our Department of Business and Management within the Business School. You will also learn from visiting speakers from business and industry, local government, consultancies and research bodies.

You'll develop the following skills in more intensive workshops:

  • team building and problem solving
  • people management - such as interviewing, negotiating, managing disciplinaries and grievances
  • leadership and influencing
  • data handling and presentation skills, using IT applications.
     

Field trips

The International Business in Practice Study Trip module allows you to experience ideas and practices of global business. During the trip you will have direct interaction with management executives and practices. You will: attend presentations from local management executives and experts go on site visits to major corporations and agencies. This study trip is voluntary and you will need to fund all costs associated with the trip. It is not linked to university assessments in any way.

We also run a study trip to Chengdu, China. If you choose the study trip (which runs in July), we will give you all the details by March so that you can make your decisions ahead of the trip in July.

If you successfully complete this non-credit bearing module, it will be recorded on your transcript as P58335 International Business in Practice: Study Trip.

Assessment

Assessment methods used on this course

We use a range of assessment methods, including:

  • individual assignments
  • group work
  • presentations
  • examinations
  • portfolio, to demonstrate continuing professional development
  • individual research reports.

Peer and self-assessment will be included in some assessments.

After you graduate


Career prospects

You will develop practical knowledge, expertise and valuable insights from visiting HR professionals and specialists from a wide range of industries who run workshops and deliver lectures.

This programme is an excellent way of providing you with a springboard for progress in your career in HR. The programme enjoys a high completion rate and is supported by a tutorial team comprising research active and experienced HR practitioners.

Through workshops and group working you develop your team working skills and build long-lasting networks, enabling you to share your experiences as you progress in your career.

Our Staff


Dr Andrea Bernardi

My main research contributions relate to the co-operative sector, including Chinese co-operatives. I also work on employment relations and inequality and I have further interests in the study of time, the past, and history in management and organizational studies.

Read more about Andrea

Birgit den Outer

Birgit has extensive experience of conducting research on a variety of topics within organization and management

Read more about Birgit

Programme Changes: On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website.

For more information, please visit our Changes to programmes page.