Programme And Module Handbook
Course Details in 2022/23 Session

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Module Title LM Human Resource Management and Ethics at Work
SchoolBirmingham Business School
Department Birmingham Business School
Module Code 07 37326
Module Lead Prof Tony Dobbins
Level Masters Level
Credits 20
Semester Semester 1
Restrictions None
Description This core module provides students with an introductory critical perspective on Human Resource Management. It critically examines and connects academic literature/concepts and real world HR practice. In so doing, it analyses people management and the employment relationship in a wider regulatory, social and political economy context. It emphasises that different stakeholders (employers and workers/unions, the state) may have conflicting concerns, as well as mutual interests, about work and employment. There is a strong emphasis on the ethics of HRM, responsible HR practice/the ‘good employer’, fairness and equality for employees at work.

The broad topic areas usually covered include the origins and meanings of Human Resource Management (HRM), debates about HRM strategy and managing performance, ethical aspects of HRM, and the four main functional areas of HRM (resourcing organisations, Human Resource Development, reward, employee relations/voice/democracy at work). The module also examines various contemporary issues affecting people management, which may change from year to year; such as working time flexibility, and new technology and the future of work.
Learning Outcomes By the end of the module students should be able to:
  • Critically analyse HRM, the employment relationship and its different stakeholders.
  • Apply the appropriate HR strategies, functions and people practices (resourcing organisations, Human Resource Development, reward, employee relations/employee voice) to enhance conceptual and practical understanding of the complexities of managing the employment relationship.
  • Analyse both academic concepts and real life practices of HRM and employment relations.
  • Evaluate HRM academic concepts and real life practice in their wider external context (political economy, labour markets, technology, society and culture, employment law/regulation of work, future of work, etc).
  • Evaluate the role and impact of HRM to enable more responsible business and citizens in the world of work and wider society (e.g., employee voice and influence at work, ethical HR best practice, valuing people, equality, fairness, working inclusively, employee well-being).
  • Critically analyse links between HR strategies and HR practices.
  • Apply critical thinking and analytical skills, notably, the ability to filter and assess complex arguments.
Assessment Methods & Exceptions Assessment
One 2500-word individual essay (60%)
One 1500-word individual policy/practice report (40%)

Reassessment by failed component. Students who fail the essay should submit another essay (2500 words). Students who fail the policy/practice report should submit another report (1500 words).
Reading List