Module PY0613 - Organisational Psychology
SYNOPSIS OF MODULE
This module is designed to provide students with a broad understanding of the psychology of organisations/workplaces. Students will gain valuable knowledge and insights into behaviour in organisations; exploring this at the organisational, group and individual level.
Students will explore some of the more topical aspects of organisational psychology, including for example:
• Individual level - What makes people happy at work? What makes people good at their jobs? How do we get the right person for a job/role?
• Group level - How do you build an effective team? What makes a good leader? What causes workplace conflict?
• Organisational level - What is an organisation? How do organisations change? What makes a “healthy” organisation?
Through this module students will be introduced to core psychological skills including questioning and listening. They will be encouraged and supported in developing their diagnostic skills and their ability to formulate solutions through consideration of case studies and group discussion.
At the end of the module students are expected to demonstrate a broad understanding of the theory, research and applications of organisational psychology. They should be able to identify links between different topics in organisational psychology, provide an evidence base to their analysis and contribute to group tasks. Students should also be able to disseminate research in a chosen area of organisational psychology.
Lectures will be interactive and student participation is encouraged to further embed learning. Topical issues will be presented by the lecturer and time will be spent in seminar groups discussing these issues and applying skills.
Assessment will be by one assignment where students will apply the skills and theories learned during the module.
INDICATIVE READING LIST OR OTHER LEARNING RESOURCES
Millward, L. (2005) Understanding Occupational and Organizational Psychology. London: Sage.
McKenna,E. (2006) Business Psychology and Organisational Behaviour 4th Edition. Hove: Psychology Press.
Furnham, A. (2005) The Psychology of Behaviour at Work: The individual in the organization. Hove: Psychology Press.
The module aims to cover the key elements of Organisational Psychology at three different levels:
1. The Individual level
Looking at issues including motivation in the workplace, matching individuals to organisations and selecting and developing people at work.
2. The Group level
Issues including teams in organisations, the lifecycle of a team and team processes. The differences between management and leadership and the key skills that make good leaders and managers. How power and conflict is created and resolved in organisations.
3. The Organisational level
How organisations are designed e.g. the structure, culture and climate. How and why organisations change and develop e.g. what the drivers are and why people resist change. How well being and stress are considered and managed in the workplace.
AIMS OF MODULE
The module aims to provide students with an introduction to applied psychology in organisations and workplaces drawing upon the range of psychological models of organisational behaviour. Emphasis will be upon some of the topical themes of individuals in modern organisations.
Students will be able to :
1. Demonstrate conceptual knowledge of Organisational Psychology by discussing relevant theory, recent research and methodology relating to each topic area.
2. Evaluate theory and research studies in Organisational Psychology
3. Identify, analyse and discuss connections between the topic areas within Organisational Psychology
4. Demonstrate evidence based reasoning when discussing various issues in Organisational Psychology
5. Communicate knowledge and information effectively both in writing and orally
6. Engage in group tasks and group discussions demonstrating sensitivity to interpersonal factors in teamwork
7. Demonstrate an understanding of the contribution of applied Organisational Psychology
8. Summarise and disseminate research in a chosen area of Organisational Psychology
DISTANCE LEARNING DELIVERY
LEARNING AND TEACHING STRATEGY
Lectures (scheduled for 2 hour slots) will be interactive in nature, providing both the framework for covering topic areas in the syllabus and the opportunity for group discussions, debates, study tasks based around video presentations, experience of applied techniques and presentations. Independent study will be strongly encouraged through the provision of reading lists, study questions and journal articles to read in preparation for interactive lectures. Together, the learning strategies of lectures and independent study aim to develop knowledge of all the topic areas, the ability to evaluate theory and research and illustrate the importance of psychological research to explain organisational behaviour.
Summative assessment will be in the form of an assignment. Students will be expected to prepare an information document for a specified audience to promote the services and benefits of Organisational Psychology in the workplace. Furthermore, students will produce a summary of one current area of research of their own choosing for this audience. Students will also have the opportunity to prepare for this assignment through group presentations towards the end of the semester. This summative assignment will provide students with the opportunity to:
• Evaluate theory and research studies in Organisational Psychology (learning outcome 2)
• Identify, analyse and discuss connections between the topic areas within Organisational Psychology (learning outcome 3)
• Demonstrate evidence based reasoning when discussing various issues in Organisational Psychology (learning outcome 4)
• Communicate knowledge and information effectively both in writing and orally (learning outcome 5)
• Demonstrate an understanding of the contribution of applied Organisational Psychology (learning outcome 7)
• Summarise and disseminate research in a chosen area of Organisational Psychology (learning outcome 8)
The following learning outcomes will be specifically met through experiential learning (interactive lectures and independent study)
• Demonstrate conceptual knowledge of Organisational Psychology by discussing relevant theory, recent research and methodology relating to each topic area (learning outcome 1)
• Engage in group tasks and group discussions demonstrating sensitivity to interpersonal factors in teamwork (learning outcome 6)
a. Formative assessment and rationale for tasks
Formative assessment will include :
Small group presentations and feedback sessions in preparation for assignment (learning outcomes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6)
Group to develop performance criteria and use these in group activities e.g. assessing and providing feedback on group performance (learning outcome 6)
b. Feedback strategy
Feedback on summative assessments will take the form of written comments on returned scripts, individual feedback comments and information about the performance of the cohort.
The tutor will support the formative feedback process and encourage and assist students in providing feedback to each other on the basis of the criteria identified during group activities.
IMPLICATIONS FOR CHOICE
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