HR9706 - Reward and Performance Management

What will I learn on this module?

Reward and Performance Management will equip you with the knowledge and skills required to effectively design, implement and evaluate reward systems and performance management processes in an organisation.

In semester one of this module you will be introduced to the theoretical underpinnings of reward and the importance of understanding organisational aims and context when developing a reward structure. From this you will then work in groups to develop a detailed pay and reward structure for a known organisation, giving you the opportunity to apply your knowledge to a simulated organisational setting. At each stage in the development of the pay and reward structure you will be guided by your tutor to evaluate and reflect on the complex implications of reward decisions. You will also consider key ethical issues in reward management, for example the gender pay gap and the national living wage, as well as the implications of pay and reward strategy in multi-national organisations.

In semester two, starting with the aims of performance management and links to organisational objectives, you will then consider the application of models of High Performance Work Systems to an organisation. You will then focus on the technical aspects of performance management processes exploring the tools available in effective performance management, the skills required by line managers and HR professionals and the role of employee involvement. Throughout you will be encouraged to reflect on differences within and across sectors and in an international context. This module will encourage you to reflect critically on models of high performance work systems and to consider the ethical implications for employees.

How will I learn on this module?

You will take part in a two-hour session each week where you will be introduced to the topic by your tutor and guided to develop your knowledge further through independent learning. In these sessions you will take part in a range of individual and group based activities which will develop your understanding of the topic area and contribute to your summative assessment. These will include the use of a database to build a pay structure, completing a market pay survey, presentations to your tutor and peers, role-play exercises, debates and analysis of topical case studies.

The interactive nature of the sessions means that formative tutor feedback and peer feedback will be received continuously throughout the module which you can incorporate into your summative assessment at the end of each semester.

Independent learning time has been set aside for learning activities, identified by you, to gain a deeper and broader knowledge of Reward and Performance Management. The module has a digital reading list that provides you with an opportunity to explore each area covered in the sessions in more detail to support the completion of your summative assessment.

Guest lectures will be incorporated into the module providing you with the opportunity to hear first-hand about research and practitioner experiences.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

The module tutor will be your main source of support on this module, providing guidance and advice in each session. Additional tutors who will lead sessions based on their experience and knowledge will also support you in those specific session activities. You will be provided formative feedback throughout the module from both your tutor and peers. In addition the module tutor will respond to questions from students via the module’s discussion board on the University’s e-learning portal so that the whole group can benefit.

The module is supported by a teaching and learning plan which outlines the learning framework for the module and includes details on each week’s session activities, directed study and recommended reading. You will be provided with a wide-ranging digital reading list that includes core textbooks and academic journals to embed your theoretical knowledge, and surveys and podcasts that demonstrate practical application of this theory in modern organisations. This will be updated regularly throughout the module with topical articles from newspapers and new research from industry.

The summative assessment for this module consists of a group presentation of a pay and reward structure and an individual piece of critical academic writing, both of which you will be supported with by the tutor in your weekly sessions.

A dedicated assessment surgery will be held at the end of the module to provide you with the opportunity to discuss any queries you may have about your individual assessment with the module tutor.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
• Demonstrate a critical understanding of contextual factors influencing reward policy and performance management decisions and processes in organisations (MOL1).
• Critically evaluate key issues in reward and performance management (MOL2).

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
• Reflect critically on theory and practice in reward and performance management from a professional standpoint (MOL3).
• Demonstrate the skills required to design and implement an organisational pay and reward structure (MOL4).

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
• Develop an ethical approach to reward and performance management (MOL5).

How will I be assessed?

The summative assessment for this module will require you to apply your knowledge and understanding of relevant theories, concepts and practices to a case study organisation providing critical evaluation of relevant theories and practice.

For the first summative assessment, weighted 50%, you will submit a 2,500 word critical analysis of an organisation’s approach to performance management at the end of semester one.

For the second summative assessment, weighted 50%, you will work throughout semester two to build a pay and reward structure for your chosen organisation. This will be assessed by a 20 minute presentation at the end of semester two, full guidance for which will be available at the start of the module.

You will have flexibility in both the group assessment and the individual assessment elements in deciding whether to use an organisation known to you, which will be anonymised in the submission, or a fictional organisation provided by your tutor.





Module abstract

Reward and Performance Management will equip you with the knowledge and skills required to effectively design, implement and evaluate reward systems and performance management processes in an organisation. Fully aligned to the CIPD learning outcomes, Reward and Performance Management will encourage you to reflect critically on theory and practice from an ethical and professional standpoint.

Weekly interactive sessions provide you with the opportunity to develop practical and transferable skills sought after in modern organisations, including designing a pay and reward structure for an organisation and understanding the tools and skills required for effective performance management.

Led by academic staff in Northumbria University with a passion for the subject, you will have access to tutors who are actively researching reward and performance management.

Course info

Credits 20

Level of Study Postgraduate

Mode of Study 2 years part-time

Department Newcastle Business School

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2022

Fee Information

Module Information

All information on this course page is accurate at the time of viewing.

Our Campus based courses starting in 2022 and 2023 will be delivered on-campus with supporting online learning content. We continue to monitor government and local authority guidance in relation to Covid-19 and we are ready and able to adjust the delivery of our education accordingly to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff.

On-campus contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with any additional restrictions, which may be imposed by the Government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors. This could potentially mean increased or fully online delivery, should such restrictions on in-person contact time be required.


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