This MSc combines an in-depth understanding of human resource management with a broader exploration of its organisational and management context. It provides up-to-date knowledge of organisational theory and behaviour, and the specialist skills essential to practitioners – and the opportunity to gain CIPD membership. It’s also ideal for career changers aspiring to work in HR.

Course content

This MSc combines thinking about strategic approaches to human resource management with the practical application of these ideas – for example, in recruitment and talent management, employee relations and employee engagement, change management, learning and development strategies and coaching and mentoring. You will also explore HR strategy in relation to the external environment – including globalisation and international forces, social and technological change and government policies and regulation.

The course has a strong practical emphasis, building essential skills such as interviewing, helping others to learn through delivering training, leading and working in teams, managing financial information, communicating effectively and making presentations. You will also develop research skills through a dissertation module, including assessing theory and information and evaluating its relevance to practice.

Course structure

Most students study this qualification over three years – but you can also take a fast track route and gain the MSc in Human Resource Management in two years by studying four modules (120 credits) in your first year (the equivalent of full-time study), and the 60-credit dissertation module during your final year. Both routes are summarised below.

Image of study routes through the MSc in Human Resources Management qualification

Career development

This MSc develops the understanding and skills needed for HR management roles in an increasingly diverse global economy. The large and diverse community of learners (both in the UK and internationally) spans cultural, professional and role boundaries – providing you with a wide range of learning and networking experiences as you interact with one another face-to-face and online. More generally, by studying for a postgraduate business qualification, you can expect a positive impact on your career progression.

For employers, the MSc in Human Resource Management will further develop their employees’ skill set and support improvements to working practices in the organisation.

CIPD membership

This qualification is approved by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and provides a route to professional membership – if you choose this route, you’ll need to be a student member of CIPD throughout your studies and attend a residential school, which will provide an additional opportunity to practise and receive feedback on HR skills. Students who already have a CIPD diploma can complete the dissertation module to gain their MSc.

More information and how to apply

For more information and to apply for a place, please visit our Postgraduate website.

For international students, more information is available at OU Worldwide.

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