The details
Essex Business School
Colchester Campus
Full Year
Postgraduate: Level 7
Thursday 05 October 2023
Friday 28 June 2024
17 October 2023


Requisites for this module



Key module for

MSC N60012 Human Resource Management,
MSC N60024 Human Resource Management,
MSC N21712 Organisational Change Management,
MSC N21724 Organisational Change Management

Module description

Students undertake an extended, independent research project. The module combines research methods skills developed on the programme and thesis writing skills.

Students will identify and formulate a research problem and question; review relevant literature; design research to address the problem; collect and analyse data; and communicate findings and conclusions effectively in writing. In the process, students will reflect on professional and personal learning undertaken from conducting and writing up the research.

Module aims

The main aims of the module are;

1. To produce an extended, independent, piece of research based on a contemporary people and/or organisational management issue.
2. To undertake a thorough review of literature and current knowledge and diagnose a real people and/or organisational management issue.
3. To assess the quality and relevance of evidence sources and the potential for bias
4. To assimilate evidence and analyse the main findings to draw realistic and appropriate conclusions and recommendations from the research.
5. To provide evidence of personal reflection and critical review of the work

Module learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:

1. Apply an academic framework within which relevant empirical and theoretical work is evaluated
2. Critically analyse a wide range of literature systemically gathered
3. Articulate a clear statement of research based on a contemporary people and/or organisational management issue.
4. Demonstrate rigorous application of knowledge and skills of chosen research method and data analysis
5. Assimilate and systematically present research findings that are relevant to the research questions
6. Identify conclusions justified by the empirical and/or theoretical material.
7. Demonstrate concise and thoughtful conclusions derived from the evidence presented, with timely, value added recommendations
8. Conduct research in an ethical and humane manner and assess the impact of the research findings on a range of relevant stakeholders
9. Reflect on the skills developed and wider continuous professional development identified for yourself and the people management profession

Module information

Skills for Your Professional Life (Transferable Skills)

In addition, this module will also contribute to your development of the following employability skills.

1. Written Communication
2. Oral Communication
3. Research Skills
4. Critical Thinking
5. Commercial Awareness

Learning and teaching methods

In addition to the workshops outlined above, learning occurs through student led independent research. Students are encouraged to develop peer-learning groups to support the development of research skills and their projects. Students will also be appointed an academic supervisor. Supervisory Meetings Students can expect a minimum of four meetings with their supervisor. Students are expected to prepare sufficient material for discussion during supervisory meetings, and ideally to submit it to their supervisor in advance (see Dissertation Schedule). Make sure you leave each meeting with a clear idea of what to do next. Students are encouraged to meet as a group outside of the formal supervisory meetings. Membership of such peer groups has proven very useful in past years; providing benefits and resources beyond that of developing the dissertation.


This module does not appear to have a published bibliography for this year.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Dissertation Choice Submission Form    0% 
Coursework   HRM Dissertation  11/09/2024  100% 

Additional coursework information

The Assessment is by 100% coursework and the submission of a 15,000-word dissertation.

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

100 per cent Coursework Mark


100 per cent Coursework Mark

Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Elaine Yerby, email:



External examiner

Dr Sheena Vachhani
University of Bristol
Reader (Associate Professor) in Work and Organization Studies
Available via Moodle
Of 9 hours, 9 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s), module, or event type.


Further information
Essex Business School

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