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MSc Human Resource Management

Study a course designed to develop or launch your career in HR management. You learn about theoretical and practical aspects of human resource management and can specialise in areas such as resourcing, talent management and performance management.

Course length 12 Months
Location City Campus

Course description

This course is designed for graduates wanting to follow a career in human resource management (HRM). It is also suitable for HR managers who are looking for career development or for people wanting a career change.

The course develops your critical thinking and problem solving skills to help manage the process and complexities of organisational change. It approaches HRM at a strategic level, and examines organisations operating both nationally and internationally.

You develop your decision making, problem solving and analytical skills to enable you contribute to the growth and competitive advantage of organisations. We focus on developing your professional expertise, and improve your employability and career prospects by helping you gain broader business, management and leadership knowledge.

The course takes a practical and vocational approach to teaching, so that you are able to apply the theory you learn through practice. Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, and skills-based workshops. You also attend a three-day residential event and an intensive study block, designed to assist you in applying your learning during topical and challenging practical situations.

The course enables you to
• develop a strategic focus and application to HRM
• develop a critical understanding of the philosophies and general practices of HRM
• appreciate and critically evaluate the latest theoretical concepts, principles, standards and frameworks of HRM practice
• gain skills in solving complex scenarios related to improving the activities and functions of modern HRM
• build a holistic approach to examining and solving complex HR problems

To ensure you learn the latest developments in HRM and to widen your knowledge and understanding, guest lectures are given by leading practitioners and visiting professors.

We have a close relationship with the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development (CIPD South Yorkshire and District branch) which provides access to a professional advisor to support students and the course team. You become a student member of the CIPD, with options to progress towards a professional level of membership when you graduate.

We also have a dynamic, student-led HR network, which provides excellent opportunities for sharing experience with alumni, sponsors, business leaders, HR managers and consultants.

We expect you to play an active part in your own development. This can involve setting up learning contracts with tutors, managing your personal development, gaining the skills necessary for reflective learning, and attending the guest lectures and professional events organised by the local branch of CIPD.

At Sheffield Business School, we have over 30 years' experience in delivering HRM masters qualifications, and have a focus on research-informed teaching. Our courses are designed and delivered by a highly experienced team of academics, who have extensive practice-based experience in HRM and consultancy.

We have also built a strong reputation nationally and internationally, for providing excellent support and advice to students to ensure they can all maximise their potential.

Professional recognition

Our MSc in Human Resource Management is recognised as equivalent to the CIPD Advanced level diploma. On successful completion students can gain associate (Assoc.) level of professional membership. As a level 7 award it provides a route for upgrade to Chartered CIPD membership.

Entry requirements

2017 entry requirements

Normally one of the following

• a degree or equivalent in any discipline

• professional equivalent

• completing a Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) postgraduate award from a recognised institution

We may consider you without a first degree if you have the necessary experience and can demonstrate an ability to complete the course. You may also be able to claim credit points which can reduce the amount of time it takes to complete your qualification at Sheffield Hallam. Find out more

If you do not meet the above criteria you can apply for the Graduate Diploma in Business and English. After passing this diploma we automatically offer you a place on one of our business-related masters degrees.

Overseas applicants from countries whose first language is not English must normally produce evidence of competence in English. An IELTS score of 6.0, with a minimum of 5.5 in all skills, (or equivalent) is the standard for non-native speakers of English. If your English language skill is currently below an IELTS score of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in all skills we recommend you consider a Sheffield Hallam University Pre-sessional English course which will enable you to achieve an equivalent English level.

International and European entry qualifications

If you are an International or non-UK European student, you can find out more about the country specific qualifications we accept on our international qualifications page.

Course structure

Full time - September start - typically 12 months

Typical modules may include

Semester one – postgraduate certificate modules

The context of HRM
You develop knowledge and apply critical awareness of the development of organisations, and the key role played by human resource management. It considers the principal external and internal environmental contexts of contemporary organisations, including the managerial and business context, within which HR professionals, managers and workers interact in conditions of environmental turbulence, change and uncertainty. Secondly, the module examines how those leading organisations respond to these dynamic environmental contexts in terms of developing and implementing HR practices and policies. Thirdly, the module indicates how those in the HR function, and line managers with HR responsibilities, need to recognise and acknowledge that corporate decisions and HR choices are not always shaped by managers alone, they are also shaped by internal and external forces beyond their immediate control.

Resourcing and talent management
This module provides you with the principles of people resourcing strategies in organisations, and an understanding of the factors informing HR policy development in the context of the acquisition, management and retention of people.

Organisations and leadership
You investigate the main influences on behaviour at work, and the central role the HR leader plays in building and managing a competitive, but harmonious, organisation.

Performance and reward management
This module enables you to develop your knowledge and understanding of performance management, reward management, and the related tools and systems.

Developing skills for business leadership
Two sessions run this semester, and the module aims to support your learning and development in key professional and HR leadership skills across both semesters.

Research methods part 1
This module equips you with the skills to interpret and evaluate published research so you can develop evidence-based HR policy. You develop your knowledge and understanding of methodological and philosophical issues in research and also your capability to design a research project and select, and justify and execute appropriate research methods.

Semester two – postgraduate diploma modules

Strategies for international HRM
The aim of the module is to raise students' awareness of how they can contribute to management decision-making and strategic HR policy-making in an international and comparative contextual environment. The module focusses on how international strategies for HRM impact on employment, resourcing and management development issues in a complex global environment and explores the impact of political, social and economic change on HRM in both mature and emergent economies.

Developing people
You develop your understanding of current and future issues in learning and development, learning how to research, design and implement development strategies in line with the organisational objectives.

Managing employee relations
The study of national employment policy, legal regulations, and current perspectives on the management of the employment relationship facilitates the development of skills needed to give professional advice, and support to the senior team and to line managers.

Developing skills for business leadership part 2
Seven sessions run this semester, where your learning and development in key professional and HR leadership skills continues over the diploma stage of the course. You extend your portfolio of learning and reflection, and there is a one day conference designed by the students to celebrate the completion of your portfolio.

Research methods part 2
This prepares you for your dissertation and follows on from part one in semester one, building on your learning of methodological and philosophical issues in research and also further enhances your capability to design a research proposal, in preparation for the dissertation.

Semester three – masters

The dissertation enhances your personal and professional development through an in-depth independent study in an area of your choice. You further develop your autonomy, academic and professional skills in order to design and conduct a thorough piece of research into a key issues facing an organisation of your choice. Upon successful completion, you are awarded the MSc in Human Resource Management dependent upon your choice of subject area.

With the exception of the dissertation, each module has one or two assessments, which could be either a written assignment, and/or examination.

Assessment With the exception of the dissertation, each module has one or two assessments, which could be either a written assignment, and/or examination.


Our students have taken up careers in human resource management with organisations including • Tesco • HSBC • Cleveland Constabulary • First Mainline • various public sector organisations • Royal Mail • Carrefour • Lenovo • International Hilton Hotels.


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Please note tuition fees may increase in each subsequent academic year of your course, subject to government regulations on fee increases and in line with inflation. More information can be found in the ‘Tuition Fee Increases’ section of our Fees Regulations (PDF, 2.10 MB)

2016/17 academic year

Typically £6,300 for the course

Postgraduate loans of up to £10,000 are available across the majority of subject areas. Please note that for 13 month courses your loan will be paid to you over the duration of two years.

2017/18 academic year

Full time – typically £7,200 for the course

Part time – typically £2,845 per stage for PgCert, PgDip and MSc stages

International student

2016/17 academic year

Typically £12,800 for the course

2017/18 academic year

Typically £13,250 for the course

Additional course costs

This link allows you to view estimated costs associated with the main activities on specific courses. These are estimates and, as such, are only an indication of additional course costs. Actual costs can vary greatly depending on the choices you make during your course.

Additional costs information

How to apply

Complete an application form available at www.shu.ac.uk/study/form

Any offer of a place to study is subject to your acceptance of the University’s Terms and Conditions and student Regulations.

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