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Human Resources Management MSc

UCAS code
Year of entry 2018
Course length
1 year full time
Department Management »
Location of study
Main Campus (Egham) »


This course is designed for individuals who are interested in pursuing a career in management either in Human Resources or a related area. It will provide you with a rigorous and critical approach to human resource management strategies and practices, which you will assess from a range of theoretical and analytical perspectives. You will also consider them in terms of their social and economic context, examining their implications and impact for a range of stakeholders and interest groups.

This programme will provide you with a rigorous analytical approach to the subject, with a broad overview of the major areas of human resources and employment relations policy. You will examine how organisations learn, create and utilise knowledge and respond to the competitive pressures in a globalising knowledge-based economy. The course will equip you with the skills and competences to conduct advanced research into a wide range of management and organisational issues and enable you to improve your social, communications and presentational skills to operate in an effective and enlightened way as leaders and managers.

The programme builds on the School of Management’s extensive expertise in the area, both in teaching and research. You will join an intellectually stimulating, friendly and supportive research environment and, through working closely with our expert and experienced academic staff, you will be in a viable position to realise your full potential.  

  • Strong career prospects in management either within human resources or a related field by gaining a deep understanding of international human resources management, coupled with a practical set of skills.
  • Outstanding research; Royal Holloway sits in the top 25 per cent of UK universities for research which is rated as ‘world-leading’ and ‘internationally excellent’.  
  • Inspiring international community; 60% of our Management students come from overseas, with over 130 countries represented across the University.  

Core modules

Core Principles in Human Resource Management

In this module you will develop an understanding of the foundational issues and concepts in the theory and practice of Human Resource Management. You will look at the nature of the employment relationship and the regulation of work and employment, considering the relationship between the utilisation of human resources on the one hand, and economic and political environments, labour markets, product markets, forms of work organisation and corporate performance on the other. You will also examine human resources practices and strategies in context, critically assessing the essential dilemmas, tensions and choices that HR departments and line managers face.

Managing Organisational Learning and Knowledge Work

In this module you will develop an understanding how knowledge creation and innovation are the foundations of social and economic progress. You will examine how organisations learn, create and utilise knowledge, and respond to the competitive pressures of a globalising knowledge-based economy. You will focus on the relationships between societal institutions and the micro-dynamics of organisational learning and innovation, developing a critical understanding of the theories and perspectives of organisational change and innovation, and their implications for change management practice. You will look at the issues facing firms in the knowledge-based economy and concepts of organisational learning and knowledge creation. You will consider the nature and process of organisational change, the role of change agents, and the complex dynamics of change management.

Human Resource Management in Global Contexts

In this module you will develop an understanding of the unique managerial challenges created by differences between, and within, countries for business operations. You will see how even within regions which have removed formal barriers to the flow of goods, finance, labour, and knowledge, a variety of differences (institutional, legal, cultural, identity, and so forth) remain. You will look at how these multi-level, multi-dimensional differences shape the contexts of ongoing transnational operations, and consider the nature of reorganisational programmes in tackling the issues faced when operating across borders.

Foundations of Employment Law

In this module you will critically evaluate national and regional differences in the regulation of labour, and their implications for international human resource management practitioners. You will look at the nature of the employment contract, as well as specific areas such as discrimination, recruitment and termination law. You will also consider the transnational regulation of business practices, and adopt a broader conception of the ‘human resource’ by considering issues such as the regulation of economic migration, international labour standards, and human rights law.

Strategic Human Resource Management

In this module you will develop an understanding of theory, policy and practice in the field of strategic international human resource management. You will look at the major current themes and debates in the field, going beyond operational approaches to managing people, focussing on core international human resource issues and functions at the strategic level. You will consider the integration of organisational strategy and international human resources management, exploring how the issues and problems in managing a global workforce can be conceived strategically and operationalised through organisation practice.

Comparative Human Resource Management

In this module you will develop an understanding of some of the principal national business systems that influence multinational decisions – including those of Germany, Japan, the UK and the USA. You will look at the role of global labour regulation through agencies such as the International Labour Organisation. You will examine the role of regional integration agreements in structuring human resources policies and practices, and consider the nature of free trade areas, common markets and currency unions, with particular reference to the historical evolution of the European Union.

Dissertation Preparation and Research Methods

This module will help you to prepare for your dissertation with useful theoretical and practical lessons in research methods. You will develop your analytical and technical research skills, reflecting critically upon the theoretical and philosophical assumptions of the underlying research methodologies. You will develop an undertanding of the ethical considerations when conducting research, and will learn how to write a structured research proposal that will form the basis of your dissertation.

Dissertation

The dissertation provides you with an opportunity to learn and practise researching and writing skills for your future career. You will apply the analytical and problem-solving techniques you have acquired throughout your studies to explore a specialist interest in greater depth. You will critically evaluate academic literature, collect data systematically, organise your findings, and present your research results in a clear and logical and manner. To help, your research proposal will be read by the programme director, who will select an appropriate member of staff to act as your dissertation supervisor. Your final submission will be between 12,000 and 15,000 words in length.

Assessment is carried out by a variety of methods including coursework, examinations and a dissertation.

Entry criteria:

UK 2:2 (Honours) or equivalent.

Professional qualifications related to the field of International Human Resource Management and work experience in an associated area will be considered.

This is a research-focused course and is appropriate for those who have prior knowledge or experience in management. Those who have studied alternative disciplines should take the ‘Foundations of Modern Management’ unit during Induction Week to obtain the background knowledge required for this course.

English language requirements:

IELTS 6.5 overall with a minimum of 6.0 in all subscores. For equivalencies, please see here.


If you require Royal Holloway to sponsor your study in the UK, your IELTS must be a UK government-approved Secure English Language Test (SELT).

International and EU entry requirements

Please select your country from the drop-down list below




Students from overseas should visit the International pages for information on the entry requirements from their country and further information on English language requirements. Royal Holloway offers a Pre-Master’s Diploma for International Students and English language pre-sessional courses, allowing students the opportunity to develop their study skills and English language before starting their postgraduate degree.

 

On graduating with a Masters degree in Human Resources Management from Royal Holloway you will be highly employable and have a variety of career paths in and around the area of human resources. You will be well prepared for a career in human resource management, management consultancy, public policy research, government advisory, the civil service, a think tank, an employers’ organisation or a trade union. This course also equips you with a solid foundation for PhD studies.

Our graduates have entered roles such as:

  • Researcher at Hays Specialist Recruitment
  • International Relocation Case Manager at IBM.

Home and EU students tuition fee per year 2018/19*: £10,400

International students tuition fee per year 2018/19*: £17,500

Other essential costs**: There are no single associated costs greater than £50 per item on this course

How do I pay for it? Find out more about funding options, including loans, grants, scholarships and bursaries.

* These tuition fees apply to students enrolled on a full-time basis. Students studying part-time are charged a pro-rata tuition fee, usually equivalent to approximately half the full-time fee. Please email student-fees@royalholloway.ac.uk for further information on part-time fees. All postgraduate fees are subject to inflationary increases. Royal Holloway's policy is that any increases in fees will not exceed 5% for continuing students. For further information see tuition fees and our terms and conditions.

** These estimated costs relate to studying this particular degree programme at Royal Holloway. Costs, such as accommodation, food, books and other learning materials and printing, have not been included.

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