HR Skills

Module description

In this module you will develop (or further develop) a broad range of skills that are necessary in order to pursue a successful career in Human Resource Management. Taught sessions will be held to introduce and assess a range of skills at the two residential courses you will be attending as part of your HRM programme. We will also be providing further taught sessions at the university to help you prepare for your final residential. The skills you be developing will help you to develop competence and confidence in your roles as leader, colleague, decision-maker and HR specialist. Sessions covering masters-level study skills also form a part of this module.

Full module specification

Module title:HR Skills
Module code:BEMM048
Module level:M
Academic year:2016/7
Module lecturers:
  • Mr Steven Taylor - Lecturer
Module credit:15
ECTS value:





HR in Context, Leading, Managing & Developing People, Employee Relations, Employment Law / People & Organisations, HRD, Resourcing  and Talent Management,

Duration of module: Duration (weeks) - term 2:


Module aims

IThe aim of this module is to help you build on your existing skills and hence to further both your ability and your confidence to perform an HR management role. We also aim to help you perform to the highest level from an early stage as a masters student at the university. You will learn through a combination of taught sessions, online exercises, group activities and more generally by reflecting critically on your own skills development during the time that you are studying with us. The major skill-sets that you will enhance as a result of participating on this module will be in the following areas:

  • postgraduate study skills
  • self-management skills
  • interpersonal relationships
  • leading, influencing and decision-making
  • interpreting financial data
  • IT skills
  • specialist HRM skills (eg: selection interviewing, appraisal and disciplinary interviewing, participating in an employment tribunal, international HR consultancy, presenting a business case).

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. demonstrate competence in the skill areas set out in the CIPD's advanced level syllabus entitled 'Developing Skills for Business Leadership'
  • 2. develop and enhance an HRM skill-set

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 3. reflect critically on your professional development as an HR professional
  • 4. set yourself objectives for continuing professional development in the future

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 5. operate effectively and successfully as a postgraduate student
  • 6. demonstrate enhanced confidence in a management role

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching activities40Attending taught sessions and the two residential programmes
Group based activities undertaken in preparation for the closing residental40Preparation for activities ahead of the residential
Reflection, reading and preparation for assessment70Background reading, critical self-reflection, preparation and submission of a skills portfolio

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
In-class exercises20 hours1-6Tutor feedback
Online learning activities20 hours1-6Tutor feedback

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Skills portfolio, learning diary, reflective essay and personal development plan507,000 words (approx)1-6Written tutor feedback
Assessed skills50Carried out at the residential2Written tutor feedback

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Skills portfolio, learning diary, reflective essay and personal development planSkills portfolio, learning diary, reflective essay and personal development plan1-63 months
Assessed SkillsAssessed Skills23 months

Re-assessment notes

In the case of some assessed skills where a group work is central and only one member of a group fails to demonstrate sufficient competence to pass, re-assessment will involve re-performing an aspect of the wider group task. 

Syllabus plan

The HR skills unit has been designed to run through the programme like a spine. We will introduce its aims and method of operation at the opening residential scheduled for the first few weeks of your course.
There will also be a number of interactive taught sessions provided here, including a session on postgraduate study skills. Later as you proceed through the programme and develop further skills-based knowledge and understanding you will keep records of your development by building up a skills portfolio and maintaining a reflective learning diary. Towards the end of your programme you will attend a further suite of taught sessions which will prepare you for the closing residential programme at which several HR skills will be assessed. The syllabus covers skills in the following areas:

  • postgraduate study skills
  • self-management
  • managing interpersonal relationships
  • general management skills
  • financial data and IT
  • interviewing, tribunal preparation / international HR consultancy and effective presentation

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Basic reading:

  • Watson, G. & Reissner, S. (2010) Developing Skills for Business Leadership. London: CIPD.
  • Cameron, S. (2007) The Business Student's Handbook: Skills for Study and Employment. London: Prentice Hall.
  • Clegg, C., Legge, K. & Walsh, S. (1999) The Experience of Managing: A Skills Guide, Basingstoke: Macmillan
  • Cottrell, S. (2008) The Study Skills Handbook. Third Edition, Basingstoke: Palgrave
  • Dyson, J.R. (2007) Accounting for Non-Accounting Students, Seventh Edition, London: FT/Prentice Hall
  • Lee-Davies, L. (2007) Developing Work and Study Skills, London: Thomson Learning
  • Thompson, N. (2002) People Skills, Second Edition, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan

Module has an active ELE page?


Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

You will have access to an online searchable and resources database, with links to several eBooks available on through the Exeter Learning Environment (ELE). Within this environment, you will also be supported through online discussion forums and activities. 

Indicative learning resources - Other resources

As an associate member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development you will also have access to the entirety of the Institute's website, including all published research reports, archived articles from 'People Management', fact sheets, discussion papers and briefings.  

Origin date


Last revision date