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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Business School : Business Studies

Undergraduate Course: Managing Across Borders and Cultures (BUST10113)

Course Outline
SchoolBusiness School CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryIt has been recognised that firms and managers both shape and are shaped by their cultures and institutional contexts. With globalisation and the increasing internationalisation of businesses, this course responds in particular to the increasing need of future managers, working in a globalised economy, to recognise the influences of national cultures and institutions on organizational and managerial performances and to acquire cross-cultural skills and competencies necessary for enhancing such performances.
Course description The course intends to stimulate a critical discussion of cross-cultural and national business issues that often seem to be neglected even by the management of multinational companies. It is believed that a better understanding of these issues will assist future managers in dealing with both cross-cultural and contextualised management challenges and opportunities.

Students will be expected to read the provided lecture materials and relevant literature, to actively participate in discussions and to analyse the readings and the information provided in the lectures and seminars. The objective is to develop a critical understanding of the key issues. Consequently, also the assessment is geared towards identifying, describing, evaluating and discussing those issues by writing and presenting a paper and writing an exam that covers both the lectures and the recommended literature.


Globalisation, Cultures and Institutions
National Cultures and Institutions
Cultures, Institutions and Corporate Social Responsibility
Cultures, Institutions and Corporate Governance
Cultures, Institutions and Human Resource Management
Cultures, Institutions and Innovation
Cultures, Institutions and International Strategy
Global Managers and Global Mindset

Student Learning Experience

Students will gain from the experience of
Learning from each other in the teamwork activities in the preparation of presentations on different ideas of management and on practical case studies.
Learning to find, read and appreciate the value of academic literature, how they are cited and referenced, and how to use them in developing a presentation of or summary of ideas.
Practising the skill of bringing together different and sometimes conflicting ideas in coherent arguments, and developing and representing ones views with colleagues.
Engaging in the dynamic process of argumentation with the academic literature.
Dissecting and interpreting managerial and organisational practices with the view of providing credible solutions by exploring their cultural and institutional embeddedness.
Presenting their ideas to their peers and teachers confidently, clearly and effectively

Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Business Studies Honours entry
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesAn equivalent to two years of Business courses at University level.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2017/18, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 20, Summative Assessment Hours 3, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 173 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 50 %, Coursework 30 %, Practical Exam 20 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 1. Group presentation 20%

2. Group essay 15% (10% of which will be moderated from peer assessment marks using WebPA)

3. Personal Reflections 15%

4. Individual written examination: 50%

The teaching of the course will be a mixture of lectures, group discussions, case studies, seminars, guest lectures, role plays and group presentations. Students will be divided into groups of 4-5. Each group will be expected to make at least a presentation to the rest of the class at some point during the course. The lectures will start with group presentations and these are expected to make use of theory informed practical and relevant examples, and will be assessed on their ability to deliver on this expectation.

In addition to the presentations, each Group will be required to submit a 1,400 word limit essay on their assigned topics, and each student will submit a 200 word limit personal reflections on each of the 8 sessions of the course. These personal reflections will be submitted with the Group essays. The Group essays and the personal reflections will jointly and equally constitute 30% (i.e. 15% respectively) of the overall course grade.

There will be an individual written examination at the end of the course, which will constitute 50% of the overall course grade.

Feedback Generic feedback on your coursework, together with individual marks, will be available on Learn on TBC. You will also be able to review your individual feedback electronically via Grademark on Learn from the same date.

Your examination marks will be posted on Learn (together with generic feedback and examination statistics) as soon as possible after the Boards of Examiners¿ meeting (normally early-mid June). During the summer months (i.e. mid/end June ¿ end August), you may come into the UG Office (Room 1.11, Business School, 29 Buccleuch Place) to look at your examination scripts. Note that you will not be able to remove any examination scripts from the UG Office as they may be required by the Board of Examiners.

Continuing students will also be given the opportunity to review their examination scripts early in the new academic year in Semester 1 (i.e. in October).
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S2 (April/May)2:00
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand and critically discuss the distinction amongst national culture, organisational culture and national institutions, and identify the different schools of thought behind each of them.
  2. Explain and critically discuss the interactive influences of national culture, organisational culture and national institutions on managerial and organisational practices.
  3. Critically evaluate theoretical frameworks on national culture and institutions to explain organisational and managerial practices in different cultures and institutional contexts.
  4. Discuss the role of multinational firms in the homogenisation of organisational and managerial practices.
  5. Critically appraise the role of national culture, organisational culture and institutions on organisational and managerial performance, respectively.
Reading List
Recommended Text for this course is: Koen, C. I. (2005). Comparative International Management, McGraw-Hill
Further Readings
* Sitkin, A., and Bowen, N. (2010). International business: challenges and choices. Oxford University Press
* Luthans, F., and Doh, J. P. (2009). International Management: culture, strategy, and behaviour. McGraw-Hill Irwin Press
* Schneider, S. C., and Barsoux, J. (2003). Managing Across Cultures. Prentice Hall/FT Press
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Key skills
Understand key concepts in the area of managing across borders and cultures, to reflect upon them, to relate them to strategic and operational managerial problems, and to apply them in the future to real world business situations.
Course organiserDr Ron Kerr
Tel: (0131 6)51 5582
Course secretaryMiss Sara Dennison
Tel: (0131 6)50 3825
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