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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Business School : Common Courses (Management School)

Postgraduate Course: Service Excellence and Design (CMSE11503)

Course Outline
SchoolBusiness School CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
Course typeOnline Distance Learning AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThe aim of this course is to equip post-experience students working in professional services (e.g. healthcare, veterinary services, education, law, architecture) with the knowledge, understanding and skills to design and deliver services to facilitate value creation. This requires them to understand the nature of services, what constitutes 'value' (for the organisation, staff, customers and other stakeholders) and contemporary approaches to service design.

The course will provide a common lecture series and will focus on three key areas:

the nature of services and the service systems within which they are delivered;

the multi-dimensional nature of value and the processes through which it is created within a service context;

the design of services to support value creation.

These online lectures will be supplemented by a tutorial series customised to the needs of each programme that it is part of.
Course description The course introduces students to the design and delivery of services within complex and dynamic service systems. It will draw upon service management theory and research to provide students with the teaching and learning they require to operate successfully in service environments.

The course will consider what a 'service' is, focusing particularly on its experiential dimension and the complexity of the systems within which services are designed and delivered. In doing so, it will introduce contemporary models of service design and delivery which situate the customer as a key actor within the value creation process. The course will also consider the multi-dimensional nature of value and the processes through which it can be created or destroyed during service production for various stakeholders, including the service organisation and its customers.

Outline Content

The lecture series will focus on the following areas:

Understanding services

Exploring the nature of value and the processes of value creation

Value creation within complex service systems

Designing service excellence

Service design methods for creativity, innovation and improvement

Student Learning Experience

This course will be delivered online through the virtual learning environment Learn. Students will have access to the recorded lecture series delivered by UEBS staff. This will be supplemented by various online resources, which will be used to support active learning and will be tailored and contextualised to discrete service areas. These components may include a mixture of online tutorials, case study resources, examples and 'talking head' videos, depending on the specific needs of each programme area. For the development of this part of the course, UEBS may seek specialist advice from each programme area.

Discussion forums will be used as a tool for class discussions on the content provided in the lecture series and other resources to share knowledge and experience among learners.

A weekly plan will provide details of the topic to be covered, readings for the week, details of discussion board activities and tasks and any assessments to be completed.

Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Critically evaluate the nature of a service and how value is created in a service, for various stakeholders, including the service organisation and its customers/users.
  2. Apply this knowledge to their own service areas and critically assess whether and how they are successful in facilitating value creation.
  3. Form analytical links between, customer service experience and service design for value creation and be able to apply this to their own experience.
  4. Communicate effectively with other staff in their service organisation about the nature of value creation and the steps they need to take to create sustainable value improvements.
Reading List
Core reading:

C Gronroos (2015) Service Management and Marketing (John Wiley)

Recommended reading:

R Normann (2012) Service Management. Strategy and Leadership in Service Business (Wiley)

R Lusch & S Vargo (2014) Service-Dominant Logic. Premises, Perspective, Possibilities (Cambridge University Press)

C Bason (2017) Leading Public Design (Policy Press)

S Osborne (2020) Public Service Logic (Routledge)
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Research and Enquiry

This course will support the development of knowledge and critical understanding in the following areas:

Knowledge about what constitutes a service organisation and the ways in which it facilitates or constrains value creation;

The inter-relationship between various actors operating in a complex and dynamic service system and the implications for value creation;

The links between service experience and service design in supporting value creation for various stakeholders;

Specialist knowledge of how service theory applies to their respective professions and how it can inform their own practice.

The application of the above knowledge and critical understanding to the student's own experience in order to develop sustainable skills for the future:

The ability to develop and apply the professional skill-set necessary to support value creation in service businesses, including around framing the customer experience and designing and sustaining successful customer journeys

Carry out lines of enquiry to assess service quality in their own practices;

To adapt their routine professional practices to best practice service standards.

Using the learning above students will be able to:

Critically analyse real business problems in their field by leveraging service theory and research;

Critically assess evidence-driven options to remedy the problem applying service theory;

Evaluate the options generated and decide upon a way forward driven by service theory best practice.

Personal Effectiveness

Exercise autonomy and initiative at a professional level in their own practice, for instance:

Exercise managerial responsibility by being able to critically assess their role in their service organisation and to be able to act to advance service excellence and value creation;

Practise in ways that show awareness of the importance of working/communicating with customers, staff and other stakeholders in achieving service excellence;

Appreciate the skills required to achieve service excellence;

Use their practice's resources to develop these skills.
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Kirsty Strokosch
Course secretaryMrs Fionna Grant
Tel: (0131 6)51 3028
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