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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Business School : Business Studies

Undergraduate Course: Managing Change (BUST10107)

Course Outline
SchoolBusiness School CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryOrganisations, their workforces, clients and customers face new internal and external contextual issues on a regular basis. This course covers organisational design and development. The course will enable students to develop a critical understanding of organisational change via the theories and conceptual frameworks of organisation design and the principles and practices of organisational development. Both are critical to our understanding of organisations and how they function and both reside within a framework of organisation theory.
Course description The course focuses on decisions that have to be made on the most appropriate organisational structure(s) to ensure dynamic delivery of organisational activities. Organisation design is about shaping an organisation to maximise its effectiveness; aiming for flexibility in delivery of its services. Through breaking down departmental barriers, seeking improved supply efficiencies, teamwork and collaboration and working towards better customer management and retention, organisations can enhance their performance and ensure that organisational goals and targets are achieved. Organisation design activities therefore focus on finding the most appropriate structures, relationships between departments and sections, and allocation of work activities, including definition of duties and role responsibilities. The module also focuses on how an organisation's culture, values and environment support and enhance organisational performance and adaptability.

Organisation development is defined as a 'planned and systematic approach to enabling sustained organisation performance through the involvement of its people'. This might include how organisational members acquire new skills, knowledge and behaviours, and do things differently, often as part of the application of continuous improvement strategies. The concept of the 'learning organisation' as one of a number of organisation development strategies that might be adopted as part organisational change activities is also explored.

Overall, the course aims to introduce students to a range of explanations that can help in the understanding of how organisations and their component groups and individuals approach change. In so doing, students will be encouraged to explore a range of practical techniques that can be used in dealing with change. The course requires critical reflection on theory and practice from an ethical and professional standpoint and provides opportunities for applied learning and continuous professional development.


- Introduction: managing change and types of change
- History, paradigms, and models of change: why change organisations?
- Organisational design and strategic change
- Changing groups and changing individuals
- Change leadership and change communications
- Resistance and other reactions to change
- Cultural change and organisational learning
- The roles of power, politics, and ethics in managing change
- Change agents, change agency, and the HR role in managing change
- Technological change, evaluating change, and Course Overview

Student Learning Experience

The two-hour class sessions combines lecture input, class and case discussions and student presentations.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites It is RECOMMENDED that students have passed Organisational Behaviour 2 (BUST08028)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesA pass in Organisational Behaviour 2 (BUST08028) equivalent.

Visiting students should have at least 3 Business Studies courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, 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 2, Revision Session Hours 1, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 173 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 50% Coursework (individual) Essay - Assesses all course learning outcomes
50% Coursework (individual) Timed Online Assessment - Assesses all course learning outcomes
Feedback Formative: Feedback will be provided throughout the course.

Summative: Feedback will be provided on the assessments within agreed deadlines.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand and critically discuss the historical and theoretical basis of organisation design and development and their context in terms of value and contribution to organisational life.
  2. Understand and critically evaluate available design options regarding organisational structures and relationships; and processes and systems that need to be in place to maintain such structures and relationships.
  3. Understand and critically discuss of methods and procedures of organisation development and the skills and tools used to review their strategic impact.
  4. Understand and critically discuss change management strategies and activities used in the application of organisation development strategies, which might support organisation design and realignment outcomes; discuss organisation culture and employee norms, attitudes, and behaviours.
  5. Critically evaluate the importance of the HR role in advising on these design and development choices and supporting their implementation.
Reading List
There are many good text books available on organisation change and change management. The core text for the course is:

Hughes, Mark (2010). Managing Change: A critical perspective (2nd Edition). London: CIPD.

However, this book does not cover all the topics included in the course and you will need to read more widely than this.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Cognitive Skills

After completing this course, students should be able to:

Understand how to manage and sustain successful individual and group relationships in order to achieve positive and responsible outcomes, in a range of virtual and face-to-face environments.

Be self-motivated; curious; show initiative; set, achieve and surpass goals; as well as demonstrating adaptability, capable of handling complexity and ambiguity, with a willingness to learn; as well as being able to
demonstrate the use digital and other tools to carry out tasks effectively, productively, and with attention to quality.

Knowledge and Understanding

After completing this course, students should be able to:

Demonstrate a thorough knowledge and understanding of contemporary organisational disciplines; comprehend the role of business within the contemporary world; and critically evaluate and synthesise primary
and secondary research and sources of evidence in order to make, and present, well informed and transparent organisation-related decisions, which have a positive global impact.

Identify, define and analyse theoretical and applied business and management problems, and develop approaches, informed by an understanding of appropriate quantitative and/or qualitative techniques, to explore
and solve them responsibly.
Course organiserDr Thomas Calvard
Tel: (0131 6)51 5313
Course secretaryMiss Isla Dalley
Tel: (0131 6)50 3900
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