Module code: MAN2136

Module provider

Surrey Business School

Module Leader


Number of Credits


ECT Credits



FHEQ Level 5

JACs code


Module cap (Maximum number of students)


Module Availability

Semester 2

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 120

Lecture Hours: 33

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Examination EXAM (2 HOURS) 50%
Coursework WRITTEN ASSIGNMENT (2000 WORDS) 50%

Alternative Assessment

Not applicable

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module overview

This module builds on the economic and sociological aspects of Level 4 Organisational Behaviour and Analysis, and seeks to extend students’ understanding of a range of issues in labour market and employee relations. Students will be introduced to both classic labour market theories and more contemporary issues in employee relations such as training and skill development, work family conflict and employee engagement in the knowledge economy. The module will encourage students to critically evaluate different theoretical perspectives and provide them with a methodological foundation to make sense of the changing labour market and working life. This module will prepare students for the subsequent more advanced modules on the HRM Pathway

Module aims

To introduce students to a range of contemporary issues in employee relations

To encourage critical evaluation of different approaches to the management of employee relations

To prepare students for the practical challenges of managing complex employment relationships at work

To provide students with a theoretical foundation of key quantitative methods used in employee relations research

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
Demonstrate understanding of key theories in labour market and employee relations C
Demonstrate understanding of the role of different actors in employee relations and the dynamics of industrial conflict KC
Demonstrate understanding of individual and collective wage determination KC
Distinguish various forms of employee involvement and representation KC
Relate the theories to the realities of managing employment relationships at work P
Demonstrate understanding of the impact of training and skills development on workforce capability KC
Apply basic quantitative research methods to analyse research questions in employee relations PT
Communicate ideas effectively in writing T

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Module content

Indicative content includes:

Introduction to employee relations
Labour market segmentation and sex segregation
Labour market flexibility and non-standard forms of work
Training and skill development
Employee involvement in organizational decision-making
Trade union and industrial action
Collective bargaining and minimum wage
Growth of job insecurity and unemployment
Work family conflict
Engaging employees in the knowledge economy

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

This module will be taught through a combination of weekly lectures and seminars. Total student learning time is 150 hours. Teaching and learning will be supported by highly interactive activities such as group exercises, on-line discussion forums, case studies and the use of electronic voting system as appropriate. All the teaching and learning materials will be made available through SurreyLearn.

The learning and teaching methods include:

 Lectures (2 hour lecture * 11 weeks)
Seminars (1 hour seminar * 9 weeks)
class discussion
electronic voting

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate understanding of the theories in employee relations, assess their ability to critically evaluate employee relations theories, relate general theories to specific examples, correctly interpret quantitative information and assess contradicting arguments against empirical evidence.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

A 2000 word essay to reflect on any topic covered in the module
A closed book examination at the end of the module

Formative assessment and feedback

The module adopts an enquiry based approach to feedback. Students will receive feedback on their performance throughout the module. These include both verbal feedback provided during seminars and written feedback on the written assignment. Before the first assignment lecture time will be spent on discussing the requirements for the assignment and the feedback strategy. A detailed marking scheme will be provided through SurreyLearn to provide both staff and students with a clear guidance on how marks will be awarded for each element of assessment. In addition to the statistical breakdown of marks along a set of specified criteria, generic feedback will be provided for each individual assignment to help students identify their strengths and weaknesses.

Marking of both the first assignment and the exam (essay question) will be carried out by the module tutors. The module leader will be responsible for moderation to ensure consistency of marking between tutors. Marks and generic feedback will be returned to students within three weeks of submission

Reading list

Reading list for EMPLOYEE RELATIONS : http://aspire.surrey.ac.uk/modules/man2136

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2017/8 academic year.