Programme: MPhil Human Resource Management (Coursework)

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Code Faculty Department
07250149 Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences Department: Human Resource Management
Credits Duration NQF level
Minimum duration of study: 1 year Total credits: 180 NQF level:  09

Programme information

The MPhil (Human Resource Management) course is a programme accredited by the South African Board of People Practice (SABPP). The two year master’s programme entails eight modules of coursework presented over at least four block weeks during the first year of study and a mini-dissertation.

Additional requirements

 A candidate may be refused admission to a master’s degree by the Department of Human Resource Management Postgraduate Selection Committee if the applicant does not comply with the standard of competence in the module as determined by the Department of Human Resource Management – with the proviso that a candidate who does not comply may be admitted, provided that the candidate completes additional study assignments and/or examinations.

The number of applicants admitted to the programme is limited by supervisory capacity and the availability of research projects in the field of specialisation in the D-HRM.
The number of students admitted in the programme will be determined by the growth strategy of the University of Pretoria as approved by the Executive.
Allowance will be made for the diversity profile of students.

Other programme-specific information

The research component comprises of the HRC 806 Research in Practice module as well as the HRC 807 mini-dissertation. The research component contributes 50% towards the total credit requirements for the degree, which includes both the Research in Practice module (30 credits) and the mini-dissertation (60 credits). The programme requires that the topic of the mini-dissertation be consistent with the expertise residing in the department.

For the examination of the mini-dissertation, a student must submit an electronic copy of the mini- dissertation to the postgraduate administrator. If so requested by the supervisor or external examiner the student must submit a printed copy using ring-bound format.

After the changes required by the examiners have been approved by the supervisor, the successful student must submit two electronic copies of the approved dissertation on a CD or DVD, clearly marked with his/her student number, name and the title of the study, to the Head: Student Administration. These copies need
to be in the format specified by the faculty and in accordance with the standards set by the Department of Library Services. Final submission should be before 30 January for the Autumn graduation ceremonies and before 26 June for the Spring graduation ceremonies, failing which the degree will be conferred only in the next series of graduation ceremonies.

Article for publication
The Dean may require, before or on submission of a mini-dissertation, the submission of a draft article for publication to the supervisor. The draft article should be based on the research that the student has conducted for the mini-dissertation and be approved by the supervisor concerned. The supervisor should then have the opportunity to take the paper through all the processes of revision and resubmission as may be necessary and/or appropriate in order to achieve publication.

Examinations and pass requirements

The pass mark for both the coursework and mini-dissertation is 50%. The provisions regarding pass requirements for dissertations contained in General Academic Regulation G 12.2 apply mutatis mutandis to mini- dissertations. A pass mark of at least 50% is required in the examination for each module.

Pass with distinction

In order to be awarded the degree with distinction, a student must meet the following criteria:

? obtain an overall weighted average of at least 75% according to module credits

? obtain at least 75% in the mini-dissertation

? complete the degree/diploma within the minimum prescribed period.



1) Only the final mark of the first attempt to pass the modules or dissertation will be considered;

2) The overall weighted average (according to course credits) will not be rounded up to a whole number.

Minimum credits: 180

Core modules

  • Module content:

    Students will develop an in-depth knowledge of the context and content of strategic human resource management. They will integrate them to develop and implement strategic human resource management plans and communicate them to a variety of audiences in different contexts. Students will be able to critically appraise the state of strategic human resource management in South African organisations.

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  • Module content:

    Students will design, conduct and evaluate research in talent management in the management of human resources; they will design, facilitate and monitor the implementation of talent management practices; as an internal or external consultant they will appreciate the complexity of behaviour in the workplace; they will combine theoretical knowledge with practical examples and provide guidelines on talent management as a decision science.

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  • Module content:

    Students will be knowledgeable about the history of leadership theory and critically apply contemporary approaches to design, deliver and evaluate leadership development programmes. They will be able to communicate their rationale for leadership development programmes to a variety of audiences.

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  • Module content:

    Students will know the principles of data management, data mining, assuring data integrity and its utilisation as the source of human capital measurement in personnel management. Students will be able to critically apply metrics to analyse the effectiveness and value of typical human resource management initiatives and be able to communicate them to a variety of audiences.

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  • Module content:

    Students will develop an in-depth understanding of diversity approaches and practices and be able to apply them in a critical manner to manage diversity related issues in South African organisations. Students will have an understanding of issues that are detrimental in a diverse work context (i.e. stereotyping, ethnocentrism, bias) and will demonstrate reflexive self and social awareness in managing diversity.

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  • Module content:

    Part 1: Research design and proposal development
    Students will design a suitable research project by developing a research proposal commencing with the background, the problem statement and the purpose of the proposed study. An integrated and in-depth literature review follows, demonstrating academic scholarship in the field of study and the student’s ability to reflect critically on their own and others’ research. They will develop research questions or hypotheses and justify an appropriate methodology for the study. The proposal will include ethical considerations and the criteria for ethical conduct in doing research, adhering to UP’s Code of ethics for scholarly activities (S4755/12). Students will present their proposals to a panel of members of D-HRM. Students will follow the APA guidelines in their academic writing.

    Part 2: Qualitative research
    Students will be proficient in advanced qualitative research methods, and knowledgeable of the relevant paradigms, designs, sampling procedures, data collection and analysis methods as well as the criteria for quality and rigour. Students will demonstrate reflexivity in applying these by conducting a qualitative research project of limited scope in which they justify their methodological choices.

    Part 3: Quantitative research
    Students will be proficient in quantitative research methods and the relevant paradigms, research designs, sampling procedures and data collection methods. They will be able to select and apply appropriate statistical models for different types of designs and justify their choices in line with the specific purpose of the study and data requirements. They will develop a practical ability to analyse data using SPSS and AMOS.

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  • Module content:

    The research component (Human Resource Management mini-dissertation) can be completed after the successful completion of HRC 806 (or IPS 806). It needs to be submitted for examination by 30 September in Year 2.

    In line with the proposal developed as part of HRC 806, students will conduct their research study by collecting, analysing and interpreting their findings in a scholarly manner, demonstrating a critical engagement with related academic work. They should also discuss the limitations of their study, its practical implications and its contribution. The findings will be communicated in the form of a mini- dissertation, following APA guidelines.

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  • Module content:

    Students will be knowledgeable about psychological theories of change in individuals and groups. They will build and communicate their own mental models of a changing post-modern society and of the organization as change territory. They will integrate this knowledge to develop suitable frameworks to facilitate change interventions and manage the dynamics of change in contemporary organisations. Students will be able to critically appraise and articulate the intended benefits and possible unintended consequences of a change intervention to different audiences.

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  • Module content:

    Students will acquire an in-depth knowledge of labour relations management principles and understand employment contracting in the context of South African Labour legislation. Students will develop an understanding of different approaches for managing grievances and understand different strategies and policies used in labour relations management. Students will integrate and apply these critically in solving South African based labour issues.

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General Academic Regulations and Student Rules
The General Academic Regulations (G Regulations) and General Student Rules apply to all faculties and registered students of the University, as well as all prospective students who have accepted an offer of a place at the University of Pretoria. On registering for a programme, the student bears the responsibility of ensuring that they familiarise themselves with the General Academic Regulations applicable to their registration, as well as the relevant faculty-specific and programme-specific regulations and information as stipulated in the relevant yearbook. Ignorance concerning these regulations will not be accepted as an excuse for any transgression, or basis for an exception to any of the aforementioned regulations. The G Regulations are updated annually and may be amended after the publication of this information.

Regulations, degree requirements and information
The faculty regulations, information on and requirements for the degrees published here are subject to change and may be amended after the publication of this information.

University of Pretoria Programme Qualification Mix (PQM) verification project
The higher education sector has undergone an extensive alignment to the Higher Education Qualification Sub-Framework (HEQSF) across all institutions in South Africa. In order to comply with the HEQSF, all institutions are legally required to participate in a national initiative led by regulatory bodies such as the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET), the Council on Higher Education (CHE), and the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA). The University of Pretoria is presently engaged in an ongoing effort to align its qualifications and programmes with the HEQSF criteria. Current and prospective students should take note that changes to UP qualification and programme names, may occur as a result of the HEQSF initiative. Students are advised to contact their faculties if they have any questions.

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