Human resource (HR) managers are responsible for the efficient management of people in a business. You will be expected to ensure that the working environment is suitable for the workforce. This will enable them to reach their potential, and maximise their performance. Human resource management (HRM) leads with a person centred approach, focusing on making sure that the needs of both the employee and employer are met. Studying human resource management will give you the skills needed to be an effective team member of a business, helping you to question the traditional methods and explore new concepts.
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About Human Resource Management
The accreditation of your human resource management degree will depend on where you study, and the content of your course. It will also be influenced by the level you are studying at. At undergraduate level, you can expect to be awarded a Bachelor of Science (BSc), a Bachelor of Arts (BA), or a Bachelor of Business (BBus). Some universities might offer an integrated Master of Business (MBus) degree, but this is less common. At postgraduate level, you are likely to be awarded a Master of Science (MSc), a Master of Arts (MA), or in some cases a Master of Human Resource Management (MHRM). Further study will award you with degrees such as Master of Philosophy (MPhil) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD).
Some universities offer degrees that have been accredited by a professional body. This body is the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD). If your degree is accredited, this means that you are eligible to become a member of the organisation once you have graduated.
DurationGenerally, an undergraduate degree will take three to four years to complete, depending on where you choose to study. A postgraduate degree will normally take one to two years to complete.
Your institution may offer part-time study options, which usually means that your degree will take four to six years. You may also be able to take a foundation programme, which is useful if you do not meet the entry requirements for your degree.
Annual tuition fees for UK students are capped by the UK government. For the 2019/20 academic year, they are £9,250. This is subject to change each year, and will be updated on your institution website.
Postgraduate course annual tuition fees are set by the institution, which means that they can differ. Postgraduate programmes are generally less expensive than undergraduate programmes. You will find detailed fee information on the institution webpage.
The fees displayed below are an example of typical annual tuition fees for undergraduate and postgraduate human resource management degrees. Actual tuition fees can be found on the institution webpages.
Typical Annual Tuition Fees
- Undergraduate - £9,250
- Postgraduate - £7,500
An undergraduate degree in human resource management will provide a good foundation of knowledge in the main areas of the subject. You might study modules on employee relations, employee engagement, business leadership, employment law, organisational behaviour and psychology, digital business management, and international business management. Most undergraduate degrees are designed to suit students who do not have a wide experience of HRM, as well as challenging those who have well developed human resource management skills and knowledge. Your degree will be delivered through lectures and tutorials, and might incorporate some group work and practical sessions. You might be presented with the opportunity to take part in a work placement year or module as part of your degree. Depending on where you study, you may be able to specialise towards the end of your course. Assessment methods could include written work, business projects, and presentations.
During a postgraduate degree, such as an MSc or MA, you will be able to build on the knowledge gained at undergraduate level. The modules you study will explore the more complex and specialist areas of human resource management. You will cover the traditional areas, as well as considering the more contemporary concepts of the field. Modules and specialisms might include international human resource management, change management, managing equality and diversity, cross-cultural management, and resourcing and talent management. Assessment methods might include written work, business projects, and a final major research assignment.
The entry requirements for a degree in human resource management will depend on where you choose to study. It will also be influenced by the level of study for which you are applying. An undergraduate degree will usually require you to have a background in qualitative subjects, like English, psychology or law, and some may also require that you have experience with quantitative subjects like mathematics. If you do not have a strong background in the required areas, but are passionate about the subject and feel that you are suited to higher education, some universities might still consider your application. You can display your passion through a personal statement or an interview. For a postgraduate degree, the majority of institutions will require that you have an undergraduate degree in human resource management, business, or a closely related subject.
Typical Entry Requirements
- A Level Grades - AAB-BBB
- UCAS Points - 136-120 UCAS points
- Required/Desired Subjects - English, Mathematics, Psychology, Law
- Undergraduate Degree Requirements - 2:2 or higher
- Required/Desired Subjects - Business, International Business, Law, Psychology
- Other Entry Requirements - some institutions might consider relevant work experience if you do not meet the academic entry requirements
Human resource management graduates will find that there are many career opportunities available to them. The most common destination is for graduates to work as HR professionals within organisations and businesses. You will be able to choose to work in the public or private sector, both domestically and internationally. Roles might include HR manager, global HRIS analyst, head of HR, or senior HR specialist. You could also choose to work as a self-employed HR consultant, working with organisations from a variety of industries and fields. A degree in HRM will have equipped for many different roles, and not all of them have to be directly within HR. You could work in charity organisations, family liaison projects, customer services, or business development management.
Throughout your degree, you will have gained a wide range of transferable skills. You will have developed your communication skills, learning how best to communicate with many types of people. Other skills that you will have gained will include problem solving, project management, budget management and analytical thinking.