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MGT8043 Contemporary HRM Issues for Managers

Semester 2, 2019 Online
Short Description: Contemporary HRM Issues
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts
School or Department : School of Management and Enterprise
Student contribution band : Band 3
ASCED code : 080303 - Human Resource Management
Grading basis : Graded


Examiner: Kim Southey

Other requisites

Students may be required to submit a video recording of a self presentation as part of the assessment in this course.


The relentless speed and intensity of societal, technological, legislative and economic forces on HR issues that impact how we manage and lead people will never cease. Leaders, managers and HRM professionals alike, must engage in continuous development and knowledge updates in order to provide precise, value-added service to their organisation(s), regardless of which level of organisational engagement in which they operate. Being able to acquire new insights, forecast potential impacts and develop ethical solutions and plans to address new and emerging challenges and opportunities in managing and leading people, is an essential and non-negotiable aspect of agile, effective professional practice. Professional bodies expect their professionals to be able to interpret the external and internal environment of their organisations and design and deliver value-added solutions and strategies to organisational stakeholders. Leaders, managers and HRM practitioners alike are expected to act with professional integrity in guiding and influencing organisational decisions. This course aims to provide students with a level of heightened awareness and practice at forward-thinking and developing appropriate solutions to dynamic HRM tensions, issues and opportunities that they confront when managing people in modern day organisations.


This course has relevance to students enrolled in any program of study leading to employment in roles where they are expected to lead, manage, and/or supervise people, or who are already performing such roles in their careers. The aim of this course is to develop the student's inquiry and problem-solving skills and improve their use of persuasive written and oral communication techniques. Students will engage in self-directed learning and independent desktop-based research in order to distinguish and examine, in detail, a contemporary or emergent HRM issue or issues relevant to their current role, or future role, in managing people. The selected issue(s) will be evaluated in relation to current HRM approaches and for their ethical implications for the organisation and/or on their professional ethics as a HRM practitioner or manager/leader generally. Students can expect to analyse and persuasively recommend solutions to identified HRM issues through the submission of written and oral presentations. Students with prior knowledge and/or experience in dealing with HRM-related issues in their work are assumed to have the foundation knowledge for this course. Students without prior HRM exposure, or those who wish to refresh their HRM knowledge, will be provided the option to pursue further reading about HRM practice as an additional aspect of their self-directed learning in this course.


On successful completion of this course students should be able to:

  1. distinguish and discuss contemporary or emergent HRM issues that influence – or are expected to influence – how management should engage with or manage its worker(s), and/or other organisational stakeholders, and/or organisational policy or strategy
  2. critically evaluate current HRM theory and/or practice in relation to its approach to managing contemporary or emergent HRM issues
  3. design ethical solutions (such as policies, processes, practices, strategies, initiatives) to contemporary or emergent HRM issues
  4. communicate through written and oral presentations that inform, recommend, and/or persuade others in relation to solutions to address contemporary or emergent issues.


Description Weighting(%)
1. Self-leadership, professional ethics and credible activism 10.00
2. Current conversations about the HRM role, its policy and practices 10.00
3. Examination of contemporary and emerging issues 80.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

There are no texts or materials required for this course.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
Briken, Kendra, 1972-, (editor.) & Chillas, Shiona, (editor.) & Krzywdzinski, Martin, (editor.) & Marks, Abigail, 1971-, (editor.) 2017, The new digital workplace : how new technologies revolutionise work, Palgrave, London.
Nikolaou, Ioannis, (editor.) & Oostrom, Janneke K., (editor.) & Ebooks Corporation 2015, Employee recruitment, selection, and assessment : contemporary issues for theory and practice, Psychology Press, Hove, East Sussex ; New York, NY.
Werth, Shalene, (editor.) & Brownlow, Charlotte, 1974-, (editor.) 2018, Work and identity : contemporary perspectives on workplace diversity, Palgrave Macmillan, Cham, Switzerland.
Wilkinson, Adrian, (editor) & Bacon, Nicholas, (editor) & Snell, Scott, (editor) & Lepak, David, (editor) 2019, The SAGE Handbook of Human Resource Management, 2nd edn, Sage Publications Ltd, Melbourne.

Student workload expectations

Activity Hours
Directed Study 20.00
Independent Study 145.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
ASSIGNMENT 1 100 50 29 Aug 2019
ASSIGNMENT 2 100 50 23 Oct 2019

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    There are no attendance requirements for this course. However, it is the students’ responsibility to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an individual assessment item a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks for that item.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    Students should refer to the Assessment Procedure (point 4.2.4)

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the aggregate of the weighted marks obtained for each of the summative items for the course.

  6. Examination information:
    NO EXAM: There is no examination in this course.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    NO EXAM:
    There is no examination in this course, there will be no deferred or supplementary examinations.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. Referencing in assignments must comply with the Harvard (AGPS) referencing system. This system should be used by students to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The Harvard (APGS) style to be used is defined by the USQ library’s referencing guide. This guide can be found at

Evaluation and benchmarking

In meeting the University’s aims to establish quality learning and teaching for all programs, this course monitors and ensures quality assurance and improvements in at least two ways. This course:
1. conforms to the USQ Policy on Evaluation of Teaching, Courses and Programs to ensure ongoing monitoring and systematic improvement.
2. forms part of the Graduate Certificate of Workforce Diversity and Inclusion and is benchmarked against the internal USQ accreditation/reaccreditation processes which include (i) stringent standards in the independent accreditation of its academic programs, (ii) close integration between business and academic planning, and (iii) regular and rigorous review.