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Course content

The course aims to produce well-rounded human resources practitioners with exemplary knowledge and relevant hands-on experience.

Accredited by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), the course is designed to -

  • Develop a critical appreciation of the theoretical foundations and empirical practice of HRM and IR
  • Expose you to a wide variety of organisational practices by use of teaching materials based on high quality contemporary research conducted by lecturers and their own research for an independent individual dissertation
  • Enable you to develop practical skills in the subject area to equip you for a career in or further study of the HR/IR field and gives you a grounding in research methods which you can apply appropriately either in the business world or in academic research
  • Provide you with the opportunity to gain graduate membership of the CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development) which is extremely advantageous in securing a career in HRM.

You have the opportunity to attend skills development workshops run by expert HR practitioners to acquire practical HR skills, to attend a live employment tribunal case, and to undertake a group project in an organisation to develop teamworking and practical HR and research skills.

CIPD Course recognition

The course is approved by the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD) to the new equivalent advanced level postgraduate standard.

  • You can enhance your studies by taking additional CIPD components that prepare you for CIPD membership.
  • To qualify for membership you need to attend a series of skills workshops, with presentations by guest speakers, and complete a range of activities enabling you to develop practical HR skills.
  • You join CIPD as a student member and when you have passed all course units (including the dissertation) and the CIPD components, your CIPD membership will be automatically updated to Associate Member. Once you have applied your knowledge in the workplace, you can apply for Chartered membership.
  • There is an additional charge for both the required skill training and the CIPD student membership - contact the Masters Admissions Office for details.

Further information about CIPD qualifications, visit the CIPD website .

If you are particularly interested in international human resource management and /or comparative industrial relations you might like to consider our MSc International Human Resource Management and Comparative Industrial Relations .

Special features

Student Prizes

The Business School presents three prizes associated with the CIPD programme. One is for best Portfolio, one for best Management Research Report and one for overall best student. Further details of the prizes will be available during the programme.

Coursework and assessment

Assessment across the course units varies, and includes a combination of examinations, essays, course work, assignment, report and group presentations. A dissertation of between 12,000 and 15,000 words is also undertaken in the final semester over the summer.

Course unit details

During the course you will be taking 180 credits in all. The eight taught modules during semester one and two total 120 credits and consists of both compulsory and optional taught units which can be viewed in the list below.  

Over the summer period, you will carry out your Research Dissertation, worth 60 credits. Examples of recent dissertation project topics include:

  • Employment security in domestic privately owned enterprises in South China
  • The role of unions in gender equality
  • The fairness of reward management and implications for staff retention
  • Disability discrimination
  • Organisational boundaries and temporary agency staff
  • Work-life balance in China

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: 

Career opportunities

Graduates from the programme have gone on to a wide variety of careers and further study, mostly, but not exclusively, in related fields. These include HR consultancy at PwC, HR roles at BP, Deloitte, Tesco, the NHS, Marks and Spencer, Fujitsu Services, Halliwell LLP, local government, Co-operative Insurance, employment law consultancy and lecturing/research.   

More details on our Careers Service.

Latest information on visa changes and opportunities in the UK for international students.

Accrediting organisations

The course is approved by the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD) to the new equivalent advanced level postgraduate standard.

You will join CIPD as a student member and on completion of the Masters and CIPD components you will have achieved the underpinning knowledge towards a level of professional membership. Once you have applied your knowledge in the workplace you will be in a position to apply to CIPD for a membership upgrade. Further details including costs are available from the postgraduate administration team and you can visit the  CIPD website  

Students wishing to gain CIPD membership attend a series of skills workshops with guests invited from a wide range of companies, to enable them to develop practical HR skills.

Visit the Human Resource Management and Industrial Relations (MSc) page on the University of Manchester website for more details!




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Recipient: University of Manchester

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