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Leadership and Management in Public Services (MSc)

Course Description

About the course

On this two year, part-time course we develop capable and resourceful public service managers with the skills to make evidence based decisions, take the lead on initiatives, collaborate with external agencies and solve complex problems within and across organisational boundaries. From the outset students will receive individual support in engaging with masters level study and are enabled to explore particular topics that are of personal interest to them. Every LMPS student has a personal tutor, typically a module leader, who will retain a mentoring role for the student throughout their studies. With support from their personal tutor students develop a personal ‘learning action plan’ which is intended to guide their studies on the LMPS programme.

The exploration of conceptual issues concerned with public service management is balanced with the development of practical skills concerned with the management of people, resources and change. This course has a strong focus on leadership, with each taught module exploring the challenges associated with leading public services from a different perspective. The diagram below provides an overview of the programme structure. Modules from the ‘concept’ and ‘technique’ blocks are classroom based whereas modules form the ‘research block’ are student led, supported by one-to-one tutoring and offering flexibility in terms of pace and topics of study.

Teaching and assessment encourages meaningful learning by applying theory to situations students encounter in their work environments. The assessment strategy ranges from written coursework assignments, to online examinations, in-class tests and practical exercises. Practical assessments include the use of techniques such as the ‘Learning Conversation’ where a structured dialogue between teacher and student is recorded and then assessed, as well as student led discussion sessions, seminars or presentations. Classes take place on three Fridays and Saturdays per semester and class sizes are typically around 12 – 20 students.

See the website http://www.herts.ac.uk/courses/leadership-and-management-in-public-services

- Flexible award structure
You can enrol for three different degree levels on LMPS. The Masters Leadership and Management in Public Services can be obtained with a minimum of two years and a maximum of five years study. The Postgraduate Diploma Leadership and Management of Public Services can be obtained after 18 months of study, and the Postgraduate Certificate Leadership and Management of Public Services can be obtained within the first year of study. The programme offers further flexibility in that prior learning, including recent work based learning, can be accredited to substitute for core modules.

- Who is the course aimed at?
This course is aimed at practitioners who are responsible for the delivery of public services. This includes staff working for charities or social enterprises, private companies, public utilities, social and health care services, housing providers, local and national government agencies and arms-length public bodies. Typically our students come from middle or senior management positions and have responsibility for teams, resources or services.

Why choose this course?

This popular course focuses on the contemporary challenges encountered by managers of publicly funded services. Course content is constantly updated to reflect current government policy and the latest conceptual developments with regard to the application of management ideas in organisations which provide publicly funded services. By combining the study of management theory with the critical analysis of contemporary practice our students develop the skills and capabilities required to progress a managerial career in public, private and third sector organisations.


The course is aimed at developing the careers of managers in public service organisations.

Teaching methods

We are constantly developing and refining our class room techniques. Class sizes are typically between 12 – 16 students which allows us to use a wide range of teaching and learning methods. These range from experiential learning techniques where delivery of content responds to student’s experience and class discussion, for example in our leadership and coaching skills modules. In other subjects, such as project management or performance management there is an emphasis on learning particular techniques or concepts and applying these to case studies. Whatever the topic, all our modules are delivered in an interactive way and based on contemporary approaches to teaching and learning as promoted by the Higher Education Academy.
In addition to group based learning in the classroom our students receive detailed one-to-one supervision during their individual research project. An academic member of staff supports the student in the development of research questions, the development of appropriate data collection and data analysis tools and the identification of relevant literature on the chosen topic.

Professional Accreditations

General Social Care Council qualification available, dependent on module choice.

Find out how to apply here http://www.herts.ac.uk/courses/leadership-and-management-in-public-services#how-to-apply

Find information on Scholarships here http://www.herts.ac.uk/apply/fees-and-funding/scholarships/postgraduate

Visit the Leadership and Management in Public Services (MSc) page on the University of Hertfordshire website for more details!

Entry Requirements

This course is designed for practitioners, in particular middle and senior managers. Entry requirements for the programme are either: a) An honours degree with a 2.2 classification or better in any subject from a UK university or the equivalent from a recognised university overseas, together with current work experience in the management of public services gained either in public, commercial or not-for-profit organisations; or b) five or more years current work experience in the management of public services gained either in public, commercial or not-for-profit organisations, supplemented by evidence of relevant professional development and training.

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