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Programme structure

We want to give you the best chance of applying what you learn with Roehampton Online towards your career. That is why we’ve structured your online learning experience to give you regular opportunities to learn from your peers and receive faculty feedback.

All our online masters programmes consist of seven modules and a dissertation, called the Research Project. Each module is 10 weeks long and composed of five learning units. Your first module will include a comprehensive introduction to our online learning platform. Each learning unit is two weeks long. This means you’ll spend two weeks debating, researching and learning about one subject before moving on to the next.

Module outlines

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Becoming an Effective Student and Professional in Public Administration (10 Weeks)

In the first module, you’ll explore the fundamentals of public administration and where you see yourself in the profession, both now and in the future. You’ll also analyse how the programme can help you develop both as an individual and as a contributor to the public good.

In the first week you will focus on getting to know the online classroom through guided activities designed to help you develop essential study skills that you will need throughout your programme.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Confidently navigate the online classroom and perform a range of tasks including submitting assignments, contributing to discussions and viewing your grades
  • Identify and express personal values, competencies and aspirations
  • Understand the diversity of contexts and possibilities of public policy and management in the 21st century
  • Analyse how personal values, competences and aspirations can influence public policy and management on a global and local level
  • Compare the differences and similarities between public and private administration
  • Apply critical study skills for public administration

Understanding the Challenges of Public Administration (10 Weeks)

This module addresses the diversity of contexts and practices of public administration around the world. You’ll explore the comparative governance of public goods and services, and the changing international challenges facing public administration.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Understand the comparative nature of different public administration systems
  • Understand the diversity and significance of different forces affecting the provision of public goods and services
  • Characterise different responses being used for meeting public administration challenges in providing public goods and services
  • Assess the specific significance for public administration of managing strategy, finance and people
  • Understand the difference between being “businesslike” but not “like a business”

Planning Public Policy and Services (10 Weeks)

This module addresses the planning of public policy, goods and services. You’ll also analyse public policy and develop foundations for identifying the drivers of change and innovation in public policy.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Analyse principles of policy planning for public goods and services, including theories and tools of policy analysis
  • Analyse sources of planned change and innovation
  • Plan for user-centred services that meet the needs of citizens, clients and customers
  • Plan and analyse policy implications of financial and human resource use

Delivering Public Policy and Services (10 Weeks)

Module 4 is designed to equip you with a range of skills and knowledge for implementing public policy and services in a contemporary global context. You will analyse all facets of delivery, including supply chains, implementation strategies, financial management, human resource management, service–user relationships and co-production of outcomes.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Understand the required transition from decision to action in delivering public goods and services
  • Analyse ways in which service users and beneficiaries co-produce outcomes
  • Evaluate types and sources of implementation dysfunction
  • Analyse and contribute to the design and practice of the delivery of goods and services in different contexts

Evaluating Public Policy and Service Effectiveness and Efficiency (10 Weeks)

In this module, you will analyse evaluation roles, processes and methods and relate these methods to specific goals for measuring programme quality. The module enables you to evaluate the quality of programmes to improve professional performance.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Understand the organisation’s role and processes of evaluation
  • Assess the relationship of evaluation to audit, monitoring and other feedback mechanisms
  • Understand the preconditions for effective evaluation
  • Assess the role and impact of evaluation on public-sector reform in relation to your own practice

Elective Module A – Managing Projects (10 Weeks)

This module seeks to equip you with the knowledge and skills to conceptualise, plan and manage projects successfully.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Systematically review and evaluate the concepts of managing projects
  • Understand the organisational context of projects and analyse important factors affecting the success or failure of a project
  • Analyse and apply appropriate techniques to each stage of a project’s life cycle
  • Assess the role and skillset required by a project manager; in particular, leading, negotiating, communicating and cooperating
  • Reflect upon individual and team performance in project management

Please note that current scheduling may be subject to change and that we cannot guarantee that all of the elective modules will be offered in every calendar year.

Elective Module B – Managing Global Organisations (10 Weeks)

This module is designed to give you the tools to analyse the HR manager’s role in operating effectively in global organisations, and for evaluating and managing the implications of contextual change on the HR function.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of HR management operations
  • Articulate the benefits of building a diverse workforce and global sourcing within a global organisation
  • Analyse strategic approaches for planning, resourcing and building a diverse workforce
  • Assess the influence of national cultures on HR management

Please note that current scheduling may be subject to change and that we cannot guarantee that all of the elective modules will be offered in every calendar year.

Elective Module C – Organisations and the Business Environment (10 Weeks)

Acquire the tools and techniques to anticipate and evaluate how the external environment affects the internal structure, processes and behaviour of an organisation, and the opportunity to develop appropriate managerial responses.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Critically evaluate different approaches to organisation, management and decision-making
  • Understand functional areas, roles and responsibilities within an organisation
  • Appraise the external environment within which an organisation resides, and its implications
  • Evaluate and interpret alternative measures of organisational performance
  • Critically evaluate a range of operations practices and techniques to optimise organisational performance
  • Demonstrate skills and knowledge to effectively manage relationships with internal and external stakeholders

Please note that current scheduling may be subject to change and that we cannot guarantee that all of the elective modules will be offered in every calendar year.

Research Methods (10 Weeks)

This module will prepare you to critically evaluate a range of research approaches and formulate an appropriate research strategy to investigate relevant issues. It forms the basis of a research proposal that you will take forward into the Management Research Project.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Discern the rationale and appraise the choice of approaches that can be taken in management research
  • Critically evaluate the methods and results of published research in a relevant field of management literature
  • Select and evaluate appropriate research methods for a management research project
  • Conceptualise a management-related or organisational issue and formulate an appropriate research question
  • Design an appropriate research strategy to address a specific management research question

Public Administration Research Project (26 Weeks)

The Public Administration Research Project will provide you with the opportunity to integrate the prior learning from the programme. You’ll apply the analytical and conceptual tools and personal skills gained from the previous modules to an in-depth investigation of a specific public administration problem. The result will be the presentation of a research report.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Refine and finalise a relevant and feasible topic and research question
  • Design and plan an appropriate research strategy to address a relevant public administration research question
  • Undertake a systematic search and review of relevant published theoretical and research-based literature
  • Collect, analyse and synthesise relevant data
  • Present research results in a critical fashion
  • Present and justify conclusions, implications and, where appropriate, recommendations

At the end of each module you’ll submit a final project, which is a written piece of work (such as an essay or case study). While your final project for each module will be the primary factor in determining your grade, your contributions to shared activities will also be taken into consideration.

Your research project is the largest – and final – piece of work you’ll undertake during your online masters programme. You’ll undertake an in-depth investigation of a specific problem and present your research topic, methodologies, results and conclusions as a report of 10,000 to 12,000 words.

This is your chance to set yourself apart from the rest


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