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PSY 338 – Organisational Psychology

2017 – S1 Day

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit Convenor
Ben Searle
Contact via ben.searle@mq.edu.au
Credit points Credit points
3
Prerequisites Prerequisites
(39cp at 100 level or above) including (PSY104(P) or PSYC104) and (PSY105(P) or PSYC105)
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Runs alongside External version of PSY338.
Unit description Unit description
This unit introduces students to psychological perspectives of the world of work, including both individual and organisational aspects. We cover such topics such as personnel selection, job attitudes, stress, personality, and human factors at work. Students discover some of the ways organisational psychologists have used the science of psychology to learn more about the human condition and to assist in the effective management of businesses. This unit provides a valuable background for the application of scientific principles and findings to workplace policies and practices that involve people. Through tutorial exercises and discussions, the unit ensures that students gain an appreciation of job analysis; recruitment and selection techniques; occupational stress management; and other psychological issues in the workplace.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at http://students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/enrolmentguide/academicdates/

Learning Outcomes

  1. Able to conduct job analyses -- to systematically collect and analyse information about jobs, enabling an accurate description of the job and the competencies required to be successful at the job.
  2. Able to write behavioural interview questions -- to create interview questions that elicit evidence about a candidate's previous behaviour in relation to core job competencies.
  3. Able to apply appropriate assessment principles to employee selection -- to utilise awareness of test reliability and validity as well as strengths and limitations of different assessments.
  4. Able to set effective goals (for self or others) -- to specify goals that are challenging, measureable and achievable.
  5. Able to identify stressors -- to recognise major sources of employee stress in a workplace situation.
  6. Able to apply models of human performance -- to use knowledge about the factors that impact employee performance to direct performance-improvement interventions.
  7. Able to engage others in a survey process -- to follow an ethical procedure of providing informed consent to recruit employed people to complete a carefully-designed survey.
  8. Able to research discoveries in organisational psychology -- to locate, understand and apply the most theories and findings about psychological and behavioural issues in the workplace.
  9. Able to communicate about organisational psychology -- to write reports for different audiences on conceptual and practical aspects of psychological factors that relate to the modern workplace.

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Hurdle Due
Weekly online quiz 6% Weekly
Survey recruitment exercise 4% TBA
Scientific Report Introduction 30% TBA
Research Summary 30% TBA
Final examination 30% Examination period

Weekly online quiz

Due: Weekly
Weighting: 6%

Type: Participation

Description:  The weekly quizzes are designed to promote regular consumption of lecture video content and other materials, and to provide you with feedback about your understanding of those materials.

Requirements:  Students can access quizzes via the unit iLearn website. Each quiz will be available for a limited time. It is the responsibility of students to keep track of whether or not they have completed each quiz.

Standards:  Students must attain a Pass grade (50%) or better to be awarded marks for participation in the quiz. Quizzes can be taken repeatedly until the desired grade is achieved.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Able to conduct job analyses -- to systematically collect and analyse information about jobs, enabling an accurate description of the job and the competencies required to be successful at the job.
  • Able to write behavioural interview questions -- to create interview questions that elicit evidence about a candidate's previous behaviour in relation to core job competencies.
  • Able to apply appropriate assessment principles to employee selection -- to utilise awareness of test reliability and validity as well as strengths and limitations of different assessments.
  • Able to set effective goals (for self or others) -- to specify goals that are challenging, measureable and achievable.
  • Able to identify stressors -- to recognise major sources of employee stress in a workplace situation.
  • Able to apply models of human performance -- to use knowledge about the factors that impact employee performance to direct performance-improvement interventions.

Survey recruitment exercise

Due: TBA
Weighting: 4%

Type: Participation

Description:  This exercise is designed give you experience in using surveys to advance psychology knowledge in a way that also has practical workplace applications. Your task is to invite four working adults to participate in an online survey on a topic relevant to organisational psychology, and to enter their contact emails into an online form. More information about the task and methods will be provided early in semester.

Requirements:  Students can receive participation marks if enough of the people you recruited commence the survey. If these people subsequently fail to complete the survey you will not be penalised. If you notify us in advance that you are unable to recruit participants, another research participation exercise can be found.

Standards:  Students must recruit participants using the specified methods / requirements.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Able to engage others in a survey process -- to follow an ethical procedure of providing informed consent to recruit employed people to complete a carefully-designed survey.

Scientific Report Introduction

Due: TBA
Weighting: 30%

Type: Graded

Description:  This exercise is designed to develop greater understanding of organisational psychology theory and research, as well as to develop skills in communication, critical analysis, and capability for evidence-based argument. Students write up to 800 words about the survey study being conducted as part of this unit, following the style and structure of the introduction section to a scientific report.

Requirements:  Students need to read articles published in reputable journals in order to better understand and explain conceptual issues related to the survey project. Specific requirements will be described in an assessment guide available early in semester. Electronic copies must be submitted via the unit website.

Standards: Assessment standards by which reports are evaluated will be described in an assessment guide available early in semester.

 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Able to identify stressors -- to recognise major sources of employee stress in a workplace situation.
  • Able to research discoveries in organisational psychology -- to locate, understand and apply the most theories and findings about psychological and behavioural issues in the workplace.
  • Able to communicate about organisational psychology -- to write reports for different audiences on conceptual and practical aspects of psychological factors that relate to the modern workplace.

Research Summary

Due: TBA
Weighting: 30%

Type: Graded

Description:  This exercise is designed to develop greater understanding of applications of organisational psychology, as well as to develop skills in communication of organisational psychology research to a non-scientific audience. Students will write a short report about findings from the survey study being conducted as part of this unit, focusing on their relevance to business. The writing style must be that of a business news article.

Requirements:  Students will need to read articles published in reputable journals in order to better understand and explain conceptual issues related to the survey project. In addition, students will need to read business news articles (examples will be provided) to get a sense of how to present their report. More details and specific requirements will be described in an assessment guide. Electronic copies must be submitted via the unit website.

Standards: Assessment standards by which reports are evaluated will be described in an assessment guide available early in semester.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Able to identify stressors -- to recognise major sources of employee stress in a workplace situation.
  • Able to research discoveries in organisational psychology -- to locate, understand and apply the most theories and findings about psychological and behavioural issues in the workplace.
  • Able to communicate about organisational psychology -- to write reports for different audiences on conceptual and practical aspects of psychological factors that relate to the modern workplace.

Final examination

Due: Examination period
Weighting: 30%

Type: Graded

Description:  A formal examination will be held during the university examination period at a time and date to be decided by the university. A formally invigilated examination allows assessment of student attainment of the unit’s learning objectives in an environment with minimal opportunity for academic misconduct. Questions will be designed to assess recall and comprehension of unit content, as well as application of conceptual factors to specific situations.

Requirements:  All topics covered in lectures and tutorials are examinable.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Able to conduct job analyses -- to systematically collect and analyse information about jobs, enabling an accurate description of the job and the competencies required to be successful at the job.
  • Able to write behavioural interview questions -- to create interview questions that elicit evidence about a candidate's previous behaviour in relation to core job competencies.
  • Able to apply appropriate assessment principles to employee selection -- to utilise awareness of test reliability and validity as well as strengths and limitations of different assessments.
  • Able to set effective goals (for self or others) -- to specify goals that are challenging, measureable and achievable.
  • Able to identify stressors -- to recognise major sources of employee stress in a workplace situation.
  • Able to apply models of human performance -- to use knowledge about the factors that impact employee performance to direct performance-improvement interventions.

Delivery and Resources

Online lecture videos

Lecture content will be delivered via online videos – there are no on-campus lectures for this unit. Due to the use of online videos in this unit, students must either have reliable access to computing equipment and internet, or else must access these facilities on campus. Approximately 2 hours of videos per week will be provided via the iLearn website for each of the 13 teaching weeks. Individual videos will vary in duration, with most running between 25-40 minutes. An assessable weekly quiz is used to encourage students to keep up to date with watching the videos.

Online expert interviews

In addition to the lecture videos, you have access to a range of interviews with respected experts in this field. Interviews with organisational psychology researchers and practitioners provide you with key insights into the "what, why and how" of key areas, beyond what you will see in any textbook.

Tutorials

Internal students are expected to attend all weekly tutorials. Tutorial times are listed on the university timetable: http://www.timetables.mq.edu.au/

Managing Classes: Changes to all units can be done on-line via eStudent before the start of semester and for a brief period after semester begins.  

Reading

The textbook set for this unit is currently:

Landy, F. J, & Conte, J. M. (2013). Work in the 21st Century: An Introduction to Industrial and Organizational Psychology (4th Edition). McGraw Hill.

In addition to reading appropriate sections from the textbook, students are encouraged to read articles published in journals in the field of organisational psychology to provide the information required for the major assignment, as well as furthering their understanding of this field. High quality journals include the Journal of Applied Psychology and the Academy of Management Journal. This will be important for many of the assessment activities, particularly the literature review.

Online resources

The iLearn site will include links to other online resources you can explore to learn more about each topic.

Unit Schedule

Unit outline will list weekly lecture and tutorial topics. Tutorials start in week 2.

Learning and Teaching Activities

Online lecture videos

Online lecture videos

Online expert interviews

Online interviews with organisational psychology experts

Tutorials

Tutorials

Online resources

Online resources and web links

Textbook

Textbook and recommended readings

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central. Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Academic Honesty Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html

Assessment Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/assessment/policy_2016.html

Grade Appeal Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html

Complaint Management Procedure for Students and Members of the Public http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/complaint_management/procedure.html​

Disruption to Studies Policy (in effect until Dec 4th, 2017): http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html

Special Consideration Policy (in effect from Dec 4th, 2017): https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policies/special-consideration

In addition, a number of other policies can be found in the Learning and Teaching Category of Policy Central.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/support/student_conduct/

Results

Results shown in iLearn, or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au.

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to improve your marks and take control of your study.

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Graduate Capabilities

Discipline Specific Knowledge and Skills

Our graduates will take with them the intellectual development, depth and breadth of knowledge, scholarly understanding, and specific subject content in their chosen fields to make them competent and confident in their subject or profession. They will be able to demonstrate, where relevant, professional technical competence and meet professional standards. They will be able to articulate the structure of knowledge of their discipline, be able to adapt discipline-specific knowledge to novel situations, and be able to contribute from their discipline to inter-disciplinary solutions to problems.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Able to conduct job analyses -- to systematically collect and analyse information about jobs, enabling an accurate description of the job and the competencies required to be successful at the job.
  • Able to write behavioural interview questions -- to create interview questions that elicit evidence about a candidate's previous behaviour in relation to core job competencies.
  • Able to apply appropriate assessment principles to employee selection -- to utilise awareness of test reliability and validity as well as strengths and limitations of different assessments.
  • Able to set effective goals (for self or others) -- to specify goals that are challenging, measureable and achievable.
  • Able to identify stressors -- to recognise major sources of employee stress in a workplace situation.
  • Able to apply models of human performance -- to use knowledge about the factors that impact employee performance to direct performance-improvement interventions.

Assessment tasks

  • Weekly online quiz
  • Scientific Report Introduction
  • Research Summary
  • Final examination

Learning and teaching activities

  • Online lecture videos
  • Online interviews with organisational psychology experts
  • Tutorials
  • Online resources and web links
  • Textbook and recommended readings

Critical, Analytical and Integrative Thinking

We want our graduates to be capable of reasoning, questioning and analysing, and to integrate and synthesise learning and knowledge from a range of sources and environments; to be able to critique constraints, assumptions and limitations; to be able to think independently and systemically in relation to scholarly activity, in the workplace, and in the world. We want them to have a level of scientific and information technology literacy.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Assessment tasks

  • Scientific Report Introduction
  • Research Summary

Learning and teaching activities

  • Online lecture videos
  • Online resources and web links
  • Textbook and recommended readings

Problem Solving and Research Capability

Our graduates should be capable of researching; of analysing, and interpreting and assessing data and information in various forms; of drawing connections across fields of knowledge; and they should be able to relate their knowledge to complex situations at work or in the world, in order to diagnose and solve problems. We want them to have the confidence to take the initiative in doing so, within an awareness of their own limitations.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Able to apply models of human performance -- to use knowledge about the factors that impact employee performance to direct performance-improvement interventions.
  • Able to research discoveries in organisational psychology -- to locate, understand and apply the most theories and findings about psychological and behavioural issues in the workplace.

Assessment tasks

  • Survey recruitment exercise
  • Scientific Report Introduction
  • Research Summary
  • Final examination

Learning and teaching activities

  • Online resources and web links

Creative and Innovative

Our graduates will also be capable of creative thinking and of creating knowledge. They will be imaginative and open to experience and capable of innovation at work and in the community. We want them to be engaged in applying their critical, creative thinking.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Assessment tasks

  • Scientific Report Introduction
  • Research Summary

Effective Communication

We want to develop in our students the ability to communicate and convey their views in forms effective with different audiences. We want our graduates to take with them the capability to read, listen, question, gather and evaluate information resources in a variety of formats, assess, write clearly, speak effectively, and to use visual communication and communication technologies as appropriate.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • Able to communicate about organisational psychology -- to write reports for different audiences on conceptual and practical aspects of psychological factors that relate to the modern workplace.

Assessment tasks

  • Scientific Report Introduction
  • Research Summary

Learning and teaching activities

  • Tutorials

Engaged and Ethical Local and Global citizens

As local citizens our graduates will be aware of indigenous perspectives and of the nation's historical context. They will be engaged with the challenges of contemporary society and with knowledge and ideas. We want our graduates to have respect for diversity, to be open-minded, sensitive to others and inclusive, and to be open to other cultures and perspectives: they should have a level of cultural literacy. Our graduates should be aware of disadvantage and social justice, and be willing to participate to help create a wiser and better society.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • Able to engage others in a survey process -- to follow an ethical procedure of providing informed consent to recruit employed people to complete a carefully-designed survey.

Assessment tasks

  • Survey recruitment exercise
  • Research Summary

Socially and Environmentally Active and Responsible

We want our graduates to be aware of and have respect for self and others; to be able to work with others as a leader and a team player; to have a sense of connectedness with others and country; and to have a sense of mutual obligation. Our graduates should be informed and active participants in moving society towards sustainability.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • Able to identify stressors -- to recognise major sources of employee stress in a workplace situation.

Capable of Professional and Personal Judgement and Initiative

We want our graduates to have emotional intelligence and sound interpersonal skills and to demonstrate discernment and common sense in their professional and personal judgement. They will exercise initiative as needed. They will be capable of risk assessment, and be able to handle ambiguity and complexity, enabling them to be adaptable in diverse and changing environments.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • Able to set effective goals (for self or others) -- to specify goals that are challenging, measureable and achievable.

Assessment tasks

  • Scientific Report Introduction
  • Research Summary

Learning and teaching activities

  • Tutorials

Commitment to Continuous Learning

Our graduates will have enquiring minds and a literate curiosity which will lead them to pursue knowledge for its own sake. They will continue to pursue learning in their careers and as they participate in the world. They will be capable of reflecting on their experiences and relationships with others and the environment, learning from them, and growing - personally, professionally and socially.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Assessment tasks

  • Scientific Report Introduction
  • Research Summary

Learning and teaching activities

  • Online resources and web links