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HRMG601 Human Resource Management , HRMG603 Workplace Relations

Teaching organisation

3 hours per week for twelve weeks or equivalent.

Unit rationale, description and aim

This unit aims to critically examine human resource management issues which are emerging in contemporary workplaces and organizations. It seeks to integrate and build on the previous human resource management units. The issues are examined from a variety of ethical, global and practical perspectives and competing approaches to the issues are debated. The scope of the issues are described, their influence on human resource policy and practice and their impact on various stakeholders explored through the concepts of the dignity of work and solidarity. The unit addresses the importance of a range of national and international contexts in shaping the link to strategic success in a world of changing values and demands. Each employee brings with them considerable challenges and contemporary issues must be able to consider these within the opportunity to make a difference both to the employee and the profession.

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Examine and analyse a number of human resource management issues in contemporary workplaces that impact on the dignity of each individual and human diversity (GA1, GA5)

LO2 - Apply various national culture based and cross-culture based frameworks and theories to address HRM issues especially in the international environment (GA5, GA6)

LO3 - Assess the ethical assumptions and values which inform various frameworks and theories and their impact on human resource policies and practices (GA3, GA5)

LO4 - Appraise and reflect on the influence of contexts such as national, cultural, stage of economic development and demographics on the development of human resource issues (GA4, GA5)

LO5 - Evaluate a number of HRM topics and issues which have emerged in the past ten years in both domestic and international contexts (GA5, GA8)

Graduate attributes

GA1 - demonstrate respect for the dignity of each individual and for human diversity 

GA3 - apply ethical perspectives in informed decision making

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession

GA6 - solve problems in a variety of settings taking local and international perspectives into account

GA8 - locate, organise, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information 


Topics will include:

  • Overview of a number of contemporary and emerging human resource management issues
  • Analysis of the influence of different national and international cultural contexts to solve contemporary human resources management issues
  • Critically analyse and reflect how different assumptions, values and contexts influence policies dealing with contemporary HRM issues
  • Examination of contemporary HRM issues –
  1. diverse work groups,
  2. HR analytics,
  3. Virtual workplaces,
  4. Emic and etic approaches to manage global workforces,
  5. Corporate governance and social responsibility HRM,
  6. Ethical HRM approach for corporate social responsibility (CSR),
  7. Occupational health and wellbeing
  • Measurement and evaluation of human resource outcomes – on employees, organisations, the community and other stakeholders
  • Convergence or divergence of HRM issues in the future

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

Mode of delivery: Workshops

Pattern of attendance and duration: 3 hour workshops over a twelve week period or equivalent. Students should expect to undertake 150 hours of study for this unit, including class attendance, readings and assignment preparation.

Learning and teaching strategies: Students are required to review various forms of media to explore emerging and contemporary human resource issues. They are required to share these with other students and explore the reasons these issues emerged. They are also required to recommend various methods of dealing with these issues and explore the assumptions and values informing these actions.

Assessment strategy and rationale

A range of assessment procedures will be used to meet the unit learning outcomes and develop graduate attributes consistent with University assessment requirements. Such procedures may include, but are not limited to: essays, reports, examinations, student poster presentations, critical self reflection journal or case studies. 

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Assessment Task 1: Interview and report writing

This assessment task consists of conducting an interview with a middle or senior level HRM manager in an organisation  about emerging real world HRM issue(s) that the organisation is currently facing. Subsequently, prepare a report (1500 words) with a range of perspectives to solve the current organisational HRM issue(s) and their impact on human dignity based on a review of relevant literature.

Submission Type: Individual

Assessment Method: Report

Artefact: Written report


LO1, LO2, LO3

GA1, GA3, GA5, GA6

Assessment Task 2: Critical self-reflection journal

This assessment task consists of a ‘critical self-reflection learning journal’ (1500 words). Students are required to research and reflect on any four contemporary HRM topics and issues indicated in the unit that affect them personally  values in their current or future role as a HR professional.

Submission Type: Individual

Assessment Method: Critical self-reflection journal

Artefact: Written ereflection 


LO3, LO4

GA3, GA4, GA5

Assessment Task 3: Group poster presentation on a contemporary HRM topic/issue

This assessment task consists of summative assessment require  students to collaborate in a team (maximum 3) to reflect an d analyse  a current HRM topic/issue. The task must include concise information about the topic/issue with supporting academic literature , and attractive visual format using a mixture of text, tables, pictures, and other presentation formats.

Submission Type: Group

Assessment Method: Presentation

Artefact: Poster presentation


LO4, LO5

GA4, GA5, GA8

Representative texts and references

Boxall, P & Purcell, J 2016, Strategy and Human Resource Management, 4th edn, Palgrave, London.

Cooke, F. L., Dickmann, M., & Parry, E. 2020. Important issues in human resource management: introduction to the 2020 review issue. International Journal of Human Resource Management, 31(1), 1-5

Holland, P. 2019. Contemporary HRM issues in 21st century, Emerald publishing limited.

Roper, I., Prouska, R., Na Ayudhya, U. C. 2020. Critical Issues in Human Resource Management: Contemporary Perspectives, Macmillan International, UK.  

Voegtlin, C & Greenwood, M 2016, Corporate social responsibility and human resource management: A systematic review and conceptual analysis, Human Resource Management Review, vol.26, no.3, pp. 181-197. 

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