Human Resource Management (CIPD Accredited) MSc - University of Sunderland

Course overview

Are you looking to make a difference to the way that organisations improve motivation, foster career development and treat people well? This course provides specialist postgraduate training in Human Resource Management (HRM).

This Human Resource Management degree is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). These accreditations show that our postgraduate HRM courses fully align with the latest academic and professional advancements, both within the UK and internationally.

Successful completion* of the course fulfils part of the requirements for professional membership of the CIPD. Membership of a professional body such as this, will further boost individual employability and help students progress towards senior managerial roles.

The course explores the Human Resource Management in areas such as leadership, employment relations, recruitment, selection, training, development and managing. The teaching is informed by current academic debates and the latest research. Core modules include ‘Managing, Leading and Developing People’, ‘Investigating a Business Issue from an HR Perspective’, ‘Developing Skills for Business and Leadership’ and ‘Learning and Talent Development’. The Human Resource Reflective Project will focus on a strategic HRM issue within an organisation which students identify themselves with the support of an academic tutor.

The University will ensure that the student’s learning is rooted in a real-world context by inviting guest speakers to share their practical HRM business experience together with arranging an external organisational visit. 

Sunderland Business School is ranked Best in the Noth East for Course Satisfaction, according to The Guardian University Guide 2015. Our teaching is informed by the latest research and up-to-date approaches and in the recent Research Excellence Framework (REF) research in the business area was rated 'world-leading'.

* Please note that students must achieve a 50% pass mark in all CIPD related areas to gain Associate Membership of the CIPD.

Course content

Modules on this course include:

  • Developing Skills for Business and Leadership (15 Credits)
  • Human Resource Management in Context (15 Credits)
  • Managing, Leading and Developing People (15 Credits)
  • Learning and Talent Development (15 Credits)
  • Leadership and Management Development (15 Credits)
  • Resourcing and Talent Management (15 Credits)
  • Investigating a Business Issues from a Human Resource Management Perspective (30 Credits)
  • Human Resource Reflective Project (30 Credits)

Plus choose one module from the following list of three modules:

  • Employee Relations (15 Credits)
  • Employment Law (15 Credits)
  • Organisational Development and Change (15 Credits)

Plus choose one further module from the following list of five modules:

  • International HRM (15 Credits)
  • Managing Diversity (15 Credits)
  • Employee Relations (15 Credits)
  • Employment Law (15 Credits)
  • Organisational Development and Change (15 Credits)

Teaching and assessment

The University uses a wide variety of teaching and learning methods which include lectures, case studies and workshops all of which are supported by the University’s virtual learning environment, Sunspace.

Compared to an undergraduate course, you will find that this Masters course requires a higher level of independent reading and research.

Assessment methods include individual and group assignments, business reports, presentations, case study analysis, portfolios of work and time-constrained activities as well as the Masters Reflective Project.

Information about our policies relating to student experience and quality assurance processes can be found on the Academic Services website.

Facilities & location

This course is based on the banks of the River Wear at The Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter’s. Recently the University developed a Student Learning Space that is specifically designed to facilitate collaboration and team-based projects. It includes a board room as well as bookable areas to hold meetings and to meet with staff and visitors from outside the University.

University Library Services

The St Peter’s Library contains over 31,000 books related to business, economics, management, human resources, marketing, strategy and tourism.

Added to this, students benefit from a wide range of journals and periodicals in the St Peter’s library, many of them in online format. To help you make the most of the wealth of resources there’s a full-time librarian who is dedicated to the Business and Tourism sections.

Further resources are available at the main Murray Library, which has a total of over 430,000 books with many more available through the inter-library loan service. The University spends around £1 million every year on new books and resources.

IT provision

When it comes to IT provision students can choose from over a hundred PCs in the St Peter’s Library, three computer laboratories, and wireless access zones. If you have any problems, just ask the friendly helpdesk team.

Learning environment

The University of Sunderland is a vibrant learning environment with an international dimension thanks to the presence of students from around the world. At the same time, the University is fully plugged into the world of business as a result of strong links with industry organisations.


The Reg Vardy Centre

The Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter's, St Peter's Way, Sunderland, SR6 0DD

Entry requirements

The University of Sunderland's typical offer will be a 2:2 honours degree or equivalent.

If English is not your first language, please see our English language requirements.

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

If you feel you already know some of the topics covered in this course, either due to previous learning or from experience of work, then you may not need to study all of the course.

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) is the name given to the process of gaining credit towards a qualification because of something you have learnt in the past. If you are eligible for APL you won't have to learn the same topic again, and so you can be exempt from a module, set of modules or year of a course. 

Read more about APL in the Quality Handbook (.pdf). If you think you may be eligible for APL, please contact the course leader.

Fees & finance

Postgraduate loans

From 2016/17, tuition fee loans will be available to UK/EU postgraduate students for the first time. Find out more about the eligibility criteria.


The annual fee for this course is:

  • £4,750 if you are from the UK / EU
  • £11,500 if you are an International student

If you are not sure whether you qualify as a UK, EU or International student, please see the International section of this website.

Employment & careers

This Masters course equips students with advanced skills and knowledge that will help you progress rapidly to more senior roles in Human Resource Management. It is accredited by the CIPD and SHRM, which means that students have access to additional HR research, conferences, training and development.

The average salary of a HR officer is £25,000 and HR directors typically earn between £75,000 and £100,000 (source: Hudson 2013 Salary & Employment Insights). CIPD-accredited qualifications can significantly enhance your career opportunities.

Previous Sunderland graduates are now working at senior and strategic levels in HRM in a wide range of industries including Caterpillar, BT and Nissan.

Your Masters degree will also enhance opportunities for academic roles or further study towards a PhD.

The Enterprise Place

If you have a good idea for a new business and have the dedication and motivation to make it happen, then we want to hear from you. The Enterprise Place, based on-campus at St Peter's Gate Business Centre, is the perfect environment for entrepreneurial students and graduates to turn their business ideas into reality. You will have access to free hot desk space, IT facilities, specialist advice and support and business mentors and networking opportunities.

To find out more about how we can help you start a business, please contact the University's Enterprise Team:

Tel: 0191 515 3751


Support for your learning

From the start of the course students will be put in contact with a Personal Tutor who will be available to meet individual students at agreed times throughout your course. The Personal Tutor is a useful point of contact for any queries about the course. They are also able to direct the students towards specialist services at the University. These include student counselling, financial advice and chaplaincy support.

All students at Sunderland Business School have access to Student Academic Advisors. They provide workshops on study skills and follow up with one-to-one support and guidance as necessary.

Support for your development

To help ensure the course is meeting individual aspirations for personal development, students will be invited to complete in questionnaires at the end of modules. This provides a structured way for students to keep the University up-to-date with student opinions and developmental improvements for the course.

During the course, and particularly towards the end of it, the University will encourage each student to make full use of the resources at our Careers and Employability Service. The Service helps students explore career opportunities and make effective applications.

Extracurricular activities

The University supports student-led initiatives that enhance the extracurricular activities available to you. Some of these are related to particular subjects while others allow you to pursue interests and social activities. It’s all part of the vibrant and life-changing atmosphere at the University of Sunderland.

For more information about all the support services you will have access to as a Sunderland student, please see Student support and guidance.

"I chose to study at Sunderland because of its international links and placement opportunities."

James Ghulam - Graduate NN2C

James Ghulam - Graduate

Operations Manager - White Lodging Services, USA

"In my second year I decided to sign up for the University's nine-month Study Abroad exchange programme at Valdosta State University in Georgia. I absolutely loved it, ever since I was young I've wanted to live and work in America. I decided to stay on, made some enquiries and found a placement in Houston, Texas with White Lodging Services (WLS) for one year.

"The experience really was life-changing and I knew when I returned to University for my final year what I had to do to succeed. It really helped open my eyes to the world of work and made me more professional. The company is renowned in the US for developing young professionals. They have taken me from a student abroad into a full grown professional, now I'm going back as an operations manager.

"Sunderland has given me a life-changing experience and developed me into a fully-fledged professional, I am a lot more focused on my career. I would advise any students to make the most of their opportunities at the University.

"This opportunity would not have happened without the University of Sunderland. I chose to study here because of its international links and placement opportunities. The support you receive throughout your course from your lecturers is second to none."

Apply for this course

To apply for this course use the relevant link below.

    Next Open Day

  • Date: Thursday 16th February 2017
  • Time: 2:00pm-7:00pm
  • Type: University Open Day
  • Location: Gateway, City Campus, University of Sunderland

Contact Sunderland

Course Leader:
Lesley Mearns

Contact the Student Helpline for further information about studying at the Universty of Sunderland:

Tel: 0191 515 3000


Programme Starts  
Monday 16th October 2017 Apply now

The details

Course Name Human Resource Management (CIPD Accredited)
Classification MSc
Course Mode Full-time
Course Level Postgraduate
Duration 1 year
Study Location On-campus (Sunderland)
Starting 16 October 2017
UK/EU Fee £4750
Intl Fee £11500

Entry requirements

See entry requirements tab

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