The aims of the course are:
- To obtain knowledge and insight concerning organisational development; determinants of effective change processes; social influence and resistance mechanisms; and interventions at three analytical levels: organisational, team and individual (EK1).
- Application of knowledge: the ability to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions at organisational, team and individual levels, and to apply interventions in theory and in cases, and predict and explain their effects (EK2).
- Professional judgment formulation: critical analysis of the efficacy and desirability of interventions aimed at organisational change in a scientific and societal sense (EK3).
- Critical reflection on material learned in relation to one’s future professional actions (EK5).
- Professional communication in the form of active participation and interaction during the class sessions and workshop presentations (EK4).
What we expect from students
We expect everyone to present a proactive, professional and academic attitude and input. This involves being well prepared for class, reading the corresponding literature in advance, preparing cases and actively participating in the discussions and presentations.
What the students can expect from us and from this course
Throughout recent years, students have consistently evaluated this course as being very good (4.6), very instructive (4.7) and inspiring (4.8) (on a 5-point scale, with 5 being very positive). The course stimulates working and thinking independently (4.2) and further develops one’s professional attitude (4.2).
In this in-depth course we investigate:
The central focus is on the distinction between effect- and process-interventions to enhance organisational change. We will analyse various effect interventions at:
- under what conditions organisations develop into healthy, productive and learning organisations.
- what social and neuropyschological processes play a role in people’s behavioural change and related learning processes.
- what theoretical approaches to organisational development are related to these purposes.
- the professional scientist-practitioner role of the agent/trainer/consultant in such change processes, including the ethical aspects and specific practical dilemmas of this profession.
- how we can make professional judgments about all kinds of 'wicked' problem situations and its possible solutions / interventions.
We will examine the intervention goals (need for change and relevance), approach (process interventions) and theoretical assumptions about change, behaviour, and effects.
- an individual level (changes in behaviour and mindset)
- a group level (changes in collaboration, leadership)
- an organisational level (systematic interventions, cultural changes).
We will explore the role of neuropsychological and social processes (habits, emotions, self-serving biases, manipulation, motivation, resistance, rewards) in designing process interventions that support the implementation of effect interventions, both in theory and by means of cases.
Every year several specific change intervention techniques are investigated in small groups outside of lecture hours and presented during the compulsory workshop.
Please note: The course has a strong focus on case-based learning, which means that each component is centered around one or more cases. Critical analysis of cases and reflection on theoretical, practical, methodological and ethical aspects is seen as an important skill and will be assessed in the exam.
Only students in the Master’s Psychology programme are admitted. The B3 course in Organisational Psychology [PSB3BE50E] is considered the entry level for this course.
Assessment learning objectives 1, 2, 3, and 4:|
Open book written examination (about 25 open-ended questions) on a complex case. The case will be available at the beginning of the course (100% final grade).
Assessment learning objective 5:
Active participation during the interactive parts of the six face-to-face-lectures and the workshops (assignments); contribution to the presentations during the workshops (100% attendance compulsory).
Further information on these examination components is given online on the Brightspace site of the course. Sample questions for the examination are dealt with weekly in the lectures and in group discussions and 1 sample question can be found on Brightspace.
Due to possible unexpected events or measures involving the corona-crisis, (parts of) this course and/or examination may be altered / adapted / changed / or skipped.