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Unit information: Strategy and Organisations in 2015/16

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Unit name Strategy and Organisations
Unit code MGRCM0001
Credit points 20
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Mrs. Nendick
Open unit status Not open




School/department School of Management
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law


This unit lays the foundations of strategic management within an organisational context. Strategic management is concerned with the future direction and scope of an organisation, developed from a thorough understanding of its external and internal environments and of its goals and aspirations. The aims of the unit are to develop students’ knowledge and understanding both of organisational analysis and of the theories, processes and practices of strategic management, and to develop students' ability to think and act strategically. Learning is developed through the use of case studies, exercises, readings, discussion and lectures.

Intended learning outcomes

By the end of the unit, students should be able to:

  • Describe the key points in the history of strategy development in organisations, related to corresponding developments in organisation and management theory;
  • Critically evaluate the principal perspectives for analysing and understanding organisations;
  • Identify, describe and critically evaluate the principle theories, concepts and techniques of strategy and strategic management;
  • Apply theories, concepts and techniques of strategy in practical contexts in order to identify and appraise strategic issues facing organisations and develop and evaluate alternative strategies;
  • Identify key issues affecting the realisation of intended strategies in practical contexts.

Teaching details

A programme of short lectures to introduce theoretical concepts and ideas that inform the subject, discussion of theories and practice, drawing on students’ practical experiences, and case study exercises. Additional reading, and the active use of the Blackboard online learning environment will be used to develop further understanding of theory.

Assessment Details

Summative assignment by individual essay of 4,000 words (100%)

The assignment tests students’ ability to:

  • Identify and describe principal perspectives on strategy development, and relate these to perspectives on organisational analysis.
  • Critically evaluate theory and practice of strategic management
  • Analyse and appraise organisations’ strategies through the application of relevant theory
  • Identify organisational and environmental issues that impact upon the practical realisation of strategies

Reading and References

Johnson, G., Scholes, K & Whittington, R. (2012), Fundamentals of strategy, 2nd Edition, Harlow: Pearson Education.

Grant, R. M., & Jordan, J. (2012), Foundations of Strategy, Oxford: Wiley

Morgan, G. (2006) Images of Organization, Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications

De Wit, R. & Meyer, R. (2010), Strategy: Process, content, context. 4th ed. Andover: Cengage.

Relevant journals include:

Academy of Management Review; Strategic Management Journal; Harvard Business Review; Sloan Management Review; Long Range Planning