COMMGMT 2500 - Organisational Behaviour II

North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2014

This course is designed to provide students with a foundational understanding of the history and development of Organisational Behaviour (OB) theories and concepts. The body of knowledge focuses on how the attributes and behaviours of individuals and groups influence the culture, design, ethics, learning and structure of an organisation. The applied focus of the course is to facilitate experiential learning of contemporary approaches to conflict resolution, communication, decision making, leadership, motivation, negotiation, power and politics within a team environment.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code COMMGMT 2500
    Course Organisational Behaviour II
    Coordinating Unit Adelaide Business School
    Term Semester 2
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Assumed Knowledge One semester of university study
    Course Description This course is designed to provide students with a foundational understanding of the history and development of Organisational Behaviour
    (OB) theories and concepts. The body of knowledge focuses on how the attributes and behaviours of individuals and groups influence the culture, design, ethics, learning and structure of an organisation. The applied focus of the course is to facilitate experiential learning of contemporary approaches to conflict resolution, communication, decision making, leadership, motivation, negotiation, power and politics within a team environment.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Peter Sandiford

    Ms Yu Chen

    Ms Lola Isaacssodeye

    Mr Long Nguyen

    Ms Lulu Ouyang

    Ms Jean-Marie See

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    By the end of this course students should be able to:

    1. Demonstrate a thorough knowledge and understanding of organisational behaviour.

    2. Collaboratively and autonomously research, analyse and evaluate information from a wide variety of sources.

    3. Apply relevant contemporary theories, concepts and models in order to analyse organisational environments, cases and issues.

    4. Communicate their findings clearly and effectively using a variety of media.

    Students are expected to:

    ·  Undertake all required reading for the subject.

    ·  Prepare for tutorials by completing pre-reading, case notes and discussion questions as outlined in the tutorial activity schedule.

    ·  Attend lectures and actively participate in tutorials

    ·  Complete all items of assessment in a timely fashion

    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Knowledge and understanding of the content and techniques of a chosen discipline at advanced levels that are internationally recognised. 1
    The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 2
    An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 3
    Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 4
    A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 2
    A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 2,3
    A commitment to the highest standards of professional endeavour and the ability to take a leadership role in the community. 1,4
    An awareness of ethical, social and cultural issues within a global context and their importance in the exercise of professional skills and responsibilities. 1
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    There is no single textbook for this course; a weekly reading list is provided to enable candidates to prepare for each lecture and tutorial. It is essential that all readings and preparation exercises are completed each week.

    Recommended Resources
    There are a number of relevant textbooks that candidates may refer to in addition to the basic required readings. While the list below is by no means comprehensive, some general OB texts are listed below:

    Bratton, J., Sawchuk, P., Forshaw, C., Callinan, & Corbett (2010) Work And Organisational Behaviour, 2nd Ed., Palgrave.

    Fineman, S.  Organisations as emotional arenas  in Finemen, S. (ed) (1993) Emotion In Organisations, Sage, pp 9-35

    Hatch, MJ. & Cunliffe, AL. (2013) Organization Theory, 3rd Ed, Oxford Uni Press.

    Huczynski, A. and Buchanan, DA. (2013) Organisational Behaviour, 8th Ed., Pearson.

    Mcshane, SL., Olekalns, M. & Travaglione, T. (2010) Organisational Behaviour on the Pacific Rim, 3rd ed., McGraw-Hill.

    Mullins, L, (2005) Management & Organisational Behaviour, 7th Ed., Prentice Hall.

    Robbins, SP., Judge, TA., Millett, B. & Boyle, M. (2011) Organisational Behaviour 6th Ed., Pearson,

    Starkey, K., Tempest, S. & Mckinlay, A. (Eds) How Organisations Learn: Managing The Search For Knowledge. Thompson Learning

    Watson, TJ. (2006), Organising & Managing Work, 2nd Ed., Pearson.

    Wilson, FM. (2010) Organisational Behaviour And Work, 3rd Ed, Oxford Uni Press

    Students are required to read beyond such textbooks to enhance their learning of organisational behaviour. Some additional specific readings will be recommended through the course (eg, tutorial preparation will normally include guided reading). Students are also encouraged to follow up lecture material through references cited in class and textbook bibliographies. Topics of particular interest can be explored further by searching the electronic and printed resources provided by the library. Some relevant academic journals are listed below. Please note, this list is by no means comprehensive and is offered as a launching point for additional readings.

    Academy of Management Journal

    Academy of Management Perspectives (formerly Academy of Management Review)

    Administrative Science Quarterly

    Human Relations

    Journal of Applied Psychology

    Journal of Organizational Behavior

    Journal of Management Inquiry

    Organization Science

    Organization Studies

    Work, Employment and Society

    Online Learning
    The course will utilise MyUni as a communications and assessment tool. Students are expected to visit and actively scan the course MyUni page regularly throughout the semester for announcements and resources that may be posted, including lecture recordings, tutorial preparation guidance and additional material.

  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    This course will be taught through a two-hour weekly lecture supported by a one-hour weekly tutorial. Tutorials are an important component of your learning in this course.  Students are expected to attend
    all classes regularly and to ensure that they complete the required exercises before coming to class. The communication skills developed in tutorials by regularly and actively participating in discussions are considered to be most important by the School and are highly regarded by employers and professional bodies.


    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    The University expects full-time students (i.e. those taking 12 units per semester) to devote a total of 48 hours per week to their studies.  This means that you are expected to commit approximately 9 hours for a three-unit course (13 hours for a four-unit course) of private study outside of your regular classes. This time commitment includes reading the relevant text book chapter, preparing for tutorials, on-line tests and other assessment tasks.

    Learning Activities Summary

    W/C          Topic

    28 July      Introduction to OBII

    4 Aug       Organising and managing work: study, critique and practice

    11 Aug      Emotions in organisations

    18 Aug      Individual Attributes

    25 Aug      Motivation and orientation at work

    1 Sept      Learning and organisation

    8 Sept      Groups & Teams

    15 Sept     Leadership

    22 Sept     Mid Semester Break

    2 Sept      Mid Semester Break

    6 Oct        Power, politics, conflict

    13 Oct      Organisational culture

    20 Oct      Organisational change

    27 Oct      Course review

    Specific Course Requirements
    There are no additional specific course requirements
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    LEARNING LOG Submitted Weekly (Friday following the relevant tutorial)  LO 1 and 2

    Learning Log Phase One: Friday 5th Sept 4:00pm       15%                       

    Learning Log Phase Two: Friday 17th Oct 4:00pm       15%                       

    GROUP REPORT: Monday 27th Oct at 5:00pm               25 %      LO 1, 2, 3, and 4

    POSTER: Monday 27th Oct at 5:00pm                           5%         LO 1, 2, 3, and 4

    FINAL EXAM: 2 HOUR CLOSED BOOK During exam period  40%   LO 1, 2, 3, and 4

    Assessment Related Requirements
    To gain a pass for this course, a mark of at least 40% must be obtained in the examination as well as an aggregate total for all assessments of at least 50% overall. 

    Students not achieving the minimum exam mark will be awarded no more than 49% for the course.

    Assessment Detail
    Assessment 1: Learning Log (30%)

    One of the most important duties of undergraduate students is managing your own learning and many of your learning activities are designed to help you develop the skills necessary to do this. Lecturers and tutors provide guidance for your reading and structure lectures and tutorials to help you understand, evaluate and apply theories in the ‘real world’. One important way that students develop their learning skills is by taking notes about their many learning activities and these notes then contribute to future learning as well as providing a framework for assignment preparation and examination revision. In this course you will be expected to keep a structured record of your learning in the form of a ‘learning log’ or journal. This will make up a part of your assessment while also serving as a key record of your learning (organised notes) for your future use. Thus, the main aim of the learning log is to reflect on what you have learn, its value and areas that may require further study/action. It is also specifically designed to help you prepare for the final examination at the end of the semester.

    Students are required to submit a reflective learning log (journal) based on the weekly tutorial tasks from week 1 until week 11. Therefore you will structure and reflect on your learning through the course. Tutor feedback on entries will help students prepare for their written assignment and examination. Like less ‘formal’ notes, your learning log will be a useful source when you are revising for the examination and will help you apply your OB learning in other relevant courses in the future.

    Assessment 2: 2500 – 3000 word group project (25%) and peer assessment of contribution (5%)

    Due: Monday 27th Oct at 5:00pm

    Group Report 25%

    Group Poster 5%

    The aim of this activity is to improve your understanding of how organisational theory informs and has relevance to management practice. The scenario and your instructions are as follows:

    A ‘real-life’ case organisation will be introduced early in the course (more details will be provided in an ongoing manner on the course myuni site).

    You will conduct an organisational audit/analysis based on your analysis of the information provided and by applying relevant OB theories, models and analytical techniques. This analysis will enable you to diagnose a key organisational challenge/problem that you can then address, presenting a small number of specific recommendations to management.
    You will need to attend the relevant presentations and regularly check MyUni for additional information and to confirm key dates. Please note, the case study introduction and the question and answer sessions WILL NOT BE RECORDED. It is essential that you attend these sessions in person. As this is a real-life ‘live case’ all milestones/dates (except the final submission deadlines) are subject to change.

    Groups of 3-4 people will work as a project team to complete this task. Your tutor will organise membership of the teams in your tutorials. The project team will be responsible for the following:

    You must analyse the available evidence about the case organisation and select ONE (1) of the following questions/terms of reference to address in your assignment

    1. Use relevant theories to identify what motivates people within the case organisation

    2. Explore how theories and models of team work could contribute to an understanding of and improvement of the case organisation’s project teams...

    3. Apply relevant learning theories to develop a better understanding of the case organisation’s  work.

    4. Analyse how the organisation has changed since it was formed and explore specific possibilities for the future development of the organisation based on a critical SWOT analysis.
    5. Use relevant leadership theory to analyse the case organisation’s direction

    Find out what relevant research has already been carried out on this topic area by undertaking a literature search. Your search should concentrate on journal articles from quality sources. A good
    place to start would be the electronic library (there are a number of useful e-databases such as EBSCO) or Google Scholar. Each team should collect a minimum of 5 (quality) sources (ie refereed journal articles, conference papers or research monographs (research books or theses). (Wikipedia or unrefereed internet sources are NOT to be considered sources of strong academic validity. Similarly, basic OB textbooks, although providing some useful introductory material, should not be seen as key, up-to-date research sources; such textbooks and other relevant materials can be used as references, but WILL NOT be counted towards your 5 quality sources).

    Additional information and guidance on the learning logs, group report and group poster will be provided on Myuni and in class.

    The learning log entries must be submitted directly to your tutor by email; logs must be submitted in Microsoft word using the following system of file names: ‘[your full name] IMIII learning log [number] (eg ‘peter sandiford IMIII learning log 3’); learning log numbers must refer to your own submissions and not the tutorial week or submission week (so if you submit 6 logs in total they will be labelled 1-6). This is to ensure your tutors have all the information they need, especially when marking your selected log. Please note, the minimum number of submissions is 3 in each phase (6 in total), but you can choose to submit logs for all weeks covered by the learning logs (8 in total); this would give you more chance to practice and a larger number of submissions to choose your ‘marked’ log from. It also would give you a richer resource of logs when preparing for the examination.

    You should also email details of your learning logs selected for marking to your tutor – you should NOT resend the log for marking.

    The group poster should be submitted to your tutor by email. Please include all your group members’ names ON the final poster

    Please retain all your email submissions in your university ‘sent’ items folder (ie do not delete) in case there are delivery problems with the email system.

    The research report should be submitted through the turnitin link on the MyUni website..

    The front of the submission should be an ‘Assignment Cover Sheet’, which is signed and dated by  you before submission. Note that Lecturers can refuse to accept assignments, which do not have a signed acknowledgement of the University’s policy on plagiarism.

    Only one of your group members should submit ONE copy of the final group report through the turnitin link.

    You must include a list of all your group members on the assignment cover sheet.

    Please retain a copy of all assignments submitted.

    All assignment submissions must be submitted to in order to generate an originality report prior to being submitted in hard copy in the normal manner. Tutors will ensure that the submission to and the hard copy of the assignment are the same material. You will need specific details (Class ID and Password) to login to and these will be posted on the course’s MyUni webpage. It may take several hours for to generate your originality report. You should print this out and attach it to your assignment.

    Late Assignment Submission

    Students are expected to submit their work by the due date to maintain a fair and equitable system.  You should start early on assignments so that foreseeable pressures like work or assessment for other courses does not delay you completing assignments for this course on time. Extensions will generally only be given for medical or other serious reasons. All requests for extensions must be submitted to the lecturer in charge of the course before the due date using the correct university form. Such requests usually require supporting evidence from a social service professional (e.g. doctor, counsellor, psychologist, minister of religion) confirming the circumstances that require an extension. Each request will be assessed on its merits.

    If three qualifying (passed) weekly learning log entries are not submitted by the deadline for the relevant phase a mark of 0% will be entered

    Group Reports and Posters that are submitted late without prior arrangement will be penalised at 5% of the potential grade for each day that it is late.  

    Return of Assignments

    Assignments are aimed to be marked and feedback provided to students with written feedback within two (2) weeks of the due date. 

    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

    The learning log assessment has been designed to improve the quality of feedback on student work following SELT results. This will enable students to receive constructive feedback on their performance earlier in the course and focus this feedback on relevant learning related matters; this also provides your tutor and the LIC with feedback on your progress through the whole course. This will also focus attention on tutorial activities, as requested by some students in their qualitative feedback. A number of students suggested an attendance and participation mark, though this seems problematic due to a direct relevance to learning outcomes. The learning log approach addresses this as attendance and participation are a key aspect of the log, although the actual mark is based on the quality of a student’s learning.

    In 2014 the learning log assessment has been modified somewhat based on feedback provided; the proportion of marks has been increased (from 20% to 30%) in response to students suggesting that the number of marks was too low for the required effort. This change was reflected in the examination which has been reduced from 3 to 2 hours and from 50% to 40% of the total course mark.

    The group report has also been modified; the peer assessment element proved troublesome from an equity perspective, so this part of the assessment has been deleted, with a slightly higher percentage for the report itself.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

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