Study this programme anywhere in the world and receive a fully accredited University of London degree

Human Resource Management

MSc and PGDip

Available to study anywhere in the world

Develop a critical understanding of people and organisations with this distance-learning Master's in Human Resource Management.

Focus on strategic and individual-level improvements, considering factors such as the role of human resource management (HRM) in modern organisations, the issues involved in developing strategic aims (including on an international basis), and employment relations.

Study the MSc Human Resource Management at your own pace and around your schedule.

By studying this programme, you will:

  • Build extensive knowledge about human resource management (in areas including careers, personnel selection, training, employment relations, practices in human resource management, and well-being at work).
  • Design and evaluate qualitative and quantitative research, and carry out basic forms of descriptive and inferential statistical analysis on quantitative data.
  • Use technology to obtain research data in human resource management.

Programme details

Programme structure, modules and specification

  • PGDip: You study 8 modules.
  • MSc: You study 8 modules, plus a research project.

View Modules

Key dates

April 2021 session
Application deadline 5 April 2021
Registration deadline 19 April 2021
Session starts 26 April 2021
Examinations July 2021
January 2021 session
Application deadline 3 December 2020
Registration deadline 17 December 2020
Session starts 11 January 2021
Examinations March 2021

How you study

The programme is offered online and is fully supported by a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). You study at a time and pace that suits you (subject to course-specific deadlines) using the study materials provided and support from a dedicated tutor.

The degree offers the flexibility to complete in one year, or up to five years depending on your desired study pace.

Study materials

We will send you study materials developed by academics at Birkbeck. These include a core subject guide for each course; further textbooks and collections of key readings; and various online and multimedia tools.

All study materials (articles and/or set texts) are included in the programme fee, with the exception of materials required to carry out the Research Project.

Online support

Tutors oversee all modules; they respond to queries, monitor discussions and provide general guidance. Each module includes interactive study materials, including videos, quizzes and online discussions. Each module also includes a revision week and revision guidance.

When you register, we will give you access to your Student Portal. You can then access your University of London email account and other key resources:

  • The Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) enables access to course materials, resources, and activities.
  • The Online Library provides access to over 100 million academic electronic items comprising E-books, E-journals, conference proceedings, etc. In addition, students can request items which are not held in the library via the library's Inter-Library loans service with the British Library.
  • Senate House Library provides free reference access for all registered distance and flexible learning students.

Student support

We are committed to delivering an exceptional student experience for all of our students, regardless of which of our programmes you are studying and whether you are studying independently or with a Recognised Teaching Centre.

You will have access to support through:

  • The Student Advice Centre – provides support for application and Student Portal queries.
  • TalkCampus – a peer support service that offers a safe and confidential way to talk about whatever is on your mind at any time of day or night.

Time commitment

You study one module at a time over a sixteen-week study session. There are two study sessions (and two dissertation sessions) per year. If you follow this without interruption, you should complete in the minimum two-year period.

You should expect to study between 10-15 hours a week during these sessions.


Each module is assessed by a series of written online activities (30% of the module mark), and a coursework essay of 4,000-5,000 words (70% of the mark). Exams are usually held in December, March and July.

The dissertation will be assessed by an initial 1,500 word research proposal (15%) followed by a written dissertation of up to 15,000 words, excluding bibliography and appendices (85%).

More about coursework.

Entry requirements

What qualifications do you need?

You need the equivalent of a UK second-class honours degree (e.g. bachelor). If you don't hold a degree but you have relevant industry experience and have completed the The Manager's Toolkit: A Practical Guide to Managing People at Work MOOC, we will consider each case on its merits.

To study modules on an individual basis, you should meet the same criteria. If you do not meet them, we may still consider your application if you can demonstrate your ability to undertake advanced study.

Find equivalent qualifications where you live.

English Language requirements

You need a high standard of English to study this programme. You will meet our language requirements if you have achieved the following within the past three years:

  • (IELTS) International English Language Testing System - 6.5 overall (with 6 in reading and writing).
  • (TOEFL) iBT Test of English as a Foreign Language - 92 overall (with 22 in reading and writing, and 20 in speaking and listening).
  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English.
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (at grade C or above).
  • Duolingo: must achieve an overall score of at least 120.

Computer requirements

We set minimum basic computer requirements because your study resources are accessed via the Student Portal and it is vital that you can access this regularly. For this degree, you will also need Adobe Flash Player to view video material and a media player (such as VLC) to play video files.

More about computer requirements.


The fees below apply if you begin during the 2020-2021 session. These may increase by up to 5% per year.

Human Resource Management 2020-2021
Registration fee £2285
Module fee £1155
Research project £1155
Dissertation fee £1155
Total MSc £13835
Total Postgraduate Diploma £11525
Total per module (on a standalone basis for CPD) £1385

Disclaimer: Currency conversion tool.

More about programme fees.

Additional Costs

You will also need to budget for exam centre fees, which are paid directly to the venues where you sit your exams.

How to pay your fees.

Please note: all student fees shown are net of any local VAT, Goods and Services Tax (GST) or any other sales tax payable by the student in their country of residence. Where the University is required to add VAT, GST or any other sales tax at the local statutory rate, this will be added to the fees shown during the payment process. For students resident in the UK, our fees are exempt from VAT.

Further information on GST.

Career opportunities

Graduates of this course go on to become training professionals, motivators, careers advisers, managers and consultants within large multinational companies, government departments, or in any company where advanced knowledge of organisational psychology may be useful.

What do employers think of our graduates?

In some countries, qualifications earned by distance and flexible learning may not be recognised by certain authorities or regulators for the purposes of public sector employment or further study. We advise you to explore the local recognition status before you register, even if you plan to receive support from a local teaching institution.

Academic leadership

Birkbeck was founded in 1823 as the London Mechanics' Institute. It is unique in its special mission to enable mature students to gain higher education qualifications via part-time study. Consequently, staff are experienced in ensuring a flexible learning environment.

Its Department of Organizational Psychology is the oldest and largest department of its kind in the UK and makes a major contribution to research in the field of behaviour at work. It is one of the principal providers of academic and professional training in occupational psychology within the UK.

Programme Director

Mr Mark Stringer has spent the last 35 years in a variety of posts within business and academia in the UK. He has worked internationally as a Director of HR and gained his MSc in Organizational Behaviour at Birkbeck. Currently completing his PhD at Birkbeck, his teaching and research covers many areas within OP and HRM, with a specific focus on areas with the use of psychoanalysis in interpreting organisational phenomena. He has had papers published at EGOS, OPUS, EURAM. He is Chartered MCIPD, an Associate Fellow of the HEA and a Member of the Association of Business Psychologists.

Programme Team

Dr Keely Jo Frasca joined the OPHRM programme in 2018 and currently convenes the Selection and Assessment, Employee Relations and Motivation, and Learning and Development modules. In addition, Keely leads the quantitative conferences of the Research Methods module.

Katerina Penna joined the OPHRM programme in 2014 and has since convened several modules on both the Organizational Psychology and Human Resource Management programmes of study. For the last three years, she has been responsible for the Comparative Employment Relations, International Human Resource Management and Professional Development and Learning modules. She is currently also in charge of the qualitative forums of the Research Methods module.

Jack Dybczak joined the OPHRM programme team in 2017 and is currently responsible for teaching Understanding Organisation and Change, Leadership and Performance Management, Human Resource Strategies and the foundation part of Research Methods.

Funding your study

Without the cost of moving to London, studying for your University of London degree anywhere in the world represents excellent value for money. However, there are additional sources of support depending on where you live and how you choose to study.

More on funding your study

Apply to Human Resource Management