Strategy

2024/25 Part-time Postgraduate Short course and CPD

Faculty:

Ulster University Business School

School:

Department of Management, Leadership and Marketing

Campus:

Belfast campus

Credit points:

15

Start date:

28 January 2025

For full instructions on how to apply for short courses, please contact the Centre for Flexible and Continuing Education - FlexEd@ulster.ac.uk

Overview

To equip students with the tools necessary to carry out an effective strategic analysis of any organisation.

Summary

This short course will equip students with the tools necessary to carry out an effective strategic analysis of any organisation. Students will understand the interconnected role of organisational functions which help achieve the strategic mission and goals of an organisation.

Furthermore, students will learn the importance of strategic management in enabling organisations to identify, evaluate and respond to the forces and influences that impact upon their organisation with particular emphasis on ethics, values, CSR and stakeholder mapping.

Sign up to hear more about Ulster

About this course

About

The aims of this short course are to provide an in-depth understanding of the processes and tools needed for strategy development in order to help organisations create and sustain a competitive advantage.

The content of the course has been developed to provide students with a clear and comprehensive understanding of strategy from a wide range of perspectives and in a variety of contexts. Below is an overview of the key themes within the short course:

Introduction to Strategy

  • Introduction to the module, theoretical underpinnings and characteristics of strategy
  • Introduction to the strategy process and contemporary models
  • Strategy in different organisational contests and the concept of Strategic Position, Strategic Choices and Strategy in Action

Understanding Strategic Position

  • The Environment; PESTEL, Porter's 5 Forces Framework, dynamics of competition, strategic groups, market segments, what customers value, critical success factors, strategic gaps.
  • Strategic Capability; resources and competencies, threshold capabilities, unique and core competencies, value, rarity, inimitability, dynamism, organisational knowledge, value chain network, activity maps, benchmarking, SWOT
  • Strategic Purpose; governance, ethics, stakeholder expectations, power and attention mapping, CSR, mergers and acquisitions.
  • Culture and Strategy; organisational and field culture, cultural web, corporate values, mission statements, objectives

Strategic Choices

  • Strategic directions/Corporate level strategy; organisational strategy development using Ansoff Matrix, portfolio management and matrices (BCG Matrix)
  • Business level strategy; Boman's Strategy Clock, sustaining competitive advantage
  • Strategy methods and evaluation: TOWS matrix, methods of pursuing strategy, success criteria

Strategy in Action

  • Development processes, prescriptive and emergent strategy development - the learning organisation
  • Business models, business plans and strategy
  • Managing Strategic Change; importance of context and change management (small versus large firms, family firms), strategy in practice
  • Strategy implementation; SAFe criteria, KPIs

Linked programmes

MSc Management and Corporate Governance, PgCertPD Professional Development.

Assessment

Report (Coursework) [100%]

Coursework Details:

"Use the models and frameworks explored in this module to critique the approach to strategy in an organisation of your choice".

Your completed report should contain the following:

A contextual overview of the organisation, current strategic approaches and rationale for conducting the analysis and choice of models (20%)

  • Detailed evidence-based application of relevant models of strategy to the organisation and critique of models (50%)
  • Based on the above, present recommendations for future strategy development in the chosen organisation (20%)
  • A reflective statement highlighting your learning experiences from the module (to be included in the Appendices) (10%)

The final submission should be no longer than 4,000 words (excluding appendices, tables and charts). The report element (first 3 bullet points above) should be no longer than 3,500 words and the reflective statement should be no longer than 500 words. The final report should be completed and submitted via TurnItIn to the Blackboard Learn Module.

Assessment and Feedback Strategy

Students will receive continuous feedback during lectures, office hours, email and individual meetings. This will encourage reflection on learning. Summative feedback will be distributed within 2 weeks of the assessment. Formative feedback will be provided, in accordance with the University's Assessment and Feedback principles and Level 7 assessment criteria. Written feedback will be provided electronically and a follow up one to one meeting will be held if requested.

Attendance

The course requires attendance at our Belfast campus, on three individual days, from 09:15am to 5:15pm, during Semester 2, 2025.

The course runs on the dates below -

  • Tuesday 28 January 2025
  • Thursday 30 January 2025
  • Friday 31 January 2025

* Please note, dates and timetabling may be subject to change.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have a second class honours degree in any subject from a recognised institution or have obtained an equivalent standard in a professional or other qualification recognised by the University for this purpose, for example, the CGIUKI Diploma in Business Practice.

If you do not meet the above requirements, you may be admitted at the discretion of the Course Committee. In this case, normally you will be interviewed to assess your capability to undertake a rigorous course of study. The award of GradCG will depend on whether you meet the CGIUKI entry criteria.

Students who have achieved relevant professional or postgraduate qualifications MAY be granted exemptions from modules on the course, in accordance with the University's accreditation of prior learning (APL) policy.

Other Qualifications

If you do not meet the above requirements, you may be admitted at the discretion of the Course Committee and in accordance with the University's APL policy. In this case, normally you will be interviewed to assess your capability to undertake a rigorous course of study. The award of GradICSA will depend on whether you meet the CGIUKI entry criteria.

Conditions of Claiming Graduate Status of CGIUKI

  • You must have registered with CGIUKI as a collaborative student and pay the fee to become a registered student member of CGIUKI.
  • Those with the relevant work experience can apply for chartered secretary status and use the post nominal ACIS.

English Language Requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English must meet the minimum English entrance requirements of the University and will need to provide recent evidence of this (certified within the last two years).

Most of our courses require a minimum English level of IELTS 6.0 or equivalent, with no band score under 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement.

Additional information on English language requirements for admission at Ulster University, is available at - www.ulster.ac.uk/global/apply/english-language-requirements

Start dates

  • 28 January 2025

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

Attendance and Independent Study

The content for each course is summarised on the relevant course page, along with an overview of the modules that make up the course.

Each course is approved by the University and meets the expectations of:

  • Attendance and Independent Study

    As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements - usually in the form of a timetable. For full-time courses, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until close to the start date and may be subject to some change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. For part-time courses which require attendance on particular days and times, an expectation of the days and periods of attendance will be included in the letter of offer. A course handbook is also made available.

    Courses comprise modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by its credit rating. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort. Undergraduate courses typically contain 10, 20, or 40 credit modules (more usually 20) and postgraduate courses typically 15 or 30 credit modules.

    The normal study load expectation for an undergraduate full-time course of study in the standard academic year is 120 credit points. This amounts to around 36-42 hours of expected teaching and learning per week, inclusive of attendance requirements for lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical work, fieldwork or other scheduled classes, private study, and assessment. Teaching and learning activities will be in-person and/or online depending on the nature of the course. Part-time study load is the same as full-time pro-rata, with each credit point representing 10 hours of student effort.

    Postgraduate Master’s courses typically comprise 180 credits, taken in three semesters when studied full-time. A Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) comprises 60 credits and can usually be completed on a part-time basis in one year. A 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) can usually be completed on a part-time basis in two years.

    Class contact times vary by course and type of module. Typically, for a module predominantly delivered through lectures you can expect at least 3 contact hours per week (lectures/seminars/tutorials). Laboratory classes often require a greater intensity of attendance in blocks. Some modules may combine lecture and laboratory. The precise model will depend on the course you apply for and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. Prospective students will be consulted about any significant changes.

  • Assessment

    Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module. Assessment can be a combination of examination and coursework but may also be only one of these methods. Assessment is designed to assess your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes.  You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessments. This feedback may be issued individually and/or issued to the group and you will be encouraged to act on this feedback for your own development.

    Coursework can take many forms, for example: essay, report, seminar paper, test, presentation, dissertation, design, artefacts, portfolio, journal, group work. The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the course you apply for and the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification, the assessment timetable and the assessment brief. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.

    Normally, a module will have 4 learning outcomes, and no more than 2 items of assessment. An item of assessment can comprise more than one task. The notional workload and the equivalence across types of assessment is standardised. The module pass mark for undergraduate courses is 40%. The module pass mark for postgraduate courses is 50%.

  • Calculation of the Final Award

    The class of Honours awarded in Bachelor’s degrees is usually determined by calculation of an aggregate mark based on performance across the modules at Levels 5 and 6, (which correspond to the second and third year of full-time attendance).

    Level 6 modules contribute 70% of the aggregate mark and Level 5 contributes 30% to the calculation of the class of the award. Classification of integrated Master’s degrees with Honours include a Level 7 component. The calculation in this case is: 50% Level 7, 30% Level 6, 20% Level 5. At least half the Level 5 modules must be studied at the University for Level 5 to be included in the calculation of the class.

    All other qualifications have an overall grade determined by results in modules from the final level of study.

    In Masters degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.

    Figures from the academic year 2022-2023.

Academic profile

The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 60% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.

Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (19%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (22%) or Lecturers (57%).

We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic and learning support staff (85%) are recognised as fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) by Advance HE - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.

The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise.  The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff.  This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.

Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.

Figures from the academic year 2022-2023.

Belfast campus

Accommodation

High quality apartment living in Belfast city centre adjacent to the university campus.

Find out more - information about accommodation (Opens in a new window)  


Student Wellbeing

At Student Wellbeing we provide many services to help students through their time at Ulster University.

Find out more - information about student wellbeing (Opens in a new window)  

Apply

Start dates

  • 28 January 2025

Fees and funding

Prices

Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland and EU Settlements Status Fees: £612.45

England, Scotland, Wales and the Islands Fees: £612.45

International Fees: £1,424.10

Fees information

Payment of Fees and Deposits

Information about how to pay for a course including different payment options is available at - www.ulster.ac.uk/finance/student/tuition-fees-payments

Fees and Funding

Information and advice about course fees and a guide to budgeting for your living costs, as well as sources for financial assistance including hardship funding, scholarships, prizes and awards, is available at - ​www.ulster.ac.uk/student/fees

Additional mandatory costs

It is important to remember that costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges) and normal living will need to be covered in addition to tuition fees.

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses (in addition to tuition fees) we make every effort to highlight them above. We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals, as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free Wi-Fi are also available on each of the campuses.

There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.

Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as a part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs, as well as tuition fees.

See the tuition fees on our student guide for most up to date costs.

Contact

For further information please contact us via -

Email: FlexEd@ulster.ac.uk

Telephone: (+44) 028 9536 7199

For more information visit

Disclaimer

  1. Although reasonable steps are taken to provide the programmes and services described, the University cannot guarantee the provision of any course or facility and the University may make variations to the contents or methods of delivery of courses, discontinue, merge or combine courses and introduce new courses if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Such circumstances include (but are not limited to) industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key staff, changes in legislation or government policy including changes, if any, resulting from the UK departing the European Union, withdrawal or reduction of funding or other circumstances beyond the University’s reasonable control.
  1. If the University discontinues any courses, it will use its best endeavours to provide a suitable alternative course. In addition, courses may change during the course of study and in such circumstances the University will normally undertake a consultation process prior to any such changes being introduced and seek to ensure that no student is unreasonably prejudiced as a consequence of any such change.
  1. The University does not accept responsibility (other than through the negligence of the University, its staff or agents), for the consequences of any modification or cancellation of any course, or part of a course, offered by the University but will take into consideration the effects on individual students and seek to minimise the impact of such effects where reasonably practicable.
  1. The University cannot accept any liability for disruption to its provision of educational or other services caused by circumstances beyond its control, but the University will take all reasonable steps to minimise the resultant disruption to such services.