Business and Human Resource Management BA (Hons)

business and human resource management vincent pericard
Mode of Study
Full-time, Full-time sandwich with work placement
3 years full-time, 4 years sandwich with work placement
Start Date
September 2020


If you get a buzz out of helping people reach their potential and want to start a career in HR, this BA (Hons) Business and Human Resource Management (HRM) degree course will satisfy your ambition.

You'll learn the skills you'll need to take on roles that attract and retain the right people, in the right place, at the right time. You can also explore employment law and effective people management in the global workplace.

This degree course could lead you onto a varied career, where you’ll be a highly valued team member in HR, recruitment or training. You can apply for Associate Membership of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) when you complete the course.

This degree shares a common first year with several other business courses. This allows you to begin to develop commercial and business understanding to underpin your HR practice. It also gives you the flexibility to transfer to another course if you develop an interest in a different subject area.

Accredited by:

This course is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD) Programme Accreditation System (EPAS).

100% Graduates in work or further study (DLHE, 2017)

91% Overall student satisfaction (NSS, 2019)

TEF Gold Teaching Excellence Framework

What you'll experience

On this course, you'll:

  • Unpack the theory and techniques of effective people management
  • Develop an understanding of employment law
  • Get to grips with professional skills, sought after in all areas of business
  • Be taught by a mix of HRM practitioners and academic researchers
  • Take advantage of our Business Simulation Suite to apply your knowledge and skills to scenarios that mimic what you'll experience on the job
  • Get the chance to learn a foreign language

Careers and opportunities

Many organisations have a human resources team responsible for attracting and recruiting the right people and managing and developing them throughout their time in the workplace. Armed with a Business and HRM degree and CIPD Associate Member status, you’ll be sought after by organisations that want skilled and knowledgable staff on their human resources team, or working in similar areas like Human Resource Development (HRD).

What jobs can you do with a Business and Human Resource Management degree?

Graduates on this course have gone on to work for big-name organisations like Reed and Kier Construction Group in a variety of roles, such as:

  • HR assistant recruitment coordinator
  • HR officer
  • HR trainee manager
  • training officer
  • recruitment consultant

Our Careers and Employability service can help you find a job that puts your skills to work in the industry when you finish the course. You can get help, advice and support for up to 5 years after you leave the University.

If you're interested in setting up your own business while you study, you can get support on this course from the Entrepreneurs in Residence programme. Our Entrepreneurs in Residence are experienced business professionals who work with us to deliver group workshops and 1-to-1 drop-in clinics to help you plan and market your business idea.

I chose this course as it gave me the chance to work with people within organisations and learn how I can play a part in their development.

Razvan Titiu, BA (Hons) Business and Human Resource Management

What you'll study on this BA (Hons) Business and Human Resource Management degree

Each module on this course is worth a certain number of credits.

In each year, you need to study modules worth a total of 120 credits. For example, 4 modules worth 20 credits and 1 module worth 40 credits.


Core modules in this year include:

  • Business Accounting
  • Business Innovation Development Project
  • Business Operations and Systems Management
  • Economics for Business
  • Managing People in Organisations
  • Marketing Principles and Practice
  • Quantitative Methods and Data Analysis

There are no optional modules in this year.

Core modules in this year include:

  • Human Resources for the Professional
  • Human Resource Development
  • Contemporary Employment Relations
  • Business and Employment Law
  • Employability, Research and Professional Development

Optional modules in this year currently include:

  • Leadership, Governance and Ethics
  • Business Analysis and Decision Making
  • Developing Individual and Team Creativity
  • Organisation Design, Theory and Analysis
  • A foreign language

On this course, you can do an optional work placement year between your 2nd and 3rd years to get valuable experience working in industry.

We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your situation and ambitions. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.

Core modules in this year include:

  • Strategic and Comparative Human Resource Management
  • People Resourcing

Optional modules in this year currently include:

  • Cross Cultural Awareness for Business
  • Discrimination and Conflict in Employment Law
  • Business Ethics
  • Business Improvement and Creativity
  • Managing Equality and Diversity at work
  • A foreign language

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional modules may not run every year. If a module doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

Placement year

After your second year, you can do an optional work placement year to get valuable longer-term work experience in the industry.

Students have completed work placements at companies such as:

  • Honda
  • Bosch Home Appliances
  • Oracle Corporation
  • IBM

We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your aspirations. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.

Work experience and career planning

To give you the best chance of securing a great job with your degree, our Careers and Employability service can help you find relevant work experience during your course.

We can help you identify placements, internships, voluntary roles and freelancing opportunities that will complement your studies.

Learning support

As well as support by faculty teaching staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK).

ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • academic writing
  • note taking
  • time management
  • critical thinking
  • presentation skills
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques

If you have a disability or need extra support, the Additional Support and Disability Centre (ASDAC) will give you help, support and advice.


Teaching methods on this course include:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • tutorials
  • workshops
  • practical sessions
  • group discussions

Teaching staff include academics and researchers who contribute to CIPD papers and textbooks used on HR courses.

Teaching Staff Profiles

Kerry Collier, Senior Teaching Fellow/ Course Leader

Kerry joined the University after more than 20 years working across the private, public and third sectors as a HR Practitioner. During that time, she gained invaluable experience at both operational and strategic levels, in challenging environments, such as occupational psychology, agriculture, management consultancy and manufacturing.

Dr Peter Scott, Senior Lecturer

Peter is an employment relations specialist, and also teaches and researches in the fields of organisational behaviour and human resource management. He's previously worked as a trade union representative and has a particular interest in technology and organisations. He also contributes to a leading student textbook on organisational behaviour.

Mrs Cherry Hood, Senior Lecturer

Cherry served as an officer in the Royal Navy for 13 years, mostly in HR roles, and after leaving the Navy, she worked in HR roles in manufacturing companies. She’s a generalist HR professional with a particular interest in learning and development.

Dr Cheryl Brook, Senior Lecturer

Cheryl’s main area of interest is work-based learning, action learning and management development. She has worked in the NHS, the third sector and in consultancy before joining the University.

In the NHS, Cheryl was Head of the Training & Development Department of a large teaching Trust in the North-West, and she has published in a range of academic journals -- including the European Journal of Training and Development, HRDI and Action Learning: Research and Practice.

Dr Matthew Anderson, Senior Lecturer in Business Ethics

Matthew teaches on undergraduate and postgraduate courses in the areas of organisational behaviour, human resource management and business ethics. Matthew’s research interests focus on the intersection between civil society and business. His main research outputs, to date, have been an investigation into the role of the Fair Trade movement and an exploration of the key drivers behind the mainstreaming of an alternative business model.

Professor Sam Warren, Professor

Sam Warren is a specialist in innovative work contexts and non-traditional management studies. Her current research project on 'grass roots creative labour' explores the careers of underground techno DJs. She is a leading authority on relationships between 'the visual' and organisational life.

Dr Steve Williams, Reader

Steve is a specialist in employment relations. He's an active researcher, has published numerous articles in a range of prominent journals, and is the author of the leading textbook in employment relations - Introducing Employment Relations: a Critical Introduction. A fifth edition of the book is due to be published by Oxford University Press in 2020.

Ask me anything about BA (Hons) Business and Human Resource Management
An 'ask me anything' session with BA (Hons) Business and Human Resource Management Course Leader, Kerry Collier.

Watch this video for answers to questions such as 'What key subjects will I study on this course?' and 'What opportunities are there to improve my professional skills alongside my studies?'

How you'll spend your time

Each academic year is divided into 2 teaching blocks and 2 assessment periods:

  • September to December – teaching block 1
  • January – assessment period 1
  • January to May – teaching block 2 (includes Easter break)
  • May to June – assessment period 2

Most teaching takes place during the day, Monday to Friday. You may occasionally need to go to University and course events in the evenings and at weekends.

There’s usually no teaching on Wednesday afternoons.

How you're assessed

You’ll be assessed through:

  • individual and group coursework
  • examinations
  • online activities
  • presentations
  • your choice of independent research

You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.

You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.

The way you’re assessed may depend on the modules you select. As a guide, students on this course last year were typically assessed as follows:

  • Year 1 students: 58% by written exams and 42% by coursework
  • Year 2 students: 15% by written exams, 17% by practical exams and 68% by coursework
  • Year 3 students: 27% by written exams and 73% by coursework

Entry requirements​

BA (Hons) Business and Human Resource Management degree entry requirements

Qualifications or experience
  • 112-120 points from 3 A levels or equivalent.

See full entry requirements and other qualifications we accept

English language requirements
  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

See alternative English language qualifications

We also accept other standard English tests and qualifications, as long as they meet the minimum requirements of your course.

If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

​Course costs

Tuition fees (2020 start)

  • UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 per year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £14,300 per year (subject to annual increase)

Additional course costs

These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.

Additional costs

Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.

You’ll study up to 6 units a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each unit.

You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.

We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.


How to apply

To start this course in 2020, apply through UCAS. You’ll need:

  • the UCAS course code – NN16
  • our institution code – P80

If you’d prefer to apply directly, use our online application form.

You can also sign up to an Open Day to:
  • tour our campus, facilities and halls of residence
  • speak with lecturers and chat with our students 
  • get information about where to live, how to fund your studies and which clubs and societies to join

If you're new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.

How to apply from outside the UK

If you're from outside of the UK, you can apply for this course through UCAS or apply directly to us (see the 'How to apply' section above for details). You can also get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.

To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section. 

If you don't meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to our terms and conditions as well as the University’s policies, rules and regulations. You should read and consider these before you apply.

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