This degree fosters specialist HR skills and knowledge alongside business acumen so that you are fully prepared for HR roles where you can add significant value to an organisation.
It is closely aligned to standards set by the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development. You’ll gain up-to-date and relevant skills, learning how to plan and implement HR policies and strategies in the workplace and exploring the contribution of HR in the wider context of talent management, employee engagement and business performance.
We cover vital themes including the recruitment, management and retention of employees; how employment law can be used to tackle workplace problems; discrimination, equality and diversity; development of effective management and leadership; the role of HR in high performance working; and the contemporary issues shaping the HR landscape in modern organisations.
Flexibility is a cornerstone of the BA (Hons) Business Management (HRM). All our Business Management students take the same core modules in the first year to give them a solid grounding in the key business disciplines. This part of the degree equips you for the broad role of the modern HR professional, so you can understand how the HR function fits within and contributes to an organisation’s wider strategies.
After that, you can choose to remain on the specialist pathway in HRM or – if you find your interests have changed – you can easily transfer to one of our other pathways in Marketing, Finance or International Business. Alternatively, you could choose the core Business Management route, drawing on our extensive list of optional modules to develop a broader, fully rounded skillset.
The BA (Hons) Business Management (HRM) is offered as a four-year degree to include a placement year. You can, however, study on a three-year full-time basis, with opportunities for internships in the summer breaks.
CIPD membership is a key requirement for most UK jobs in the HR field and is increasingly recognised globally too. Because this course is approved by the CIPD, you can join the Institute as a student member during your studies. On successful completion of the degree, you can then become an associate member, which will help you secure your first HR role and support your developing career.
We expect you to take up student membership of the CIPD during the second and third stages of the course. There is a wide range of membership benefits including exclusive study and career resources, local branch events and the CIPD mentoring scheme. (You will need to pay the Institute directly for membership.)
The BA (Hons) Business Management (HRM) has also been developed in close collaboration with the premier professional body for managers, the Chartered Management Institute (CMI). Ours is one of the few degrees in the country where you can graduate with an extra CMI qualification: the Level 5 Diploma in Management and Leadership. The Diploma is the benchmark qualification for full CMI membership and takes you a step towards Chartered Manager status. You won’t need to take extra exams or coursework to achieve it: our combined module and CMI assessments offer a smooth route to both qualifications.
Throughout the degree, you’ll become an affiliate member of the CMI, at no extra cost, with access to networking events, online resources and additional benefits.
Thanks to the CIPD approval and CMI accreditation, this degree introduces you to a privileged network of contacts. Ours was the first course in the country to offer every student the chance to receive support and guidance from an external CMI mentor at each stage.
Your mentor will be a senior business person – either a Chartered Manager or Fellow of the CMI with a wealth of experience and insights to share with you. They will advise and coach you from a business perspective, showing how the management and HR principles you are learning can be applied directly to the workplace.
To sharpen your focus on the HR profession, you are also encouraged to apply for a CIPD mentor to give you additional guidance in the second and third stages of the degree.
You’ll take the theories off the page and put them into practice in real-world scenarios. You can test your ideas through business simulations, topical case studies and employer-led projects that show how academic knowledge can be translated into management practice in the workplace. You can expect to take an active role in classroom sessions – whether learning how to negotiate for your share of a salary pot, to appraise an employee or to design and run a training and development session.
We support you to take an optional placement year or summer internship to enhance your employability. Our students have secured invaluable experience with organisations such as the NHS, the National Trust and Lubrizol. One student completed a placement in Europe working on the recruitment of legal professionals. If you take a year-long placement, you will have the chance to gain an additional qualification – the Diploma in Professional Practice – to add to your CV.
Live consultancy projects, where you help employers to improve their business performance, will build your HR, research, project management, problem-solving and decision-making skills. Recent examples include a performance management project with PKF Cooper Parry, HR consultancy with Erewash Sounds and the Derby and Sandiacre Canal Trust, and enterprise projects with the Annabel’s Angels charity.
You could also benefit from fieldtrips to see business in close-up: one recent example was to the Sony UK Technology Centre, the company’s manufacturing and customer service base in Wales.
You’ll be taught by an experienced and highly qualified team with an impressive track record for research and a national reputation for excellence. They have received recognition in the prestigious CMI Higher Education Awards, including runners-up places for the Outstanding Innovation and Delivery Award and the International Award in 2018.
The team has extensive contacts in the business and HR community and you can draw on those connections for inspiration and insight. You will be encouraged to engage with the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire CIPD branch to start to build networks with other HR professionals. The branch stages events at the University where you can make new contacts in a professional forum.
Your learning will be enriched by international perspectives. Ours is a global student community and the BA (Hons) Business Management (HRM) not only attracts students from all over the world to Derby but is also delivered for our educational partners across Europe and Asia. It means there is a lot of potential for inter-country debates, seminars and guest lectures delivered online, international case studies and joint projects.
In your second year, you’ll have the option to spend an exchange week in Barcelona studying at the EU Business School, one of our academic partners which runs the same degree and where teaching is in English. You could also take advantage of other optional visits overseas: a trip to Copenhagen saw our students investigating issues such as art fraud and business ethics.
To complete the BA (Hons) Business Management (HRM), you’ll study modules such as:
You will study modules such as:
- Understanding People in Organisations
- Business Economics
- Marketing Fundamentals
- Finance and Business Performance
- Understanding the Global Business Environment
- Developing an Enterprising Mindset
You can choose to take an optional internship between stages one and two.
You will study modules such as:
- Principles of Responsible Management
- Managing Performance through People
- People Resourcing and Talent Planning
- Employment Law in the Workplace
- Quantitative Skills for Business
- Applied Operations Management
You can choose to take an optional placement year or an optional internship between stages two and three.
You will study modules such as:
- Developing Leadership and Management
- The Business Consultancy Project (double module)
- Managing Performance
- Contemporary Issues in HR Management
- Global Business and Strategy
Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.
Our ‘scaffolded’ approach to learning provides a smooth transition so that you can ease your way into both university-level study and HR practice. It means that you’ll have full support in the early stages of the degree but will gradually move towards greater independence as your knowledge deepens and you start to immerse yourself in the wider business community. By stage three, you will be able to take more charge of your own learning, with module tutors advising and directing your studies.
Thanks to your contact with personal tutors and external mentors, engagement with the CIPD and participation in University events, you’ll become more attuned to professional behaviour and build your skills in critical thinking, creativity and self-reliance.
Another of our priorities is to foster a new generation of responsible business leaders with a strong moral compass. Throughout the course, you will therefore look at the role of business in wider society, exploring issues ranging from environmental sustainability to child labour, ethical governance to responsible innovation.
You’ll learn through different methods including:
- formal lectures, sometimes involving guest speakers
- tutor-led and student-led seminars
- one-to-one and small group tutorials
- work experience projects
- work-related learning
- self-directed study
- optional placement and internship opportunities
- video discussions with overseas partner institutions
How you are assessed
Assessment is mainly via coursework which can take forms such as:
- traditional essays and reports
- group project work
- research and consultancy projects
- design of digital materials
- in-class tests
- computer-based assessments
Who you'll meet
You will be taught by an experienced and highly qualified team with outstanding contacts in the wider business community.
They include our Programme Leader Sheena Bevitt who is a Chartered Member of the CIPD and has extensive practical experience of HRM gained in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors before pursuing her academic career. Since joining the University of Derby In 2005, she has maintained her professional links and delivered CIPD-approved qualifications at undergraduate and postgraduate level to hundreds of students at the University as well as running a number of workshops and masterclasses for CIPD branches.
Sheena keeps her subject knowledge up to date through a developing active research role. She is currently working on a project looking at the experiences of HR professionals as they transition into new and more senior job roles, which has seen her develop strong relationships with HR departments in two large local employers as well as with successful HR directors from a range of organisations.
When working with students in the classroom, Sheena encourages them to build on a firm foundation of theoretical knowledge with practical activities that simulate how academic knowledge turns into management practice in the workplace. Whether you are negotiating for your share of a salary pot, appraising an employee or designing and running a training and development session, expect to take an active role in her sessions.
September 2020 typical entry requirements
|Requirement||What we're looking for|
|UCAS points||120 (up to 16 from AS-levels)|
|Specific requirements at A-level|
No specific subject requirements
|Specific requirements at GCSE||GCSE Maths and English Grade C/Grade 4 (or above) or equivalent qualification|
|IELTS||6.0 (with 5.5 in each skills area)|
|Interview / Audition||N/A|
Alternative entry qualifications:
- BTEC - DDM
- Access to HE Diploma - 60 credits: 45 at level 3 with a minimum of Dist: 15 Merit: 24 Pass: 6
We usually consider an A-level in General Studies as a supplementary qualification. A good application/performance will be taken into account if you do not meet the criteria/offer conditions.
Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.
When combined with associate membership of the CIPD and the CMI Diploma, the BA (Hons) Business Management (HRM) makes a powerful statement about your professional credibility and management potential.
We pride ourselves on developing graduates who can work competently and ethically in global and cross-cultural environments. Our former students now work in a wide range of companies, from major names in the HR field such as Hays Recruitment and talent management specialists EMBS to public sector organisations like the NHS and local authorities.
Our Careers and Employment Service will provide you with support from day one of your course to ensure you leave Derby as a ‘work-ready’ graduate – industry aware, motivated and enterprising. Throughout your studies, you’ll also benefit from our Personal Development Planning (PDP) scheme which enables you to reflect on your learning and develop your career ambitions.
The support continues once you’ve completed your course too: you are entitled to further help and guidance from the Careers and Employment Service for up to three years after leaving the University.
You can choose to continue your studies at Derby with one of our far-reaching masters programmes, including the CIPD-accredited Postgraduate Diploma in Human Resource Management – which could then be ‘topped up’ to the MSc Human Resource Management – and the MSc International Business and HRM. You may be entitled to an alumni discount on your fees if you decide to extend your time with us by progressing from undergraduate to postgraduate study.
If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.Contact us
† Additional information about your studies
4 with optional placement year
Download programme specification
Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.
Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.