Psychology in Organisation and Leadership

SOL1 Psychology in Organisation and Leadership

Autumn 2022

  • Topics

    SOL1 provides a psychological perspective on leadership and organizations. What motivates us? How do we make decisions? And what does a good workplace really look like?

    The purpose of the course is to provide insight into the human factor in organizations and work life, and what can be done to create a better workplace. From the individual to the group level, the course will provide a research-based introduction to key theories of human behavior in organizations. The overall goal is for students to acquire a scientific perspective on which factors create well-being, health and productivity -- and which factors can be detrimental to an organization. The academic basis for this course is recent research in psychology, leadership and behavioral economics.

    SOL1 consists of two main parts.

    - Part 1 focuses on how we can understand the individual in organizations and work life. Specific topics include: Personality, cognitive resources and attitudes; motivation and performance; job satisfaction and health; decision-making and rationality.

    - Part 2 takes a more social perspective, and focuses on how we can understand the interaction between individuals, groups and leaders. Specific topics include: Groups and team collaboration; relationships and morality in organizations; communication technique; characteristics of good and bad leadership; and societal considerations of diversity and equal treatment. In addition, the course will provide a basic introduction to academic writing and scientific thinking.

    Each of the two main parts will consist of lectures and self-studies, which end with an individual test of general knowledge (pass / fail) and a group-based case presentation (pass / fail) which constitutes the Compulsory activities (work requirements).

    Starting already in the first lecture, the students will be divided into a random team for the two case presentations (4 people per group), which will be completed halfway (after Part 1) and towards the end of the course (after Part 2). Finally, the grading evaluation (A-F) will be carried out by an individual home exam. The form (but not content) of the home exam will be similar to the case assignments, which means that the work the students put in on these assignments during the semester will also make them better prepared for the exam.

  • Learning outcome

    Knowledge: The candidate

    - Has broad knowledge of what characterizes the individual's functioning in organizations and work life, based on key theories and previous research from psychology and leadership.

    - Has broad knowledge of the interaction between the individual and social processes at the group and organizational level, based on key theories and previous research from psychology and leadership.

    - Has a scientific understanding of which characteristics in the individual and the organization that together can create well-being, health and productivity.

    Skills: The candidate

    - Is able to identify challenges related to the interaction between individuals and groups in an organizational context.

    - Can assess which specific measures can be implemented to deal with key challenges related to leadership, well-being and productivity.

    - Can carry out a decision analysis of specific scenarios, by identifying common biases and how these can be avoided by creating a better decision-making process.

    - Has the ability to present relevant academic insights to others in a reflected and systematic way, both in the form of written case reports and verbal presentation technique.

    General competence: The candidate

    - Has insight into the relevance of psychology for leadership and organizations, both at individual and group level.

    - Can communicate his/her own insights about key issues in psychology and leadership.

    - Masters academic writing, independent search for scientific literature and source criticism.


ECTS Credits

Course responsible

Associate Professor Hallgeir Sjåstad, Department of Strategy and Management.