M.A. WOP-P: Work, Organization, Personnel Psychology & Services

University of Bologna, Cesena campus

Application deadline: January 15
Tuition fee:
  • € 2,600 / Year (EEA)
  • € 8,000 / Year (Non-EEA)
Start date: September  2014
Credits: 120 ECTS
Partnership: Erasmus Mundus Scholarship
Languages:
  • Italian
Location:
Delivery mode: On Campus
Educational variant: Full-time

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Description

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The European Master on Work, Organizational, and Personnel Psychology (WOP-P) is a graduate university programme, supported by the European Commission through the Erasmus Mundus Programme which provides a Postgraduated Diploma.

The Master requires a university undergraduate degree in Psychology. The objective is to contribute to the qualification of professionals and researchers in the discipline of Work, Organizational and Personnel Psychology emphasizing a European approach and perspective. The Master implements the main guidelines developed by the Euro-Psych model for the European Diploma of Psychology (EDP) supported by the European Federation of Psychology Association (EFPA). It also follows the Reference Model and Minimal Standards of the European Curriculum in WOP Psychology established by the European Network of Work and Organizational Psychology Professors (ENOP).

Five European universities are involved: Universitat de València (Spain) as the coordinating institution, Universitat de Barcelona (Spain), Université René Descartes Paris 5 (France), Alma Mater Studiorum-Università di Bologna (Italy), and Universidade de Coimbra (Portugal) and two Non-European universities are also involved: Universidade de Brasília (Brazil) and University of Guelph (Canada).

The duration of the Programme is two full-time years, with a total workload of 120 ECTS credits (60 per year). The languages of instruction and examination can be any of the following languages: English, French, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish.

Students are awarded a double diploma, delivered by the Home and the Host Universities they study at over the master programme.

Contents

The WOP-P Master has a student workload of 120 ECTs distributed into two years (60 ECTs + 60 ECTs) (four semesters). There are 14 blocks describing the different training activities of the Master. The design of the master follows principles and guidelines of the Advanced Certificate of Psychology in Europe, proposed by the EFPA (European Federation of Psychological Associations), and the ENOP (European Network of Work and Organizational Psychology Professors) reference model for the training of WOP psychologists in Europe. This reference model distinguishes between explanatory and intervention approaches in the three main areas of WOP (work, organizational, and personnel). Explanatory refers to the knowledge of theory and up-to-date and comprehensive empirical evidence aiming to explain human behaviour in its context. It also refers to diagnostic skills in work, organizational, and personnel psychology areas. Explanatory knowledge and skills prepare the student to describe, assess, diagnose, explain, and interpret the main psychosocial processes in the areas of work, organizations, and personnel. Intervention refers to the promotion of effective and positive change, based on scientific knowledge and professional expertise. It focuses on design theory and intervention skills in work, organizational, and personnel fields. Intervention theory and skills prepare the student to plan, implement, monitor, and evaluate changes and interventions in order to improve behaviours, situations, and psychosocial processes in the areas of work, organizations, and personnel. This type of knowledge and skills also prepares students to design new models, strategies, methods, and tools. The WOP-P master presents a rationale where the student begins with courses emphasizing the explanatory approach to WOP and, gradually (especially during the second year), the student receives training in the intervention approach to the different areas of WOP-P. In the induction course, they are briefed about the whole rationale of the master, and they are introduced to the learning outcomes the master aims for them to achieve through the process of professional development. The WOP-P Master emphasizes training in both research and professional students competencies. Accordingly, the WOP-P master presents two important areas devoted to research training (24 ECTs, BLOCK 12) and professional internship (20 ECTs, BLOCK 13). It is assumed that both types of competencies are necessary to prepare a competent professional in WO-P who considers the scientific rationale in his/her activity.

This design is congruent with the specific objectives of the Master. First, it covers different facets of WOP, including topics related to well-being at work and performance. Although both types of topics are present in the different areas of the master, work psychology tends to focus more on quality of working life and health and well-being at work, while personnel psychology is more centred on employee performance than other areas of WOP-P. Second, the Scientist-Practitioner Model is totally incorporated in the master: combination of research and professional training, emphasis on scientific rationale in the different courses of the master, and development of design competences (especially in the Joint Intensive Learning Unit or International Winter School). Third, because we satisfy criteria shared by European reference models of training, the mobility and recognition of our WOP-P students and professionals across countries is facilitated.

The structure and contents of the WOP-P Master are organized in four semesters, as follows:

* First semester, year 1, (beginning between September 15 and October 7. Workload: 30 ECTS):

BLOCK 1. The orientation course (4 ECTS) aims to prepare and socialize students with regard to the master and its rationale. During this course, students receive information and training about the competencies the master aims to develop, the scientist-practitioner model, ethics in professional activity of WOP-P Psychologists, databases and electronic resources to be used in the master, and introduction to the general process of training in research. This orientation course communicates shared values and contents of the master. It is congruent with the objectives to prepare students for excellence in training and learning, to reinforce the idea of a rigorous master based on the scientist-practitioner model, and to explain the WOP- psychologists career opportunities considering both practitioner and academic areas. The students have access to and analyse this application document, as submitted to the EACEA, and it is discussed with them in order to obtain a shared vision of the goals and main strategies and also to find out their views and suggestions about it.

BLOCK 2. This block consists of two courses of 4 ECTS (total = 8) that develop the explanatory approach to work psychology area of training. These courses offer knowledge about the main psychological theories on work, well-being, and quality of working life, as well as an overview of methods of work analysis, and other evaluation and assessment techniques of relevant work phenomena.

BLOCK 3. This block includes two courses of 4 ECTS (total = 8), offering the explanatory approach to organizational psychology. These courses offer knowledge about organizational phenomena and an overview of methods for various types of organizational analysis and assessment.

BLOCK 4. Because personnel psychology is a more intervention-oriented area of the discipline, only one explanatory course (4 ECTS) is included in the first semester. This course offers knowledge about psychological concepts and theories related to work careers and employment relationships, as well as an overview of methods for individual assessment in human resources practices.

BLOCK 5. As we mentioned before, the WOP-P Master incorporates mportant training in methodology in order to reinforce a solid and evidence-base scientific rationale in the professional activity of WOP psychologists. It is congruent with our objective aiming to follow a scientific-professional model of training. One course (4 ECTS) is considered in the first semester, emphasizing learning of multivariate statistical procedures.

BLOCK 12. Two of the 24 ECTS corresponding to the research training for the first year are offered in the first semester of the first year. This allows an initial preparation of the position paper and research work before initiating mobility to another country of the consortium. Two tutors are assigned for each student, corresponding to the higher education institutions where each student participates in mobility periods in the first year of the master.

* Second semester, year 1 (beginning the last week of February and finishing 10-17 of July). Workload: 30 ECTS):

BLOCK 11. Two free-content courses (2 x 4 = 8 ECTS) are devoted to other areas of psychology, as well as other disciplines related to WOP-P (law, economics, management, psychobiology, anthropology, sociology). Although Psychology is protected by law in the European countries of the consortium, we assume that excellent training in the discipline requires contact with other disciplines. Certain level of dialogue with other disciplines and a multidisciplinary approach is satisfied with these free-content courses.

BLOCK 12. Twenty two out of the 24 ECTS devoted to research training in the first year are included in the second semester. The objective of this training is to develop research competencies in the students. They need to prepare two documents and the respective oral presentations corresponding to: 1) the position paper (it describes the students research project) and 2) the research paper (it is similar to a scientific article). These two documents are sent to tutors and they are also examined by other researchers, providing feedback to improve the manuscripts and oral presentations. In these 24 ECTS (2 in the first semester and 22 in the second semester) there is also included a 4 ECTS course on research methods directly related to the specific methodologies students are using in their research projects.

* Third semester, year 2 (beginning between September 15 and October 7. Workload: 30 ECTs):

BLOCK 6. This block includes one course devoted to the intervention approach to work psychology (4 ECTS). This course offers theory and know-how concerning interventions in the field of work psychology, as well as an overview of approaches for intervention related to the (re)design of work, quality of working life, psychosocial risk prevention at work and the optimisation of human work activity.

BLOCK 7. One 4 ECTS course offers know-how concerning interventions in the field of organizational psychology, as well as an overview of approaches for intervention related to the design, functioning and development and redesign of organizations.

BLOCK 8. Because Personnel Psychology covers a large array of professional interventions, and taking into account the suggestions of students and alumni, as well as the professionals who tutor the students during their internship, two courses of 4 ECTS (8 ECTS in total) are devoted now to intervention in Personnel Psychology. These two courses offer knowledge and know-how concerning interventions in human resources practices and employment relationships, paying special attention to selection, training, performance evaluation and compensations.

BLOCK 9. An additional 4 ECTS methodology course is implemented with an emphasis on intervention. This course offers knowledge and skill about methodologies that aid intervention in the different fields of the discipline (e.g., design and use of interviews; focus groups, etc.).

BLOCK 10. Ten of the 12 ECTS associated with the Joint Intensive Learning Unit (International Winter School) are covered in the first semester of the second year. These 10 credits correspond to the first two phases of the International Winter School: 1) the multicultural and virtual team work related to the preparation of the state of the art on topics about WOP-P, review of journals and documents at the international level, etc. (6 ECTS); and b) the intensive two-week training period with the physical presence of all the Erasmus Mundus students and the participation of the international teaching staff (4 ECTS). Each student is registered in one of the options available (up to four) (see Figure 1). The first three options (work, organization, and personnel) provide an intensification of intervention knowledge and competencies in Work, Organizational, and Personnel Psychology. Special emphasis will be placed on the design and development of new models, strategies, methods and tools. The fourth option (research) provides an intensification of knowledge and competencies in the research activities on Work, Organizational, and Personnel Psychology, especially for those who plan to continue in a PhD program. The first phase of the International Winter School (preparation) is necessary in order to organize groups of students pertaining to different countries and to focus the attention of these groups on the analysis of a WOP topic that will be considered in the second phase of the International Winter School. An electronic platform facilitates the interaction among members of distributed multicultural groups during the first phase. In the process as a whole, competencies underlying participation in multicultural groups are developed both in virtual and face-to-face interactions.

* Fourth semester, year 2 (beginning last week of February and finishing 10-17 of July). Workload: 30 ECTS):

BLOCK 11. The third phase of the International Winter School (2 ECTS) takes place in the second semester of the second year. After the two-week intensive period (second phase), Erasmus Mundus students finish their work by preparing and submitting for evaluation an assignment about this training activity. This assignment requires the outline for the design and development of an intervention and a press release or publicity material for its commercialization.

BLOCK 12. Revised version of the research (master thesis). At the end of their research work (July of the first year), Erasmus Mundus students prepare and deliver an oral presentation. In addition to the corresponding mark, students receive detailed feedback about their paper and comments for improvement. In this block the students have to revise their research, done in the previous year, and come up with a second version of their research. Additionally, the student has to deliver a letter to the chair of the new evaluation committee describing how the feedback received during the first year of the master has been incorporated (or not) and improved the final version of their master thesis. This document, the letter describing how the feedback has been incorporated, and the oral presentation are examined by a jury.

BLOCK 13. Erasmus Mundus students carry out their professional stage (20 ECTS) in companies and different types of organizations. This training is under the supervision of both an academic tutor and a tutor in the company or organization. It develops professional competencies and the professional role. These competencies include client need analysis, diagnosis, planning, intervention, evaluation, reporting, and documentation with regard to a particular type of problem posed by an individual or organizational client. In order to assess the progress in the development of professional competences, a portfolio is used, and both students and tutors rely on the Competencies model developed by the Europsy

BLOCK 14. Once the Erasmus Mundus student finishes his/her professional stage, he/she prepares an integration report where theory and research evidence studied in the different units of the master and practice carried out during the professional stage have to be integrated. This strategy is congruent with the scientific-professional model. This document is really useful in order to find out how what it is taught and learned in the master is used afterwards in professional practice. In fact, these reports are posted in a platform to which all the teaching staff have access, and they are invited to read those reports and see how much the students have used and reflected on the contents of their Units. Teachers can use these materials for didactic purposes only if the anonymity of the company is assured and the student gives his or her consent.

Requirements

* Laurea (First cycle degree/Bachelor - 180 ECTS) obtained at any University
or, alternatively,
* a post-secondary qualification obtained in a non-university Higher Education Institute allowing for the continuation of the university studies in the subsequent level, but provided that the secondary school diploma was attained after at least a 12-year education;

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