Corporate Governance and Business Ethics (MSc)

Year of entry

2018

Start date

October 2018

Location

Central London

Status

Fully Approved

Duration

One year full-time or two years part-time

Attendance

Two to three evenings a week full-time or one to two evenings a week part-time, October to June

The economic and financial aspects of corporate governance relationships have long been of concern to those in the business and investment communities, and in recent years the social, political and moral aspects of these relationships have also become a major public concern.

This interdisciplinary Master's degree addresses both these sets of issues. It studies the complex and changing relationships between business corporations, their stakeholders (shareholders, employees, customers, suppliers, etc) and the societies in which they operate. The programme is international in scope, recognising both the wide variety of cultures and corporate governance systems within which businesses operate worldwide and the increasing globalisation of business and finance.

The programme is ideal if you are interested in the policy aspects of corporate governance or you wish to be involved professionally in the direction and regulation of companies and the management or trusteeship of pension funds and other investments.

Coursework is combined with independent research, leading to a dissertation. You can also choose a specialist pathway, depending on your interests and career objectives. The modules are run in collaboration with other departments at Birkbeck, giving you access to a wide range of options and a truly interdisciplinary approach to corporate governance and business ethics.

 

Highlights

  • Based in the School of Business, Economics and Informatics, the Department of Management is an internationally recognised centre of excellence in teaching, research and consultancy in the broad field of management.
  • Our academic staff are active researchers as well as enthusiastic teachers, and regularly publish cutting-edge articles in the world's leading journals. We have particular research strengths in international business and strategy, the management of innovation and entrepreneurship, human resource management, corporate governance, sport management and marketing, as well as financial management and accounting, and are supported by the London Centre for Corporate Governance and Ethics research centre.
  • Provides a strong foundation for PhD research in the area and has achieved ESRC Research Training recognition.
  • Benefits from the involvement of a number of leading figures in the field, including members of national and international committees on corporate governance, shareholder activists and NGO representatives. We engage in significant collaborative research and have excellent contacts with many public and private sector organisations, professional bodies and researchers at other academic institutions.
  • Has a number of streams, enabling you to concentrate on particular areas within the broader field of corporate governance and ethics, including public sector governance (in collaboration with our Department of Politics); environmental issues in corporate governance (in collaboration with our Department of Geography); and finance and accounting.
  • You will have access to Moodle, our online learning resource where all information and materials relating to your programme of study and modules are available. You will also have access to the Birkbeck Library and e-Library where you can obtain books and journal articles that are required for your studies.

Course structure

You complete modules, including a 12,000-word dissertation, to a total of 180 credits.

You choose an area to specialise in:

  • Corporate Governance
  • Environmental Issues in Corporate Governance and Ethics (in collaboration with our Department of Geography)
  • Public Sector Governance (in collaboration with our Department of Politics).

Corporate Governance

You take five compulsory modules, including two from:

  • either Principles of Organization and Management or Strategic Management
  • either Corporate Responsibility or Theoretical Perspectives and Research in Corporate Responsibility.

You also choose three option modules, including one option module from the wide range of postgraduate option modules offered by the Department of Management, and complete a dissertation.

Full-time students complete all of their modules in one year.

Part-time students take three compulsory modules and choose one option module in their first year, before undertaking two compulsory modules, choosing two option modules and completing a dissertation in their second year.

Environmental Issues in Corporate Governance and Ethics

You take four compulsory modules, including two from:

  • either Principles of Organization and Management or Strategic Management
  • either Corporate Responsibility or Theoretical Perspectives and Research in Corporate Responsibility.

You also choose three option modules, which can include one option module from the wide range of postgraduate option modules offered by the Department of Management, and complete a dissertation.

Part-time students take three compulsory modules and choose one option module in their first year, before undertaking one compulsory module, choosing two option modules and completing a dissertation in their second year.

Public Sector Governance

    You take six compulsory modules, including two from:

    • either Principles of Organization and Management or Strategic Management
    • either Corporate Responsibility or Theoretical Perspectives and Research in Corporate Responsibility.

    Part-time students take four compulsory modules in their first year, before undertaking two compulsory modules and completing a dissertation in their second year.

     

    Module groups

    Corporate Governance compuslory modules

    Corporate Governance option modules

    Environmental Issues compulsory modules

    Environmental Issues option modules

    Public Sector Governance compulsory modules

    Public Sector Governance option modules

    MSc Corporate Governance and Business Ethics dissertation

    • Entry Requirements

      Entry requirements

      Normally at least a second-class honours degree in any subject area from a UK university or a non-UK equivalent. A professional or other qualification obtained by written examinations approved by the College.

      Relevant experience, supporting statements and references may be taken into consideration, especially in the case of non-standard applications.

      International entry requirements

      If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

      If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

      Visit the International section of our website to find out more about our English language entry requirements and relevant requirements by country.

      Credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL)

      If you have studied at university previously, you may have accumulated credits through the modules you studied. It may be possible to transfer these credits from your previous study to Birkbeck or another institution. You should discuss this with the Programme Director when you are making your application.

      Find out more about credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL).

    • Fees

      Fees

      Part-time home/EU students: £5625 pa
      Full-time home/EU students: £11250 pa
      Part-time international students: £8700 pa
      Full-time international students: £17425 pa

      Students are charged a tuition fee in each year of their programme. Tuition fees for students continuing on their programme in following years may be subject to annual inflationary increases. For more information, please see the College Fees Policy.

    • Teaching and assessment

      Teaching

      At Birkbeck, almost all of our courses are taught in the evening and our teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments. We actively encourage innovative and engaging ways of teaching, to ensure our students have the best learning experience. In the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), the government’s system for rating university teaching, Birkbeck was allocated a Silver award.

      Teaching may include formal lectures, seminars, and practical classes and tutorials. Formal lectures are used in most degree programmes to give an overview of a particular field of study. They aim to provide the stimulus and the starting point for deeper exploration of the subject during your own personal reading.

      Seminars give you the chance to explore a specific aspect of your subject in depth and to discuss and exchange ideas with fellow students. They typically require preparatory study.

      In addition, you will have timetabled meetings with your Personal Tutor.

      Methods of teaching on this course

      Theoretical components are taught mainly via evening sessions supported through online materials and attendance at evening classes.

      Timetables

      Timetables are usually available from September onwards and you can access your personalised timetable via your My Birkbeck Profile online (if you have been invited to enrol).

      Indicative class size

      Class sizes vary, depending on your course, the module you are undertaking, and the method of teaching. For example, lectures are presented to large groups, with 30 to 100+ students in attendance, whereas seminars usually consist of small, interactive groups of 10 to 30 students, led by an academic.

      Academic support

      Birkbeck offers study and learning support to undergraduate and postgraduate students to help them succeed. Our Learning Development Service can help you in the following areas:

      • academic skills (including planning your workload, research, writing, exam preparation and writing a dissertation)
      • written English (including structure, punctuation and grammar)
      • numerical skills (basic mathematics and statistics).

      Our Disability and Dyslexia Service can support you if you have additional learning needs resulting from a disability or from dyslexia.

      Our Counselling Service can support you if you are struggling with emotional or psychological difficulties during your studies.

      Our Mental Health Advisory Service can support you if you are experiencing short– or long-term mental health difficulties during your studies.

      Assessment

      Assessment is an integral part of your university studies and usually consists of a combination of coursework and examinations. You will be given time to complete coursework and prepare for exams.

      Unseen written examinations are usually taken in the Summer term, during May to June, and, in most cases, are held during the day on a weekday – if you have daytime commitments, you will need to make arrangements for daytime attendance. Exam timetables are published online in March each year.

      Find out more about assessment at Birkbeck, including guidance on assessment, feedback and our assessment offences policy.

      Methods of assessment on this course

      A combination of examinations, coursework and a 12,000-word dissertation.

      Feedback

      As well as a mark for your coursework and exams, you will also receive feedback from your marker(s) to help you learn, improve and succeed. We encourage you to discuss feedback with your module tutor.

      Feedback can come in different forms: notes via Moodle (our online learning environment); a paper copy of a completed feedback form; or in-class or face-to-face feedback. The College Policy on Feedback on Assessment sets out what you can expect from your feedback.

      Your department will usually provide you with your marked coursework within four weeks of submission. Your initial mark is provisional until the relevant Board of Examiners has confirmed it.

      Your official coursework and exam results will be made available to you via your My Birkbeck Profile online.

    • Careers and employability

      Careers and employability

      Graduates can pursue careers in local and national government, business, and industry. Possible professions include management consultant, human resources officer, or marketing executive. This degree can also be useful in becoming a Civil Service fast streamer, retail manager, or sales executive.

      Find out more about these professions.

      We offer a comprehensive Careers and Employability Service to help you advance your career, while our in-house, professional recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, works with London’s top employers to help you gain work experience that fits in with your evening studies.

    • How to apply

      How to apply

      You apply directly to Birkbeck for this course, using the online application.

      Birkbeck can give you all of the information and help you need to complete your application form, including our online personal statement tool, which will guide you through every step of writing your personal statement.

      Application deadlines and interviews

      Applications accepted from November until early September; early application is recommended.