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Regular version of the site
Master 2019/2020

Work and Organizational Psychology

Type: Compulsory course (Applied Social Psychology)
Area of studies: Psychology
Delivered by: School of Psychology
When: 2 year, 1, 2 module
Mode of studies: distance learning
Instructors: Нестик Тимофей Александрович, Olga Abramova, Alexander Eliseenko
Master’s programme: Applied Social Psychology
Language: English
ECTS credits: 6

Course Syllabus


a. Work and Organizational Psychology covers the main topics of modern organizational behavior. Leadership, motivation, organizational change and innovation are the core elements of the human side of management. The course reveals the issues of adaptation of organization and its employees to the economy of the future. What organizational design will be in demand? How will innovation change people's attitudes, motivation and strategies in organization? What styles of leadership will fit the digital world? b. The course is obligatory discipline for the 2st year master students of the MSc program “Applied social psychology” c. The discipline builds on the previously learned general theories within the courses of social psychology and consists of series of seminars and practical classes.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • The aim of the course is to offer students a deep understanding of modern organizational behavior taking place in the society against the backdrop of rapid development of technologies and digital transformation of the economy. More specifically, students will enhance their knowledge of concepts, models, theories, and research findings that are central to the study of organizational and work psychology, organizational change, innovation and leadership from psychological background. This course also focuses on developing analytical and practical skills to enable students to manage people and modern organization.
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • understand the main theoretical approaches, practical questions, concepts of organizational and work psychology
  • critically reflect and apply main motivational theories in organizational psychology
  • compare and apply different organizational structures for desired organizational behavior of employees
  • reflect upon organizational cultures' types and choose appropriate one for desired organizational behavior
  • able to use the specific concepts, models, and methods of decision making process to solve complex problems in business organizations
  • plan and execute the team research projects to generate and evaluate complex ideas and organizational practices
  • able to use the tools of creativity to generate and implement innovative ideas and new products
  • critically reflect upon theoretical approaches and analyze their application to achieve effective organizational change towards innovation
  • analyze and use social power main theories for evaluation of organizational behavior
  • analyze and train contemporary leadership styles in a dynamic 21st century work environment, acting consistently, ethically and socially responsibly
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Introduction to modern work and organizational psychology.
    Age of digital transformation. Globalization. Innovative technologies and people.
  • Motivation in organization.
    Work performance. Job-satisfaction. Work engagement. Self-determination theory. Basic psychological needs theory. Intrinsic vs extrinsic motivation (Deci and Ryan). Self-efficacy theory (Bandura). Goal-Setting Theory (Locke). Expectancy theory. Equity theory.
  • Organizational design: organizational structure.
    Vertical vs horizontal organizational structure. Job design. Matrix organization. Project management: agile. Holacracy business model.
  • Organizational design: organizational culture.
    Typology of organizational culture. Levels of organizational culture. Trust/ autonomy at organization. Flexible management. Holacracy business model. Intel case “Intel’s new strategy: jump to the future”. Valve case.
  • Decision-making process in organization.
    Psychological bias. Knowledge sharing. Organizational learning and learning organization. Nudge theory (Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein).
  • Teamwork in organization.
    Groupthink. Teamwork roles. Teams: virtual teams, cross-cultural teams, multifunctional teams. Team conflicts.
  • Creativity in organization.
    Methods of new ideas’ generation. Design thinking. Brainstorm. Mindmap. Team creativity. Individual vs Organizational creativity. Networks roles and ties in generation of new ideas (Granovetter, 1973)
  • Organizational change and innovation management.
    Innovation ecosystem. Theory of social influence and social change (Moscovici,1976). Opinion leaders. Types of innovations (product, process, business model). Readiness to organizational change. Resistance to change.
  • Leadership in organization of 21t century: power.
    Social power theories. Transformation of relationships. Power paradox.
  • Leadership in organization of 21t century: modern leadership styles.
    Transformational, transactional leadership styles. Servant leadership. Innovation leadership. Ambidextrous leadership. Self-leadership.
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Class participation, preparedness and attendance
  • non-blocking Homework №1
  • non-blocking Homework №2.
  • non-blocking Test
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (2 module)
    0.225 * Class participation, preparedness and attendance + 0.263 * Homework №1 + 0.262 * Homework №2. + 0.25 * Test


Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Christensen, C. M. (2013). The Innovator’s Dilemma : When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail. Boston, Massachusetts: Harvard Business Review Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=nlebk&AN=675240
  • Schwartz, B. (2015). Why We Work. New York: Simon & Schuster/ TED. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=nlebk&AN=1970298

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Organizational design : a step-by-step approach, Burton, R. M., Obel, B., 2015