MSc Business Psychology

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Selection and Assessment in Organisations

Course unit fact file
Unit code BMAN70091
Credit rating 15
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? No


The course covers each stage of the selection process.

Topics include: organisational needs and job analysis and competency profiling; Reliability, validity, and fairness as criteria for evaluating selection techniques; evaluating meta-analytic evidence; predictors of job performance and evaluation of selection methods (e.g., cognitive ability and personality assessment, CVs and application forms, interviews, and situational judgment tests, technology-based selection); emotional intelligence and creativity in selection; diversity, fairness and ethics in personnel assessment; candidate reactions; selecting for specific roles such as leadership positions and international careers

BPS curriculum areas covered:

Psychological assessment at work

Applying psychology to work and organisations


BMAN70091 Programme Req: BMAN70091 is only available as a core unit to students on MSc Business Psychology and MSc Organisational Psychology


The course aims to give students an understanding of the theoretical issues concerning the selection and assessment of personnel and the knowledge base to apply practical skills in designing selection procedures.

Learning outcomes

  • Understand the key stages of the selection process
  • Understand and be able to apply the concepts of reliability, validity, fairness and utility to selection in the work environment
  • Discuss cognitive ability and personality and their prediction of job performance and other criteria relevant to selection decisions
  • Be able to critically evaluate a range of selection methods such as psychometric tests, interviews, CVs and application forms, situational judgment tests, work samples, and assessment centres
  • Understand issues of fairness and diversity in personnel selection and demonstrate awareness of BPS ethical considerations in selection and assessment at work
  • Understand the role of personnel selection for subsequent organisational objectives such as employee development and promotion systems.


BPS curriculum areas covered:

Psychological assessment at work

Applying psychology to work and organisations

Assessment methods

Individual essay plan (20%)

Examination (80%)

Feedback methods

  • Informal advice and discussion during a lecture, seminar, workshop or lab.
  • Responses to student emails and questions from a member of staff including feedback provided to a group via an online discussion forum.
  • Written and/or verbal comments after students have given a group or individual presentation.
  • Generic feedback posted on Blackboard regarding overall examination performance.

Recommended reading

Core text:

Smith, J M. (2005). Testing People at Work: competencies in psychometric testing.   London: Blackwell

Additional, useful textbook

Cook, M. (2016). Personnel Selection: Adding Value Through People – A Changing Picture. London: Wiley-Blackwell

The primary reading consists of reading lists, which accompany each lecture.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 2
Lectures 30
Independent study hours
Independent study 118

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
David Hughes Unit coordinator

Additional notes

Informal Contact Method

Office Hours

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