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Is Britain’s membership of the EU good or bad for British workers?


In accordance with the Postgraduate Regulations students will be given one opportunity only to resubmit/retake a failed element of assessment. Failure at the second attempt constitutes failure to achieve the award of MA/Postgraduate Diploma in the Management of Human Resources.

Should you need to resubmit a failed assignment you are strongly advised to seek advice from the module tutor as to how to improve on the original failed piece of work.

Assignments are expected to be submitted by the deadline that has been set. In exceptional circumstances you may request an extension to a deadline or a deferral of the submission of work. Please refer to the Programme Handbook for information about the circumstances in which you can request an extension or deferral and the procedure for doing so.

Assignment : Individual Essay (3,500 words)

Choose ONE of the following essay questions. Your essay should be typed in Arial font, size 11 or 12. It must be properly referenced, i.e. sources of quotes from and citations of published work must be indicated clearly in the text of your essay and full details of all references must be included in an alphabetical list of references at the end of the essay. Failure to reference your sources properly will be penalised. If you are in any doubt about how to reference your work, consult the referencing guide on the Blackboard site for the programme (click on the study skills button). If you are still in doubt, ask the module leader.

Essay questions:

1.       ‘The employment relations legislation measures introduced since 1997 have served to significantly constrain managerial prerogative’.  Critically evaluate this statement.

2.      Who wins from flexible working practices – employers or employees?

3.      Can non-union systems of employee representation provide workers with an effective voice at work?

4.  Is Britain’s membership of the EU good or bad for British workers?

Essay  submission date: May 17th 2019

Essay hints

An essay is NOT a report, it should therefore not be written in point form; one sentence cannot be a paragraph as this is a collection of sentences.  Do not write in one sentence paragraphs.  An essay should offer a general introduction to the topic area, develop this discussion with specific arguments offering an analysis of the area, ultimately drawing the arguments together in the conclusion.  A report describes, an essay offers analysis (where description determines how something happened, analysis offers explanations as to why it happened).  Do not make unsupported statements, for example, `during the 1980s management became increasing powerful’ or `the majority of the labour force are no longer interested in trade union membership`;  these statements must be followed by a reference indicating they came from a text or an actual study of workplace change, otherwise it is your opinion, unless of course you have personally spoken to the majority of the UK workforce so you know they are not interested in trade union membership!  Your opinion should only ever be offered against a specific point when you have given evidence for and against the issue and are drawing a measured conclusion.  Arguments must be referenced using the Harvard system of referencing that is: 

‘the state remains a key player in shaping employment relations. It may be different from what is was in the past with individual employee protections such as the national minimum wage, extended paternity leave, statutory union representation  and employee consultation, but it also supports an environment of free enterprise and capitalism’ (Dundon and Rollinson, 2011: 184)

The full references should be listed at the end of the essay as follows:

Surname, Initial, date, book or article title, journal/book publisher details; for example,

Edgell, S. (2007) The Sociology of Work, London, Sage.

Edwards, P., Belanger, J. and Wright, M. (2006), ‘The Bases of Compromise in the Workplace: A Theoretical Framework’, British Journal of Industrial Relations, 44, 1, 125 – 145.

Quotes are useful to illustrate a point but should be used sparingly.  Quotes over four lines long should be separated from the main body of the text and indented, all quotes should be followed in brackets with the authors name, date and page number of the quote, for example.

“A useful way to think about the employment relationship is to contrast it with alternative ways of organizing economic relations, and to ask under what conditions freely choosing agents would opt for one form or another.” (Marsden 1999: 7)

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