NBS8491 : Personal and Professional Transformation (FT MBA)

Semester 1 Credit Value: 5
Semester 2 Credit Value: 5
ECTS Credits: 5.0


This practice-focused module is designed to help students understand, reflect on and develop their own personal managerial and leadership styles. The module uses a series of interactive sessions to enable students better understand their own personal aptitudes and approaches to interpersonal interactions. Building on this students then learn how to be more effective both when working in teams and when in leadership roles.

A key feature of the module is the intensive Personal Development week. During this week students undertake a wide variety of carefully structured individual and group activities. Facilitated by experienced development consultants and through detailed one-to-one individual feedback, the week provides students with a unique and highly valuable opportunity to understand and develop their personal managerial, team-working and leadership styles.

The module also includes extensive group and individual career-development support to help students identify their preferred career opportunities and to support and guide them in developing the networking and career-management skills needed to pursue these opportunities.

The aims of the module are to:

• Develop students' knowledge and critical understanding of personal and professional development issues;
• Enable students to critically reflect on and evaluate their own personal and professional skills development, enhancing their understanding of their strengths and weaknesses;
• Enhance students’ confidence in how they can support a team, their potential impact and effectiveness in cross-cultural business environments;
• Explore the challenges which cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary change brings to both collaboration and effective leadership and the implications of this for leadership styles and behaviours, so that students appreciate the importance of developing their ability to adapt to context and circumstances;
• Provide a structured mechanism to supporting students in planning their future career, and personal and professional development needs;
• Provide a framework for professional career management which helps students to develop key professional and employability skills.

Outline Of Syllabus

Workshops during Semester 1 and Semester 2 to include the following topics:

Critical analysis and academic writing skills
Learning self-awareness and learning styles
Reflective learning
Emotional Intelligence, Neuro Linguistic Programming
Personal resilience, stress and time management
Working effectively in teams
Leadership and the role of leaders in cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary situations
Negotiation and influencing skills
Presentation skills
Networking skills
Careers & employability
Effective self-marketing and CV development

The module will culminate in an intensive Personal Development experience held over a week. During this week, external consultants will provide, facilitate and observe a range of practical opportunities and challenges that enable students to better understand and reflect on their skills, knowledge and behaviours when working in pressured, time-constrained situations. Individual and specific feedback enables students to improve and develop their own self-awareness. Furthermore, this week gives students valuable experience of the sorts of tasks and activities used by many major employers when evaluating potential recruits.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture23:006:00Critical analysis
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion114:0014:00Independent Study
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture93:0027:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops48:0032:00Intensive integrative exercise
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops73:0021:00Career development workshops
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The module aims to ensure that all Newcastle MBA graduates have developed their interpersonal and professional skills in addition to their academic and practical business knowledge. The emphasis is on student development through self-reflective learning, practice and planning.

A variety of teaching and learning strategies are implemented to ensure the achievement of intended learning outcomes.

The initial lectures and teaching are designed to provide students with the critical analysis skills which will support their studies across the entire MBA programme. The subsequent lectures, class discussions and activities build from an initial focus on personal learning and self-awareness, to an understanding of how individuals contribute to teams in varied contexts, and culminate in exploring the skills and behaviours required of leaders.

The careers lectures are designed to help students understand and interact with the range of support available to them in considering an managing their future careers. In addition, the MBA Careers Adviser supports the students and works with them individually to help enable them to become self-reflecting learning practitioners, able to meet their personal goals.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1M301500 word critical review
Essay2M702000 word Personal Development Plan
Zero Weighted Pass/Fail Assessments
Description When Set Comment
Prof skill assessmntMPersonal Development Experience - Full attendance is required to pass this element
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The initial lectures and teaching on critical analysis skills, which are key skills to develop for use across the entire MBA programme, are tested through a critical essay. This essay is completed early in the programme so that feedback is available in time for learning to be applied to future work on other modules.

The personal development plan will assess how well students have developed both their factual understanding of the topics covered and their skills in applying their knowledge and abilities in self-directed learning and reflection on personal experiences. A key element in this plan will be the student’s evidence of reflection and learning from the activities and individual feedback during the Personal Development week. To ensure that students are aware of the importance of full participation in the Personal Development week, attendance at the full timetable of activities during the week is required in order to pass the module.

Reading Lists