MPHR 696 - Foundations of HR

This course focuses on the core competencies that are essential for effectively working in the field of Human Resources (HR) and lays the groundwork for a successful journey through Georgetown’s School of Continuing Studies Master of Professional Studies in Human Resources Management program. The semester begins with a macro view of the field and its role as a critical strategic business partner to the organizations in which it functions. This “helicopter view” of HR will examine the role of HR from a strategic perspective as well as a tactical or operations perspective, and the nature of HR in different types of organizations (private enterprise, government, nonprofit, academia) will be introduced. This initial focus on the macro organization level will help establish the importance of systems thinking as a critical skill from the beginning of the course. In addition to looking outward at the field of human resources, students will be asked to look inward at themselves in order to begin their journey to increased self-awareness and personal development. Self-awareness is a cornerstone of effective interpersonal interaction, and HR professionals who have insight into their own personalities, needs, tendencies and styles can consciously choose behaviors that will allow them to be most effective in their roles as Human Resources professionals interacting with individuals, groups, and organizations. Throughout the semester, the major functions of Human Resources will be examined, along with the Human Resource professional’s role in each of those functions. Human Resource Competencies (or, what makes a Human Resource professional successful in the major functions) will be discussed in relationship to different career stages (Early Level, Mid Level, Senior Level, and Executive Level). In addition, the skills, competencies, and individual characteristics that students will be expected to gain by the time they complete the HRM program will be clearly laid out and explained, so that students can learn to manage their own growth and development throughout the program. Students will be provided with the basic skill-set and framework required for the more specialized and advanced concentration courses in the curriculum. Moreover, through the use of readings, lectures, group presentations and real-world case studies, students will gain a basic understanding and appreciation of concepts and issues relating to core HR areas including: Strategy, Talent Management, Total Rewards, Employment Law, Human Resource Development, Employee and Labor Relations, and Risk Management. Students will be expected to learn these basics while developing an awareness of the challenges facing the HR profession today.
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