Appendix F

HRD Curriculum Resources*

University Programs

There are at least 10 different master's degree programs for people interested in HRD. These are:

  • Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Human Resource Management

  • Master of Science in Personnel and Human Resource Management

  • Master of Science in Applied Behavioral Science

  • Master of Science in Adult Learning and Human Resource Development

  • Master of Science in Organization Effectiveness

  • Master of Science in New Professional Studies: Organizational Learning

  • Master of Arts in Human Development or Human Resource Development

  • Master of Arts in Human Resource Management

  • Master of Arts in Organization Development

  • Master of Education

A few universities also offer nondegree certificate programs. These include:

  • Graduate Certificate in Human Resources

  • Graduate Certificate in Organizational Development

  • Graduate Certificate in Instruction Design

The nondegree certificate programs range from 15 to 18 required credits, while the master's programs require between 30 and 54 credits. The MBA programs generally require the most credits.

Costs range widely depending on the university's location, private/public status, and faculty/program prestige. For comparison, universities in the Washington, D.C., area range in cost from $150 to $707 per credit hour, with most programs charging about $300 per credit hour.

Admission requirements are generally similar whether applying for a graduate certificate program or a master's degree. Many university programs consider the professional experience of their applicants. Some may offer to waive required courses that relate specifically to applicants' experience.

Most universities require a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university. Many also require that the applicant's average GPA for that undergraduate degree be above a set limit. With few exceptions, either GRE or GMAT scores are required for application to master's degree programs. Universities may also require one or more of the following: references, resumes, written personal statements of purpose, several years of progressively responsible work experience, and/or interviews.

Required course work varies between programs depending on the emphasis of particular programs and universities.

Some common courses for programs emphasizing HRD include:

  • Instructional Design and Development
  • Performance Analysis and Improvement
  • Consulting
  • Managing HRD
  • Training Research and Development
  • Delivery Systems Design
  • Career Development
  • Behavior Modeling

Some more progressive courses in programs emphasizing HRD include:

  • Distance Education Methodologies
  • Incorporating Technology in Training
  • International Adult Learning and HRD
  • Strategic Approach to Human Resource Management
  • Negotiation Skills and Strategies
  • Strategic Management of Change

Some common courses in programs emphasizing Organizational Development include:

  • Program Intervention
  • Management and Organizational Theory
  • Work Group or Team Development and Learning
  • Organizational Diagnosis or Analysis
  • Organizational Development or Learning

Some more progressive courses in programs emphasizing Organizational Development include:

  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Managing Quality Customer Services
  • Business Statistics
  • Creating the Learning Organization
  • Strategic Knowledge Management

Some common courses in programs emphasizing Human Resource Management or Administration include:

  • Strategic Human Resource Management
  • Compensation
  • Employee Benefits and or Pensions
  • Labor Relations
  • Recruiting and Selecting Employees
  • Managerial Economics
  • Personnel Law

Some more progressive courses in programs emphasizing Human Resource Management or Administration include:

  • Managing Diversity
  • Problem Solving
  • Managing Conflict
  • Writing for Decision Making

Professional Associations

Associations exist for just about every profession, and they are usually an excellent source for professional publications, learning materials, continuing education courses, and networking with others in that profession.

Some of the associations for individuals interested in Human Resources, Human Resource Development, Organizational Development, or related fields include (among others):

  • The American Management Association
  • The American Society for Training and Development
  • The Association for Quality and Participation
  • The International Personnel Management Association
  • The American Society for Quality Control
  • The Federal Executive Institute Alumni Association
  • The International Society for Performance Improvement
  • The Society for Human Resource Management
  • The Human Resource Planning Society
  • The Society for Advancement of Management
  • The Association for Educational Communications and Technology

Commercial Programs

These programs vary widely from company to company and region to region. Many are national; some are only regional, statewide, or local. Some specialize in specific fields like change management, and some cover a gamut of subjects from basic math to professional development.

Formats vary from live seminars, to video- and audiocassette group or self- training, to computer-based training, to workbooks and self-assessments. Cost varies from around $5 for a workbook self-study course to thousands of dollars for week-long seminars in popular resort areas. Quality also varies broadly from company to company and region to region.

One of the greatest benefits of this kind of training/curriculum resource is convenience. The live seminars are generally taught by expert speakers who know the topic of the seminar from personal and professional experience, and teach the topic repeatedly on numerous dates in a particular area.

Most seminars are day- or week-long, causing less disruption of work and ensuring that only the most practical topics and/or skills are presented.

Self-study workbooks, videos, and audiocassettes can be used on your own time at your convenience, and can be reviewed for future reference. Video and computer-based learning provides a cost-effective way of training many people scattered across different geographical locations or who are unable to gather at one particular time.

One of the greatest disadvantages of this kind of training/curriculum resource is that topics are broad to cover common needs and don't always address a topic in a way specific to your needs. Customized training is usually only available to larger groups, and tends to be quite expensive.

Determining Your Best Option

In most career decisions, what you want to accomplish from the activity or experience is an important step toward determining what the decision should be. In considering various curriculum options the same is true.

Some possible questions to ask yourself when considering different options are:

  • What are my current strengths, skills, and competencies?

  • What is my current role, and what do I want my role to be in the future? What are the skills and competencies I'd need for that role I want in the future? Which of them are not among the ones I listed as current strengths, skills, and competencies?

  • Of those skills and competencies that I don't already have which I need for that role I want in the future, how many cannot be obtained unless I take a certificate or master's program?

  • How many can be learned/obtained through continuing education courses at a junior college, professional association classes, commercial training programs; by listening to video or audiotape training programs; by taking a computer-based training program or correspondence course; by reading a book; or through some other alternative source?

  • Will my current employer pay for some or all of the additional training that I need?

  • How much energy, time, or money am I willing to invest in obtaining those skills and competencies that I need for that role for the future?

  • Which option will be the best use of my time, energy, and money for where I want to be/what I want to do?

  • How will that option affect my lifestyle, my work, my relationships, or my financial condition?

  • When am I willing to initiate any additional training/learning that I need to do?

  • What span of time am I willing to commit to that training/learning?

  • Do I need any financial assistance? If so, how will I go about getting it?

  • Will my friends, family, coworkers, and supervisors be supportive of my efforts? Will their reaction affect my willingness to go forward with my plans or my success in getting where I want to go and doing what I want to do?

  • How will I know when I'm successful?

  • What rewards will I plan for myself along the way to recognize small successes and keep me motivated to complete my plan?

  • At what intervals will I re-evaluate where I'm headed and where I want to go to and adjust my course if necessary?

  • Will I need to prepare for a geographic, industry, career, or job change when I'm through with my training/learning? If so, what will I do to prepare for that, and when?

  • Am I satisfied that this option will get me where I want to go, when I want to go there, and how I want to get there?

*This information on curriculum resources for HRD practitioners and managers was compiled by Amy Van Skiver, Department of Agriculture, during a developmental assignment for the Women's Executive Leadership Program. The data were collected and synthesized from leading universities around the country, professional associations in HRD and related fields, commercial training programs, and career development programs.
Appendix E       Appendix G       Table of Contents