CONSULTING PROJECT - 2019/0

Module code: MANM448

Module Overview

The Consulting Project is designed to integrate the learning from across the programme curriculum and apply it to a real business problem in a specific organisational context. Working in teams of 3-5, students will consolidate and deepen their knowledge and understanding of the relevant areas of study through their engagement with a live consulting project set by a client organisation in conjunction with the module teaching team.

Students will develop their professional skills with a particular emphasis on consulting skills, including the ability to:


  • engage with representatives of client organisation in a professional and effective manner; -interpret a consulting brief from a client;

  • define the scope of the project in terms of the issues that require investigation;

  • select appropriate sources of information and methods of data collection and analysis;

  • design an effective approach to conducting a consulting project given the requirements of the client brief and the circumstances of their engagement with the client organisation;

  • conduct research within the client organisation with professionalism and sensitivity to political and ethical dimensions of the assignment; 

  • conduct relevant background research (e.g. benchmarking, market research, competitor analysis, etc.);

  • select and deploy appropriate analytical tools and frameworks to analyse and interpret the data;

  • reach evidence-based conclusions and develop innovative solutions and recommendations for the client organisation.

  • act ethically and with professional integrity.



Thus, the module supports the development of professional expertise understood both as advanced subject knowledge and an advanced professional skillset.

 

Module provider

Surrey Business School

Module Leader

ZDUNCZYK Katarzyna (SBS)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

JACs code:

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

N/A

Module content

Indicative content includes: The Consulting Project module consists of a live project set by a client organisation in relation to an actual business problem. Students work in teams of 3-5 and engage in collaborative inquiry with the client organisation, collect, analyse and interpret relevant data and conduct background research to develop novel, evidence-based solutions to the problems set out in the client brief. They prepare a consulting report and present to the client organisation.

Students benefit from taught sessions on the consulting process and skills (delivered in a blended format) and are supported throughout by an academic advisor.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework Group Coursework : Consulting Report 60
Oral exam or presentation Group Presentation : 20 min 40

Alternative Assessment

Individual Report 60% Individual Presentation 40%

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate advanced understanding of the subject matter pertinent to their consulting and their mastery of the learning outcomes through practical application.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module is based on the live consulting project that students carry out for a client organisation.

This is an integrative collaborative project that showcases students' knowledge from across the programme curriculum, their cognitive skills as well as their practical ability to apply their learning to complex problems and tasks in the practice of management consulting.

The assessment consists of two elements:

20- minute presentation for the client organisation (40%)

4,000- word Consulting Report, including a 1,500-word executive summary (60%);

In the event that any student would not be able to contribute to the group presentation, they will be given an alternative assessment, i.e:

20-minute individual presentation to the teaching team (40%)

In the event that any student would not be able to contribute to the group report, they will be given an alternative assessment, i.e.:

4,000 word Individual report (60%)

Formative assessment

Following the team presentation, students receive formative feedback from the client organisation.

Feedback

Students receive formative feedback throughout the duration of the module in the form of team meetings with their academic advisor.

 

 

Module aims

  • Provide students with a structured set of opportunities to develop their professional skills in the area of management consulting through the engagement with a client organisation in a live project context.
  • Familiarise the students with the rigours, demands and dilemmas of working for a client in a consulting capacity.
  • Enable students to scope, design and develop a major piece of original work for a client organisation.
  • Allow students the opportunity to enhance their learning of subject matter from across the programme curriculum by applying it in a real business and organisational context.
  • Enable students to gain experience of conducting applied research to develop effective, evidence-based solutions and recommendations.
  • Demonstrate an awareness of any ethical dilemmas that arise in the course of a consulting engagement and develop their own professional integrity as a consultant.
  • To enable students to develop professional and career skills relevant to their programme of study.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Understand and demostrate appropriate professional conduct as a consultant PT
002 Develop a practical ability to engage as a consultant with the representatives of a client organisation across functional areas and hierarchical levels PT
003 Demostrate an advanced ability to interpret the brief, scope and design a consulting project CPT
004 Grasp a new organisational and business context efficiently and accurately through on-site inquiry and background research CKPT
005 Apply academic knowledge and research skills to address business and organisational issues in a reflexive an ethically informed manner CKPT
006 Demostrate critical engagement with the client brief, the evidence obtained, and the existing literature relevant to the chosen topic CKPT
007 Develop original ideas and solutions to real business problems by drawing on academic knowledge and appropriate evidence CKPT
008 Write with clarity and precision in a format approriate for a consulting report CKPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Workshop Hours: 5

Independent Study Hours: 137

Tutorial Hours: 8

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to ensure that students achieve the learning outcomes for the module; these relate to (1) personal and professional development with a focus on consulting skills, (2) integration of knowledge from across the programme curriculum; (3) in-depth understanding of the area of investigation relevant to the specific project.

The academic advisor supports students' work throughout the project by meeting with each team regularly throughout their engagement with the client organisation. The meetings may be face-to face or online (synchronously).

In addition, the module includes four taught sessions dedicated to consulting skills and the consulting process. These sessions are scheduled towards the beginning of the module to equip the students for effective engagement with the client.

The learning and teaching methods include:

Self- directed learning pertains to engaging with learning materials and undertaking desk-research required for classroom participation, client engagement and independent project work. 

Practical tutorials are designed to develop a practical understanding of the consulting process and skill set through guided discussion, engaging in classroom practical exercises, video and case analyses; -

Independent project work : Students learn through engaging with the client organisation, and applying the knowledge and skillsfrom the module and the programme to their consulting project in an integrative and original manner;

Experiential learning : students experience being a consultant in a real situation of engagement with a client and learn in a phenomenological way about the rigours, demands and dilemmas of working for a client in a consulting capacity.

Team advisory meetings support students in their project work through systematic review of progress, discussion and formative feedback from an academic tutor.These may be run face-to-face or online (synchronously);

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list

Reading list for CONSULTING PROJECT : http://aspire.surrey.ac.uk/modules/manm448

Other information

N/A

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Management MSc 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2019/0 academic year.