Negotiations

Module summary

Module code: BUSI1632
Level: 6
Credits: 15
School: Business Faculty
Department: Human Res and Organisational Beh
Module Coordinator(s): Scott Tindal

Specification

Aims

The aim of this module is to enhance participants’ knowledge about key principles of negotiations, in order to develop their skills for managing negotiations in a broad array of business situations and settings. This includes negotiations with co-workers, bosses, buyers, suppliers, and other organizations. The course will introduce participants to the subject both from a theoretical and a practical perspective, drawing on key concepts and theories from psychology and other social sciences.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student will be able to:
1 1. Describe the key aspects of negotiation situations, the challenges they present, as well as strategies for dealing with them.
2 Explain how contextual, cognitive, and emotional factors affect negotiations.
3 Analyse negotiation situations and select appropriate negotiation strategies.
4 Analyse and evaluate empirical and theoretical research findings to inform the selection of negotiation strategies and to evaluate the outcomes.
5 Reflect critically on their own negotiation behaviour in order to analyse their performance, appraise alternatives and continually improve their capabilities.

Indicative content

Examples of topics covered include the following: • Introduction to the main types of negotiation (distributive bargaining, integrative negotiation) and key concepts associated with them • Different types of goals and their effects on negotiations • How relationships and emotions affect, and are affected by, negotiations • The role of norms in negotiations, e.g., gender norms, cultural norms and ethical considerations • Different forms of power and their effects on negotiations • Dynamics and challenges of negotiations with multiple parties.

Teaching and learning activity

The course will be taught through a combination of lectures, tutorials, role play negotiation exercises, individual and group assignments, and independent study. Independent study is essential, because the course readings, together with the material covered in the lectures, provide the foundation for other elements of the course. Throughout the course, students will use role-play negotiation exercises to apply insights from the lectures and course literature, and gain some practical experience. Some of the role plays will take place in class; others will take place out of class. As part of the lectures and tutorials, participants will analyse their experiences with the role play negotiation exercises. The discussion will be based on two key elements: (1) setting participants’ experiences in relation to concepts and theories introduced in the lectures and the course readings, and (2) learning from each other by comparing the strategies used by different participants, and their negotiation outcomes. This requires active participation from everyone.

Assessment

Reflective Portfolio - 50%
LO - 1, 2, 4, 5.
Pass mark - 40%
1,400 words.
Across the module, students conduct a series of 4 negotiation simulations. Students will be required to write a short reflection of the experience (ca 300 words) which will be compiled into a portfolio.

Essay - 50%
LO - 1, 2, 3, 4.
Pass mark - 40%
1,400 words.
Students will select a negotiation situation. In their essay, they will analyse the negotiation situation, process and outcomes, and develop recommendations for one of the parties involved. In doing so, they will draw on insights from theoretical and empirical research on negotiations.

Nature of FORMATIVE assessment supporting student learning:
(1) Assessment 1: Portfolio. After each negotiation role play simulation, there will be a detailed class discussion where students will examine why they reached the agreement they did, and why other groups reached different agreements. This discussion forms the basis of their own short reflections which will be compiled into a portfolio.
(2) Assessment 2: Essay. There is one workshop where there will be a class discussion on the negotiation situations that students may consider. Students will have the opportunity to meet on a one-to-one with the programme leader to discuss their essay ideas and to raise any other questions they may have. Students can have 2 pages of text reviewed by the programme leader. This may be part of their essay or an essay structure.