The MSc. in Human Resource Development is one of several graduate programmes offered in our department. The others are:
MSc. Sociology (specialization in Social Policy and Administration/Sociology of Development/Social Anthropology)
Ph.D. Organisational Behaviour
For more information, please contact us:
Sociology Unit - 876-977-0315 or 876-977-6267 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Mondays - Fridays
Psychology Unit - 876-970-3896
Social Work Unit - 876-970-4336 or 876-970-6009
HRD Unit - 876-702-2359 or 970-6466
or email us
Graduate Programmes in the Department
The Masters Programme in Human Resource Development
The Masters Programme in Human Resource Development was initiated in 1995 by the Department of Sociology, Psychology and Social Work at the University of the West Indies, with significant input from the professional fraternity of human resource practitioners in Jamaica. Students are drawn from the NGO, public and private sectors, and work in HRD contexts as well as in direct management ositions, service organisations and private consultancies.
The idea to teach human resource development at the UWI Mona campus emerged from several sources, and coalesced as the programme launched in January 1995. One of these strands occurred during a coffee break at a conference of the Jamaica Association of Training and Development (JATAD) (now the Human Resource Management Association of Jamaica (HRMAJ)) in the early 1990s. At that time, one of the participants asked the Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Professor Don Robotham, why it was that UWI wasn’t teaching a comprehensive programme in this discipline. Professor Robotham agreed with Dr. Grace Martin-Hall and asked his former department to remedy that gap.
Interestingly, Professor Robotham did not realise that the seeds of that dream had already been sown in the department, and that a pair of staff members had begun to discuss the possibility of this endeavour with a group of HR professionals. After much work by the Department’s staff to define their interpretation of the philosophy of the discipline in the roots of the sociology, psychology and social psychology taught within the department, the Department of Sociology, Psychology and Social Work launched the Masters Programme in Human Resource Development in 1995with Professor Patricia Anderson and Mr. Clement Branche as Academic Coordinators, Administrative Assistant Mrs. Simone Wong and Clerical Officer, Ms. Sophia Morgan leading a faculty of practitioners and academic theorists.
This programme was built upon the traditional strengths of the department in teaching sociological and psychological theory and sociological psychology and applying these to Caribbean organisational life. These foundations are still to be
seen at the core of the programme that pays close attention to the interpersonal and group processes at the dyad, small group and organisational levels along with the theories of training, adult education, learning and development, as well as the traditional human resource management functions and the principles of strategic management. These have been blended into an amalgam of theory and practice in a scientist-practitioner model of education that prepares students to contribute to their organisations’ long-term as well as immediate development.
The programme also capitalises upon the opportunities that present themselves to develop its students through the augmentation of the core programme with several workshops. Many of these were developed in response to the gaps perceived in the students’ readiness for the competitive environment in the workplace. Others were prepared as answer to the employee challenges posed by our stakeholder groups. The result is a programme that has been pronounced, publicly, the best HR programme in the Caribbean by some members of the University Council of Jamaica.
The Ph.D. in Organisational Behaviour
While the Masters in Human Resource is regarded as a professional training programme the practica before they sit comprehensive examinations and present their dissertation proposals.
The need for this doctoral programme became sharply evident when the UWI lost Gordon Draper, lecturer in Organisational behaviour and a widely respected professional in organisational analysis and consulting throughout the Caribbean. This loss signaled that the delay in training the next generation of human resource and Organisational behaviour academics could no longer be sustained. This basis for the programme was supplemented by independent analyses of the myriad gaps in organisational research and effective responses to our concerns in the region. The variance between our needs and the resources available to meet these requirements was far more widespread than within the HRD Unit. Regionally, this was apparent in the drive to re-train persons after organisational restructuring in both the public and private sectors in many of the countries served by the UWI as well as the rethinking of our industrial relations norms and with the CSME imperative forcing our hands the stage was set for the introduction of a UWI catalyst to galvanise organisational growth.
The Coordinating team at the time, comprising Professor Patricia Anderson, Clement Branche andOlivene Thomas worked with significant help from Dr. Garth Lipps of the Psychology Unit of the Department to develop the Doctoral Programme in Organisational Behaviour. This programme seeks to provide a sound theoretical and technical base from which our graduates can increase their skills in organisational analysis and intervention and build careers in academia and consultancy. The first cohort was admitted in January 2006, and members selected research topics which cover a wide range covered from the effects of breaking the psychological contract and organisational trust to narratives in organisational identities, leadership engagement and organisational justice. Cohort II was welcomed in September 2010; Cohort III in September 2011, Cohort IV in September 2013 and Cohort V in September 2014.
Ph.D. in Organisational Behaviour is a research degree which seeks to strengthen the basis for organisational analysis and theory-building in the Caribbean. Unlike the traditional MPhil/Pd.D. programmes on which the UWI has usually relied, this new doctoral programme is structured to include a more extensive foundation of coursework to establish a platform for the development of the doctoral dissertation. Students spend approximately 30 months completing coursework and undertaking
The Higher Degree Diploma in Human Resource Development
The Diploma in Human Resource Development
The Higher Degree Diploma in Human Resource Development was launched in September 2006. This programme sought to distil the functional courses from the Masters programme and re-package them along with strategic human resource development theory and accounting to serve the needs of professionals who, having been trained in other disciplines, found themselves functioning as professional HR Practitioners. Additionally, the programme is being marketed to the Nurses Association of Jamaica and other professional groups to support their thrust for continuing education for their members. The programme was restructured late during Academic Year 2013-2014 and so will welcome a cohort of new students in September 2020.
For the Future
Today, Unit’s coordinating team includes Dr. Disraeli Hutton who has been with the MSc. HRD Programme from the start. This group of persons is now concerned with such processes as introducing the Unit’s offerings online and at the University’s Western Jamaica Campus, modernising the administration of both our academic and day-to-day activities, democratising policy-making and stabilising our finances. Additionally, the Team is examining the feasibility of offering other Masters degrees and diplomas based on specialist areas of the HRD experience and re-engaging our alumni and the wider public in realising our vision and mission. The development of this site, it is hoped, will serve as a bridge between the Unit and its stakeholders. It is in these pages that we will seek to keep you advised of our plans and our progress toward their achievement. Please visit us often, and do feel free to offer your suggestions and comments here.