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One-Year Master's Degree Programs in Human Resource Management

Students interested in a one-year master's program in human resource management can study topics in human resource law, diversity, and organizational development to prepare for a career in human resource leadership. Learn about requirements for these programs here.

How to Earn a One-Year Master's Degree in Human Resource Management

Master's degree programs in human resource management that can be completed in one year are usually taken full time and most commonly award a Master of Science (MS) degree, although some Master of Arts (MA) programs are available. These programs typically include summer terms and range from about 30 to 38 credits in length. The curriculum may include a final project, capstone, and/or optional internship experience and can be taken in an online format. Coursework for these master's programs generally consists of required core courses, with some common course topics discussed in more detail below.

Organizational Development and Change

These courses are designed to equip future HR leaders with the necessary skills to facilitate change in their organizations. Students may explore the various change management models and techniques as well as evaluation methods for implementing change through discussions, case studies, and group exercises. Other course topics can include employee involvement, tools for designing change, cultural intelligence, change theories, and quality improvement.

Diversity

Classes on diversity help aspiring leaders in human resources understand the impact of globalization on their organization's workforce. Students can examine the similarities in organizations and people regardless of nationality, while also discussing the ethics and issues faced by multinational organizations. Students may also discuss different methods of inclusion at work, approaches to managing across cultures, and the various effects of cultural and political influences on human resources.

Human Resource Law

Courses in human resource law may focus on specific areas, such as ethics or employment law. In general, these courses provide students with an overview of the legal and ethical guidelines for human resources professionals as well as regulations for such areas as workplace safety and employment contracts. These courses often utilize case studies and readings in employment law and ethical theory to help students further develop their decision-making skills. Some courses may even include mock trials to allow students to learn how to create legally defensible procedures in their organizations.

Human Resource Analytics

Courses in human resource analytics are also designed to help students make better informed decisions in the field by analyzing data. Students learn about helpful human resource management metrics for evaluating the effectiveness of programs, typically using statistical software. Based on their findings, which students learn to present in reports, students can understand how to make decisions based on talent needs.

Rewards

Students in these courses examine the various compensation and reward systems used in human resources as well as how to develop these systems for their organization. Some of these courses also explore the rewards behaviors that are effective for a diverse workplace and how to be strategic in the reward management process. Specific topics that students may explore include pay structures, job evaluations, labor relations, cost-effective benefit programs, and performance-based pay.

Admission Requirements for a One-Year Master's Programs in Human Resource Management

Admission requirements for one-year master's degree programs in human resource management can be competitive and vary by school, with some schools having many more admissions requirements than others. All of these master's degree programs typically require applicants to hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution, but some of the more competitive programs also examine students' GPA and prefer applicants with a 3.0 or higher. Some competitive programs also prefer applicants with a specific amount of work and professional experience in human resources, such as at least five years of work experience with three years of experience in human resources. Master's degree programs in human resource management might also require students to take and submit their scores on the GRE or GMAT exams, while other programs do not require these test scores. Other common application materials for these degree programs include official transcripts, letters of recommendation, and a statement of purpose. Some programs include an interview process for students.

Master's degree programs in human resource management that can be completed in one year may be offered as an MS or MA degree in an on-campus or online format. Students applying to these degree programs may need some prior work experience, and once admitted typically take 30 to 38 credits of core coursework in areas like compensation, employment law, diversity, and organizational development.