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M.A. in Human Resource Management

Well-trained human resource professionals are incredibly valuable in today’s business environment. 

They serve as strategic leaders—working with leadership on issues related to communications, ethics, and budgeting; navigating changes within an organization; acting as a link between management and employees; and ensuring each team member is empowered and best positioned to contribute to a company’s success.

Program Outcomes

A Master of Arts in Human Resource Management degree from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota prepares graduates for careers as human resource managers, compensation and benefits managers, labor relations managers, and more. As a university that is committed to developing people, helping them to follow their passions, and believing in their full potential, there is no better team to learn from than the human resource experts at Saint Mary’s. You’ll receive training through real-world examples and the preparation you need to succeed on the PHR/SPHR certification exam. And when you graduate, you’ll approach your career with confidence, knowing that the Saint Mary’s curriculum is validated by the Society for Human Resource Management.

From Start to Finish

  • You can earn your M.A. in Human Resource Management degree in a little more than one year.
  • Applications are accepted for six start times throughout the year. Apply today.


This program is offered at our Twin Cities location and online.

Degree Requirements

Degree Requirements

Required Human Resource Management Courses 24 cr.
Required Management Courses 9 cr.
Required Capstone Course 3 cr.
Elective Courses 3 cr.
Total 39 cr.

Required Human Resource Management Courses: 24 cr.

HRM601 Human Resource Management Strategy (3 cr.)

This course examines human resource management in the context of business policy and competitive strategy. The core competencies required to become a successful human resource manager are discussed. Topics include an overview of business policy, role of human resource planning, strategic human resource management, and using technology for planning and administering human resource functions.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Outline the core competencies needed to become a successful human resource manager.
  2. Analyze how business strategy, competition, labor markets, technology, labor unions, and government regulations affect human resource planning activities, including skill inventories and supply/demand forecasting.
  3. Formulate how human resource policies, systems, and organizational design support an organization's business strategy.
  4. Appraise employment practices related to recruitment, selection and performance management.
  5. Evaluate training and development practices such as career counseling, needs assessment, and career pathing.



HRM602 Organizational Measurement and Assessment Issues in Human Resources (3 cr.)

This course examines research design for organizational measurement and assessment. Assessment and evaluation tools are examined for hiring, performance management, career development, retention, and termination processes. An emphasis is on creating and implementing a human resource scorecard using predictive analytics.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Analyze how business and industry use measurement systems to enhance an organization's competitive strategy, including reputation and brand enhancement.
  2. Distinguish among the following: information, experience, research, data, and evidence, based on research theory, design, and methodology models.
  3. Evaluate strategies for incorporating human resource metrics and benchmarking into an organization's measure of business performance.
  4. Design and demonstrate assessment models for improvement of an organization's performance, and for accountability and transparency.
  5. Design and implement balanced, HR and organizational scorecards for human resource functions within an organization.



HRM604 Developing Human Capital (3 cr.)

This course examines recruitment, appraisal, development, and talent management strategies critical to a company's success. Concepts related to adult learning are also examined.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Design work processes, job roles/responsibilities, evaluations, and compensation strategies.
  2. Evaluate recruitment and interviewing strategies.
  3. Develop successful strategies for performance appraisal and management.
  4. Identify terms, theories, and components of human resource development (HRD), talent management, and career development, including succession planning.
  5. Construct a theoretically sound, practically-applied training and development plan for employees within an organization, focusing on the theories related to adult learning.

HRM606 Employment Law (3 cr.)

This course examines employment law and its impact on business. It reviews employment law practices and trends, the statutory framework, major court cases, how the law of contract and tort apply to employment situations, and anti-discrimination laws.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Articulate legal definitions of and distinctions in the employer-employee relationship, including issues related to employment-at-will, independent contractors, and negligent hiring.
  2. Analyze discrimination issues likely to be faced by human resource managers in compliance with Title VII and resulting legislation and court rulings.
  3. Analyze state and federal issues addressed by business and industry, including fair labor standards, occupational safety and health, retirement income security, and employee right to privacy.
  4. Evaluate employee accommodation and leave issues resulting from state and federal legislation.
  5. Assess policies and procedures related to terminating employees, including mass layoffs and plant closings.

HRM609 Labor Relations (3 cr.)

This course provides an in-depth study of the history of collective bargaining including how changes in product and service markets affect the way labor and management relate to each other. State and federal employment laws and their impact on labor-management cooperation are explored. Students trace how collective bargaining has adapted to economic, social, political, technical and sector specific needs. Various dispute resolution mechanisms and bargaining strategies are examined.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Explain the history, development and role of the collective bargaining process and labor unions, including labor legislation, wage policy, labor contracts, and labor/management relationships.
  2. Evaluate the primary activities of labor relations: organizing, bargaining, contract administration, and dispute resolution.
  3. Describe the collective bargaining process, good faith bargaining, and the inclusion of mandatory and non-mandatory issues.
  4. Evaluate the strategies of both management and union organizations as they take part in the labor relations process, including managing union shops, right to work issues, and unfair labor practices.
  5. Contrast strikes, boycotts, work stoppages, and also the deauthorization and decertification of unions.

HRM611 Globalization and Diversity (3 cr.)

This course examines the interplay of various factors associated with evaluating managers, employees, and customers from different cultures. Students explore the varied components of expatriate recruitment, selection, orientation, and training strategies. International labor standards and public policy issues associated with trade agreements are explored to determine their impact on organizational strategy.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Compare the U.S. and other developed capitalist countries in regard to the way workers are organized and the role of government.
  2. Develop staffing strategies for multinational organizations, including expatriate compensation, repatriation, and career pathing for returning expatriates.
  3. Assess the global legal environment including country-specific laws, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, immigration rules, and U.S. laws that apply outside the U.S.
  4. Appraise security issues associated with global human resources, such as data security, HR information systems, and employee privacy and safety issues.
  5. Articulate cultural sensitivity practices involved in managing a virtual workforce, valuing diversity within work teams, and appreciating the importance of cultural competence.

HRM613 Total Reward Systems (3 cr.)

This course analyzes theories of total reward systems including compensation, benefits, retirement, other rewards, motivation and equity theories. Contemporary issues associated with the design, financing, communication, education, and legal issues of total reward systems are examined. Public policy and legal/regulatory issues affecting compensation, healthcare, and pensions and their impact for employers and employees are also discussed.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Articulate the components of an organization's compensation and benefit system.
  2. Analyze current and future trends in managing total rewards systems, including issues related to executive compensation.
  3. Design performance management and variable/incentive pay plans, identifying key success factors and legal requirements.
  4. Apply reward incentives, including compensation changes, in an equitable, ethical, and cost-effective manner.
  5. Select, develop, and evaluate benefit programs that comply with federal, state, and local laws and regulations and meet employee needs.
  6. Plan training and communication with managers and employees on benefits programs and policies.
  7. Identify various benefit costing models and alternative funding techniques.

HRM614 Internal Consulting in Human Resources (3 cr.)

This course examines the concepts and the application of internal consulting in the human resources function of any organization. It draws from thought leaders in the practice and leverages real world situations. The goal is to equip human resource professionals to be strategic business partners. Also included are conflict resolution and alternative dispute resolution methods.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Analyze the roles of the human resource professional as strategic business partner, change agent, and employee advocate.
  2. Design a collaborative engagement with an organizational manager using the key phases of internal consulting.
  3. Articulate the opportunities and problems with internal consulting, including the use of audit data and reports to inform business decisions, and the need for change management.
  4. Synthesize risk management components, including financial implications.
  5. Evaluate one's strengths and development opportunities as a consultant and leader of special and cross-functional project teams.
  6. Identify alternative dispute resolution methods and propose when such methods might be used to resolve individual, departmental, or organizational conflict.

Required Management Courses: 9 cr.

GM623 Academic Research and Writing (3 cr.)

This course focuses on graduate academic writing skills, including voice and style, writing that incorporates source material, ethical use of source material, APA writing guidelines, and revising writing.  Students learn to locate and evaluate resources relevant to the research and writing process.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Develop a research question, delineating the complexity in an issue.
  2. Use information from a variety of sources relevant to a question.
  3. Evaluate information for relevance and credibility.
  4. Analyze and synthesize scholarly articles.
  5. Integrate source material into academic writing, including correct use of summary, paraphrase, and quotation, along with proper citation.
  6. Incorporate different points of view on an issue.
  7. Write clearly and concisely.
  8. Demonstrate skills in rewriting, editing, and proofreading.

GM675 Managerial Ethics and Issues (3 cr.)

This course examines philosophical theories and ethical practices that can be used to resolve organizational dilemmas.  The course emphasizes the role of managers to strengthen the ethical culture of the organization.  Application of ethical principles and models to deal with complex ethical issues facing domestic and global organizations is studied.  Students develop skills in values-based decision making built upon integrity and accountability.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Identify and assess the extent of ethical issues that face organizations, communities, and stakeholder groups.
  2. Recognize how ethical theories, principles, and models provide options for examining complex ethical issues.
  3. Analyze how organizational and cultural norms affect the ability of people within it to act ethically.
  4. Consider value-based decision making to select options that are congruent with business.
  5. Develop a framework for resolving complex ethical dilemmas.
  6. Apply ethical theories, models, and principles.


GM680 Leadership and Strategic Management (3 cr.)

This course introduces selected models and practices in the exploration of what effective leadership is, including understanding one's own leadership style.  The course also examines both the theory and application of strategic management tasks of leaders, including conducting a strategic analysis, developing a strategic plan, and implementing strategic change.

Upon completion of this course students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Analyze their own leadership style in order to adapt and develop effective leadership behaviors. 
  2. Apply the foundations of leadership and decision-making required when dealing with situations marked by change and transition.
  3. Apply one or more processes for developing a strategic plan.
  4. Identify the distinct challenges of strategic planning and strategic management.
  5. Evaluate an organization's business model and develop of a set of action steps for improving its strategy and effectiveness.
  6. Identify and apply the steps required to lead change effectively.

Required Capstone Course: 3 cr.

HRM689 Human Resource Management Capstone (3 cr.)

This course focuses on integrating human resource management knowledge, skills, and tools developed in previous courses. It emphasizes critical analysis, synthesis, and evaluation of the theories and application of human resource management. The course culminates in a final project. Students are also prepared to begin the certification process for the Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) exam.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Examine the business management and strategy of an organization to ensure that human resources supports organization goals through planning, providing the appropriate tools, and incorporating change initiatives.
  2. Create activities related to workforce planning, from the evaluating and recruitment stages through the exiting process.
  3. Defend the value of training, development, change, and performance management programs that ensure employees are ready to accomplish company goals.
  4. Appraise the use of total rewards systems and employee relations programs to drive engagement, improving business results.
  5. Build positive employment relationships through workplace policies and dispute resolution systems.
  6. Assess company risks related to health, safety, security, legal noncompliance and poor human resources practices.

Elective Courses: 3 cr.

GM600 Management Principles (3 cr.)

This course provides an overview of key organizational and behavioral concepts, which underlie effective management practice in private and public sector organizations. Management strategies are examined and compared. Special attention is given to defining and interpreting cross-cultural differences and influences. The course gives attention to the local and global trends, both existing and emerging, that influence organizational structure, behavior and change.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Synthesize and build creatively on concepts about management roles in planning, organizing, leading and oversight in the 21st Century;
  2. Analyze the management challenges of organizations in today's global marketplace;
  3. Evaluate and apply management strategies to real world problems;
  4. Outline a rationale for integrating corporate responsibility and social justice into the organization; and
  5. Identify personal management skills and competencies.

GM605 Creative Problem Solving and Critical Thinking (3 cr.)

This course gives students the opportunity to learn and practice higher level thinking skills such as curiosity and imagination, divergent thinking, idea generation, creative problem solving, evaluation, synthesis, critical thinking, and analysis. Students develop strategies to search for challenges, identify problems, produce creative ideas, research solutions, design innovative applications, and build a case for the solution.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Analyze the importance of creativity and the need for creative leadership in business and society today.
  2. Apply concepts, principles, definitions, and creative problem solving.
  3. Apply techniques and skills of creative and analytical thinking.
  4. Utilize both creative and analytical skills in problem-solving situations.
  5. Practice both traditional and contemporary models of decision making in situations marked by change and transition.
  6. Use problem-solving models to address problems in their own organizations.

GM630 Quantitative Methods (3 cr.)

This course focuses on statistical analysis of data for professional applications or research with an emphasis on quantitative methodologies. The course covers populations, sample selection, and descriptive and inferential statistics. Significance, Chi Square, correlations, analysis of variance and simple regression, and concepts of reliability, validity and levels of measurement are addressed.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Apply statistical ideas and practicalities to real world quantitative situations within organizations.
  2. Read and interpret the statistical content of literature relating to management of people and resources.
  3. Analyze statistics through performing basic computation both by hand and with computer software.
  4. Determine and apply the appropriate inferential analysis for different types of data and derive correct conclusions.

GM643 Multicultural Perspectives (3 cr.)

This course focuses on how diversity of all kinds influences both organizational behavior and client outcomes. The place of culture in society, the marketplace, and the workplace is examined. The importance of cultural competence is explored along with the knowledge and skills needed to work with, manage, and serve diverse groups of workers and clients.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Identify the wide spectrum of differences included in the definitions of diversity and multiculturalism.
  2. Demonstrate an awareness of their own cultural identity, background and biases, and forces that shape(d) them.
  3. Analyze how these shaping forces and biases may influence their interactions with people from diverse backgrounds and organizational behavior and productivity.
  4. Demonstrate the ability to articulate, in supportive ways, the needs and concerns of diverse groups of people with marginalized identities in the workplace.
  5. Analyze opportunities for applying cultural competencies to create greater inclusion in the work place.
  6. Plan for the evaluation of cultural competence initiatives, and the resulting effect on organizational behavior, work productivity and products.

GM660 Financial Management (3 cr.)

This course introduces, discusses and analyzes financial issues facing profit, not-for-profit and governmental organizations in today's domestic and global business environment. The course provides the general manager with an ethical financial manager's perspective through examination of various financial areas including types of organizations; sources of capital; financial statement analysis; asset management; time value of money; international payments and foreign exchange rates; trade theory and policy; and investment in the US and in foreign countries.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Identify the various forms of business entities and the different ways of financing them.
  2. Analyze the financial reporting requirements of the differing entities.
  3. Apply the principles of managing current assets and current liabilities.
  4. Assess the existence of management problems or and opportunities through analyzing of a company's financial statements and making comparisons to other companies in the same industry.
  5. Compute present values and use them in financial decision making.
  6. Analyze the global economy and its impact on the domestic economy.
  7. Identify the impact of unethical behavior by an entity's general and financial managers on the entity and its owners.
  8. Outline the mechanics and risks of operating an entity in a global marketplace.

MBA610 Organizations and Human Behavior (3 cr.)

This course examines human behavior and social relationships in the workplace setting from a domestic and intercultural perspective. The theories, history, and practice of promoting effective individual and group behavior in organizations across cultures are covered. Topics include groups and teams, multicultural teams, power and influence, trust, gender and equality, the impact of culture on work behavior, and creating cultural synergy in a multicultural work environment.

Upon completion of this course, students are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Deconstruct the dynamics and complexities of individual and group behavior in a workplace setting.
  2. Build multicultural teams.
  3. Recognize and manage issues of justice, gender, equality, ethics, and trust as they arise in the workplace.
  4. Design a plan to promote cultural synergy in a workplace setting.

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Austin Pippin

SGPP Admission - Enrollment Counselor Graduate School of Business and Technology

LaSalle Hall-TC Campus, LSH114

Campus Box: # 28

(612) 728-5198

Austin Pippin