Business, human rights law and corporate social responsibility

This interdisciplinary module considers how business increasingly conducts its operations with responsibility to its stakeholders and the wider society. It takes a socio-legal approach when examining how this expectation is being framed in terms of corporate social responsibility and human rights and the challenges of a globalised world. The module is diverse and wide-ranging, considering the development and application of these concepts in very different business contexts, such as the development of international labour standards, criminal liability (corruption and corporate manslaughter), branding and marketing, supply chain management and sustainability, charitable foundations and a range of specialist industries through the use of case studies.

Qualifications

W822 is a compulsory module in our:

If you are studying for the Postgraduate Certificate in Advanced Professional Practice (Employment Law Advice), which is only available to those working for ACAS, you can count Continuing professional development in practice (UYA810) in place of W822.

W822 is an optional module in our:

This module can also count towards C96, D37, F03 and F11 which are no longer available to new students.

Excluded combinations

Sometimes you will not be able to count a module towards a qualification if you have already taken another module with similar content. To check any excluded combinations relating to this module, visit our excluded combination finder or check with an adviser before registering.
 

Module

Module code
W822
Credits

Credits

  • Credits measure the student workload required for the successful completion of a module or qualification.
  • One credit represents about 10 hours of study over the duration of the course.
  • You are awarded credits after you have successfully completed a module.
  • For example, if you study a 60-credit module and successfully pass it, you will be awarded 60 credits.
30
Study level
Across the UK, there are two parallel frameworks for higher education qualifications, the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications in England, Northern Ireland and Wales (FHEQ) and the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF). These define a hierarchy of levels and describe the achievement expected at each level. The information provided shows how OU postgraduate modules correspond to these frameworks.
OU Postgraduate
SCQF 11
FHEQ 7
Study method
Distance learning
Module cost
See Module registration
Entry requirements

Find out more about entry requirements.

What you will study

In this module, you'll use case studies to consider the diverse and complex issues of corporate social responsibility and human rights which arise from commercial activity in a globalised world. You'll consider company policies of corporate social responsibility, including the nature and extent of voluntarism shown by companies when devising and implementing them. This module will appeal to an international audience with an interest in human rights and the culture and behaviour of companies, and their responsiveness to the changing external environment. 

Topics covered include:

  • the application of human rights to a business context 
  • marketing, brands and reputation
  • labour standards
  • injury, death and business
  • trade in health; business and corruption
  • international development
  • supply chain management and sustainability
  • monitoring, enforcement and remedies.

Examples and case studies are taken from various industrial sectors in different parts of the world.

You can take this module on its own or as part of a postgraduate qualification.

Teaching and assessment

Support from your tutor

You will have a tutor with whom you can communicate by email or telephone, who will help you with the study material and mark and comment on your written work, and whom you can ask for advice and guidance. Tutorials are run online with a range of dates for you to choose from. You are encouraged, but not obliged, to take part in tutorials. The tutorials are scheduled for you at key points in the learning calendar to help you engage with the course content. These events are designed to help provide extra tutor-marked assignment support and are titled “Preview” and “Review” sessions. These events will be recorded if you're unable to attend. Additionally, there will be an opportunity for you to attend guest lectures. These are programme-wide and cover topics relevant to LLM students. The details of these will be sent to you nearer to the time of the event.

Contact us if you want to know more about studying with The Open University before you register.

Assessment

The assessment details can be found in the facts box.

Course work includes

3 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)
End-of-module assessment

Future availability

Business, human rights law and corporate social responsibility starts once a year – in November. This page describes the module that will start in November 2024 when we expect it to start for the last time.

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the academic regulations which are available on our Student Policies and Regulations website.

Entry requirements

To register for this module, you must have an honours degree from a UK university or equivalent. Various higher education and professional qualifications are considered equivalent to an honours degree. If you hold a qualification that you believe is equivalent to a UK honours degree or lack formal academic qualifications but have relevant work experience, please contact us.

The module is taught in English, and your spoken and written English must be of an adequate standard for postgraduate study. If English is not your first language, we recommend that you seek assessment under the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Please see their website for details.

If you have any doubt about the suitability of the module, please speak to an adviser.

Register

Start End Fee Register
02 Nov 2024 Apr 2025 Not yet available

Registration closes 10/10/24 (places subject to availability)

Register
November 2024 is the final start date for this course. For more information, see Future availability.

Future availability

Business, human rights law and corporate social responsibility starts once a year – in November. This page describes the module that will start in November 2024 when we expect it to start for the last time.

Additional costs

Study costs

There may be extra costs on top of the tuition fee, such as set books, a computer and internet access.

Ways to pay for this module

We know there’s a lot to think about when choosing to study, not least how much it’s going to cost and how you can pay.

That’s why we keep our fees as low as possible and offer a range of flexible payment and funding options, including a postgraduate loan, if you study this module as part of an eligible qualification. To find out more, see Fees and funding.

Study materials

What's included

You’ll be provided with three printed Study Guides and a specially-commissioned Module Reader, each covering one block of study and a collection of chapters from leading experts. You’ll also have access to a module website, which includes:

  • a week-by-week study planner
  • course-specific module materials
  • audio and video content
  • assignment details and submission section
  • online tutorial access.

You will need

This module may use real-time online tutorials, in which case you will need a headset with a microphone to participate.

Computing requirements

You’ll need broadband internet access and a desktop or laptop computer with an up-to-date version of Windows (10 or 11) or macOS Monterey or higher.

Any additional software will be provided or is generally freely available.

To join in spoken conversations in tutorials, we recommend a wired headset (headphones/earphones with a built-in microphone).

Our module websites comply with web standards, and any modern browser is suitable for most activities.

Our OU Study mobile app will operate on all current, supported versions of Android and iOS. It’s not available on Kindle.

It’s also possible to access some module materials on a mobile phone, tablet device or Chromebook. However, as you may be asked to install additional software or use certain applications, you’ll also require a desktop or laptop, as described above.

If you have a disability

Written transcripts of any audio components and Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) versions of printed material are available. Some Adobe PDF components may not be available or fully accessible using a screen reader, and diagrammatic or foreign language materials may be particularly difficult to read in this way. Alternative formats of the study materials may be available in the future. Our Services for disabled students website has the latest information about availability.

Part of this module is delivered through a website and includes online activities. If you use specialist hardware or software to assist you in operating a computer or the internet and have any concerns about accessing this type of material, you are advised to talk to us about support which can be given to meet your needs.

To find out more about what kind of support and adjustments might be available, contact us or visit our disability support pages.

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