SHE Level 5
SCQF Credit Points 4.00
ECTS Credit Points 2.00
Module Code MMNY24893
Module Leader n/a
School School of Computing, Engineering and Built Environment
Subject GCU New York
  • A (September start)
  • B (January start)
  • C (May start)

Summary of Content

This module explores the key issues in corporate governance and the extent to which the present arrangements secure corporate accountability. It also will incorporate a theoretical and practical understanding of ethics. As the UK is seen to be a front runner in corporate governance it will be based around UK practice, US and global influences will also be addressed. For all topics studied, students will require to demonstrate the critical thinking, two way communication and personal effectiveness skills referred to in the Statement of Benchmarks for Masters degrees in Business and Management issued by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education.


Theoretical aspects of corporate governance The development of corporate governance codes Corporate accountability: To shareholders and beyond The main aspects of good governance The responsibilities of the board, effectiveness and diversity Executive incentives The developing role of board and other committees, non-executive directors The control environment The developing role of internal audit and risk management Relationships within the corporate governance framework: Executive directors, shareholders, other stakeholders, audit committees, internal audit and external audit The external auditor and corporate governance The role of institutional investors and financial analysts in corporate governance International corporate governance Ethics, Morality & Values The Role of Ethical Theories Ethical Decision-Making and the Individual Professionalism & Professional Behaviour (including Codes of Ethics/Conduct) Whistle-blowing Corporate Social Responsibility (plus 2/3 slides to recap on your lecture re stakeholders (in relation to CSR) Sustainability

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the module the student should be able to:1. Demonstrate a systematic understanding of the nature of corporate governance and accountability.2. Critically evaluate current developments in corporate governance from a knowledge base that is informed by recent research and practice.3. Compare and contrast a range of ethical theories and examine their impact on decision-making within a business context.4. Demonstrate a critical understanding of and apply the key principles of ethical and professional behaviour in business.5. . Extrapolate from existing research and scholarship, practice and international developments to identify revised approaches to practice to improve standards of performance and accountability and ethical issues.6. Demonstrate the ability to engage in two way communication by making individual oral presentations to a small group and participating in group discussions on the basis of prior knowledge and reading.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

Lectures will be used to highlight the key issues in a specific topic and point the way towards appropriate journal articles, case studies and other literature. Considerable reading and background awareness will be required by students as a basis for the weekly seminars. These will be led by students and will be focused round individual presentations by students, supplemented by group discussion. Appropriate use will be made of C&IT resources including GCU LEARN support. GSBS will continue to use the advancement of GCU Learn as a blended learning tool through its teaching and learning as well as through engagement with students. GSBS will ensure that all modules are GCU Learn enabled and with the support of the Learning Technologists at the cutting edge of development of online materials. Academic staff and the Learning Technologists will continue to work together to develop and operate all modules on GCULearn to ensure student support and information sharing.

Indicative Reading

Essential: Solomon J. (2010) 3 rd edition Corporate Governance and Accountability: J Wiley & Sons, Chichester Fisher, C. and Lovell, A. (2009), Business Ethics and Values, (3rd edn), Essex: Prentice Hall Recommended: Mallin C A(2013) 4 th edition Corporate Governance; Oxford University Press: Oxford Tricker B (2013) 2 nd edition Corporate Governance: Principles, Policies and Practices: Oxford University Press; Oxford Crane, A. and Matten, D. (2010), Business Ethics, (3rd edn), Oxford: University Press Harrison, M. (2005), An Introduction to Business and Management Ethics, Hampshire: Palgrave MacMillan McPhail, K. And Walters, D. (2009), Accounting and Business Ethics, London: Routledge Chartered Banker. (latest edition) Professionalism, Ethics and Regulation, London: BPP Learning Media Ltd Various prescribed journal articles taken from journals such as Corporate Governance, Corporate Governance - An International Review, International Journal of Auditing; Journal of Business Ethics; Critical Perspective on Accounting; Strategic Management Journal

Transferrable Skills

On completion of this module students will be able to demonstrate an enhanced ability to: -360 1. Make presentations to small groups -360 2. Engage in two way oral communication in discussion with a peer group. 3. Think creatively about a range of approaches and options for corporate accountability and ethics requiring the organisation of thoughts, analysis, synthesis and critical appraisal. 4. Perform effectively in the areas of data and time management.

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Independent Learning (FT) 136.00
Assessment (FT) 20.00
Seminars (FT) 22.00
Lectures (FT) 22.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Essay 1 n/a 40.00 n/a 2500 word essay
Seminar Participation n/a 15.00 n/a Facilitation of seminar and participation - Marks will be awarded when student facilitate a seminar and also their participation over the 22 weeks.
Essay 2 n/a 45.00 n/a 3000 word essay