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BUU22560 Introduction to Operations Management

(5 ECTS credits)


Dr Katrin Dreyer-Gibney

Module Content/Outline:

Operations management relates to transformations of materials, people and information for the production of goods and the delivery of services.  The working of an operation has always been an enigma.  On the one hand, the operation is a visible part of the organisation where people or equipment can be seen to be working away and where something happens.  On the other hand, the operation will neither come right nor stay right of its own accord and, even if challenged, answers to the following questions are not obvious:

  • What makes it work as it does?
  • Could it work better in its current form?
  • What different forms could it take and still get the same result?
  • What market, internal or environmental change would cause most disruption to the working of the operation, and with what knock-on effects?
  • Can Operations be improved?
  • And if so, how?

This course introduces Operations Management as the act of combining people and technology in an organisation so as to produce goods and to deliver services now and in the future with a focus on “Getting Things Done”.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Make effective use of the basic vocabulary of operations management 

2. Explain what is meant by the contribution of operations management to the competitiveness of the firm 

3. Critically appraise the role of operations management in driving growth, performance, and ethical and socially responsible business practices in organisations 

4. Define and explain the choices in structuring and running the operation 

5. Critically evaluate operations performance, defined in terms of quality, dependability, flexibility, speed and cost, as well as sustainability 

6. Apply operations management models and frameworks to business situations

Learning and Teaching Approach:

The course is delivered as a series of lectures, supported by videos and written materials. Students are engaged in class to discuss and develop understanding and are asked to participate in a number of simulations and case studies to better understand the applicability and use of the theoretical constructs delivered by the lecturer. Participation is enhanced by engaging in polls and quizzes. Students are expected to read the base course materials.


BUU11510 Fundamentals of Management and Organisation (JF Year)

Lectures/Contact hours:

  • 2 hours lectures per week

Recommended Texts/Key Reading:

Required core course textbook: 

Slack, N.& Brandon-Jones, A., Operations Management OR Essentials of Operations Management

· Additional readings and other material will be notified on Blackboard


The Operations Management Module will be assessed by:

  • Two multi-choice on-line question tests which will be set between weeks 1-6, accounting for 5% each of the grade for Introduction to Operations Management
  • A multi-choice on-line question test which will be set for week 8, accounting for 30% of the grade for Introduction to Operations Management
  • A 1.5-hour multi-choice question test will be set, with negative marking, accounting for 60% of the grade for Introduction to Operations Management

Collectively these account for 100% of the grade for Introduction to Operations Management

Penalties for late submission:

Students unable to submit a term assignment for medical reasons must produce a medical certificate to the School of Business Studies office within three working days of the missed submission date. Certificates received after that time will not be accepted.