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A Guide to Industrial and Organizational Psychology at Southern New Hampshire University

Updated on January 28, 2016


The purpose of this guide is to help you to understand the course and what is required of you in this course. It is not to give you easy answers, but to help you decide if this is a course you should take or not. For this reason none of the question (which are only possible questions) are answered.

Discussion Board

There are ten discussion board question in Industrial and Organizational Psychology. Each one requires a one to two paragraph response with references in APA style. The initial post is always due by midnight on Thursdays. Each person must also respond to at least two discussion posts written by their classmates. Make sure to greet each classmate by name (some professors take points if you don't). Here are ten sample discussion board questions that you may be asked.

  1. What is I/O Psychology and how does it differ from other subfields? What does the “I” side cover as compared to the “O” side? Which side (I or O) is more interesting to you, and why?
  2. Take a look at the O*NET site and then answer this question: Why should we care about individual differences in the workplace?
  3. Review the Performance Management article and then answer the following questions:

    • How often is your performance evaluated on the job and by whom?
    • Do you benefit from the evaluation methods of your supervisor/company?
    • What would you change (if anything) and why? If you do not currently have a job, share an ideal performance evaluation plan.
  4. What are some major legal or ethical issues that may occur when staffing, and what steps can we take to ensure that organizational practices are appropriate and effective?
  5. Share an example of a training program that you participated in at work or elsewhere. Did “transfer of training” occur? Why or why not?
  6. What is the difference between internal and external motivation? Are you more regularly influenced by internal or external motivators, and why? How might you use this knowledge about yourself when leading others?
  7. Review the Job Descriptive Index article and then answer the following questions:
    Which facet of job satisfaction is most important to you, and why? How might your answer differ from that of a parent or loved one? Finally, how might you apply this understanding of different facets when motivating different employees?
  8. What is the difference between a group and a team? How can we minimize the stress related to teamwork, in general? Further, what steps can we take to minimize stress related to cultural issues surrounding global teams?
  9. Compare and contrast organizational climate and organizational culture. Which is easier to change, and why?
  10. Reflect on the lessons learned in this course. Which is the most important takeaway that you can apply now (or in the future) in the workplace? What is the muddiest point for you?

Short Papers

There are two short paper assignments in the course. Each short paper should be written in APA format with a tittle page and a reference page. These papers should be one to two pages long double spaced. Two possible assignments are:

  1. Review the article “Job Analysis” and then write a paper based on the following scenario: Imagine you were asked to conduct a job analysis for a company. What questions would you ask? What specific steps would you take to ensure that your job analysis is thorough and meets the needs of the organization?
  2. What are the key things to consider when rating employee behavior so as to avoid (or reduce) bias?

Power Point

There should also be one power-point assignment. There is not set amount of required slides however most people do this assignment in amount a dozen slides.

  • Imagine that you have been hired as a consultant to create a leadership development program for new managers. What major topics will you cover in the training? What training method(s) will you use and why? How will you evaluate the effectiveness of your training program?
  • The assignment is to create a leadership development training program for managers, using the material you are learning in module 5 about training and development. The presentation format is just a method of conveying the information -- it's in a presentation format rather than a traditional paper to give you practice creating effective presentations.
  • Do write your "script" for the presentation in the notes section, which allows me to see what you would present if you were actually delivering the presentation and also saves you from writing too much text on the slides.


There is a mid-term exam in this course. Now before you ask I won't just give you the questions here, but I can give you the link to a mid term study guide make sure to understand that the mid term is in the form of ten essay questions so while one can study off possible questions you will have to take the exam for yourself. However good news the exam is open book and not timed.

Final Project

The final project is an APA style 6-8 page paper double spaced in times new roman 12 font.

Possible topics to choose from include the following:

  • Motivation
  • Leadership
  • Training and Development
  • Diversity
  • Selection
  • Ethics
  • Research Methods

You must use the below headings in your paper in the same order they are written:

    • 1. Background/situation of your selected topic - this is an introduction of your main idea.

      2. Key subtopics - this defines the main constructs you are researching

      3. Method of research - see below for more info

      4. Findings/results - this summarizes what conclusions can be drawn about your main topic. What do we know about your topic based on the research you reviewed?

      5. Discussion (including your views, opinions, and observations) - this is your personal and professional response to your findings. What does it mean to you, what future research is needed in the field...?

      6. Closing comments:

  • What did you learn from your research?
  • How does this new knowledge change your perceptions of Industrial/Organizational Psychology?
  • How can you use what you have learned in your personal life and/or work life?


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