This unit of study will help students' learn the skills involved in conducting a systemic, organisational diagnosis. The unit specifically places emphasis on systems thinking, psychodynamic organisational theory, and appreciative inquiry as ways into understanding organisational issues and problems. A broader aim is to examine how systems thinking can be incorporated in action research interventions to successfully implement change. The unit intends to provide participants with the theoretical constructs and application skills necessary for identifying and framing problem areas, collecting data, and organising feedback to client systems. Real-time case examples will inform our discussions as we consider the relationship between diagnosis, organisational reflection, and appropriate action.

Unit details

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Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Devise and prescribe applicable and robust approaches to diagnose problems in organisations and implement organisational reviews with accountability;  
  2. Interrogate data collected and advocate an innovative intervention plans as suitable to current organisations;  
  3. Critically analyse and synthesise various models of systems change practiced in contemporary global, multinational settings and theorise and adjudicate their applicability to Australian contexts, respecting and valuing diversity; and  
  4. Contextualise approaches to systems thinking in resolving multi-dimensional, real-world complex problems with creativity, leadership and initiative.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Assignment Critique of the literature 30%
Case Study Examination of a real-time case study from participating organisation (group) 30%
Report Research report on conducting systematic organisational diagnosis 40%

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

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