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The CSR Specialist

The CSR Specialist

Code: CSR5LH006
Extent: 15 ECTS (405 h)
Timing: Semester  **
Language: English with possibility to complete assignments and/or exams in Finnish for Finnish speaking students.
Level: Professional specialization studies
Type: Optional

The CSR specialist / Yritysvastuun asiantuntija

Prerequisites

This course forms the entire specialization, or C-module for Corporate Responsibility. Approved completion of the introductory course to Corporate Responsibility is a prerequisite. The basic course is for example CSR1LH001, ECO1LF001 or CSR1LK001 (Kestävä kehitys ja yhteiskuntavastuu, Yhteiskuntavastuu ja eettinen johtaminen and/or The sustainable global environment).

Learning outcomes

The course is designed to equip the student with a well-rounded understanding of how to plan, implement, execute and measure the success of CSR initiatives within a modern, internationally oriented company. The course has a very practical approach, which will expose the students to real-life tools and techniques while preparing the student for various positions within the CSR field. All student tasks are directly linked to actual tools used by industry. The course has a vast material base covering articles, blogs, videos, podcasts, reports, examples and cases and is updated frequently to ensure timeliness.

Upon successful completion of the course, the student understands the notion of doing well by doing good and can skillfully assess the appropriateness of CSR activities to the company. The student can also act as a valuable part of a CSR team.

Course contents

The course will cover diverse topics, such as

Planning corporate responsibility management

  • Appreciating the importance of drivers and megatrends
  • Evaluating and following changes in consumer behavior
  • Identifying when corporate responsibility is strategic
  • Realising the potential competitive advantage from strategic CSR activities
  • Understanding the role of economic responsibility as part of modern CSR

Executing corporate responsibility

  • Challenging the students to discover ways to deal with corruption, bribery and fair operating practices
  • Understanding corporate and product environmental management
  • Introducing ways to deal with social responsibility
  • Analysing and devising effective sustainability communication and marketing messages

Performance management for corporate responsibility

  • Expose students to the practices in corporate sustainability reporting
  • Challenge students to think critically concerning the measurement and evaluation of corporate CSR activities

The course also includes three coaching sessions via telephone/ skype, of which two are individual and one is a group coaching session.

Cooperation with the business community

The course is implemented totally on-line. The required tasks can always be applied to a company, if the student has such company available. Otherwise, there is no practical cooperation with the business community.

Learning and teaching methods

The course is divided into 11 sections; each designed for a specific topic. Each section has 1-2 tasks and is evaluated separately. Optimal timing is to complete the course within one semester; i.e. roughly 20 weeks (2 periods of 8 weeks, plus intensive weeks). All tasks can be done either in English or Finnish. Spread over 20 weeks, the workload is roughly 20 hours/ week.

Independent work on-line: 400 hours
Coaching sessions and preparations: 5 hours
Assessment of one's own learning 1 h

Accreditation of prior learning (APL, in Finnish AHOT)

Accreditation of prior learning is observed on the course according to separate instructions

Teachers with main responsibility for the course

Minna-Maari Harmaala
Niina Jallinoja                                       

Course materials

All materials are available on-line and recommended reading and other reference materials are available on-line.

Assessment criteria

Each section is worth 8-10% of the final grade.
All tasks and coaching sessions are evaluated 1-5.
Assessments can be followed in Moodle.
All tasks must be completed with at least grade 1.
Students' performance is graded on the following scale: Excellent (5), Very good (4), Good (3), Satisfactory (2), Fair (1), Fail (0). The assessment criteria is presented on scale 1 to 5.

 

1 (40%)

3 (70%)

5 (90%)

Knowledge

The student can identify, list and combine the main issues related to strategic corporate responsibility.

The student can describe the main issues related to strategic corporate responsibility and apply them to new contexts. The student can link the key theoretical concepts to the practical tasks. The student has an understanding of how strategic corporate responsibility contributes to organizational success.

The student can use and combine different theories to present her own suggestions and models. The student is aware of conflicting views on the topics. The student uses theory and specific terminology accurately. The student has a clear understanding and appreciation of how strategic corporate responsibility contributes to organizational success.

 

Skills

The student can, when part of a team, contribute to tackling and developing corporate responsibility in an organization.

 

The student can conduct research to identify the elements of strategic corporate responsibility.

The student can identify and create corporate responsibility elements and strategies in an organization and implement them with some support.

 

 

 

The student can identify, create, implement and develop corporate responsibility strategies in an organization independently or with only occasional support.

 

Competence

The student can only with difficulty apply problem identification, analysis and solving to strategic corporate responsibility. The student does not demonstrate aptitude or interest in developing strategic corporate responsibility.

The student shows moderate independence in his/her work. The student can apply problem identification, analysis and solving to strategic corporate responsibility to a certain extent. The student demonstrates some aptitude and interest in developing strategic corporate responsibility.

The student shows a great degree of independence in his/her work. The student can skillfully apply problem identification, analysis and solving to strategic corporate responsibility issues and projects to an extent. The student demonstrates great aptitude and interest in developing strategic corporate responsibility.

The assessment of one's own learning does not influence the course grade. The assignment is the same for all courses/modules and the answers will also be used for course/module development. The assignment is completed on an electronic form.