Course syllabus


TEK430 Change management and improvement processes lp1 HT19 (7.5 hp)

Course is offered by the department of Technology Management and Economics

Contact details

Guest lecturers:

  1. Sari Scheinberg - Action Research Center
  2. Anna Sandberg - Volvo Cars
  3. Mats Färnstrand - CoreChange
  4. Anna Norinder - Chalmers 
  5. Henrik Almgren - Högsbo Specialist Hospital

Course purpose

This course provides insights into strategy, change and improvement theories and practices on the organisational level; it consists of lectures, literature seminars with homework assignments, seminars with experienced change managers from industry, as well as authoring and presentation of a term paper. The areas covered include theories on learning, leadership, resistances, and levels of analysis.

All course participants study a common body of literature and in addition each student specialises in a narrower area (term paper). The theoretical content of the course is discussed from the perspective of practical experiences of change projects in industry. These experiences come from research projects, participants’ personal experiences and above all from seminars with experienced change managers.

A major part of the course is an in-depth group assignment where participants themselves choose a specific area to specialize in. The aim is to combine theories with practice by conducting a literature analysis accompanied by own data gathering from organizations and document the analysis in a term paper.



Course literature

All literature for the course is provided through the lectures and the literature seminars. A full reference list of the literature is provided in the Canvas module (literature seminars).

Course design

The course contains lectures, guest lectures, literature seminars, an online Quiz and a term paper (3-4 persons).


The examination is based on online quiz (for the online quiz the final grade is either a fail or pass) and a term paper written in groups of four (three) students.

However active participation in literature seminars (both as participant and a leader) and guest lectures, and submission of discussion questions/comments on other groups’ term papers, affect the final grading. The final grades are: fail, 3, 4, or 5.

  • Literature seminars

As a participant you are expected to read all of the material supplied before each literature seminar and submit three discussion questions based on your reading. The questions need to be suitable for discussion, but you do not necessarily need to have a definitive answer for them. Good questions often connect different pieces of literature. You should also provide a motivation to why each question is relevant. It is mandatory to hand in three questions/motivations before each seminar (through Canvas).

Attendance at literature seminars is highly recommended both because of the opportunity of learning in small group discussions/seminars and because active participation provides bonus points that affect the grading. In each literature seminar one student group will have the responsibility to lead the learning process including to place focus on specific areas. The student group in charge at each seminar will be graded and receive bonus points.

During the literature seminar sessions, the class is divided in two groups; Literature Seminar 1 + 2 from 13:15 to 15:00 and Literature Seminar 3 + 4 from 15:15 to 17:00 on Wednesdays.

  • Guest lectures

The guest lectures will highlight different aspects of change management in practice. Submission of a written reflection (1 -1,5 pages max.) based on the guest lecture, provides bonus points that affect grading as it is a way of showing active participation (reflections on at least 3 guest lectures are required to receive any bonus points). Guest lecture reflections are peer reviewed.

  • Online Quiz via Canvas

An online Quiz focusing on the literature and lectures is provided through Canvas and is graded with a pass or fail. The online quiz is open for a specific period of time on Canvas and closes by the end of study week 6 (deadline 11 October 2019 at 23:59). A pass (which is 40% of the questions are correct) is needed to finalise the whole course.

  • Term paper (3-4 persons)

The term paper assignment includes the choice of topic to study, the development of a theoretical understanding and research questions, empirical data collection, analysis, hand-in of a written report and oral presentation at a seminar. The written report should not be more than 5,000 words. This strict limit excludes the front page, table of content, reference list, and appendices.

The first hand-in of the term papers is on Thursday 2018-10-17 (18:00 h). Each group is supposed to present its term paper and to provide constructive comments on another group’s term paper. Before the presentation of group’s report, the group has to submit the slides that will be used. Attendance at the presentation seminar is mandatory.

Each group will be assigned another group’s term paper to scrutinise in detail as opponents (more information will be provided). As an opponent, you are supposed to make both a written (1-2 pages) and an oral opposition including a few questions suited for discussion and suggestions for improvement. More detailed comments (e.g. on language etc.) are only provided in the written comment. In addition, you are also required to review two other term papers in order to be able to participate in a discussion (more information will be provided).

After the final presentation, you have the opportunity to consider the comments and improve your report. The final deadline to hand-in the term paper is on Wednesday 2019-10-30 (18:00 h). This version will be graded.

You should be clear how missed deadlines and revisions are handled.

Changes made since the last occasion

A summary of changes made since the last occasion.

Learning objectives and syllabus

Learning objectives:

  • define, describe and interrelate strategy and change theories
  • define and describe quality inspired improvement approaches
  • provide good examples on quality driven improvement and change processes and projects
  • develop an sustainable and ethical understanding and approach to change
  • in-depth understand one more narrow areas within the field change and improvement
  • develop an ability to critically view consultants packaging of change and improvement project offerings.

Link to the syllabus on Studieportalen.

Study plan

Examination form

The examination is based on an online Quiz on Canvas (for the online quiz, the final grade is either a fail or pass) and a term paper written in groups of two or three students.

However active participation in literature seminars (both as participant and a leader) and guest lectures, and submission of discussion questions/comments on other groups’ term papers, affect the final grading (bonus points can be gained). The final grades are: fail, 3, 4, or 5.

The online Quiz on Canvas is graded with either a fail or a pass and a pass is needed for finalising the course. 

For the final term paper a grading sheet is used that is added on Canvas and which takes the following aspects into account:

  • Overall impression, including lay-out, coherence, referencing and length of the paper
  • Introduction (relevance of selected purpose)
  • Literature overview
  • Methodology
  • Empirical data presentation
  • Discussion and conclusion


Course summary:

Date Details Due