TS501318 - Professional practice and organizational systems


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Assignment
Grade: Letter grades

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
Assignment 100/100

Course content

This course put emphasis on the leadership dilemmas in organizing work and the interface between organizational systems and professional work practice. It looks particularly on how to facilitate and organize for good professional practice (profesjonsutøvelse). It problematizes the tension between the need for standardized management systems and a need for some flexibility. Central learning outcomes concerns organizational understanding, particularly related to the use of standardized systems to govern and monitor work. Procedures and standards have often been regarded as opposites to the flexibility and improvisation that is often necessary to conduct work in an efficient manner in practice. This course explores and nuances this notion and will enable future leaders to better understand and manage the dynamics between management systems and professional work practice. The course will be based on case studies and examples, in particular regarding safety critical operations and implementation of new technology. It will also include discussions of organizational issues in general. The discussions of the relationship between work practice and organizational systems will be enable managers across industries and sectors to reflect on their role as leaders.

Central topics are:

  • Organizational theory and work practice
  • Standardization in organizations
  • Formal vs. informal qualities of organizations
  • How work is represented in organizational systems, and what this means
  • What dimensions of work are "invisible" in procedures and reporting systems
  • Procedures, compliance and resilience
  • Professional discretion and expertise, and their limits
  • Accountability and the leader's responsibility
  • Changes and trends: bureaucratization, increased reliance on measurement, digitalization.
  • Central safety theoretical contributions to the discussion of regulatory management and the significance of practice; e.g. Resilience engineering, High reliability organization theory, practice theory.

Learning outcome

Learning outcome knowledge: Having passed this exam it is expected that the candidates have

• a better understanding of the organizational dimension of managing professional practice

• throughout knowledge of organizational dilemmas of procedures vs. practice

• advanced knowledge of academic contributions to relevant discussions of management systems and leadership

• advanced knowledge of the significance of standardization of practice in organizational life

• advanced knowledge of the significance of organization for safety and risk management

• in-depth understanding of fundamental leadership dilemmas in facilitating good professional practice in operational work Learning outcome skills and competence: Having passed this exam it is expected that the candidates can apply their knowledge to

• improve both the design, implementation and use of procedures and reporting systems

• deal with practical and theoretical problems concerning the interface between professional practice and management systems.

• use relevant methods for research and scholarly development work in an independent matter

• analyze and deal critically with various sources of information and use them to structure and formulate scholarly arguments on related topics

• See the connections between core dilemmas and developments in the management field and larger developments in society in general

• analyze relevant academic, professional and research ethical problems

• contribute to new thinking and innovation processes within management systems and professional practice

• carry out an independent, limited research and development project under supervision and in accordance with applicable norms for research ethics

• communicate about academic issues, analyses and conclusions, both with specialists and the general public

• understand and apply existing and new research on these topics in their professional practice

Learning methods and activities

Lectures, individual and group exercises (some to be presented in class), and table-top simulations to ensure a thorough understanding of how the theory can be applied in realistic situations.

Compulsory assignments

  • Group presentation

Further on evaluation

Written individual project report on a given assignment. The project shall be submitted in NTNU's Exam System INSPERA as one pdf-file.

Mandatory assignment: Each group is required to present 1 - 2 group exercises. Compulsory activities from previous semester may be approved by the department. Students are expected to be present minimum 80% of the time. Special cases are evaluated individually through an application to the head of the programme.

Re-sit examination: Students who failed the exam or have a legitimate leave of absence from the exam, will be allowed to re-sit the exam during the next semester.

Specific conditions

Admission to a programme of study is required:
Management of Demanding Marine Operations (MLAKMO)
Operational Maritime Management (830MDO)

Course materials

This will be informed at the start of the subject.

More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  SPRING 2024

Language of instruction: Norwegian

Location: Ålesund

Subject area(s)
  • Organization and Leadership
Contact information


Examination arrangement: Assignment

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Autumn UTS Assignment 100/100





Room Building Number of candidates
Spring ORD Assignment 100/100



Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

More on examinations at NTNU