BUS159: Greensheet

Spring, 2018

Preferred contact method: Email. stan.malos@sjsu.edu [put “Bus 159” in subject line] 


*Investing in People: Financial Impact of Human Resource Initiatives (Cascio & Boudreau; 2nd Edition, SHRM/FT Press).


Although costs related to some HR practices, such as instituting a new HRIS system, adding health insurance coverage, or hiring a new CEO, can be readily measured by traditional means, it can be difficult to evaluate more abstract costs of items such as invalid employee selection or development, adverse legal effects, negative employee attitudes or workplace stress, and related withdrawal behaviors such as employee absenteeism, “presenteeism,” excessive use of sick leave, or turnover. 

This course will enhance your career success by providing an integrative experience that develops skills in deploying human resources at the strategic level. More specifically, the course will provide a foundation for analyzing--and communicating with senior management about--issues related to costs and benefits of implementing HR practices. We will use case-based problem solving and web-based research into scholarly empirical journal articles to keep up with current developments in strategic HRM.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Mastery of / ability to apply substantive knowledge of professional HRM practices (integrating strategic HRM, team, interpersonal, and leadership skills);
  2. Mastery of / ability to apply professional written and verbal communication skills
  3. Mastery of / ability to apply professional critical thinking and problem-solving skills

Prerequisites and Criteria for Adding if Space Available:

First, you must qualify for graduating senior status within the HR major. Second, you must have successfully completed both Bus 157 and Bus 158 prior to enrolling in this course! In very rare circumstances and subject to space constraints and instructor discretion, concurrent enrollment with one--but not both--of these courses may be considered, but only if this will enable graduation in the current semester without an otherwise unrealistic course load. Sorry, but those are the realities of the CSU system in today’s world. In most cases, your best bet is to plan ahead and take all of your other courses, including those in the HR area, then try again next semester. If you still want to try to add the course this semester, come to class on Day 1 and be prepared to present hard copies of graduation paperwork, class schedule, and transcript. Sorry, anyone not ready to provide all three of these items in class when requested for any reason will not be considered for admission even where space may be available. Again, you will simply have to wait your turn and try again next semester. 


You are responsible for learning the basic substance of the text material--individually or in study groups--on your own outside of class; class time will be spent on current topics, research presentations, chapter exercises, and related materials. Expect to meet with the instructor multiple times in order to understand the empirical substance of your current topics researchand to credibly present it.

Current Topics Research Presentations and Write-ups:

Students will select from among current topics in HRM, conduct on-line research to find relevant articles of a scholarly level, and write them up to present and hand in for credit. Details are provided on a separate web link and will be discussed in class. See the updated posted schedule when presentation dates and topics have been assigned.


Prepare typed answers to the assigned Cascio chapter exercises to be turned in on the due date. Remember to do them 2 ways: Manually, and using the online software available from the publisher. Because we will go over these exercises in class on the date due, no late submissions can be allowed.

Class Conduct:

Class preparation and participation are critical, and will be evaluated based on the substance and frequency of contributions to seminar discussions and research presentations. Instructor, peer, and self-evaluations will be used. Class members will help to discuss and critique current topics presentations by other students. Take notes on your performance in this area for use in preparing your self-evaluation. Participate in, and keep track of major points from, student current topics presentations and critiques.

Prolicy on Use of Electronic Devices in the Classroom:

Please observe the course policy on Professionalism in the Classroom or expect to be asked to leave. In addition, it is highly recommended that no electronic devices of any kind be used in class. Accepted industry practice increasingly disdains bringing laptops, cell phones, and other devices to meetings; behavioral research supports the notion that taking notes by hand supports learning much more than electronically and helps you integrate the material into your own thought processes rather than simply copying it down. If you need to text or take a call, please wait until a break or leave the room where necessary.

If you need to text, take a phone call, or visit with a classmate, please wait for a break or leave the room in an emergency as you would in any other professional situation. Avoid distracting the instructor or other students with excessive sidebar conversations. Violators will be asked to leave the room--or the course! In short, stay focused on scheduled activities. The overriding key is professionalism. Always.


Grades will be determined based upon a weighted combination of scores for cases, chapter-end exercises, class preparation and participation, and a current topics research paper and related presentation [see separate links]. The resulting percentage scores translated into grades whereby "A"s go to those with scores in the 90s, "B"s to those in the 80s, and so on.

Extra credit will not be offered, so do not expect to blow off regular coursework and then "buy" a grade with fluff at the end of the semester (compare actual business practice and ask yourself if your boss would allow you to make up for a shoddy report on critical issues with other work on an unrelated project!).