Human Resources Courses

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Human Resources Courses overview

The study of human resources involves the support and management of people within an organisation. The skills of the human resources department are key to both keeping staff happy, and keeping businesses running smoothly. The human resources department is an essential cog in the smooth machinery of business.

Usually those working in human resources will have knowledge of employment standards, labour laws, hiring, training, performance management and compensation for their co-workers. Some may develop knowledge in specialised fields as well.

Those working in human resources strive to seek compromise between the needs of the staff and the employers. On the one hand, they will fight for good working conditions and listen to what employees require to make their working environment pleasant. On the other, those working in HR will encourage peak performance and productivity in order to meet the objectives of the company.

The human resources department is all about communicating, and finding balance for the needs and job requirements of staff.

Is human resources for me?

A career in human resources could be for you if you are a good listener, naturally empathetic, and diplomatic in nature. Those working in human resources should also have good organisational skills, and enjoy working with people.

Study pathway

Typically, those wanting to work in human resources will need to complete an undergraduate degree in this field, but there are also certificates available that negate the need to go to university to study HR. For example, private educational institutes can offer a BSB41015 Certificate IV in Human Resources, such as the one available from Australian HR Institute.

Private institutes offering certificates in HR often have more flexible hours, making it easier to study part time. However, tertiary institutes associated with the Australian government have more standards and accountability, and may ensure that the courses they offer are of better quality.

Upon completion of an undergraduate degree or your certificate in human resources, it is possible to further your studies with more advanced qualifications. You can go on to get a graduate diploma, graduate certificate or masters. These qualifications are typically the next step once you have your bachelor's degree.

After working in the industry for some time, it is also possible to get a doctorate in human resources.

Employment options

There is high demand for those with knowledge of human resources. A qualification in human resources can get you a career in most any sector or industry, as all industries require good organisation and people skills to function at their peak. The skills gained from studies in human resources are transferable to many industries.

Typical human resources positions include:

Human resource manager

HR managers are in charge of the overall running of the human activity within an organisation. This includes discussing strategic staff required to reach the overall goals of the business, recruiting and hiring staff, and liaising between management and employees.

Recruitment specialist

As the name suggests, recruitment specialists are responsible for finding and placing appropriate staff in their chosen sectors. Usually, recruitment specialists will have specialised knowledge of a particular industry to find the best staff for the job.

Training and development coordinator

Training and development coordinators help employees develop new skills and keep their existing skills up to industry standards. They will also work with managers to come up with methods and incentives to improve workplace performance.

Employee relations manager

The employee relations manager will advise staff about employment laws and company policy. Aside from labour relations, they will have knowledge about managing a variety of staff functions.

Human resource management information systems professional

Those working in this area will have developed knowledge about human resources information software and work with managing the related data to help businesses understand productivity.


Human resources is a discipline that encompasses many niche skills. You could choose to focus on areas such as:

Advice for Human Resources Courses

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Choosing a course

The Master of Human Resource Management program prepares graduates of any field for a management career across the diverse field of human resources.


Human Resources Courses Videos


Edith Cowan University (ECU)

Discover courses, get advice from staff, watch demos and enjoy music, food and games.

Edith Cowan University (ECU)

Discover courses, get advice from staff, watch demos and enjoy music, food and games.