HR9400 - Decision-making, Teamwork and Leadership in Policing

What will I learn on this module?

This module is designed and developed through combining relevant management theories with course content specified in the College of Policing curriculum. The key learning objectives incorporate those noted in the latter and are to help your understanding on decision making process and its implications for frontline policing practices; to facilitate your appreciation on the functionality of teamwork and its contributions to the delivery of policing; and to improve your evaluation on the role of leadership in organising contemporary police services.

To complete the module learning activities, you will be guided in this regard to:

• explore the key factors underlying decision-making process and identify the main barriers to effective leadership behaviour and team working experiences, including skills in reading circumstances, bias and the role of risk

• consider the role of autonomy and discretion in contemporary policing and the necessary measures put into place for ensuring that personal discretion is applied ethically and professionally

• investigate the links between the Police Code of Ethics and the decision-making process, particularly the skilful use of the National Decision Model (NDM).

• examine the importance of recording and reviewing of decisions in a team environment, with an aim for continual improvement and performance enhancement grounded in evidences

• evaluate the role and functioning of leadership in various challenging contexts, and appreciate the key qualities and personal characteristics of a good leader

The module will introduce and critically review a range of policing incidents involving decision-making, team work and leadership

CoP pre-join curriculum learning outcomes: CoP February 2023 curriculum v6.0 05/2023
Decision Making and Discretion: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11
Leadership and Teamwork: 1
Criminal Justice: 1.1, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 2, 7.1, 7.4

How will I learn on this module?

As this is a first-year module learning will framed around a series of large group sessions. These lectures will include a research-led element as the module tutor draws upon research and extensive subject expertise in order to expose you to current debates about decision making, team work and leadership.

Students will be expected to locate, read and utilise secondary source materials on management theory and policing within small group sessions. There students may be required to discuss, explain and analyse the ideas and information with students and staff and to participate in any simulations, roles plays or exercises which explore leadership, team work and decision making

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Lecture slides, reading lists and guidance will be placed upon our virtual learning environment – Blackboard along with other selected learning materials including recordings making use of Panopto software. Other University software – such as PebblePad -may be used where appropriate. Lecturers will be available to discuss ideas and issues with students inside and outside the classrooms

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
By the end of the module you should be able to:
1. Demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of key aspects of team work, leadership and decision making (including bias and risk) and your ability to apply those in scenarios encountered by police.

2. Demonstrate your understanding of the various elements of the National Decision Model (NDM), discretion and the recording of decisions as well as their deployment and rationale.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
By the end of the module you should be able to:
3. Communicate your knowledge and understanding of team work, leadership and decision making (noted above) and your ability to apply those principles and discretion to scenarios encountered by police.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):

By the end of the module you should have developed the ability to:

4. Understand how varying circumstances can exert different influence upon the decision-making process for individuals as well as team leader

5. Explain the professional importance of ethics, self-evaluation, self-improvement and reflective practice for career and leadership development

How will I be assessed?

Formative assessment

During the semester you will have two formative assessments. (1) A written exercise analysing a problem scenario relating to policing, requiring a plan of action. This will be marked by your seminar tutor and you will receive written feedback on your answer. (2) A mock examination to be made available via the eLP and completed in your own time. You will receive written feedback in the form of a model answer and oral feedback in the form of a discussion of the examination in one of the workshops.

Summative assessment

This will take the form of a 2 hour unseen examination. The examination will require you to demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of key aspects of team work, leadership and decision making in the context of policing

Summative feedback will be available in written form on scripts, via the eLP as notes for guidance and orally from module/seminar tutors.

Assessment Criteria and Grade-Related Criteria will be made available to you to support you in completing assessments. Grade-Related Descriptors are descriptions of the level of skills, knowledge and/or attributes that you need to demonstrate in order achieve a certain grade or mark in an assessment, providing a mechanism by which the quality of an assessment can be measured and placed within the overall set of marks.





Module abstract

This module ‘Decision-making, Teamwork and Leadership in Policing’ combines relevant management theories with the literature on current policing policies and practices and is designed to help students understand key elements of each aspect within context of policing.
This module includes content that will help students: appreciate how various factors such as risk, bias and circumstances affect judgements and decision made by officers on the an everyday basis; understand key aspects of teamwork; and to improve their ideas about leadership at various levels of the police service

Course info

UCAS Code LL44

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time

Department Social Sciences

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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