Work and organizational psychology (2015/2016)

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Course code
Name of lecturer
Riccardo Sartori
Riccardo Sartori
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
Sem. IIA, Sem. IIB

Lesson timetable

Learning outcomes

This is mainly a course of psychology, academic discipline dealing with human behavior and its underlying cognitive and emotional constructs. In particular, Work and Organizational Psychology deals with psychological aspects (of cognitive, emotional and behavioral kind) connected to work and organizational contexts. Among the first ones, we can find intelligence (which is mainly a cognitive construct), motivation (which is mainly an emotional construct) and commitment (which is mainly a behavioral construct). Among the second ones, we can find the sense of belonging to a working group and to an organization (which can affect both positively and negatively on social identity), role dynamics and conflict. Following the typical research and intervention line that comes from individuals to organizations through groups, the course specifically deals with:


1.4. The individual at work and in organizations
- Cognitive characteristics: intelligence and convictions:
o Scale for the IQ determination (Stanford-Binet, Wechsler, ecc.);
o Aptitude tests;
o Opinions and attitudes;
o Gardner (multiple intelligences) and Goleman (emotional intelligence).

- Emotional characteristics: needs and motivations:
o Intrinsic and extrinsic motivations, self-centered and other-centered motivations;
o Maslow’s hierarchy of needs;
o Rogers’ self-actualization;
o Herzberg’s two factor theory.

- Behavioral characteristics: abilities and competences:
o Abilities, capacities, skills and competences;
o Job evaluation (job description; job analysis; task analysis);
o Performance evaluation (performance);
o Potential evaluation: from work behaviors to underlying constructs.

1.5. Working group and group work: organizational dynamics
- Cooperation vs. Competition;
- Inclusion vs. Exclusion;
- Cohesion vs. Conflict (functional conflict and pathological conflict, Tajfel);
- Leadership vs. Membership (Lewin, Likert, Fiedler e Bass)
- Dependence vs. Autonomy
- Task orientation (operating effectiveness) vs. relational orientation (interactive effectiveness) – Bass.

1.6. Organization and orgnizational functions
- Organizational Development (Bennis e Schein):
o Assessment and selection (Assessment Center and Development Center);
o Training (knowledge, abilities, attitudes);
o Vocational guidance (mentoring, tutoring and coaching);
- Cultures, sub-cultures and counter-cultures;
- Diversity Management;
- Organizational and safety climate: stress, mobbing, burnout and accidents at work.

Assessment methods and criteria

Books and papers for the exam:

1. Asleigh M. & Mansi A. (con Di Stefano G.) (2014). Psicologia del lavoro e delle organizzazioni, Pearson Italia, Milano-Torino.

2. Girelli C. (a cura di) (2014). Cooperare è un’impresa, Franco Angeli, Milano.

3. Sartori R. (2011). Metodi e tecniche di indagine e intervento in psicologia, LED, Milano.

4. Sartori R. (2010). Tecniche proiettive e strumenti psicometrici per l’indagine di personalità, LED, Milano.

5. Sartori R. (2008). Psicologia psicometrica, LED, Milano.

- Sartori R., Favretto G. & Ceschi A. (2013). The relationships between innovation and human and psychological capital in organizations: A review, The Innovation Journal, 18 ,

- Sartori R. & Ceschi A. (2013). Assessment and development centers: judgment biases and risks of using idiographic and nomothetic approaches to collecting information on people to be evaluated and trained in organizations, Quality & Quantity, 47, 3277-3288

Before the exam, students must send a little dissertation written in English on a topic of work and organizational psychology chosen by them.
The dissertation must be studied by students because in the written exam there will be a question about it.

The exam will be written with open and closed questions.