GRA 2204 Judgment and Decision Making in Organisations

GRA 2204 Judgment and Decision Making in Organisations

Course code: 
GRA 2204
Leadership and Organizational Behaviour
Course coordinator: 
Thorvald Hærem
Course name in Norwegian: 
Judgment and Decision Making in Organisations
Product category: 
MSc in Leadership and Organisational Psychology
2021 Spring
Active status: 
Level of study: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

Despite the fact that decision-making is an integrative part of most managers' professional lives, most managers have never had any systematic training in how to make decisions. Judgment and decision making research shows that decision makers repeatedly make the same types of mistakes and errors when making decisions. By focusing on decision-making failures and how decisions are actually made by individuals, groups and organizations, the objective of this course is to improve participants' ability to make decisions and organize for decision making processes, as well as their capacity to observe and learn from decision-making processes.

Learning outcomes - Knowledge
  • Understand the concept of decision making
  • Know  the cognitive foundations for decision making
  • Know fundamental flaws in assumptions of rational decision-making models
  • Understand the relevance and scope of behavioral decision making at different levels of aggregation, for micro to macro
  • Know about important heuristics and decision-making techniques
  • Understand implications for organizing for decision making in organizations
Learning outcomes - Skills
  • Be able to identify decision traps
  • Reflect upon the decision-making process on the fly
  • Know techniques to avoid the most important decision traps
  • Know how to use appropriate measures to avoid flawed decision-making processes
  • Being aware of the shifting of "cognitive gears" in decision-making processes
  • Being able to diagnose threats to faulty decision-making processes in groups
General Competence
  • Develop a measured understanding of the relevance and scope of decision making in business
  • Have a realistic and empirically based attitude to the strengths and limits of human information processing in decision-making processes
  • Developed a measured and empirically based understanding of how micro and macro conditions may interact to facilitate and inhibit effective decision-making processes in a business context
  • Be able to identify the differences in the decision processes and decision outcomes and reflect on the implications for management
Course content
  • The psychological foundations of judgment and decision-making
  • Problem formulation and psychological context
  • Normative and descriptive models of individual judgment and decision making
  • Cognitive heuristics and biases
  • Individual differences in judgment and decision-making
  • Group dynamics and group decision-making
  • Strategic and organisational decisions
  • Decision making tools
Teaching and learning activities

The course is structured as a combination of lectures, discussions, in-class activities, and compulsory student presentations. It requires substantial amount of preparation by the students and active involvement during class.

Software tools
No specified computer-based tools are required.
Additional information

Please note that while attendance is not compulsory in all courses, it is the student’s own responsibility to obtain any information provided in class.

This is a course with continuous assessment (several exam components) and one final exam code. Each exam component is graded by using points on a scale from 0-100. The components will be weighted together according to the information in the course description in order to calculate the final letter grade for the examination code (course). Students who fail to participate in one/some/all exam elements will get a lower grade or may fail the course. You will find detailed information about the point system and the cut off points with reference to the letter grades when the course starts.

At resit, all exam components must, as a main rule, be retaken during next scheduled course.


All courses in the Masters programme will assume that students have fulfilled the admission requirements for the programme. In addition, courses in second, third and/or fourth semester can have specific prerequisites and will assume that students have followed normal study progression. For double degree and exchange students, please note that equivalent courses are accepted.


Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, there may be deviations in teaching and learning activities as well as exams, compared with what is described in this course description.

Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Exam code: 
Grading scale: 
Point scale leading to ECTS letter grade
All components must, as a main rule, be retaken during next scheduled course
Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Written submission
Group (2 - 3)
6 Week(s)
Exam code: 
Grading scale: 
Point scale leading to ECTS letter grade
All components must, as a main rule, be retaken during next scheduled course
Type of Assessment: 
Continuous assessment
Grading scale: 
Total weight: 
Sum workload: 

A course of 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours. Therefore a course of 6 ECTS credits corresponds to a workload of at least 160 hours.