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
2025 Spring
Active status: 
Level of study: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

Even though decision-making is an integral part of most managers' professional lives, most managers have never had any systematic training in making decisions. Judgment and decision-making research show that decision-makers repeatedly make the same types of mistakes and errors. We focus on how individuals, groups, and organizations actually make decisions by discussing decision failures, successes, and the corresponding decision processes. A key topic in judgment and decision-making is demonstrating how heuristics systematically bias decisions. This course examines the cognitive and emotional mechanisms that drive the use of heuristics. The goal is to provide the students with practical tools built on scientific knowledge to help nudge and redesign decision situations and processes. The objective is to improve the students’ capacity to observe and learn from decision-making processes and increase their ability to organize 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 responsibility to obtain any information provided in class.

Mandatory coursework must be approved before you can take the exam.


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.


Deviations in teaching and exams may occur if external conditions or unforeseen events call for this.

Mandatory courseworkCourseworks givenCourseworks requiredComment coursework
Mandatory11Group presentation
Mandatory coursework:
Mandatory coursework:Mandatory
Courseworks given:1
Courseworks required:1
Comment coursework:Group presentation
Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Submission PDF
Exam/hand-in semester: 
First Semester
Group (2 - 3)
6 Week(s)
Exam code: 
GRA 22044
Grading scale: 
Examination when next scheduled course
Type of Assessment: 
Ordinary examination
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.