Course code AOS333

AOS333 Organization Theory

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Showing course contents for the educational year starting in 2017 .

Course responsible: Arild Wæraas
ECTS credits: 5
Faculty: School of Economics and Business
Teaching language: NO
(NO=norsk, EN=Engelsk)
Teaching exam periods:
January block
Course frequency: Annual
First time: 2015H
Last time: 2018H
Course contents:
This course is organized around three perspectives; the rational, natural and open systems perspectives on organizations. Based on this division, an introduction to micro and macro theories of organizations and organizational fields and populations is given, including theories such as contingency theory, institutional theory, population ecology, resource dependence theory, etc.
Learning outcome:

Knowledge objectives

  • Understand the evolution of organizational thought and its division into three main categories of perpectives on organizations. 
  • Understand the difference between the three most comprehensive perspectives on organizations
  • Understand how the evolution of organization theory is associated with broader technological and structural societal conditions


  • Explain the difference between the open, natural, and rational perspective and describe the development of organizational theory through these perspectives
  • Apply multiple perspectives on central organizational problem areas and assess the limitations of each perspective

General competence objectives

  • Understand basic principles for analyzing organizations on the basis of multiple perspectives
  • Acquire a platform for learning in other courses, particularly within the fields of organization and management
Learning activities:
Lectures, discussions, and group assignments
Teaching support:
Continuous guidance in accordance with student needs.

Main textbook:

Scott, W. R. & G. F. Davis (2007/2015): Organizations and Organizing. Rational, Natural, and Open Systems Perspectives. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. Kap 1-5, 6 (s 144-146), 7 (s. 152-155), 9-10 og 13 (s. 340-354)

In addition, several articles and book chapters will be made available through Canvas.

Recommended prerequisites:
Mandatory activity:

Participation in group assignments is obligatory. The group assignments include presentations of sentral parts of the required readings through a Powerpoint presentation in class.

Work in groups occurs almost every day of the course.

The group assignments must be approved by the instructor in order for the student to take the final exam.

Approved group assignment is valid until the next time the course is offered.

One written in-class exam, which accounts for 100% of the grade.
Nominal workload:
150 hours
Examination details: Continuous exam: A - E / Ikke bestått