Decision-Making Behaviour and Promotion
level of course unit
second cycle, Master
Learning outcomes of course unit
Upon successful completion of the course, students are able to apply the psychological foundations for the decision-making behavior. In particular, students learn to assess the problems of individual and collective decisions..
prerequisites and co-requisites
Decisions, whether by an individual or within companies and organizations have always taken place between the conflicting poles of rationality and emotion. Decisions are usually taken before an emotional or value-led background and are then justified rationally. Nevertheless, there are numerous models that are supposed to support managers in their decision-making behavior. For the work in and with businesses, it is essential to differentiate rational and emotional levels of decisions and to deal with the psychology of decision-making behavior.
For this purpose, it is essential to know the scientific basis of some aspects of the research on decision-making and discuss the following:
- What is a decision?
- What is the current state of research into decision making?
- Which variables play a role in decisions? ( Values and norms; uncertainty/risk; motivation; emotion; justification )
- How does the will form the basis for a decision?
- How do individual decisions differ from group decisions? In which cases are individual decisions better than group decisions, and vice versa?
- What is the role of gut feelings and intuition for decisions?
- What role do environmental factors (e.g., stress, time pressure, conflict) play for decisions?
- How do the decisions taken influence our perception?
- Classical experiments on decision-making behavior
- Game theory as a basis for business decisions
- Decisions in complex situations and organizations
- How do you advise people in enterprises in their decisions?
- How can decisions be improved in the company? ( Decision Support System ) Where are the limits of such systems?
The topics are illustrated by examples and thoroughly discussed. Based on these foundations, cases are handled and role-plays conducted. It is about :
- Individual decisions
- Business decisions
- Decision-making behavior in groups
recommended or required reading
Exler, Markus; Hrsg. (2013) Restrukturierungs- und Turnaround-Management, Berlin,
Braun, W. (2010). Die (Psycho)-Logik des Entscheidens. Bern
Dörner, D. (2003). Die Logik des Misslingens. Reinbek
Gigerenzer, G. (2007). Bauchentscheidungen. München: C. Bertelsmann.
Heckhausen, H., Gollwitzer, P.M., & Weinert, F.E. (Hrsg.). (1987). Jenseits des Rubikon: Der Wille in den Humanwissenschaften. Berlin, Heidelberg, New York
Heckhausen, H. (1989). Motivation und Handeln. Berlin
Krapp, A. (2002). Structural and dynamic aspects of interest development: theoretical considerations from an ontogenetic perspective. Learning and Instruction, H. 12, 383-409.
Krapp, A. (2007). An educational-psychological theory of interest and ist relation to self- determination theory. In: Deci, E./Ryan, R. (Eds.). The handbook of self-determination research. Rochester
Taleb, N. N. (2008). Der schwarze Schwan: Die Macht höchst unwahrscheinlicher Ereignisse. München
assessment methods and criteria
written examination or homework
language of instruction
number of ECTS credits allocated
planned learning activities and teaching methods
Lecture, group work, presentation and task discussion
semester/trimester when the course unit is delivered
name of lecturer(s)
Dipl.-Psych. Dipl.-Psych. Willi Pölt
year of study
2.year of studies
recommended optional program components
course unit code
type of course unit
compulsory (integrated lecture)
mode of delivery