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    Professional bodies, duties and behaviour. Professional practice and management.

    Professional surveyors are expected to exercise appropriate standards of behaviour in their career. The objective of this paper is to develop an understanding of the appropriate values, ethics and standards that lead to good judgement, consistent with the requirements of good business practice. Aspects of individual and group behaviour, including means of communication, leadership and the interactions between professionals, clients and society are also examined.

    The paper also focuses on the business practice in a consulting environment and covers a wide variety of topics, including marketing service businesses, client management and financial planning. Organisational structures within a sustainable business model lead on to detailed accounting, industrial relations and time-management issues. The paper explores a variety of effective decision-making practices, using theory and practical tools to build confidence and understanding.

    About this paper

    Paper title Professional Practice
    Subject Surveying
    EFTS 0.132
    Points 18 points
    Teaching period Semester 2 (On campus)
    Domestic Tuition Fees ( NZD ) $1,193.54
    International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.
    216 points
    SURV 418
    Schedule C
    May only be taken by students in the final year of study for a degree.
    This is a core paper for the BSurv degree, but is suitable for graduates of all disciplines who expect to be employed as a professional, will be become part of a profession or will be employed in a professional environment.
    Teaching staff
    Course Co-ordinator and Lecturer: Fraser Jopson

    The lecturing requirements of this paper are supported by a wide range of guest lecturers from industry who provide real-world examples of what is expected of a professional.
    Paper Structure

    SURV 450 covers many of the issues that a graduate may experience as they start their professional career and advance through to full professional status as recognised by an appropriate professional body. Further issues relating to the running and ownership of a professional business are introduced to the students.

    Issues to be introduced include:

    • Personal career management
    • Concepts of a profession
    • The professional and the client
    • Business plans and practice analysis
    • Marketing
    • Contracts
    • Duty of care and liability
    • Insurance
    • Private jobs
    • Professional bodies
    • Professional ethics
    • Continuing professional development
    • Expert witness
    • Practice accounting
    • Contact with other professionals
    • Types of business arrangements
    • Health and safety of a professional
    Teaching Arrangements

    The paper is taught over a full semester and uses set lectures and guest lectures to introduce the students to the issues and themes that are covered by the course material.

    Lectures introduce the content themes, identify specific points of interest and learning and explain some of the more important issues.

    Guest lectures reinforce many of the themes introduced to students and provide real-world examples of current professional issues that graduates will be exposed to over the course of their careers.

    Handouts, in addition to lecture notes, of current news items or developments are provided when available.

    Blackboard: All lecture notes will be made available on Blackboard.


    • 30% internal (2 assignments and a test)
    • 70% external (final exam)
    No textbooks are required for this paper.
    Graduate Attributes Emphasised
    Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Communication, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Ethics, Information literacy, Research, Self-motivation, Teamwork.
    View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
    Learning Outcomes

    Students who successfully complete the paper should:

    • Have an understanding of the postgraduate work environment and the professional expectations of their peers in the workforce
    • Understand the value of and means to build effective teams, exercise leadership and communicate well with their colleagues and employees
    • Have an understanding of the various duties and ethical responsibilities that arise from membership of professional bodies and the implications of ethical or unethical behaviour. Particular emphasis is placed on what ethical or unethical behaviour can do to a professional's reputation
    • Be aware of the value of effective communication in a business environment and explore a variety of communication media, including web-based resources
    • Be familiar with services marketing techniques, branding and client behaviour for a successful consultancy business model
    • Have an understanding of financial business management for a professional services company, including computing in business, accounting, time management and insurances, management of risk and compliance with appropriate legislation


    Semester 2

    Teaching method
    This paper is taught On Campus
    Learning management system


    Stream Days Times Weeks
    A1 Tuesday 12:00-12:50 29-35, 37-42
    Wednesday 12:00-12:50 29-35, 37-42
    Thursday 11:00-11:50 29-35, 37-42
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