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Gain the skills to develop and deploy your strategic and specialist people management knowledge with a CIPD Level 7 Advanced qualification.

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CIPD Level 7 Advanced Course Overview

The Level 7 CIPD qualifications will emphasise your strategic thinking and handling of complex people management and business decisions. You will be able to develop the latest specialisms essential for your organisation to thrive in an ever changing environment. Specialist modules include Strategic Employment Relations and Strategic Reward Management.

Our practical approach to learning will ensure that you will be able to apply the skills and knowledge discussed in the classroom at work from the very start of the course. 

What does the CIPD Level 7 offer?

The Level 7 CIPD Advanced course is the highest level of study for senior HR professionals. There are two options the Certificate or full Diploma in Strategic People Management. Completing the Diploma is the only way to move to Chartered membership of the CIPD. Being a chartered member will mean you can use the designation Chartered MCIPD or Chartered FCIPD after your name, on your CV and Linkedin profile.

The Level 7 Diploma is a post-graduate qualification which you can easily (and affordably) top-up to a full MSc in Human Resource Management (HRM).

Great provider of the CIPD level 7 Diploma. Good tutors and course material very relevant. Felt supported all the way through and love the flexibility. Would highly recommend this route as opposed to university.


Philly LearCIPD Level 7


Level 7

The Advanced Diploma provides a comprehensive and contemporary overview of strategic people management.

  • Choose this if:

    you are serious about a career in leadership and wish to attain the highest level CIPD qualification, as well as Chartered membership of the CIPD.

  • Duration:

    2 years part time study

  • Syllabus

    8 modules: 4 Core + 3 Specialist + 1 Optional

  • Accreditation

    CIPD Chartered member or upgrade to Chartered Fellow

  • Price (all prices are inclusive of VAT)

    Live Online: £6,150

    Classroom: £7,160 10% off, now £6,444!

  • Additional Costs

    CIPD membership must be taken to complete any of these courses and this is not included within our course fee.

Dr Kay Maddox-Daines explains what to expect from studying the CIPD advanced level 7 Diploma in Strategic People Management >

Click to hear what Elisabeth Bucknall has to say about studying for her CIPD Level 7 Diploma. 

New CIPD Qualifications 2021

The CIPD have launched their new 2021 qualifications. Find out about what has changed including how the new Diploma In Strategic People Management qualification compares to the previous CIPD HR courses? Read: CIPD course levels 3, 5 & 7 explained.

Choose the level that’s right for you!

Speak with one our friendly course advisors. They will discuss your specific requirements, offer you advice and provide you with further information on our study options, start dates and more.

Pay monthly, interest free…

For more information on our interest-free payment options view our payment plans.

You need to be a member of the CIPD whilst you are studying the diploma. Membership is arranged directly with the CIPD and is not included within our course fee. 

CIPD Levels
CIPD Level 7 Pass Rate 2021

Course Delivery and Assessment

Our flexible study options mean you can complete the CIPD Level 7 qualification by attending live online or London classroom sessions.

Live Online
London Classroom
Course Timetable
Assessment & Support

Join our Live Online classes once a month. They combine the convenience of remote learning, with the supportive structure and interaction of a classroom environment. 

In small groups an experienced, CIPD approved tutor will take you through the theory, application and assessment for each learning outcome. You will be able to share ideas and experiences with other high level professionals from a variety of organisations and industries.

Read more about our Live Online courses and options here.

– You will meet a mixture of CIPD approved tutors during the course, whether it’s Dr Stephen Taylor on Employment Law or Clare Taylor on Leadership & Management Development, they’re all experts in their chosen fields.

– Mix and match how you learn – choose how and when you want to take each module, whether all in the classroom, or a blend of classroom and online.

– Complete flexibility on when to take each module, whether during the week, week-day evenings or at weekends.

– You will be working with other HR leaders, building your network from a diverse range of industries!

– Choose between 7 central London locations, including London Bridge, Holborn and Liverpool Street.

More information about our Level 7 CIPD London Workshops

You can mix and match between our different delivery options, creating a personalised training programme. We have start dates every month and you can choose to speed up or slow down your study as you go.

If you are still undecided we also offer free taster classes for our online or London workshops. You can book to attend a session where you will get access to career and study advice from your tutor, as well as meet fellow students to help you get started.

For access to our full timetable complete the contact form at the bottom of the page.

At CIPD Advanced Level 7 there are no more exams! The modules are assessed by submitting a written report. Your tutor will take you through each learning outcome and explain how it relates to the assignment. You will be given access to all the resources you need through our student hub. We will also give you the recommended e-textbook for the first module you take with us.

This content is covered via written assessments for each module. You will also need to submit a 7000-word research project on an aspect of HR or L&D of your choice.

At Acacia Learning our commitment to ensuring all our students pass their assignments with flying colours involves more time with experienced CIPD approved tutors than any other accredited CIPD centre.

The Modules

Our flexible approach to breaking down the course into modules means you can pick between evening, weekend or online classes. 

For the Level 7 Advanced Diploma there are a total of 8 modules. Click on each one to find out what you will learn in each unit.

Core:Work and working lives in a changing business environment

This unit will extend your skills and understanding of the interaction between the commercial business environment and future developments in the world of work, employment and the people management. You will research a range of contemporary people practices including those relating to ethics and sustainability, employee well-being, equality, diversity and inclusion.

You will learn

• How leaders and managers working in people practice are responding to globalisation and its significance for work and employment.

• Investigate the current and future thinking within organisations around technological developments and how new agendas are evolving.

• Evaluate social, demographic and economic trends and how developments in public policy affect people practice.

• Learn about effective leadership of change, innovation and creativity, including the key interrelationships between ethics, sustainability, diversity and well-being.

• Analyse policy, practice and corporate social responsibility and the ways in which people professionals can apply and promote them for organisational productivity.

Core:People management & development strategies for performance

This unit highlights the importance of using evidence-based, outcomes-driven and principles-led practice in support of the fundamental purpose of the people profession. You will explore how people professionals create value and deliver outcomes for organisations and employees, and how contributing to the success of business goals improves performance and improves the employee experience. You will also study the benefits of delivering policy and practice coherently and in line with organisational goals.

You will learn

• How to explain the advantages and benefits of aligning people practice strategies with organisational objectives and learn about the ways in which organisations integrate people practice with culture, brand and values including the evaluation of data sources aimed at shaping people practice.

• Develop an understanding of contemporary people practice through evaluation in the fields of resourcing and performance management.

• Delve into the fields of learning and development and organisational design and development. Understanding the role and influence of people professionals is a key part of your learning for this unit.

• Debate the merits of the different and varied ways in which people practice is organised and structured in organisations.

• Evaluate the practical and ethical challenges presented by data analytics and technological developments.

Core:Personal effectiveness, ethics & business acumen

This unit is about supporting successful employees and promoting ethical behaviours to champion better work and working lives and develop business acumen. You will learn about fundamental theories and concepts and how they are important for promoting inclusiveness and influencing others through fair and transparent behaviours. Using core skills including critical thinking, communication and teamwork the unit will also provide you with an in depth understanding of how actions and inclusive behaviour impact on ethics and the organisation.

You will learn

• How to critically assess different ethical standpoints in people practice and how ethical behaviour maintains high standards.

• How to consider business improvement in relation to working lives evaluating the promotion of well-being, fairness and the contribution of personal integrity within organisations as well as evaluating the benefits and costs of collaborative methods both internally and externally across a variety of business boundaries.

• Learn how to achieve and maintain challenging business outcomes through an understanding of the business, and self-awareness and improvement to support your career progression.

• Justify the benefits of maintaining a passion for learning, evaluate the need for continuing professional development and the merits of evidence-based critical thinking.

• Demonstrate behaviours associated with effective influencing and decision making as well assessing the benefits of networking.

Core:Business research in people practice

Qualified people professionals will be required to research relevant topics and write reports that can persuade key stakeholders in the organisation to change or adopt a particular policy and practice. This core unit will equip you with the skills to be able to define, design and undertake a business research project. It focuses on developing ability to produce an integrated report based on evidence and to include your own recommendations and critical reflection.

You will learn

• How to plan a business research project including examination of themes that would add value to the organisation.

• Critical evaluation of key publications and terms of reference will be undertaken, and a range of questions established to support the project focus and developed outcomes.

• Distinguish between primary and secondary data, conduct cost and benefit analysis, and research ethical issues around data collection for your project.

• Design an appropriate strategy for analysing and organising your data and finally develop conclusions and business-focused recommendations as an outcome of the project and reflect on how you could improve future project design and delivery.

Specialist:Strategic employment relations

This unit focuses on different perspectives of employment relations and the cooperation and conflict that varies between workplaces. There is a key role that external institutions play in forming people management policy and practice within organisations, and a wide variety of emerging models, outcomes and relationships which must be managed carefully.
You will build awareness of effective employment relations procedures and policies and gain in-depth knowledge, skills and confidence to:

• Understand different perspectives on employment relations and the cooperation and conflict that varies between workplaces including employer strategies and trade unions to sustain mutuality and voice.

• Justify the growth of low-quality jobs and the decline of high-quality roles in different parts of the economy and how to support voice which will contribute to improved levels of organisational performance and employee outcomes.

• Analyse the role of collective bargaining in determining pay and review the advantages and disadvantages of arbitration, conciliation and mediation and their role in the resolution of work disagreements.

• Examine the design and implementation of grievance and disciplinary procedures to help mitigate risk and resolve problems.

Specialist:Resourcing & talent management to sustain success

This specialist unit focuses on best-practice strategies to engage and retain the most valuable employees for improved performance. It covers the everyday practicalities and longer-term strategic issues associated with resourcing organisations ethically and fairly and to maximise staff performance and the organisation. These activities take place in a competitive context in which different employers aspire to recruit and retain the most talented and experienced people.

• Learn about the impact of the business environment on resourcing and talent management and the significance for strategy and practice, explaining and debating the relevance to organisations and presenting advice on workforce and succession planning.

• Evaluate attraction and retention, comparing ways in which organisations build and maintain positive reputations in key labour markets.

• Learn about which technologies can be used to improve recruitment and retention, evaluating measures designed to reduce employee turnover.

• Evidence policy and practice in selection and induction, including developments in job analysis and debates about employee selection, referencing legal compliance and staff underperformance in organisations.

Specialist:Strategic reward management

In this unit you will learn how to plan, implement and evaluate consistent reward structures in order to support any strategic business goals. It focuses on the role of strategic reward to attract, motivate and retain people at work in order to direct the actions and behaviours of individuals, teams and the organisation towards the achievement of business goals.
Different financial and non-financial benefits will be applicable depending on the organisational context, but these must always be fair and equitable. The unit contains the elements required to design, introduce, manage and evaluate effective and fair reward strategies and how the associated policies and practices link and impact on other people practices.

• Learn the key factors that influence the design of reward policy.

• Critically justify the value of benchmarking and reward strategy choices.

• Develop in depth understanding of the total rewards approach and the impact of base and incremental pay and benefits in attracting and motivating employees.

• Assess the benefits and challenges of performance appraisal and its links to pay progression.

• Examine the ethical issues that may arise from forms of reward and how the principles of transparency and equity are the cornerstones of responsible and effective approaches to reward.

Optional:Advanced employment law in practice

This unit focuses on the main reasoning of employment law such as employer defences and claimant remedies. You will examine the common issues relating to employment law which arise in organisations with a view to preparing a defence or helping to settle claims before a hearing. Integral to this is the legal system, the main sources of law and the evolution of contemporary employment regulation in the UK.

• Develop an understanding of UK employment law and the legal framework for employment regulation in the UK.

• Explain the major sources of employment law and its evolution, the role and function of the courts and other employment law institutions and the principles of law in the fields of precedent, vicarious liability and continuity of employment.

• Cover the Equality Act and its application including interpretation of the protected characteristics aimed at protecting workers from unlawful acts of discrimination.

• Analyse contracts of employment and debate the principles of wrongful, constructive and unfair dismissal.

• Explore the law in relation to health and safety at work and personal injury, regulation on hours and wages, maternity and parental employment rights and the regulations relating to confidentiality at work.

Optional:Organisational design and development

Effective organisational design and development is crucial for businesses to thrive. Influencing organisational structure is a key part of effective people development. This CIPD postgraduate unit will give you the knowledge, skills and confidence to re-shape your organisation to meet the business challenges of the future. You will develop understanding of the range of options for organisational design and how these align with strategic objectives. Learn how to:

• Critically evaluate theory and concepts in relation to ODD to gain an understanding of its principles and any key issues that underpin them.

• Examine the meaning and value of ODD and review the rationale for and the complexity of organisational design, considering a range of organisational forms and the contextual relevance of these.

• Develop understanding of different methods and approaches to organisational development and how these align with organisational goals.

• Explore the role of people professionals in the creation of new organisational forms.

• Examine responses and approaches to change, including strategies for employee engagement and reflection on personal skills and behaviours that influence successful implementation.

Optional:Managing people in an international context

When organisations become international, they can face major challenges and complexities in their scope and activities. This unit explores how and why organisations trade and operate internationally, the different forms that international business operations take and some of the practical and ethical issues that international organisations face from a people management perspective.

• Analyse the different ways in which organisations operate, trade and expand overseas, discussing the ethical issues in the field of international management and employment.

• Learn about how and why people management practices vary between different countries and regions around the world.

• Focus on the staffing of international organisations, and effective management of expatriate staff and the major alternative staffing strategies which international organisations follow.

• Focus on the practicalities associated with managing people in an international context, specifically in the fields of performance management, diversity and inclusion, reward management, communication and employee voice, talent management and development, and flexible working practice.

Optional:Advanced diversity and inclusion

This unit explores strategic workplace diversity and inclusion in terms of communication and training, addressing workplace behaviour and analysis of trends. It focuses on the historical and present-day role of trade unions and line managers in promoting a fair work-place culture key to managing workplace effectiveness.

Ten reasons to choose us

  • 94% Pass Rate plus 3 Distinctions, 7HRC, Jan 2021 exams
  • More flexible study options than anyone else
  • Several start dates each month throughout the year
  • 24/7 access to online study resources
  • Free official Level 7 CIPD e-textbook
  • A welcoming community of experienced tutors, as well as Acacia’s friendly support team
  • Plentiful opportunities to meet like-minded professionals and create lifelong connections
  • Celebratory Graduation events and our annual Awards night
  • Interest-free monthly payment options
  • Highly competitive prices without compromising on quality

Career Options

The CIPD Level 7 Advanced qualifications are ideal if you are:

  • Serious about being a dynamic strategic people management leader with the credibility to effect positive change
  • An experienced people professional looking to demonstrate that you can operate at the very highest level
  • Looking to achieve a Master’s in HR Management (this could be a pre-requisite or requirement for a board level position).

CIPD qualifications are the gold standard in people management. The skills you develop with us will open new career options. Jobs which would be suitable once you have completed your CIPD level 7 diploma qualifications include People Analytics Manager, Head of HR, Head of Diversity and Inclusion, Director of People, Head of Resourcing, Head of Talent roles.


The skills you develop with the CIPD Level 7 qualification will open new exciting career options for you!

People Management Director
Average pay: £68,417
Top pay: £119,640

Your Tutors

I would definitely recommend Acacia Learning and actually already have as two of my colleagues are currently completing the course on the back of the value-add I gained from the course. The quality of teaching and materials provided are some of the main reasons I would recommend Acacia. The course was also enjoyable with engaging tutors and the flexibility in terms of modules and locations available was great.


Scott GavinAcacia CIPD Level 7 Graduate

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