This 30-credit Master of Science degree is composed of 7 Required Core Courses and 3 Elective Courses. Within the Required Core Courses is the culminating experience of a Capstone course.

Core Courses - Required

Complete all 7 courses.

The first part of this course introduces students to the classical literature in philosophical ethics, including consequentialist, regularian, deontological, and virtue approaches. The second part of the course explores the ethical responsibilities professionals have toward themselves, corporations, the government, and the public. In the third part of the course, students apply an appropriate decision-making framework and gain experience in decision-making surrounding ethical issues. Course discussions will center on issues involving research, research designs and populations, privacy and confidential or sensitive information. During their final project, students will codify an individual code of ethics in relation to professional codes of conduct.

Leading and managing organizational change requires knowledge and skills for analysis, development and the reengineering of processes. This course provides an overview of organizational change management theories and aligns specific strategies to organizational processes. Using the case study method, students will examine examples of organizational change across industries and the leadership characteristics that contribute to organizational dynamics and facilitate sustainability.

The study of leadership and organizational behavior increases our understanding of the complex nature of employees and how their individual interactions impact corporations, government agencies, academic institutions and other working environments. Leadership, on the one hand, involves making sound judgments to inspire others to perform well while working toward a common goal. Organizational behaviors, on the other hand, reflect the impact of environmental characteristics and job duties on the health, safety and wellbeing of employees. Therefore, leadership and organizational behavior are inextricably linked. To understand this connection, this course presents the primary theories of leadership which drive interaction and the key elements of organizational behavior. The course helps students build knowledge and skills to develop protocols for leadership and organizational behavior that result in increased efficiency and productivity in the workplace.

This course explores the historically rich field of organizational development (OD). The goal of organizational development is to increase efficiency and productivity of organizational processes through planned intervention. To do so effectively, organizational development as an approach will encompass the analysis, development and implementation of planned efforts, often organization-wide and managed from the top. Students will examine common OD efforts that may include diagnostic activities, systems realignment, team-building, sensitivity training, or technology innovation. The outcomes of OD are rich with reward: organizations which embrace this approach also foster a learning culture and incorporate related behaviors that are dynamic, flexible, innovative and creative.

This course explores models and principles of strategic planning and the leadership characteristics that promote effective strategic planning, including setting priorities, allocating resources to support priorities, and focusing energies to strengthen operations and employee engagement. The outputs of strategic planning, which include documentation and communication that guide achievement of an organization's identified goals. Students learn to recognize the degree of alignment between these goals and actual outcomes from execution of the strategic plan, as a measure of the organization's strategic advantage. Students will extract a set of practical principles useful in any future leadership role.

This course provides the opportunity to study the process of crisis mitigation in organizations. Primary activities include spending time to assess risks, developing and prioritizing response mechanisms, and training staff and stakeholders in threat detection. Students utilize up-to-date strategies to observe and interpret signals of disruption, and build viable, actionable scenarios to defend the organization's people and processes. Crisis mitigation, as part of an organization's crisis management effort, occurs on several levels (i.e., individual, departmental and organization-wide) and across many functions (i.e., IT, HR, finance, and marketing). This course provides students the knowledge and skills to lead crisis management in organizations with authority and engagement, and to decrease vulnerabilities in diverse circumstances.

The program culminates in this Capstone Seminar, which requires each student to complete an independent, faculty-approved project that will address a substantive or methodological challenge in Organizational Leadership. A successful capstone will include research that provides evidence of the student's mastery of the theoretical knowledge and analytical skills central to the degree's learning outcomes. The capstone provides an opportunity to apply the skills acquired throughout the program to a key challenge facing their organization or community. This course will introduce a variety of research and statistical methods intended to provide a basis for designing the capstone. Students will prepare a literature review, a bibliography, select a research method appropriate to their study, and analyze data in their capstone project. Student must have successfully completed at least 80% (8 courses) in the MSOL program prior to enrolling in AS.485.820 Capstone: Current Issues in Leadership. Additionally, students may not take more than one additional course in the same semester in which they pursue the capstone course.

Elective Courses

Select 3 of these courses:

In order to provide the best care possible, health care professionals are working together more now than ever before. As a result, strong leadership and teamwork skills are becoming necessities in joining the health care field. This course will provide hands-on activities to help students develop problem-solving skills, learn basic negotiation and mediation strategies, and understand their own tendencies as leaders and team members. Using real-world examples, students will explore how strong leadership and teamwork can drive innovative solutions to public health issues.

The field of managerial economics integrates the concepts of microeconomics and logical decisionmaking to facilitate the development of organizational policies and strategies. These organizational policies and strategies in turn, provide leaders with an effective cost-benefit analysis for implementing change. In this course, students study the principles governing managerial economics and apply them to guide the allocation of limited resources to competing entities within the organization. The goal is to optimize spending to maximize value and output. This course recognizes the impact of markets and the challenges of managing production and performance costs. Students then have the opportunity to build skills for distinguishing between business decisions that provide an immediate benefit return, and those decisions designed for longer term investment. The course also addresses optimization tools and techniques to strengthen decision-making during times of uncertainty.

Individual and group dynamics are at the core of evidence-based practices. Leaders direct individuals and groups and also the interaction that occurs among multiple groups toward accomplishment of a mission or purpose. Additionally, leaders must come to terms with the concept of self-leadership-which involves personal resilience and methods for building cultures of resilience. The knowledge of how groups and followers function is essential to sound decision making, implementing new concepts, changing direction, solving problems, and motivating others. To acquire this knowledge, students will dissect modern theories and research in individual and group dynamics, identify 'fit' and apply accepted principles of dynamics to a work environment. Students will also differentiate between small and large group dynamics, evaluate the role of a group leader, by focusing on issues such as boundaries, group identity, cohesion, conflict, power, group recognition, and intergroup alliances.

Project management, as a strategic organizational competence, focuses on the goals, resources and timeline of workplace endeavors designed to achieve a unique product or service. Leading projects to a successful outcome will require attaining all project goals within given constraints. This course provides students the opportunity to learn the stages critical to successful project management and build skills to lead project teams through establishing scope, calculating cost, and assessing risk. Students in this course distinguish between project management and true leadership of projects, and proactively observe, assess and remedy extenuating circumstances to reach successful outcomes. The course will examine current project management processes associated with project. Students will develop mastery of the fundamental project management concepts through the use of case studies and software tool to lead successful projects through the entire project life cycle. Students will also acquire the leadership skills to monitor project statuses, document lessons learned, and successfully close a project.

Portfolio management aligns the selection, prioritization and control of an organization's projects and programs to the organization's strategic objectives and capacity to deliver. This course will examine the process of portfolio management in organizations and its relationship to projects and programs. Students learn to construct optimal portfolio(s) for an organization that manage risk effectively while supporting strategic operations, change management and sustainability. The concepts and principles of project portfolio maturity (PPM) models are evaluated and applied to ensure strengthening organizational capability for successful divestiture and allocation of resources. Through the use of case studies and hands-on assignments, students will master the foundations of portfolio management in order to maximize their leadership skills for successful projects and programs in organizations.

The theory of developmental leadership encompasses three basic assumptions: leadership skills can be learned, the individual is the focus, and many leadership roles exist. This course explores the elements of a successful developmental process for leaders in organizations. Students will learn the characteristics of effective leaders and examine the impact of cognition and emotion on individual behaviors and attitudes. Through the case study method, students will examine the following areas of leadership development: information and communication, decision-making, interpersonal relationships, personal resources, and effective use of self.

Students should be aware of state-specific information for online programs. For more information, please contact an admissions representative.

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