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Today, companies are looking for effective leadership at all levels – from identifying and onboarding younger leaders faster to ensuring that senior leaders remain relevant and engaged. In every sector, industry, or setting, employers are looking for leaders that have highly desired leadership competencies including collaboration/team building, global cultural agility, driving creativity and innovation, and influence and inspiration. You can build those competencies with the Organizational Leadership program at WOU. In addition to the master’s program, WOU offers three Leadership Certificate options that can be completed individually or as part of the MA in Organizational Leadership.

Start your program anytime, anywhere!

credits required

certificate options

Program Details

Overview

Where this degree can take you:

  • Management roles
  • Further career advancement

To start, you need:

  • A bachelor’s degree
  • Desire to further your professional career

Finishing will take:

  • 45 credits
  • Professional project

Begin your Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership program:

  • Next term

Where you will take classes:

  • Online/distance fall, winter, and spring
  • On-campus evening courses at the WOU Salem Campus

Technology you will need:

  • Computer with internet connection

What you will learn:

This degree includes instruction in organizational planning, dynamics of leadership, communication, creativity and innovation, team building, conflict resolution and mediation, and other leadership skills. The Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership enables students to develop leadership skills that can be applied to a wide range of settings including: business, government, nonprofit, and education.

Learning outcomes:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge and application of principles, theories, and concepts of leadership within organizational settings.
  2. Develop critical intellectual skills including: critical thinking and analytical reasoning; ethical reasoning; and communicative fluency.
  3. Apply teamwork, leadership, and communication skills to work effectively with people from diverse backgrounds.
  4. Demonstrate integration of their knowledge and skills by engaging with and responding to civic, social, environmental and economic challenges at local, national and global levels.

Application Requirements

Deadlines and key dates:

  • You may apply to start the program in fall, winter, or spring terms.

Graduate Student Assistant Positions are a form of student employment, earning a compensation package including both salary and tuition remission for the performance of research or teaching services to the University as part of a student’s academic and professional training and development. If you are interested in applying for a Graduate Assistant Position, please apply for this position no later than February 1st for priority processing. Applications will continue to be accepted until the position is filled.

Detailed application requirements:

Application materials required for WOU Graduate admission:

  • Application Fee $60
  • Transcripts
    • You can upload an unofficial copy of your transcript to complete your application for admission. Save as a PDF with your first and last name in time from all previous colleges. We will require an official transcript from the Colleges or Universities you have attended for formal admission.
    • Transcripts are used as Evidence of completion of a four-year baccalaureate degree (or international equivalent) from a regionally accredited institution as defined by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars, with a cumulative B average (equivalent 3.00 on a U.S. 4.00 grading scale) on the most recent baccalaureate degree. Applicants who hold a master’s degree will have the 3.0 GPA requirement waived. Students with less than 3.0 can also provide passing MAT/GRE scores to be fully admitted.
  • Current Resume
    • Save as a PDF with your first and last name in the title.

Process: Applications will be reviewed once all application materials have been submitted. Please refer to the Application Checklist in your Graduate Application Portal to confirm the status of your submitted materials. The Graduate Application Portal will also provide additional details about the checklist items for further clarification. You will be notified via email regarding changes in the status of your application or if you are missing any application components.

      Curriculum

      MA in Organizational Leadership curriculum overview:

      Provide opportunities for students to develop leadership skills that can be applied to business, government, nonprofit, or educational settings. Includes instruction in organizational planning, dynamics of leadership, communication, creativity and innovation, team building, conflict resolution and mediation, communication, and other management skills. Students will not only grow as professionals through action-based learning, but they also make a positive impact on their communities and workplaces through a practical application of cumulative skills.

      The program is intended for currently working adults. Consequently, program delivery is flexible with courses being offered online and as hybrid courses at WOU’s Salem site. The program draws on WOU’s learning management system (Canvas) for all flexible format course delivery (including face-to-face), including instructional and curriculum design support from WOU’s Center for Academic Innovation.  In addition, WOU’s electronic library resources will be central to providing access to students who may spend relatively little time on WOU’s main campus.

      Your plan of study:

      Once admitted to MA in Organizational Leadership , you will work with an advisor to plan the courses you will take and how you will complete the academic requirements of the program. By filing this Program Plan, you have a road map for completing your degree and clarity on what to expect.

      The Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership degree consists of 45 credit hours of approved graduate-level courses. The degree has four areas:

      1. Fundamental Skills (3)
      2. Adaptive Leadership (15)
      3. Enabling Leadership (15)
      4. Executive Leadership (12) includes exit requirements

      Core Courses


      Fundamental Skills


      • WR 630 Professional Writing and Research Credits: 3

      Adaptive Leadership


      • OL 612 Conflict Management Credits: 3
      • OL 614 Leading for Creativity and Innovation Credits: 3
      • OL 631 Fundamentals of Leadership Credits: 3
      • OL 632 Building Effective Teams Credits: 3
      • OL 633 Organizational Communication Credits: 3

      Enabling Leadership


      • OL 613 Human Behavior in Organizations Credits: 3
      • OL 619 Strategic Change and Organizational Development Credits: 3

      Elective Credits: 9


      Consult your advisor about elective options.

      • OL 507 Seminar Credits: 3
      • OL 606 Special Individual Studies Credits: 1-3
      • OL 607 Seminar Credits: 3
      • OL 618 Advanced Leadership Credits: 3
      • OL 624 Talent Management Credits: 3
      • OL 625 Executive Coaching Credits: 3
      • OL 626 Leading Sustainability Credits: 3
      • OL 627 Leadership: Keys to Mental and Physical Health Credits: 3
      • OL 628 Leadership and Work-Family Balance Credits: 3
      • OL 634 Leading Across Cultures Credits: 3
      • OL 635 Leading in Public Organizations Credits: 3
      • OL 636 Data Driven Decision Making Credits: 3

      Executive Leadership


      • OL 611 Ethics in Leadership Credits: 3
      • OL 615 Strategic Leadership Credits: 3
      • OL 622 Critical Thinking for Leaders Credits: 3
      • OL 690 Leadership Action Project Credits: 3

      Exit Evaluation


      Students must complete the following exit evaluation to receive their degree:

      • Portfolio

      Total Credits: 45

      Program Design

      The course work within the Organizational Leadership master’s degree program is embedded primarily within three certificate programs: An Adaptive Leadership Certificate, an Enabling Leadership Certificate, and an Executive Leadership Certificate. Conferral of the master’s degree requires students must complete the course work for all three certificates complete plus a professional writing and research course. The exit requirement for the master’s degree is embedded within the Executive Leadership Certificate requirements. Qualified students may earn the certificates as either part of the master’s degree program or as standalone certificates.

      The standalone Adaptive Leadership Certificate equips leaders with the knowledge and competencies needed to lead effectively within complex adaptive systems (teams). The certificate curriculum is designed to provide students with the knowledge and competencies to learn, adapt, collaborate, and innovate while working with diverse team members. Students earn the certificate by completing the Adaptive Leadership core courses.

      The standalone Enabling Leadership Certificate equips leaders with the knowledge and competencies needed to effectively lead multiple teams within an organization. The certificate curriculum is designed to provide students with the knowledge and competencies to lead change; lead people; and build coalitions. Students earn the certificate by completing the Enabling Leadership core and elective courses.

      The standalone Executive Leadership Certificate equips students with the critical capabilities and skills needed to assume top-level leadership positions. The certificate curriculum is designed to provide students with the knowledge and competencies to plan; build vision; drive results; manage crises and establish organizational strategy. Students earn the certificate by completing the Executive Leadership core and elective courses.

      Faculty

      DAVID FOSTER

      Professor, Psychological Sciences Department
      503-838-8805 | fosterd@wou.edu | TODD 327

      LARS SODERLUND

      Department Chair, Associate Professor, Writing, English Studies Department
      503-838-8325 | soderlundl@wou.edu | BELL 309

      STEVEN WINEGAR

      NTT Assistant Professor, Organizational Leadership
      winegars@wou.edu

      PAUL DISNEY

      Adjunct Professor, Business/Economics Division
      503-838-8546 | disneyp@wou.edu | WEST 208

      JESSICA MURFIN

      Partnership Specialist/Adjunct Instructor, VP Academic Affairs/Provost
      503-838-8374 | murfinj@wou.edu | VICK 114

      SARAH SHELDRICK

      Instructor, Communication Studies
      503-838-8152 | sheldricks@wou.edu | BELL 123

      Where this degree can take you:

      • Management roles
      • Further career advancement

      To start, you need:

      • A bachelor’s degree
      • Desire to further your professional career

      Finishing will take:

      • 45 credits
      • Professional project

      Begin your Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership program:

      • Next term

      Where you will take classes:

      • Online/distance fall, winter, and spring
      • On-campus evening courses at the WOU Salem Campus

      Technology you will need:

      • Computer with internet connection

      What you will learn:

      This degree includes instruction in organizational planning, dynamics of leadership, communication, creativity and innovation, team building, conflict resolution and mediation, and other leadership skills. The Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership enables students to develop leadership skills that can be applied to a wide range of settings including: business, government, nonprofit, and education.

      Learning outcomes:

      1. Demonstrate knowledge and application of principles, theories, and concepts of leadership within organizational settings.
      2. Develop critical intellectual skills including: critical thinking and analytical reasoning; ethical reasoning; and communicative fluency.
      3. Apply teamwork, leadership, and communication skills to work effectively with people from diverse backgrounds.
      4. Demonstrate integration of their knowledge and skills by engaging with and responding to civic, social, environmental and economic challenges at local, national and global levels.

      Deadlines and key dates:

      • You may apply to start the program in fall, winter, or spring terms.

      Graduate Student Assistant Positions are a form of student employment, earning a compensation package including both salary and tuition remission for the performance of research or teaching services to the University as part of a student’s academic and professional training and development. If you are interested in applying for a Graduate Assistant Position, please apply for this position no later than February 1st for priority processing. Applications will continue to be accepted until the position is filled.

      Detailed application requirements:

      Application materials required for WOU Graduate admission:

      • Application Fee $60
      • Transcripts
        • You can upload an unofficial copy of your transcript to complete your application for admission. Save as a PDF with your first and last name in time from all previous colleges. We will require an official transcript from the Colleges or Universities you have attended for formal admission.
        • Transcripts are used as Evidence of completion of a four-year baccalaureate degree (or international equivalent) from a regionally accredited institution as defined by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars, with a cumulative B average (equivalent 3.00 on a U.S. 4.00 grading scale) on the most recent baccalaureate degree. Applicants who hold a master’s degree will have the 3.0 GPA requirement waived. Students with less than 3.0 can also provide passing MAT/GRE scores to be fully admitted.
      • Current Resume
        • Save as a PDF with your first and last name in the title.

      Process: Applications will be reviewed once all application materials have been submitted. Please refer to the Application Checklist in your Graduate Application Portal to confirm the status of your submitted materials. The Graduate Application Portal will also provide additional details about the checklist items for further clarification. You will be notified via email regarding changes in the status of your application or if you are missing any application components.

        MA in Organizational Leadership curriculum overview:

        Provide opportunities for students to develop leadership skills that can be applied to business, government, nonprofit, or educational settings. Includes instruction in organizational planning, dynamics of leadership, communication, creativity and innovation, team building, conflict resolution and mediation, communication, and other management skills. Students will not only grow as professionals through action-based learning, but they also make a positive impact on their communities and workplaces through a practical application of cumulative skills.

        The program is intended for currently working adults. Consequently, program delivery is flexible with courses being offered online and as hybrid courses at WOU’s Salem site. The program draws on WOU’s learning management system (Canvas) for all flexible format course delivery (including face-to-face), including instructional and curriculum design support from WOU’s Center for Academic Innovation.  In addition, WOU’s electronic library resources will be central to providing access to students who may spend relatively little time on WOU’s main campus.

        Your plan of study:

        Once admitted to MA in Organizational Leadership, you will work with an advisor to plan the courses you will take and how you will complete the academic requirements of the program. By filing this Program Plan, you have a road map for completing your degree and clarity on what to expect.

        The Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership degree consists of 45 credit hours of approved graduate-level courses. The degree has four areas:

        1. Fundamental Skills (3)
        2. Adaptive Leadership (15)
        3. Enabling Leadership (15)
        4. Executive Leadership (12) includes exit requirements

        Core Courses


        Fundamental Skills


        • WR 630 Professional Writing and Research Credits: 3

        Adaptive Leadership


        • OL 612 Conflict Management Credits: 3
        • OL 614 Leading for Creativity and Innovation Credits: 3
        • OL 631 Fundamentals of Leadership Credits: 3
        • OL 632 Building Effective Teams Credits: 3
        • OL 633 Organizational Communication Credits: 3

        Enabling Leadership


        • OL 613 Human Behavior in Organizations Credits: 3
        • OL 619 Strategic Change and Organizational Development Credits: 3

        Elective Credits: 9


        Consult your advisor about elective options.

        • OL 507 Seminar Credits: 3
        • OL 606 Special Individual Studies Credits: 1-3
        • OL 607 Seminar Credits: 3
        • OL 618 Advanced Leadership Credits: 3
        • OL 624 Talent Management Credits: 3
        • OL 625 Executive Coaching Credits: 3
        • OL 626 Leading Sustainability Credits: 3
        • OL 627 Leadership: Keys to Mental and Physical Health Credits: 3
        • OL 628 Leadership and Work-Family Balance Credits: 3
        • OL 634 Leading Across Cultures Credits: 3
        • OL 635 Leading in Public Organizations Credits: 3
        • OL 636 Data Driven Decision Making Credits: 3

        Executive Leadership


        • OL 611 Ethics in Leadership Credits: 3
        • OL 615 Strategic Leadership Credits: 3
        • OL 622 Critical Thinking for Leaders Credits: 3
        • OL 690 Leadership Action Project Credits: 3

        Exit Evaluation


        Students must complete the following exit evaluation to receive their degree:

        • Portfolio

        Total Credits: 45

        The course work within the Organizational Leadership master’s degree program is embedded primarily within three certificate programs: An Adaptive Leadership Certificate, an Enabling Leadership Certificate, and an Executive Leadership Certificate. Conferral of the master’s degree requires students must complete the course work for all three certificates complete plus a professional writing and research course. The exit requirement for the master’s degree is embedded within the Executive Leadership Certificate requirements. Qualified students may earn the certificates as either part of the master’s degree program or as standalone certificates.

        The standalone Adaptive Leadership Certificate equips leaders with the knowledge and competencies needed to lead effectively within complex adaptive systems (teams). The certificate curriculum is designed to provide students with the knowledge and competencies to learn, adapt, collaborate, and innovate while working with diverse team members. Students earn the certificate by completing the Adaptive Leadership core courses.

        The standalone Enabling Leadership Certificate equips leaders with the knowledge and competencies needed to effectively lead multiple teams within an organization. The certificate curriculum is designed to provide students with the knowledge and competencies to lead change; lead people; and build coalitions. Students earn the certificate by completing the Enabling Leadership core and elective courses.

        The standalone Executive Leadership Certificate equips students with the critical capabilities and skills needed to assume top-level leadership positions. The certificate curriculum is designed to provide students with the knowledge and competencies to plan; build vision; drive results; manage crises and establish organizational strategy. Students earn the certificate by completing the Executive Leadership core and elective courses.

        DAVID FOSTER

        Professor, Psychological Sciences Department
        503-838-8805 | fosterd@wou.edu | TODD 327

        LARS SODERLUND

        Department Chair, Associate Professor, Writing, English Studies Department
        503-838-8325 | soderlundl@wou.edu | BELL 309

        STEVEN WINEGAR

        NTT Assistant Professor, Organizational Leadership
        winegars@wou.edu

        PAUL DISNEY

        Adjunct Professor, Business/Economics Division
        503-838-8546 | disneyp@wou.edu | WEST 208

        JESSICA MURFIN

        Partnership Specialist/Adjunct Instructor, VP Academic Affairs/Provost
        503-838-8374 | murfinj@wou.edu | VICK 114

        SARAH SHELDRICK

        Instructor, Communication Studies
        503-838-8152 | sheldricks@wou.edu | BELL 123

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