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What Are the Courses in a Master's Degree in Organizational Leadership?

Organizational leadership master's degree programs can help you develop the skills to effectively lead an organization. In this article, we'll explore the core courses of a master's degree in organizational leadership, taking time to explain the general purpose of each class.

Overview of Organizational Leadership Master's Degree

Organizational leadership studies can result in an M.A. (Master of Arts), M.S. (Master of Science), or M.Ed. (Master of Education) degree, among others, but this article will focus on the curriculum of a Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership. In general, you can expect your core studies to consist of around 12 courses, in the following three broad categories: leadership, organizational, and other general courses.

Important Facts About a Master's Degree in Organizational Leadership

Concentrations Higher education student services, not-for-profit management, organizational and leadership coaching, organizational management, training and development
Online Availability Available both online and on campus
Continuing Education Doctoral degree and graduate certificate available
Possible Careers Chief executive officer, chief financial officer, chief information officer, operations manager, corporate recruiter, strategy consultant, business consultant, heath services manager, program director
Median Salary (2018) $189,600 (for chief executives); $100,930 (for general and operations managers)
Job Outlook (2016-2026) -4% decline (for chief executives); 9% growth (for general and operations managers)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Leadership Courses

  • Organizational Leadership examines leadership research and models that can help students learn how to work productively in organizations.
  • Leadership Principles attempts to construct a general leadership paradigm, often with a specific aim toward relating leadership theory to the real world.
  • Leadership and Diversity courses look at leadership through the lens of different cultures, races or genders, helping students understand how to manage and resolve conflicts.

Organizational Topics Courses

  • Organizational Research studies the methods used to research organizational dynamics, in both quantitative and qualitative ways.
  • Organizational Theory introduces students to the study of how organizations work, paying attention to the inherently chaotic nature of human behavior.
  • Organizational Analysis teaches students how to improve the effectiveness of organizations by understanding how they work.

Other Courses

  • Organizational and Leadership Ethics explores the issues students will have as leaders of companies and other groups. Master's degree candidates learn to fulfill their responsibilities to the people in their organizations and to society as a whole.
  • Organizational Communication looks at communication within organizations as well as studying the best ways to overcome barriers in communications and present ideas as effectively as possible.
  • Scholarly Writing is a foundational course that teaches students how to write properly at an advanced level.