MA in Leadership Studies (MLS)
The interdisciplinary program is designed to stress the knowledge, skills, values, and behaviors essential to successful organizational leaders. The curriculum components are designed to produce professionals capable of intelligent and creative analysis, communication, and action in leadership functions. Some flexibility in the curriculum is permitted to meet the diverse educational needs of our diverse array of students who are often at different points of time in their careers.
- Requires a total of 33 credit hours (11 courses) to complete the program. .
- We are a non-thesis program. We offer a rigorous capstone course focused on ethical leadership to cater to the needs of our largely professional student base.
- We offer both online and hybrid (face to face). Students can take their courses entirely online, or in class, or do a combination of both.
- ALL STUDENTS are required to take at least 7 required courses. Transfer credit limit is 4 courses (12 hours).
- The average length of the program is 2 years. It is possible to complete the program in 1.5 years – this will depend on the individual degree plan a student builds with the guidance of the program advisor.
- Students who transfer 4 courses (12 hours) can complete the program in 1 year.
- MLS 5300: Contemporary Concepts of Leadership
A review of fundamental principles and concepts of leadership, with analysis of classic literature and application to current issues.
- MLS 5303: Applied Research Methods
Focuses on methods of research used in leadership processes such as: interviewing, surveys, observational, and ethnographic research. Also discusses basic methodologies in research. E.g. developing research questions, determining research variables, and assessing feasibility of various research methods.
- MLS 5315: Organizational Theory and Behavior
Introduction to the major theories in organizational theory and administrative behavior and their uses in diagnosing organizational problems. Addresses key organizational functions and emphasizes organization-environment relationships.
- MLS 5321: Leadership in Complex Organizations
Studies leadership in complex operating environments, such as those with multiple contexts, constituencies, and functions. Topics will include but not be limited to: diversity and leadership, conflict management, leadership and changes in organizational structures, and leadership in times of downsizing.
- MLS 5326: Leadership of Organizational Change
Studies leadership behaviors that initiate, implement and sustain transformational organizational change as well as incremental innovations. Focus is on follower/audience analysis, context analysis, strategy development and implementation.
- MLS 5331: Leadership Communications
Studies communication media/channels used in the process of exercising leadership, depending on audiences and contexts. Students develop and analyze messages used in the processes of leadership, including but not limited to motivation, inspiration, and decision-making.
- MLS 5340: Team Based Leadership (Optional – can be taken as a concentration course)
Studies leadership within team structures, and the exercise of leadership by teams, rather than individuals. Includes foci on collaborative leadership, connective leadership, cooperative leadership, and the effects of group dynamics on processes of leadership, such as decision-making.
The final program requirement is the completion of the capstone course:
- MLS 5351: Ethics and Leadership Capstone
Requires students to study a leader or leadership situation in which the use, or absence, of ethical behaviors was critical and paramount. Course will include readings in ethics, in addition to materials used in previous courses, as preparation for completion of the capstone project.
Students who do not transfer any credit hours may choose from the 4 concentrations offered:
the student’s GPA. If you were accepted into the program conditionally, it is not likely that you would be approved to enroll for an advanced concentration course. For more information on conditional acceptance, please contact the program to learn more about our admissions policies.
degree plan developed with the MLS program advisor.
what courses are offered and available in the particular semester the individual student decides to take their concentration courses.
While every degree plan is developed in consultation with the program advisor based on a student's individual needs and unique situations, below is a general degree plan to help students get an approximate idea of the MLS program structure.Required Credits for Graduation: 33 credit hours (1 course = 3 hours)
Required Minimum Grade Point Average (GPA): 3.0
MLS Required Courses
Hybrid (face to face classes)
Required Courses: 21 credit hours
|MLS 5300||Contemporary Concepts of Leadership|
|MLS 5303||Applied Research Methods|
|MLS 5315||Organizational Theory and Behavior|
|MLS 5321||Leadership in Complex Organizations|
|MLS 5326||Leadership of Organizational Change|
|MLS 5331||Leadership Communications|
|MLS 5340||Team Based Leadership
(Required for USASMA and ADACCC students)
|MLS 5351||Capstone - Ethics and Leadership|
Note: The Capstone course is an accumulation and demonstration of everything learned during the students' entire progress through the program. Thus, it should be the last course taken by students before graduation except for in special cases.
Credit Transfer:Insert the number of credits transferred.
Note: As per Graduate School policy, no more than 12 credit hours can be transferred towards this degree.
Elected Concentration: Insert one of the concentrations here
Concentration Courses: 12 credit hours
ALL REQUIREMENTS MUST BE COMPLETED WITHIN 6 YEARS OF GRADUATION DEGREE AWARD
Program Advisor Signature and Date Student Signature and Date