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MS in ODL Course Descriptions & Sample Offerings

 

Course Descriptions

Course Descriptions: Philadelphia, PA Campus

Course Descriptions: Suwanee, GA Campus

Sample MS in ODL Course Offerings 

(3 credits each)

Fall Winter Spring Summer
ODL 501
Foundations and Systems of Organizational Development**
ODL 505
Team Dynamics*
ODL 501
Foundations and Systems of Organizational Development**
ODL 507
Action Research in ODL: Capstone Project Preparation
ODL 504
Personal and Professional Development
ODL 508
Leadership for Practitioners
ODL 516
Developing Systems Literacy: Organizational Workshop*
ODL 522
Leader as Meeting Designer and Facilitator
ODL 520
Appreciative Inquiry*
ODL 519
Strategic Change: Planning for Organizational Success*
ODL 514
Managing Emotional Systems in the Workplace
ODL 506
Social Factors and Cultural Diversity
ODL 512
Small and Large Sytems Diagnosis
ODL 517
Communication Skills for Leaders*
ODL 518
Ethical Effectiveness
ODL 523
Adventure Leadership
ODL 510
Capstone: Action Research Project
ODL 525
Consulting Skills for Community Engagement
ODL 502
Understanding the Business of Organizations
 
ODL 524
Coaching Skills for Leaders
     

* Turbo Courses: accelerated courses offered on weekends.
** Only pre-requisite course in the MS in ODL program; offered in fall and spring to accommodate matriculation in both semesters.

NOTES:

  • Maximum number of credits per semester: 9
  • Coursework to be completed within 2-3 years.
  • Capstone usually begins between last 1/2 and last 1/3 of program.

Download the College Catalog [1.3 MB PDF]

Master of Science in Organizational Development & Leadership – Philadelphia Campus

*Turbo courses are accelerated courses offered on weekends  
 
ODL 501 – Foundations and Systems of Organizational Development
3 credits
This course is an introduction to the ODL program. It describes the genesis of organization development and how it has evolved over the last 50 years. Students address the importance of using themselves as an instrument of change by creating their own development program that they will use throughout the entire ODL program. The course introduces a consulting model and models of organizational change that can be applied immediately to the student’s work setting.
 
ODL 502 – Understanding the Business of Organizations
3 credits
This course provides needed background to those students who have not experienced the challenge of operating successfully in a business or business unit. The course focuses on how to establish a strategic direction for a business, create the needed organizational structure, develop and lead the operations of the business, monitor financial results and meet the needs of customers, shareholders and employees.
 
ODL 504 – Personal and Professional Development
3 credits
This course is an exploration of development from three viewpoints – personal, interpersonal and organization. Students will examine their own preferences, strengths and motivations as well as the role these play in their relationships. They will assist others in meeting career or personal goals through a mentoring relationship. Topics include feedback, career development, personality preferences, motivation, mentoring, creating a development plan and supporting development in an organization.
 
ODL 505 – Team Dynamics
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
This course provides a broad overview of different types of teams in the workplace. Discusses the necessary elements of successful teamwork and how to develop these elements. Explores various team roles with a particular focus on team leadership. Exposes students to real-time team dynamics and provides opportunities for practicing diagnosis and intervention skills.
 
ODL 506 – Social Factors and Cultural Diversity
3 credits
Culture is the set of shared attitudes, values, goals and practices that characterizes a community. These communities exist around gender, race, color, age, differently-abled, sexual orientation, class, religion, ethnicity and nationality. This course examines differences that characterize people of various communities and what happens when they come together in organizations. The dynamics of social factors and cultural diversity in organizations will be examined through both theoretical literature and pragmatic experience. The course will culminate in the development of strategies for engaging people of various cultures more successfully.
 
ODL 507 – Action Research in ODL: Capstone Project Preparation
3 credits
This course is intended as preparation and support for the final Capstone: Action Research Project. It reinforces action research as a critical tenet of organization development, leadership and change. The learning experiences will focus on enhancing action research practice and data collection skills to facilitate deeper-level inquiry, reflection, critical thinking and assessment into the issues that are impacting organizational performance and results. As leadership practitioners, students will learn how to appropriately align the methodologies and interventions with the identified organizational issue(s)/problem(s). As a definitive outcome, students will deliver a draft of the beginning sections of the Capstone: Action Research Project.
 
ODL 508 – Leadership for Practitioners
3 credits
This course provides an overview of leadership and organization development practitioner models that effectively lead organizations through the change process.  A key focus of the course is to: enhance the reflective practice of the adult learners by integrating organization diagnostic models presented in class; design aligned interventions that enhance individual, relational and organizational health; and coach learners to achieve higher practice performance within their respective organizations.
 
ODL 510 – Capstone: Action Research Project
3 credits
The Capstone course is taken in the last year of the student’s master’s degree work. Working with an advisor, the student demonstrates her/his competence in leading organizational change. Students write an action research paper from an actual or theoretical practice perspective describing how they would engage in organizational diagnosis to clarify the current organizational or business challenge, design an intervention(s) appropriately aligned with the organization diagnosis, and practice use of self as an instrument of change to achieve the desired individual and organizational results.
 
ODL 512 – Small and Large Systems Diagnosis 
3 credits
This course gives students an awareness, understanding and practice of how to diagnose organizational effectiveness and then plan and implement complex change. Diagnostic models will be introduced as instruments used to identify issues impacting the performance and effectiveness of the organization at the individual, group and system levels. As a critical learning process, the students will learn the importance of: use of self as an instrument for organizational diagnosis and change; engaging the whole system as an intentional process to promote system-wide understanding of the issues; assessing system change readiness; and, aligning, designing and implementing appropriate interventions with the organizational diagnosis.  
 
ODL 514 – Managing Emotional Systems in the Workplace
3 credits
This course develops the students’ ability to be more effective in leading change in the workplace by increasing their ability to manage their own emotional reactivity and develop an objective perspective on how emotional systems operate. Students discover their own patterns of reactivity and identify how they can diffuse a toxic situation by changing their own behavior.
 
ODL 515 – Project Management and Strategic Thinking
3 credits
The purpose of this course is to provide an overview of project management and its role in strategic management. It will cover the history of strategy development at the organizational level and apply department-level project management. Additionally, the course will address the implications of strategic project management for team dynamics and organizational development. A text is offered as a guide for project completion. Selected articles will be provided as supplemental reading as well as tools for discussion. Upon successful completion of the course, students will have a basic understanding of strategy and a practical comprehension of project management.
 
ODL 516 – Developing Systems Literacy: Organizational Workshop
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
The organizational workshop focuses on helping people “see” the systemic conditions in which they live and work. It is a day-long group simulation followed by three days of debriefing. This rich learning experience provides an understanding of what is needed to create powerful human systems – systems with outstanding capacity to perform their functions and carry out their mission. This experience and the related frameworks demonstrate what is now understood about systems. They cast a powerful light on organizations. 
 
ODL 517 – Communication Skills for Leaders
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
This course introduces a comprehensive set of communication skills available to leaders including theoretical background, practical applications and on-camera practice sessions delivering critical messages to diverse audiences.  Students will examine core components of messaging and powerful presentations in organizational settings. Students will learn how to effectively communicate from organizational and individual settings, including creating an organizational communication plan.
 
ODL 518 – Ethical Effectiveness
3 credits
This course explores how one can be effective and ethical while operating within an organization. Students will examine the relationships among personal values, organizational systems, action, control, accountability, ethics, power, political savvy, organizational politics, influence and persuasion, trust and credibility. They will explore the role of missions, values, ethics policies, violation reporting systems, current laws and reporting agencies in the promotion of ethical behavior. The connections to issues of diversity, leadership, teams, decision-making, coaching, mentoring and action research will support and emphasize previous learning.
 
ODL 519 – Strategic Change: Planning for Organizational Success
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
Change may be inevitable, but organizational response to change is not. Understanding the nature of change pressures on the organization and developing an effective strategy for organizational change is critical to the long term success of that organization. Key change strategies are reviewed and analyzed in detail, providing a diverse “tool kit” of alternative paths-forward for the leader. Students are asked to apply these new alternatives to their own organizational experience and provide new “thought leadership” to existing challenges of change.
 
ODL 520 – Appreciative Inquiry
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
Appreciative Inquiry (AI) is a method for discovering, understanding and fostering innovation in systems. AI uses incisive questions to gather positive stories and images, leading to the construction of positive possibilities. AI seeks out the very best of “what is” to help ignite the imagination of “what could be.” The aim is to generate knowledge in  such a way as to: surface important values, expand the “realm of the possible,” help the system envision a desired future, and encourage the successful translation of these values into practice and these images into reality. One way the principles and practices of AI will come alive is by students applying the methodology to their own growth and development as leaders of change. 
 
ODL 522 – Leader as Meeting Designer and Facilitator
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
Meetings are where collaboration happens. Well planned, designed and facilitated meetings tap a variety of different perspectives, expand everyone’s understanding of the situation, and increase the likelihood of good, effective decisions that benefit the system—the common good. The purpose of the course is to become familiar with basic concepts, to practice the skills and methods, and to develop the habits of mind essential to designing and facilitating task-focused, collaborative meetings.
 
ODL 523 – Adventure Leadership: Building Teams the Natural Way!
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
In today’s fast-moving global arena, it is vital to develop and sustain an internal atmosphere of trust, personal empowerment, leadership and teamwork. The most powerful and sustainable learning comes from direct, relevant, concrete experiences. Our professional facilitators draw on their time-tested experience in the field of action learning to instruct you in their unique approach to building high performing teams. As you and your team work through the dynamics of this course, you will discover more effective, sustainable solutions to help you build powerful teams and accomplish greater goals.
 
ODL 524 – Coaching Skills for Leaders
3 credits
This course provides an introduction to coaching for Leaders.  We will explore the definition and framework for leadership coaching, learn coaching approaches and provide opportunities to practice, utilizing workplace situations.  We will emphasize learning how to be fully present when coaching and how to focus attention to maximize the coaching interaction.  Course objectives include: Understanding the importance of coaching within an organization development and leadership context and recognizing the benefits of leading from a place of self-awareness.  We will explore a variety of topics including, “managing polarities”, “leadership stance” and “the choice to speak or be silent.”  We will utilize several models and theories including kinesthetic awareness and movement based approaches.  Nonverbal practices help us to both broaden and focus our attention. They foster a sharpened sense of the perspectives available for observation and understanding. They expand our choices for being present by enabling us to discover and deepen our own dimensions of expression.  No movement or dance experience is necessary.
 
ODL 525 – Consulting Skills for Community Engagement
3 credits
This course provides an opportunity for adult learners to engage in a community consulting project wherein they can advance their consulting and intervention skills and enhance PCOM’s presence and commitment to the community. The project will demonstrate the leaders’ ability to: think strategically, manage projects, behave ethically, develop self, and build teams employing the following elements: 1) Demonstrate understanding of how to build core inclusion skills critical for building relationships and effective teams to create an environment where all parties feel respected and able to work up to individual potential; 2) Model organizational principles and values to leverage them for creativity, risk taking, decision making, and enhanced organizational performance; 3) Create action steps to identify and build skills that increase the effectiveness of team interactions and overall organizational performance; and, 4) Analyze organizational culture and see the connection between leadership behavior and the impact on teams and organizational goals.
 
ODL 530 – Special Topics in ODL
3 credits
The field of organization development, change and leadership continues to evolve and grow through a spirit of action research inquiry yielding new discovery by global scholar practitioners.  This course explores emergent theory and practice in the field of organization development, change and leadership and the implications for improving individual and organizational performance and results.  Actual topics will be chosen by the professor(s) and may vary from term to term. 
 
*Turbo courses are accelerated courses offered on weekends  
 
 

Master of Science in Organizational Development & Leadership – Georgia Campus

*Turbo courses are accelerated courses offered on weekends  
 
ODL 501G – Foundations and Systems of Organizational Development
3 credits
This course is an introduction to the ODL program. It describes the genesis of organization development and how it has evolved over the last 50 years. Students address the importance of using themselves as an instrument of change by creating their own development program that they will use throughout the entire ODL program. The course introduces a consulting model and models of organizational change that can be applied immediately to the student’s work setting.
 
 
ODL 504G – Personal and Professional Development
3 credits
This course is an exploration of development from three viewpoints – personal, interpersonal and organization. Students will examine their own preferences, strengths and motivations as well as the role these play in their relationships. They will assist others in meeting career or personal goals through a mentoring relationship. Topics include feedback, career development, personality preferences, motivation, mentoring, creating a development plan and supporting development in an organization.
 
ODL 505G – Team Dynamics
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
This course provides a broad overview of different types of teams in the workplace. Discusses the necessary elements of successful teamwork and how to develop these elements. Explores various team roles with a particular focus on team leadership. Exposes students to real-time team dynamics and provides opportunities for practicing diagnosis and intervention skills.
 
ODL 506G – Social Factors and Cultural Diversity
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
Culture is the set of shared attitudes, values, goals and practices that characterizes a community. These communities exist around gender, race, color, age, differently-abled, sexual orientation, class, religion, ethnicity and nationality. This course examines differences that characterize people of various communities and what happens when they come together in organizations. The dynamics of social factors and cultural diversity in organizations will be examined through both theoretical literature and pragmatic experience. The course will culminate in the development of strategies for engaging people of various cultures more successfully.
 
ODL 508G – Leadership for Practitioners
3 credits
This course provides an overview of leadership and organization development practitioner models that effectively lead organizations through the change process.  A key focus of the course is to: enhance the reflective practice of the adult learners by integrating organization diagnostic models presented in class; design aligned interventions that enhance individual, relational and organizational health; and. coaching learners to achieve higher practice performance within their respective organizations.
 
ODL 510G – Capstone: Action Research Project
3 credits
The Capstone course is taken in the last year of the student’s master’s degree work. Working with the program director as her/his advisor, the student demonstrates her/his competence in leading organizational change. Students write an action research paper from an actual or theoretical practice perspective describing how they would engage in organizational diagnosis to clarify the current organizational or business challenge, design an intervention(s) appropriately aligned with the organization diagnosis, and practice use of self as an instrument of change to achieve the desired individual and organizational results.
 
ODL 512G – Small and Large Systems Diagnosis 
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
This course gives students an awareness, understanding and practice of how to diagnose organizational effectiveness and then plan and implement complex change. Diagnostic models will be introduced as instruments used to identify issues impacting the performance and effectiveness of the organization at the individual, group and system levels. As a critical learning process, the students will learn the importance of: use of self as an instrument for organizational diagnosis and change; engaging the whole system as an intentional process to promote system-wide understanding of the issues; assessing system change readiness; and, aligning, designing and implementing appropriate interventions with the organizational diagnosis.  
 
ODL 514G – Managing Emotional Systems in the Workplace
3 credits
This course develops the student’s ability to be more effective in leading change in the workplace by increasing their ability to manage their own emotional reactivity and develop an objective perspective on how emotional systems operate. Students discover their own patterns of reactivity and identify how they can diffuse a toxic situation by changing their own behavior.
 
ODL 516G – Developing Systems Literacy: Organizational Workshop
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
The organizational workshop focuses on helping people “see” the systemic conditions in which they live and work. It is a day-long group simulation followed by three days of debriefing. This rich learning experience provides an understanding of what is needed to create powerful human systems – systems with outstanding capacity to perform their functions and carry out their mission.  This experience and the related frameworks demonstrate what is now understood about systems. They cast a powerful light on organizations.
 
ODL 517G – Communication Skills for Leaders
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
This course introduces a comprehensive set of communication skills available to leaders including theoretical background, practical applications and on-camera practice sessions delivering critical messages to diverse audiences.  Students will examine core components of messaging and powerful presentations in organizational settings.  Students will learn how to effectively communicate from organizational and individual settings, including creating an organizational communication plan.
 
ODL 519G – Strategic Change: Planning for Organizational Success
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
Change may be inevitable, but organizational response to change is not. Understanding the nature of change pressures on the organization and developing an effective strategy for organizational change is critical to the long term success of that organization. Key change strategies are reviewed and analyzed in detail, providing a diverse “tool kit” of alternative paths-forward for the leader. Students are asked to apply these new alternatives to their own organizational experience and provide new “thought leadership” to existing challenges of change.
 
ODL 520G– Appreciative Inquiry
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
Appreciative Inquiry (AI) is a method for discovering, understanding and fostering innovation in systems. AI uses incisive questions to gather positive stories and images, leading to the construction of positive possibilities. AI seeks out the very best of “what is” to help ignite the imagination of “what could be.” The aim is to generate knowledge in such a way as to: surface important values, expand the “realm of the possible,” help the system envision a desired future, and encourage the successful translation of these values into practice and these images into reality. One way the principles and practices of AI will come alive is by students applying the methodology to their own growth and development as leaders of change. 
 
ODL 522G – Leader as Meeting Designer and Facilitator
3 credits
(Turbo Course*)
Meetings are where collaboration happens. Well planned, designed and facilitated meetings tap a variety of different perspectives, expand everyone’s understanding of the situation, and increase the likelihood of good, effective decisions that benefit the system—the common good. The purpose of the course is to become familiar with basic concepts, to practice the skills and methods, and to develop the habits of mind essential to designing and facilitating task-focused, collaborative meetings.
 
ODL 530G – Special Topics in ODL
3 credits
The field of organization development, change and leadership continues to evolve and grow through a spirit of action research inquiry yielding new discovery by global scholar practitioners.  This course explores emergent theory and practice in the field of organization development, change and leadership and the implications for improving individual and organizational performance and results.  Actual topics will be chosen by the professor(s) and may vary from term to term. 
 
*Turbo courses are accelerated courses offered on weekends.
 

 

Last Updated: 10/30/14