What You'll Learn

Our Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership will prepare you to meet twenty-first century leadership challenges and opportunities. The Organizational Leadership Graduate Program brings together real-world practice with a robust academic approach that is designed to strengthen personal leadership styles and leadership potential.

This program requires thirty-three (33) semester hours taken in fifteen (15) week semesters. You'll take four (4) courses per semester in the first two (2) semesters and three (3) in the third semester.

In addition to completing our admissions application, an essay is also required. Find more about the admissions process and essay.

Career Opportunities 

There will always be a need for accomplished individuals who are prepared to assume leadership roles and direct organizations with knowledge and charisma to produce successful outcomes. Our Organizational Leadership program will showcase your capabilities.

We'll accomplish this by strengthening your leadership capabilities, exploring contemporary models of leading change, decision-making, innovation, organizational behavior, diverse teams, and organizational culture.

The Columbia College Difference

With a dynamic faculty who are leading experts in their fields, the Organizational Leadership program has a proven track record in cultivating strong leaders.

In fact, graduates from our program are currently leading organizations and programs in corporate, nonprofit, education, philanthropy, and small business on local and national levels.

ON-CAMPUS COURSE DATES

2019–2020 M.A. Organizational Leadership Program Schedule

Fall 2019

Aug. 24-25
Sept. 28-29
Oct. 12-13
Nov. 16-17
Dec. 7-8

Spring 2020

Jan. 11-12
Feb. 1-2
Feb. 22-23
Mar. 14-15
Apr. 18-19
Easter is April 12

Summer 2020

May 16-17
June 6-7
June 27-28
July 11-12
July 25-26

2020–2021 M.A. Organizational Leadership Program Schedule

Fall 2020

Aug. 28-30
Sept. 26-27
Oct. 10-11
Nov. 14-15
Dec. 5-6

Spring 2021

Jan. 9-10
Jan. 30-31
Feb. 20-21
Mar. 13-14
Apr. 10-11
Easter is April 4

Summer 2021

May 15-16
June 5-6
June 26-27
July 10-11
July 24-25

2021–2022 M.A. Organizational Leadership Program Schedule

Fall 2021

Aug. 28-29
Sept. 25-26
Oct. 9-10
Nov. 13-14
Dec. 4-5

Spring 2022

TBA

Summer 2022

TBA

Course Requirements

View degree requirements including concentrations and electives for this program of study in our course catalog.

Graduate Course Catalog

Graduate Certificate

Additional Course Options

Certification Program

Our Organizational Leadership Certification is designed for individuals who may not desire a master's degree or who may want credit toward another advanced degree.

You will explore organizational issues related to inclusivity, communication, and ethics and how to effectively lead yourself and others by developing a better understanding of the nature and dynamics of organizational behaviors that impact organizational performance and effectiveness. You will leave this course with skills to embrace differences, engage in crucial conversations, and lead ethically in organizations.

Our certification is offered through a mix of classroom experience and online study. The courses run in three 5-week modules and take fifteen (15) weeks to complete. The program cost is $1500 including materials and may be covered by your organization.

Each of the three modules covers an area of Organizational Leadership and ensures you finish with a deep knowledge of each topic.

Modules

Module One: Leading Inclusive Organizations

Viewing diversity and inclusion as a leadership function is vital for well- functioning organizations and societies. Yet, as we look to the future of our marketplace and workforce, we recognize that huge demographic shifts are happening that impact our business model and require a new way of conducting business and ensuring strategic diversity and intentional inclusion. Understanding the diversity and inclusion essentials to move from good intentions to evidenced-based application and the traits of an intentional and authentic diversity leader is paramount to thriving societies. Managing and valuing human difference is an essential step toward effectively leading inclusive organizations. This module consists of a series of incremental, experiential activities that provide peer training strategies for welcoming diversity and leading in diverse communities/organizations. The module is designed to help leaders understand the dynamics of oppression, unconscious bias by working through a series of personal and small group explorations. Participants will engage in micro-learning activities and self-reflective guided conversations on topics related to the overall value and management of human difference in the workplace.

Module Two: Managing Conflict Through Advanced Communication


When addressing the issue of inadequate communication within the organizational culture, it is imperative that we equip today’s professional with the ability to identify, analyze and resolve interpersonal and intergroup conflict.  Since conflict is inevitable and often times used as the point of origin for positive change, it is also essential that we understand the fundamental difference between conflict management, conflict resolution and conflict transformation and how effective communication must serve as a daily tool for personal and professional success within the field of organizational management.  The Conflict Management Advanced Communication module will assist the student with first, understanding the importance of identifying the presence of any personal communication obstacles by gaining insight into their own conflict management style.  Conflict Management Advanced Communication will provide an elevated understanding of reflective listening, information sharing and the proper use of both professional and personal assertion.  We will also explore the field of kinesics by highlighting the valuable use of non-verbal communication.  Each student, by way of practical exercises and instruction, will be provided the opportunity to develop problem-clarification and problem-solving skills as well as those conflict management skills that will enable them to effectively deal with organizational disputes and differences that involve the presence of intense emotion.

Module Three: Business Law and Ethics

Law, in its simplest form, is used to protect one party from another. For instance, laws protect customers from being exploited by companies. Laws protect companies from other companies. Laws even protect citizens and corporations from the government. However, law is neither perfect nor all encompassing. Sometimes, societal ethics fill the voids that laws leave behind; other times, usually when societal ethics have been systematically violated by a group of the population, we write laws that are designed to require individuals to live up to certain ethical standards. This module will introduce you to the laws and ethical standards that managers must abide by in the course of conducting business. Laws and ethics almost always shape a company’s decision-making process. By the end of this module, you will have a clear understanding of the legal and ethical environment in which businesses operate.