Educational Leadership Doctoral Program
The Organizational Leadership program specialization provides preparation for leaders in education-related organizations and non-profits not classified as schools, colleges, or universities (e.g., local community agencies, human resource and development officers, or consultants and trainers). Candidates would qualify for a variety of roles within organizations, policy-makers in federal and private agencies, foundation administrators, and employees of state boards of education, Ministries of Education employees, nurse executives, or directors of professional development. The coursework and learning experiences in this track apply leadership with a strong emphasis on field experiences within these organizations.
Students in the Organizational Leadership program specialization will work with faculty advisors to select program electives that reflect this strand, as well as student goals and interests. The list of WKU courses described below provides a starting point for program development, but is not exhaustive. Courses described under other WKU doctoral program specializations may serve as appropriate electives.
WKU courses specifically designed for this specialization:
BA 751 Strategic Leadership: This course is designed to improve understanding of strategic planning, implementation, and performance measurements in public and nonprofit organizations. Although they have been adopted from a business sector model, strategic planning and management have become the standard practice of public and nonprofit organizations as a critical tool to reinvent, restructure, and transform the traditional ways of doing business. Students will explore the benefits and limitations of strategic planning and management in the context of public and nonprofit organizations, the role of organizational leaders as a key player in strategic management, managing stakeholders, assessing the organizational capacities as well as the external environments, and identifying the adopting strategies.
BA 752 Leadership Innovation, Creativity, and Change: This course is geared towards developing a better understanding of the challenges, techniques, burden, and successes associated with initiating and implementing major changes within organizations. Therefore, the objective of the course is to prepare leaders to meet the challenges of organizational change. The theoretical concepts and practice of leading change in organizational, community, political and social action/social movement contexts are examined. This course explicitly links theoretical concepts, models and processes of leadership and change with the intended purpose of change and its resulting outcomes.
BA 753 Current Topics in Organizational Behavior: This seminar course extends the material introduced in Leadership 710. Students will examine the many principles of human behavior that effective leaders use when leading individuals and groups in organizations. Current research relating to individual differences in abilities and attitudes, attribution, motivation, group dynamics, power and politics, conflict resolution, organizational culture, and organizational structure and design will be examined.
BA 754 Budgeting and Financial Decision Making: This course is designed to improve understanding of strategic planning, implementation, and performance measurements in public and nonprofit organizations. Although they been adopted from a business sector model, strategic planning and management have become the standard practice of public and nonprofit organizations as a critical tool to reinvent, restructure, and transform the traditional ways of doing business. Students will explore the benefits and limitations of strategic planning and management in the context of public and nonprofit organizations, the role of organizational leaders as a key player in strategic management, managing stakeholders, assessing the organizational capacities as well as the external environments, and identifying the adopting strategies.
COMM 721 Organizational Communication for Leaders: Examines the communication perspectives, theories, and principles necessary to lead organizations. Considers ways to assess and improve communication processes in various organizational situations.
COMM 731 Global Communication for Leaders: This seminar focuses on the impact of national or ethnic culture on leadership communication behaviors when leading in multi-national and/or multi-ethnic organizations.
COMM 741 Leadership and Social Trends: Examines the literature on current economic, political, technological and/or social trends as they relate to leadership.
COMM 751 Strategic Communication: Considers the way organizational leaders use communication to influence opinions and behavior of various constituencies.
PSY 770 Legal Issues for Organizational Leaders: Survey of Equal Employment Opportunity laws and other employment laws and their implications for organizational leaders.
PSY 771 Human Resources Management and Personnel Decisions for Leaders: Survey of leadership roles in managing human resources in organizations to achieve both individual and organizational objectives and ensure effective work practices in dynamic work environments. Topics include selection and placement of employees, evaluation of employee performance, compensation and benefits, and effective utilization of human capital.
PSY 773 Employee Training and Development Issues for Leaders: Review of training needs assessment, issues in the design and development of training programs, evaluation of training programs, methods and delivery systems for training, managing the training function and special issues in training.
General WKU graduate courses that may serve as additional electives:
EDFN 601 Applied Statistics and Design: Parametric and non-parametric statistical techniques applied to experimental and quasi-experimental research designs in education.
EDFN 603 Qualitative Research in Education: Qualitative research for graduate students within the educational setting. Includes the foundational theory of qualitative research, methodological designs and techniques of data collecting, analysis, and reporting.
EDFN 703 Field Methods for Qualitative Research: Developing and conducting qualitative research.
EDU 695 Advanced Topics in Education: Readings or special projects in education.
LME 737 Leadership in Educational Technology: Emphasis on educational technology leadership, professional development, and instructional management. Topics include equitable access, technology plans, meeting needs of diverse learners with technology, and technology integration strategies.
CNS 710 Leadership and Stress Management: Examines the meaning of stress, its effects on the individual and the organization, how it manifests itself, and strategies for its management. Explores the organizational demands that contribute to stress and addresses how leaders in organizations can help provide preventative stress management.
Additional graduate courses in various WKU colleges and departments that may be appropriate for this strand are described in the WKU Graduate Catalog.
Back to: General Overview
Note: documents in Portable Document Format (PDF) require Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 or higher to view,
download Adobe Acrobat Reader.
Note: documents in Excel format (XLS) require Microsoft Viewer,
Note: documents in Word format (DOC) require Microsoft Viewer,
Note: documents in Powerpoint format (PPT) require Microsoft Viewer,
Note: documents in Quicktime Movie format [MOV] require Apple Quicktime,