Jul 17, 2024  
2024-2025, 2nd ed. General Catalog 
2024-2025, 2nd ed. General Catalog

Organization Development, MA

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs by Department

Applications are not being accepted for this program at this time.

Program Overview

The MA in Organization Development (MAOD) prepares students to create more effective human systems, and to gain the practical skills, conceptual knowledge, and field-tested experience to successfully lead business and community improvement efforts.

This program is designed to accommodate the working professional: mid-career individuals preparing to become leaders and specialists in organizational change, process improvement, and human systems redesign. It is appropriate both for senior leaders seeking to become more effective in their work, and anyone who would benefit from greater personal and professional effectiveness in their life and work.

Program Learning Outcomes

The MA Program in Organization Development provides professional preparation for mid-career individuals interested in understanding and developing more effective and sane organizations. In four semesters, participants explore concepts of leadership and self-development, group dynamics, organizational culture, systemic change. Practical skills, conceptual knowledge, and field-tested experiences successfully leading to organization improvement efforts are at the heart of the program. 

The program focus and format are based on the awareness that our increasingly turbulent business, technology, and socio-economic environments are creating serious challenges for most organizations. To respond appropriately to these challenges, organizations must become more cost-effective, innovative, resourceful, and adaptive. This calls for leaders and specialists who have a new set of skills.


Total Units in Major: 40 

Requirements for the Major 

The MAOD is a cohort-based program consisting of 40 units taken over two academic years. Classes are held on Monday and Wednesday evenings and some Saturdays. Students will participate in seminar discussions, skill-building activities, and extensive field projects under the guidance and supervision of experienced faculty.  Completion of a practicum and the development and completion of a Master’s Culminating Project are also required. 

Students are required to complete their first and second semesters in immediate succession with a GPA of 3.0.

Career Opportunities 

MAOD graduates work as internal OD and HR professionals, or as external OD consultants.  Graduates are enabled to lead their organizations as more effective change agents.

Application to Program 

The criteria for acceptance into the MA Organization Development program are:

  • A four-year BA or BS degree from a regionally-accredited institution, awarded no later than the Spring semester or quarter before enrollment.

  • A grade point average of at least 3.0 (B) over the most recent 60 semester (90 quarter) units of coursework.

  • Experience in organizations: Foundational knowledge of issues and concepts encountered in business and human behavior, as learned from first-hand experience.

  • Academic grounding in both business and psychology, as demonstrated by successfully completed graduate or undergraduate coursework and/or degrees previously awarded. On a case-by-case basis, this requirement may be fulfilled by a directed reading assignment during the summer, enrollment in pre-requisite coursework, or in other ways. Applicants are encouraged to consult with the MAOD directors about what might be appropriate for them.

  • An acceptable level of competence in oral and written communication. This will be demonstrated by: (a) A written statement about the student’s background, relevant work experience, and specific goals to be achieved from the program; (b) Individual and group interviews during the admissions process; and (c) A recent example of the applicant’s academic or professional writing.

Program of Study

Semester III

Satisfactory completion of the first year curriculum including the Spring Project is a prerequisite for continuing in the program. The Culminating Project Proposal must be completed by the end of the third semester.

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs by Department