Master of Arts in Leadership

The Master of Arts in Leadership program focuses on equipping individuals with the leadership skills they need for their lives, areas of community service, and chosen work environments. The program offers a strong emphasis on emerging leaders looking for preparation for leadership in current and future endeavors and/or those interested in learning how to create leadership development programs. The program is interdisciplinary in scope, emphasizing foundational preparation through core courses and a culminating project giving evidence of the student’s development in the field.

The program is designed for individuals in current leadership positions, those who aspire to be good leaders, and for students eager to engage in more in-depth study of leadership. This will require the ability to embrace one’s leadership identity, capitalize on strengths, and increase emotional intelligence. Such leaders also have a commitment and ability to develop others to make important contributions.

Mission Statement

The Master of Arts in Leadership program at Azusa Pacific University offers current and emerging leaders a graduate degree by means of theoretically grounded and practically applied courses. The objective is to award degrees to adult participants who develop not only academically, but also in accordance with a set of comprehensive leadership competencies.

Competencies

The program aims to help students develop not only academically, but also in accordance with a set of comprehensive leadership competencies. These competencies are organized into three meta-competencies and five core program competencies.

The three meta-competencies provide a framing through which all knowledge, skill acquisition, and personal development will be engaged. In other words, the meta-competencies help quantify the core essence of learning necessary for students to become holistic leaders. These meta-competencies affect behavior and influence what leaders do. In this sense, the meta-competencies improve the assimilation and use of the core program competencies.

Program Meta-Competencies

Spirituality and Faith
Shows basic knowledge of the conceptual foundations that characterize those who lead with integrity and spirituality.

  1. Graduates can articulate a personal worldview and philosophy of leadership.
  2. Graduates can identify and explain a Christian perspective of truth and life.
  3. Graduates demonstrate an ability to recognize complex spiritual, religious, and ethical issues in various leadership contexts.
  4. Graduates detect faith and ethical systems of others and can describe their own.
  5. Graduates express their own sense of vocation.
  6. Graduates give attention to their own personal growth and holistic health.
  7. Graduates embody an approach to personal authority that is based on servanthood and transformation, not control or manipulation.

Emotional and Social Intelligence
Shows basic knowledge of the set of traits that allows people to interact with each other effectively and an awareness of the social and cultural contexts and dynamics that influence human flourishing.

  1. Graduates demonstrate self-awareness through an ability to analyze emotions and their effects, access and embrace personal limitations, and present self-confidence.
  2. Graduates demonstrate self-regulation through management of emotions and impulses, maintaining standards of honesty and integrity, and handling multiple demands, shifting priorities, and rapid change.
  3. Graduates demonstrate self-motivation through results-oriented goal setting and a focus on performance improvement.
  4. Graduates pose questions and reflect on fundamental issues in ways that help them and others interpret the world and understand complex human interactions.
  5. Graduates demonstrate the ability to be credible, show trust in and respect for other people, and inspire trust.
  6. Graduates demonstrate an ability to analyze and respond to complex social and cultural systems.

Academic Inquiry
Demonstrates the ability to conduct graduate-level academic research and writing.

  1. Graduates are proficient academic and organizational evaluators and analysts.
  2. Graduates read, comprehend, and evaluate relevant research in the social sciences.
  3. Graduates present evaluation and analyses clearly.
  4. Graduates are familiar with the APA writing style.
  5. Graduates are conversant with basic quantitative and qualitative methodologies.
  6. Graduates communicate competently both formally and informally, including orally, written, technologically, and interpersonally.

Program Core Competencies 

Strategic Mobilizer
Demonstrates the ability to strategically organize oneself, others, and the essential resources toward the achievement of a clearly articulated plan.

  1. Graduates develop, communicate, and align others around a vision and strategy for the future.
  2. Graduates design functional strategies for carrying out vision and mission.
  3. Graduates allow others to take the lead in achieving strategic vision by delegating project responsibilities in accordance with individual strengths, passions, and experience.
  4. Graduates can be trusted with resources—both human and financial—stewarding them with care and effectiveness.
  5. Graduates use technology appropriately for communicating formally and informally with others.
  6. Graduates speak honestly and persuasively with individuals, small groups, and large groups.
  7. Graduates create a work environment that encourages creative thinking and innovation.
  8. Graduates employ systems thinking to analyze complex systems and mobilize resources that address current and future challenges with strategic solutions.

Inspiring Developer
Demonstrates skill for effectively developing people and ideas in ways that are authentic and appropriate.

  1. Graduates demonstrate a commitment to be mentored and to serve as mentors who are committed to developing others.
  2. Graduates design meaningful learning experiences and environments, creating empowering conversations and offering meaningful input to foster mutual learning and action-oriented outcomes.
  3. Graduates network people, groups, and ideas in meaningful alliances.
  4. Graduates work capably with theories and practice of adult education.
  5. Graduates develop people and leaders at every level and provide performance feedback, coaching, and career development to teams and individuals to maximize growth and success.
  6. Graduates reconceptualize mistakes as learning events and effectively handle disagreements and conflicts by focusing on solving problems through respectful discourse, consensus building, appreciation of diverse perspectives, and interventional strategies.

Change Catalyst
Demonstrates the capacity to help individuals and groups assess personal and organizational dynamics, solve problems, and pursue positive change.

  1. Graduates are growing and changing people who remain passionate about ongoing personal transformation and lifelong learning.
  2. Graduates recognize when there is a need for change and effectively manage both stable and changing areas.
  3. Graduates communicate effectively, with frequency and candor, during times of change.
  4. Graduates demonstrate patience and adaptability when dealing with ambiguous situations.
  5. Graduates develop resources and strategies so that others might more effectively embrace change.
  6. Graduates seek and identify trends, challenges, and cultural dynamics in order to develop opportunities to initiate intelligent risks and actions that will foster innovative approaches.

Principled Decision Maker
Demonstrates proficiency in identifying and applying ethical principles to decision making through a balanced approach involving both systemic and intuitive analysis. 

  1. Graduates can align personal values with organizational values, embodying high standards and ethical acumen.
  2. Graduates engage others in the identification and solving of problems, effectively using collaboration as a style of managing contention.
  3. Graduates model and maintain values of candor, openness, and inclusiveness despite internal and external pressures.
  4. Graduates demonstrate the ability to act in decisive, urgent, and committed ways to achieve results.
  5. Graduates create shared responsibility among team members by involving them in critical deliberations and decisions as appropriate.
  6. Graduates take ownership for their areas of responsibility, effectively organize and prioritize tasks, and use resources ethically.
  7. Graduates use formal tools to hold others accountable when situations warrant.

Responsible Influencer
Demonstrates proficiency in empowering others through virtue-centered engagement with people and systems.

  1. Graduates analyze the social, political, religious, economic, and cultural factors that affect individuals and organizations.
  2. Graduates advance equity by fostering environments that are inclusive, yet differentiated, to meet the needs of diverse constituents.
  3. Graduates are able to identify and analyze power dynamics and structural influences within organizational systems.
  4. Graduates collaborate with and empower other stakeholders to advocate justice, pursue prudence, and lead with accountability.
  5. Graduates engage in relevant professional networks and establish and maintain rapport with key constituents. 
  6. Graduates take action to preserve and promote human rights, human dignity, and human flourishing.

Requirements

Students pursuing the M.A. in Leadership must complete 36 units of coursework as well as a final capstone colloquium project. Up to 6 units of appropriate coursework may be transferred into the program by petition.

Core Courses
LDRS 501Foundations of Leadership Theory3
LDRS 502Cornerstones of Christian Leadership3
LDRS 503Organizational Behavior3
LDRS 510Creative and Collaborative Leadership3
LDRS 516Leadership Development and Practice3
LDRS 533Systems and Strategic Planning for Leaders3
LDRS 534Leader as an Agent of Change3
LDRS 561Group and Conflict Issues in Leadership3
LDRS 571Leadership for a Learning Environment3
LDRS 592Research Methods and Design3
LDRS 593Applied Research3
LDRS 595Capstone Project in Leadership3
Capstone Colloquium 1
Total Units36

Program Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this program shall be able to:
  1. Strategic Mobilizer: Demonstrates the ability to strategically organize oneself, others, and the essential resources toward the achievement of a clearly articulated plan.
  2. Inspiring Developer: Demonstrates skill for effectively developing people and ideas in ways that are authentic and appropriate.
  3. Change Catalyst: Demonstrates the capacity to help individuals and groups assess personal and organizational dynamics, solve problems, and pursue positive change.
  4. Principled Decision Maker: Demonstrates proficiency in identifying and applying ethical principles to decision making through a balanced approach involving both systemic and intuitive analysis.
  5. Responsible Influencer: Demonstrates proficiency in empowering others through virtue-centered engagement with people and systems.