MA/PhD Organizational Systems

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A Versatile Program for Creative Change

Complexity in organizational systems is escalating rapidly. Many leaders see working within this complexity as their greatest challenge. Organizations must be able to mobilize the energy and commitment of their people as co-collaborators, as stake holders who see themselves as leaders, and as willing participants in transformation. It is enormously difficult to develop innovative, successful systems that respond to the emerging global needs for sustainability while creating the conditions for everyone within an organization to contribute to her or his full potential.

This task requires new knowledge, skills, and values. An MA or PhD in Organizational Systems will help you support and lead the kind of change that transforms organizations and the lives of people who work within them. Our programs offer adult students like you significant flexibility to design a course of study that fits your particular interest within the broad focus of organizational systems design and transformation, organizational learning and development, organizational management, and leadership development.

The MA program combines a program of rigorous academic study with:

  • Practical application of innovative new ideas and approaches
  • A comprehensive understanding of how systems connect and impact each other
  • Exploration of new approaches to organizational management and leadership development

The PhD program is designed for advanced students who have a masters degree and who want to develop further skills to contribute to innovative organizational and social systems change. If you want to combine research and practice, if you want to contribute to theoretical work in the field,  then the PhD in Organizational Systems is for you.  Our program is taught by faculty who are leaders in the field of human systems and can pass on their expertise to you.

Real World Application

Both degrees can help you improve your possibilities for career advancement or improve performance in your current position in management, consulting, human resources, or non-profit leadership, among other fields. These programs will help you develop the skills and confidence you need to manage organizations, work with complexity, and lead in a time of transition, whether in business, education, public service, or social services. 

Blended Learning Model

Our online hybrid MA/PhD programs in the Department of Leadership and Management combine the best of both online learning and in-person classes and seminars. You are able to participate in the program remotely, through interactive online classes, teleconferences, and small group sessions, without relocating or disrupting your schedule. 

Twice a year, you’ll come to Seattle or San Francisco to participate in a five-day Residential Conference, working with instructors and fellow students face-to-face. It’s a highly successful learning model that is specifically suited to people who don’t want to disrupt their careers while getting an education. We pride ourselves in the strong learning community we have developed within our hybrid teaching approach. Students and faculty know each other well and support each other through providing encouragement, academic support, and resources.