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Course Descriptions

Core Courses (21 hours) 

ILD 801        Leadership Styles and Reflective Practice (3) 

This course introduces the student to the knowledge, skills, and values underlying reflective practice. Various theories and leadership styles will be examined from a historical and contemporary point of view.  Students will identify leaders and leadership situations that are examples of the various theories and styles. Students will apply leadership theories using their own institution/organization as a laboratory. Special attention will be directed to leaders engaging in reflective practice. Through readings and exercises focusing on leadership styles and reflective practice, the student will develop a greater knowledge of self and will begin the deliberate, life-long practice of reflective thinking. Students will develop a clear personal philosophy of their leadership style as the culminating activity for the class.  

ILD 802        Leadership and Applied Ethics (3)

Consistent with the ideal that leadership is not just an act but a way of being, this course will explore the ethical foundations that inform the leader’s personal and professional practices. Students will examine ethical theories and concepts applied to leadership challenges in real world situations. Emphasis will be placed on understanding ethical leadership for social and organizational change, the leader’s role as a moral agent, as well as the organization’s role as a moral agent in society. 

ILD 807 Financial and Legal Leadership Issues (3)

This course has been designed to focus on the leadership skills related to the management of the financial and legal issues in organizations/institutions. Specific attention will be given to theories of economic and finance, financial planning, sources and uses of financial support, budgeting, the American legal system, institutions as legal entities, authority for governance and administration, employee rights and responsibilities, client/student rights and responsibilities and institutional and personal liability applicable to business, education and health organizations and institutions. Graduate students are expected to have a basic understanding of business, education or health organizations with practical experience and professional preparations and planning careers for leadership in these types of organizations/institutions.

ILD 803        Strategic Planning and Management (3)

This course integrates systems theory and problem solving with strategic thinking. Students will engage in deep exploration of all aspects of strategic planning processes, including the following:

  • Development of an organization's mission and vision statements within social, political, and economic environments
  • Creation of a strategic plan through trend analysis, systems analysis, and environmental analysis
  • Discernment of goals, objectives, and performance outcome measures
  • Execution and monitoring of strategic management

Principles related to how organizations and institutions operate in the context of a system guided by a strategic plan will be studied and applied to respective institutions and organizations.     

ILD 804        Organizational Theory and Behavior (3)

This course explores the most important theories and models that explain the behaviors and attitudes of individuals (micro OB), teams and other groups (meso OB), as well as the "behavior" of entire organizations (macro OB).  The course covers critical topics from organization theory and behavior, including such things as the relationship of environment, size, and technology to organization structure, organization culture, motivating followers, recognizing individual differences, decision making, creativity, leading groups and teams, exercising power, managing conflict, and job satisfaction and other work attitudes.

ILD 805        Administrative and Policy Leadership Issues (3)

This course examines the research on administrative issues and political power in decision making and the role of leaders in policy development. The course will address social, political, and economic influences on administration and policy development and the relationship between leadership and governance.  Learners will review and critique public policy analytic frameworks and their application to contemporary policy issues. Administrative and policy leadership issues will also be applied to community relations and governing boards.

ILD 806        Change Theory and Practice (3)

Confronted with profound, rapid, and dynamic changes in the nature of their work and organizations, individuals are entering into a “permanence of change.” As such, leaders are required to develop their understanding of and skills necessary to lead and/or facilitate complex organizational change.  This course is designed to help individuals explore organizational change theory, analyze research on the multiple perspectives on and elements of change, understand how change can promote a learning organization, and practically apply what they have learned regarding organizational structure and decision making within and across organizations.

Leadership Seminars (6 hours)

ILD 808        Leadership Seminar I: Orientation and Formulation of Learning Community (2)

Students will be required to be present on campus for a Learning Community meeting that will provide an opportunity for relationships and community building among students and faculty. The relationships established during this residency will be important as students progress through their program. The philosophy and mission of the interdisciplinary Ed.D. in Leadership will be presented. The learning outcomes and expectations will be presented along with a review of the program requirements. A step by step explanation of how students will move through the program will assist students in understanding the requirements and navigating the program successfully. Attention will be given to distance education via online classes and students will learn how classes are formatted and delivered.

Activities will be planned to involve faculty in the program both professionally and also socially. Students will be assigned a provisional advisor.  Attempts will be made to secure the best match between student and advisor.  Upon acceptance into the program, students will complete the Gallup StrengthsQuest Inventory and bring their leadership profile with them for advising purposes. Students and advisors working together will develop an Individualized Professional Development Plan (IPDP) where professional and personal goals are identified and plans are made to assist the student in meeting each of the goals/objectives. A permanent advisor (either through re-affirmation of the provisional advisor or assignment of a new advisor) will be determined once the student has completed their IPDP. A resource website will be developed that will take students step by step through the program, from admission to graduation. It will be used for orientation purposes as well as outlining steps in the program.  

During the required Learning Community meeting, each student’s Supervisory Committee will jointly be identified with his/her advisor, a tentative program of studies will be jointly developed, and if possible a Supervisory Committee Meeting will be held to approve the program.

ILD 809e        Leadership Seminar II: Mid-Program Reflection and Dissertation Design (2)

The purpose of this course is to understand the components of forming a dissertation committee, prepare for the dissertation proposal process, ensure completion of CITI training, and recognize important ethical considerations for dissertation in practice design.

ILD 810        Leadership Seminar III: Portfolio Review and Dissertation Defense (2)

This seminar will be the concluding requirement of the program and will be held on campus. Students will present their portfolio to their supervisory committee, present their reflective journal, review a final self analysis of the Gallup StrengthsQuest, and share future professional and career goals/plans.  At this time the oral defense of the dissertation will be conducted. Students will be given an opportunity to provide feedback to the committee about the Ed.D. program and share any suggestions on how to improve the program.

Interdisciplinary Practicum

ILD 811       Interdisciplinary Practicum (3)

Students will arrange a practical field experience to further develop their skills and abilities in a professional or organizational setting where they will be engaged in interdisciplinary leadership in action. This could include working with another person on a major project or exploring an area outside the student's own field (business, education, or health). The student will gain an understanding of researching internal or external elements related to personnel, policy, politics, economics, finance, governing relationships, elements of change, or other influences that challenge leadership, and then apply or recommend an innovative solution. The practicum experience will be arranged working with the practicum advisor. 

Electives (15 hours)

ILD 820        Jesuit and Ignatian Traditions (3) 

Jesuit education in the 21st century stems from philosophical values rooted in the humanistic tradition of Renaissance culture. This course will explore the historical backdrop that sparked the formation of organized Jesuit schools, including focus on a unique style of social leadership that has sustained the Ignatian tradition for over four hundred and fifty years. To enhance learning, students will engage in critical self-reflection on personal values, attitudes, ethics, and moral development in relation to societal expectations and norms.          

ILD 821        Quality and Accountability Issues (3)

This course introduces students to concepts of program quality and assessment that can be applied to organizations and encourages students to engage in becoming familiar with issues related to the assessment of quality.  Students are encouraged to apply the concepts they learn about quality, accreditation, accountability and standards to their organization and experiences. Attention will be given to strategic alignment and the role of values and propositions along with a focus on the utilization of several systems for assessing quality with specific focus on the “Balanced Scorecard” and the Baldridge National Quality Program and the criteria for performance excellence.

ILD 822        Human Resources Leadership and Management (3) 

This course examines the knowledge base of Human Resources Development (HRD) and the organizational setting in which HRD occurs. Topics include the design and development of education and training programs, how change occurs in organizations; how career development can optimize the match between individual and organizational goals and needs; how to improve the performance in organizations by analyzing performance opportunities;  and designing employee training to address these opportunities. Students apply knowledge of personnel/Human Resource principles, practices, policies, and procedures to the identification and solution of case problems.

ILD 823        Leadership in a Global Society (3)

In the ever-shrinking world of the new millennium, leaders are frequently challenged to work with and develop international teams. Building on the Ignatian leadership paradigm, this course will facilitate the formation of leadership skills for a rapidly changing global landscape. International market forces and technological changes that influence the global workplace will be described. Students will also have the opportunity to develop and practice communication skills necessary for leaders in a diverse, multi-cultural workplace.    

ILD 825      Women and Leadership (3)

This elective course will explore women's leadership, leadership styles, and contributions to social change from an interdisciplinary perspective.  Students will examine the barriers and challenges facing women in different types of careers and their possible causes.  Readings will include books and scientific articles on the structural, cultural, pyschological, institutional, organizational, political, personal, economical, and financial issues facing women leaders today.  Students will reflect on their own experiences and how gender influences their leadership style and perceptions of the leadership. 

ILD 826       Applied Development Analysis (3)  

This course is focused on understanding theories of development, and examines a variety of international development projects using the Institutional Analysis and Development (IAD) framework.  The IAD framework, developed by Nobel laureate Elinor Ostrom, is a useful tool for thinking about how individuals and institutions interact within the context of projects. Despite our conceptions about development, it is clear that this framework can be used in any context where leaders wish to uncover how a large project involving many people and organizations works, and what intentional and unintended consequences may result.  This course will guide the student through the identification of problems, and will subsequently apply the IAD framework to develop a potential development project.  

ILD 831         Technology and Leadership (3)

This course introduces students to an overview of the impact of technology in general and the internet in particular on organizations. Through this examination, students will explore how leadership is or should adapt to a changing world. In the past decade, the internet has become a part of life and work. The internet has moved from a virtual space where people want to find information to an active place that is open, social, and participatory. This shift has profound implications on leadership.

ILD 832          Planning Programs for Adult Learners (3)

This course is designed for novice or experienced leaders who plan or manage educational and training programs for adults in a variety of settings.  It is for students who have or aspire to leadership positions in adult education, training, staff development, human resources development, or performance improvement with staff. 

ILD 833          Writing for Scholarly Publication (3)

This course prepares students to write manuscripts for scholarly publication.  Course topics include: writing as conversation; topic identification; conversants; exemplars; the components of a scholarly paper; presentations; and editing.  

ILD 834         Catholic Social Teaching (3)

In the contemporary era, the promotion of justice has become a staple thread of identity in Jesuit education.  This course will (1) provide an overview of the conceptual background to this commitment, as contained in official Catholic Social Teaching on justice, (2) highlight the early history and theory of Jesuit education, and (3) consider a particular perspective on Ignatian pedagogy for justice in higher education.  In dialogue with one another and the instructor, students will engage these perspectives in light of their own faith perspectives, understandings of justice, and leadership responsibilities and goals.   

ILD 835         Sustainability Leadership (3)

This course explores the interdisciplinary, interdependent and integrated complexity of the sustainability movement.  Because planet sustainability is a global issue, a systems perspective is appropriate for the examination of the relationships between local, regional, national and international solutions.  A three-pillared concept-environment, economics, and social equity-serves as a foundation to study the history of the movement, its key leaders and thinkers, innovative environmental policy, strategies for change that include clear goals and measurable indicators, stewardship and conservation measures, and social responsibility principles.   

ILD 836 Leadership, Public Relations, and Stakeholder Engagement (3)

This elective course will examine leadership, public relations, and stakeholder engagement from an interdisciplinary perspective.  Students will explore the notion of transparent communication, and the impact this communication has on creating an open and ethical organization.  Students will identify the opportunities and challenges of stakeholder engagement with internal, external and global audiences, through the news media, social media, crisis communication, and corporate social responsibility.  Readings will come from books, scholarly articles, and current events to offer students practical as well as theoretical perspectives of public relations and stakeholder engagement.  Students will reflect on their own experiences concerning leadership and stakeholder engagement in their own work environment. 

ILD 837:  Servant Leadership

This course is designed for those who wish to integrate servant leadership in order to define their leadership style.  Leadership is not about serving one's personal need and interest; rather, true leadership is about "men and women in service of others," a primary Jesuit educational objective.  First, this course will focus on the theory of Servant Leadership, from ancient text to current research.  Following theoretical framework will be practice of Servant Leadership in those whose core principles and first responsibilities are service to relationships and others.  Finally, the learner will engage in the activity of discernment in Servant Leadership as a means toward achieving  a definable personal mission statement as a member of the ILD community.

ILD 838 Toxic Leadership

 This interdisciplinary course investigates and analyzes the impact of toxic leadership on followers, the organization and organizational values and ethics.  Employing a three pronged model that examines the interplay of 1) leaders, 2) followers, and 3) context, students will examine the environmental drivers that contribute to a dysfunctional and harmful leadership style.  The course will also evaluate possible mitigation strategies for reframing the detrimental behavior and reinforce an ethical foundation.  Readings will come from books and both current and historical events and will employ self-reflection and a case study approach to apply both theoretical and practical knowledge. 

ILD 839 Military Leadership

The course provides a multi-faceted view into military leadership to provide a better understanding of how decisions are made, particularly under duress, in hostile environments, and under situations of life and death.  Unique circumstances and training provided to military leaders has resulted in examples throughout history of extraordinary leaders.  Understanding how elements such as history, communication, Eastern and Western cultures, decision sciences, and a survey of exemplary military traits are synthesized into a strong military leader, will provide profound insight to the student and a unique confidence to apply this insight in his/her everyday leadership life.

ILD 840 Followership

This course examines the concept of followership and its role within an organization.  Topics include redefining followership, leadership-followership paradigm, effective followership, and the challenges of followership.  Students apply knowledge of followership principles and practices by analyzing professional followership experiences. 

ILD 850 Quantitative Research Design and Methods (3)

The course will examine theory and practice in the design, conduct, analysis and interpretation of experimental, quasi-experimental, and descriptive methods for research and evaluation. Basic core concepts of statistics such as the computation and interpretation of measures of central position, variability and correlation; introduction to sampling, probability, and tests of significance will be reviewed. Methods of assessing credibility of published research will also be discussed.

ILD 851 Qualitative Research Design and Methods (3)

The course will examine theory and practice in the design, conduct, analysis and interpretation of the broad approaches to qualitative research methods used for social and behavioral research. Methods of application of concepts through both critique and planning one’s own research will be basic tenets in the course.

ILD 852 Mixed Methods Research (3)

This approach to research has an interdisciplinary appeal because increasingly diverse worldviews and complex issues and problems require a blending of qualitative and quantitative data. Hence, mixed method designs provide researchers, across research disciplines, with a rigorous approach addressing multi-dimensional research questions. The purpose of this class is to provide an introduction to mixed methods research, to discuss the steps involved in designing and conducting this form of inquiry, and to focus on the types of mixed methods designs.


K-12 Administration (Superintendent) Certification (6-9)

This part of the degree program is designed for individuals who are interested in obtaining a K-12 Administrative Superintendent Certificate. Individuals wishing to pursue this endeavor will need to work closely with their respective State Department of Education to obtain specific requirements for this certification. These requirements are not universal, and each state has its own requirements. Individuals who wish to pursue this option must have the Principal's Certifications. Typically, 12-15 hours beyond the Principals Certificate are required. This option may require coursework beyond the minimum 60 hours required.

ILD 827           Leadership in School Improvement (3)

This course examines policies and practices exercised by school leaders in continuous school improvement. Students explore school effectiveness research and organizational literature to discover measures that maximize learning for all students. School improvement policies and practices are examined within a framework of six major functions, setting goals and establishing expectations and standards, developing personnel, establishing a relevant instructional and curricular focus, meeting state, national, and professional standards, aligning system-wide consistency of core operations in all schools, and creating a continuous process of assessment and renewal.

ILD 828          Policies, Politics and School Board (3)

Learn differences between policies, rules, and procedures, school board and administrative functions.  Students will effectively understand the politics of education and the relationships between the public, boards, and chief administrators in public and Catholic/private schools.  Students will learn and practice dispositions helpful to success in the role of superintendent/chief administrator. 

ILD 830          Internship for Superintendents (3)

The course provides students seeking the superintendency or a central office administrative position, the opportunity to gain on-the-job experience.  Practicum experiences, under the direction of leaders in K-12 school systems and the practicum advisor, provide opportunities for students to observe and experience various components of system wide leadership.

Research and Dissertation (15 hours)

ILD 812       Research Design and Professional Inquiry (3)

Students will learn steps involved in modern social science research process and indentify promising topics, puzzles, and create research questions.  The course will focus on developing falsifiable theories, the process of drawing testable hypotheses from theory, social science writing techniques, APA formatting and insights regarding qualitative and quantitative methods of inquiry.

ILD 813        Research, Data Collection and Analyses (3)

This doctoral level course builds upon ILD 812:  Research Design and Professional Inquiry and develops concepts associated with research designs, sampling and data collection methods in quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods research as well as descriptive, inferential, and thematic data analyses. 

ILD 899        Dissertation Research (9)

The dissertation research project is applied research done through a process of inquiry focused on practical issues related to the student's workplace. The dissertation addresses real world problems or issues in applied settings. The student workplace or practice setting is the laboratory for development of the dissertation. The dissertation provides the structure for examination of the student's practice in a thoughtful and systematic way. The candidate may register for 6 to 9 hours applicable toward the degree. The dissertation proposal must be approved as part of the first three (3) credit hours of dissertation credit earned. Students will not be able to register for additional credit hours until the dissertation proposal has been approved.

Personal Growth Opportunity

ILD 800        Scholarly Writing Seminar (0-1)

The Scholarly Writing Seminar will engage students with scholarly research and writing at the graduate school level. As such, the course requires students to effectively use the written word to summarize articles and scholarly arguments, to use language to craft and support arguments and to prepare writing that is grammatically correct, academic in tone, and cites and references effectively.  

If you are interested in ILD 800, please contact the Ed.D. in Leadership Office at 402-280-2306.