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Online Bachelor's Degree in Integrated Leadership Studies

Successful businesses and organizations require educated leaders to provide creative vision, facilitate collaboration, make ethical decisions, and inspire others. Drawing upon the universityís tradition of academic excellence, Creightonís Bachelor of Science in Integrated Leadership Studies seeks to develop leaders whose skills and knowledge will make a difference in the world. This flexible, affordable, and relevant degree is specifically designed for you, the adult professional, who is seeking employment stability and job advancement.

Is this online degree right for me?

Fully-online format.

Classes are delivered online, allowing you to access and complete course materials in a flexible and convenient manner. This degree will fit your busy schedule!

Emphasis on timely completion.

The program generously accepts up to 80 hours of credit from other institutions that you have attended. Credit is also offered for certified training and experiential learning, allowing you to demonstrate competencies based on knowledge gained in the workplace and community.

Integrated education.

The program respects and recognizes the valuable personal and professional experiences that you bring to the classroom. The concept of integration is reflected in your practicum, in which you apply your education in a real-world setting, perhaps even your own workplace. Our goal is to help you connect your education to your career in real and tangible ways!

Multi-disciplinary study.

Leaders are needed in all workplaces. This innovative program brings together students and faculty from diverse backgrounds, such as business, healthcare, and military, to create a unique learning community. Your education will draw on a variety of fields from finance to communication to ethics, while building on a strong foundation in the liberal arts.

Optional specializations.

You can choose to specialize in one of three tracks, allowing you the option to personalize your education to the organization that you serve. Tracks include healthcare management, non-profit sector management, and human capital management.


More details about the online bachelor's degree program

Why Choose Creighton?

  • Outstanding reputation and value.
    Creighton University is nationally respected for the quality and value of its education. For ten consecutive years, Creighton has ranked #1 overall among regional Masterís granting institutions in U.S. News and World Reportís ďAmericaís Best Colleges.Ē Creighton also ranked #1 regionally as a ďbest valueĒ university, giving students an excellent return on their tuition investment.

  • Community.
    Even though classes are online, you will still experience the benefits of Creightonís exceptional sense of community. Online discussions and activities ensure that you regularly interact with classmates. Course sizes are small so faculty can give you the attention that you deserve. University College staff is readily available to assist you with all of your advising needs.

  • Jesuit, Catholic tradition.
    Creighton provides a values-centered education that prepares students to act with purpose and make meaningful impacts in their workplaces and communities. Grounded in its commitment to service, justice, and caring for each student as a whole person, Creighton respects all faith traditions.

Learning Outcomes

The graduate of the Integrated Leadership Studies program will demonstrate proficiency in the following areas:

  1. Communication
    Students will communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, demonstrating expertise in interpersonal and organizational communication.

  2. Information Technology
    Students will know how to integrate technology in a manner relevant to the context within which they study or work.

  3. Project Management
    Students will demonstrate knowledge of the basic concepts and principles of project planning and management, as applied in real-world scenarios.

  4. Critical Thinking/Analytic Skills/Creativity
    Students will think and problem-solve critically, analytically, and creatively. They will approach personal, professional, and real-world problems rationally and imaginatively.

  5. Diversity/Teamwork/Collaboration
    Students will work collaboratively, demonstrating an awareness of and respect for the diversity of all individuals. Students will show the ability to work effectively and collegially with individuals and communities across differences of race, ethnicity, culture, gender, religion, and sexual orientation.

  6. Finance and Quantitative Reasoning
    Students will demonstrate knowledge of key models of budgeting, principals and processes of financial decision-making, and the role of morally-grounded financial policies and practice and their applications in management within organizations. Students will master foundational concepts in quantitative reasoning and the role of quantitative data in sound decision-making.

  7. Ethical Decision-Making and Social Justice
    Students will demonstrate ethical decision-making, a commitment to service, and a promotion of social justice, in accordance with Judeo-Christian tradition and Ignatian values. They will demonstrate leadership skills that are rooted in faith, service, justice, and ethics

  8. Integrated Leadership
    Students will demonstrate knowledge of the roles and types of leadership theories and practices in a variety of professional and social environments, including multicultural and global perspectives. Drawing from their own experiences and studies, students will demonstrate the ability to represent the contributions of different fields toward leadership through the program capstones, in designing and conducting their practicum experience and in designing and completing their program portfolio.

  9. Reflective Professional Development
    Students will practice deliberate reflection to nurture lifelong personal and professional development in alignment with the Jesuit pedagogical model. Students will identify, analyze, and evaluate relevant work and learning experiences contributing to their degree completion.


Bachelorís of Science in Integrated Leadership Studies: 128 credits

General Requirements

  • Bachelorís degree requires 128 credits.
  • A minimum QPA of 2.0 is required in the major and an overall cumulative QPA of 2.0 is required to graduate.
  • A minimum of 48 hours must be completed at Creighton.
  • A minimum of 48 hours of upper-division courses are required.
  • A minimum of 64 Creighton hours will be required to earn graduation honors.
  • No more than 30 hours of a studentís curriculum may be earned through prior learning portfolio assessment credit.

Core Curriculum (45 credits)

Courses in the following core areas are required:*

College Writing: 3 credits
Communications: 3 credits
Conflict Engagement and Negotiation: 3 credits
Social and Behavioral Sciences: 6 credits
Natural Sciences: 6 credits
History: 3 credits
Literature: 3 credits
Global Studies: 6 credits
Philosophy, Ethics, and Theology: 12 credits

*This core curriculum is specific to the online Bachelorís degree, granted by University College. Students can utilize eligible transfer courses and/or Creighton courses, CLEP or DANTES exams, ACE transcripts, and portfolio assessment of prior learning to fulfill some of these requirements.

Major Requirements (36 credits)

All of the following courses are required (24 credits):

ILS 200 - Introduction to Integrated Leadership Studies (3 credits)
ILS 301 - Theories of Leadership and Organizational Change (3 credits)
ILS 302 - Leadership, Planning, and Project Management (3 credits)
ILS 303 - Ethical Dimensions of Leadership (3 credits)
ILS 304 - Financial and Quantitative Dimensions of Leadership (3 credits)
ILS 305 - Leadership and Social Justice: Faith Traditions and Global Perspectives (3 credits)
ILS 401 - ILS Practicum (3 credits)
ILS 402 - ILS Portfolio Preparation (3 credits)

An additional 12 credits of electives are required and can apply to an area of specialization. Optional specializations include: healthcare, non-profit sector, and human capital management. Elective course titles are tentative, but might include:

ILS 311 - Gender and Leadership (3 credits)
ILS 312 - Conflict Engagement: A Systems and Consulting Perspective (3 credits)
ILS 313 - Global and Multicultural Leadership (3 credits)
ILS 314 - Leadership, Transitions, Transformations (3 credits)
ILS 315 - Professional Writing (3 credits)
ILS 316 - Leadership in Literature and Popular Culture (3 credits)
ILS 317 - Leadership and the Non-Profit Sector (3 credits)
ILS 493/495 - Independent Study (3 credits)

Remaining Credits for the Degree (47 credits)

Students can utilize credits gained at their previous institution. Students may also take additional Integrated Leadership Studies courses, as interested, or other courses offered through University College, as relevant.

Optional Specializations

Healthcare Management
Human Capital Management
Non-Profit Sector Management

Course Descriptions

ILS 200    Introduction to Integrated Leadership Studies (3 credits)

This course provides foundational knowledge and skills for engaging in the Integrated Leadership Studies program. Students will be introduced to foundational concepts and theories of leadership and begin a process of reflection on their leadership style and its impact on their personal and professional development. Students will also gain an understanding of the expectations and purpose of the program; their responsibilities as students; the mission and values of the University, and how these align with the studentís personal and professional goals. They will be introduced to basic skills for using library electronic resources including library search strategies; review essential academic writing skills; and initiate a program portfolio; building a learning community; developing strategies for being a successful distance learner, and developing proficiency with the computer hardware and software used in this program.

ILS 301 Theories of Leadership and Organizational Change (3 credits)

The Leadership and Organizational Change course is an introductory leadership course designed to prepare students to develop or improve their knowledge, understanding and skills in communication, interpersonal relationships, leadership practice, leadership theories, organizational culture and change, diversity and working with teams and small groups, so that they can be more effective in the leadership positions they currently hold, or prepare for a position to which they aspire. The course will build on and enhance the studentís preexisting leadership knowledge and experience. Students will be expected to develop and write about critical incidents/case studies based on their experiences, which will provide meaningful dialogue and discussion for each of the major topics of the course. This strategy will integrate the knowledge and experience of adult learners to the course content. Studying leadership is a journey and knowledge is socially constructed, so participation by all members of the class is required to enhance collaborative learning and provide feedback which contributes to the diversity of ideas from and across all types of leadership positions and organizations.

ILS 302 Leadership, Planning, and Project Management (3 credits)

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of strategic leadership, project planning, and management. Additionally, students will examine and consider the practical applications of strategic leadership, project planning, and project management. Students will then apply these concepts and principles in real-world scenarios. 

ILS 303 Ethical Dimensions of Leadership (3 credits)

Leadership is not just an act but a way of being. This course will explore the ethical foundations that inform the leaderís personal and professional practices. Students will examine ethical theories and concepts applied to leadership challenges in real-world situations, including examples of their own life experience. Emphasis will be placed on understanding ethical leadership for social and organizational change that seeks the common good, the leaderís role as a moral agent, as well as the organizationís role as a moral agent in society.

ILS 304 Financial and Quantitative Dimensions of Leadership (3 credits)

This course is designed specifically for students to gain practical and job-ready financial and quantitative analysis skills. The course incorporates real-world case studies designed to help students strengthen their quantitative and finance acumen. Students will gain an understanding of key financial terms and tools to demonstrate how they can be used in employment situations. They will also be introduced to key concepts from statistical analysis. This course provides foundational information required for leaders to successfully understand the key functional areas of business and the role of quantitative data in decision making. The course will assist students in understanding finance from a holistic perspective. The fundamentals of financial statements, the financial perspective of strategic business decisions and plans, and how to use financial information to impact performance will be addressed. The course will prepare students to interpret financial and other quantitative data and answer relevant questions related to the workplace. Students will gain the insight required to understand the advantages and disadvantages of different types of financial and quantitative data in order to identify the relevant questions to ask to accomplish specific goals of their workplace.

ILS 305 Leadership and Social Justice: Faith Traditions and Global Perspectives (3 credits)

The primary goal of the course is to familiarize students with the ways in which religious and social justice principles of Catholic and non-Catholic faith traditions can motivate leaders in their approach to problems of social justice. Students will examine in particular Catholic social teaching about social justice, including the core principles of human dignity, common good, solidarity, and subsidiarity. Reading Chris Lowneyís book, Heroic Leadership, students will also examine how Ignatian charisms have informed specific efforts to enact social change. Students will then examine, research, and make written presentations, focusing on how other faith traditions, including their own, address questions of leadership and social justice, both historically and in contemporary society, in thought and in action. Finally, students will reflect upon how their own faith background contributes to their personal and professional development.

ILS 401 ILS Practicum

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 studentís own field (business, nonprofit, 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.

ILS 402 ILS Portfolio Preparation

This course will allow students to prepare and formally present the portfolio they have been building during their journey through the program. The portfolio will become an integral part of the studentís learning experiences. The portfolio should be regarded much like an artistís portfolio, building it continually through the studentís program.

The portfolio will truly provide the evidence of outcomes that the student has achieved in the program. The portfolio must be tied to personal and professional goals established by the student in conjunction with their advisor as the program of studies is developed. The purposes of the portfolio are as follows:

  1. Provide documentation of your leadership profile.
  2. Provide documentation of your leadership and learning experiences.
  3. Provide evidence about your growth and development during the ILS program experience.
  4. Provide an opportunity for you to conduct self-assessment as a reflective practitioner.
  5. Provide an opportunity for your advisor to assess your progress in meeting your goals and recommend any modifications or refinements of your program of studies.
  6. Provide a record of academic accomplishment and experiences that will help you in pursuing employment or advancement.


Online Format

Is there an on-campus residency requirement for this degree?
No, all courses needed to complete this degree are offered completely online. You are not required to attend classes on campus. For some courses, you may have the option to attend in person, if desired.

Is the online program accredited?
Yes. Creighton University is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an approved regional accrediting body. As an online student, you will be held to the same rigorous academic standards that apply to campus-based study.

Will my degree indicate that it was earned online?
No, your transcripts and degree will look the same as any other Creighton undergraduate student. You will not be specifically identified as an online student.

What is the quality of online learning?
You will receive a high-quality education and be held to the same rigorous standards as those in campus-based study. Online learning has become an accepted mode of delivery and recent studies have shown that it is an effective method of instruction. A recent publication (May 2009) by the U.S. Department of Education titled, Evaluation of Evidence-Based Practices in Online Learning: A Meta-Analysis and Review of Online Learning Studies, reported that, on average, students in online courses performed better than those receiving face-to-face instruction.

What is online learning like?
Students choose online learning formats because their schedules prohibit them from attending traditional classes, not because they are easier. Successful students must be self-disciplined and possess excellent time management skills. You will need to login to your online courses daily and there will be frequent deadlines. You should expect to dedicate 9-12 hours per week to study. Online courses are demanding, but we have the support system needed to ensure your success. For more information on distance learning at Creighton and the resources available to you, visit the Office of Online Learning website.

How will I interact with my instructor and other students?
Building community in online courses is an important aspect of your online learning experience at Creighton. You will regularly interact with your instructor and other students via audio/video web conferencing, discussion postings, and email. Our online students tell us they feel part of the Creighton community and did not feel isolated or alone during their educational experience.

What platform is used for online course delivery?
You will use our online system, BlueLine2, to access course content, submit assignments, and take exams. You will learn how to use the system in an orientation course at the start of your degree.

What are the technology requirements for online courses?
Your computer must have the minimum technology requirements found here.


How much is tuition?
We offer a competitive tuition rate among online programs at $400 per credit hour.

Are there additional costs and fees?
Yes, students are charged both a university fee ($54 per semester) and a technology fee ($90 per semester). You will also be responsible for purchasing your textbooks.

Is financial aid available?
Yes, more than 90% of our students receive tuition assistance. You may qualify for various forms of financial aid such as employer education benefits, loans, institutional scholarships and/or private scholarships. We will help you find options to finance your education.

How do I apply for financial aid?
All students who wish to be considered for federal need-based aid must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov . Creighton's school code is 002542. For further information on the application process, please visit the Financial Aid website.

Who can I contact for financial aid assistance?
Questions can be directed to the financial Aid Office at 1-(800)282-5835, or locally at (402)280-2731.

Are institutional scholarships available?
Yes, students are encouraged to apply for the Osher Reentry Scholarship. Applications are due August 1st and are awarded for fall and spring semesters. For further information or to apply online click here. Unfortunately, online Bachelor's degree students are not eligible for the Dean's Merit Award at this time.

Can I use my Yellow Ribbon benefits?
Yes, we are committed to helping members of the armed services, veterans, and their family members obtain an education. For further information, visit our Yellow Ribbon website or contact Patty Hall, University Registrar and VA Coordinator, at (402)280-2702.

Are there additional charges for out-of-state students?
No, Creighton does not distinguish between in-state and out-of-state tuition.

Application Process

What are the admission requirements?
Applicants must be 23 years or older and have a high school diploma or GED. ALl applications are completed and submitted online. An official copy of the applicant's high school transcript or GED must accompany the application, which is to be sent to University College. If applicable, send transcripts from all prior postsecondary institutions including colleges and universities, military service, and CLEP/DSST test results.

Where should I send my transcripts?
Certified transcripts should be sent to:
Valerie Mattix
University College
Creighton University
2500 California Plaza
Omaha, NE 68178

Do I need to take the ACT or SAT?
No, you are not required to submit ACT or SAT scores for admission.

Should I include a personal statement with my application?
The personal statement is optional; however, we strongly encourage you to include a statement so we can better understand your personal goals. You might especially consider submitting the personal statement if you have never attended college, or need to clarify causes for concern in your academic history.

When is the next program entry date?
We offer flexible entry throughout the year. Students can choose from five start dates: early January, mid-March, late May, late August, or mid-October.

When are applications due?
We accept applications on a rolling basis. There are no specific application deadlines; however, we encourage you to submit your application and supporting materials as soon as possible.


How many credits are required for the degree?
128 credits are required to graduate.

How long will it take to complete my degree?
Completion times will vary from student to student. Factors such as transfer credits or the ability to test out of courses will significantly affect completion times. We encourage you to schedule an appointment with a University College advisor, who can help establish your personalized degree timeline. To arrange a meeting, call (402)280-2424.

When do classes start and end?
Courses are offered in eight-week accelerated terms. There are two terms in both the fall and spring semesters. An additional term is offered in the summer. An academic calendar is available here.

Are transfer credits accepted?
Yes. The program generously accepts up to 80 hours of transfer credit.

What courses will transfer?
University College advisors can provide a transfer credit evaluation prior to your enrollment. We will require official transcripts (and admission to the University) to post transfer credits.

Is credit available for prior learning?
Yes, credit is available for personal and professional experiences through portfolio assessment. Students will enroll in a writing-intensive course which guides them through the process of developing a portfolio, which is then submitted for review. A maximum of 30 credit hours can be gained through prior learning assessment.

How many students will be in each course?
The average course is around 15 students. Our small course sizes are designed to foster a sense of community among students and between students and instructors. A hallmark of Creighton's educational environment is the high level of interaction between students and instructors.