OCL online Course Descriptions

The Doctor of Education in Organizational Change and Leadership online (OCL online) is designed to equip professionals with the skills to lead effective organizational change across a number of sectors.

3 - 4 years

Depending on the track you choose, you can earn your OCL online in as few as three years.

43 units

Students who hold a master's degree may be admitted with advanced standing and are required to take only 43 units.

60 units

Students without master's degrees who have substantial work and leadership experience will be required to complete 60 units.

43-Unit Curriculum

Advanced Standing Track

YEAR 1

TERM 1

Immersion 1

EDUC 603: Framing Organizational Change and Leadership (4 units)

This course will help students develop the critical analysis and academic literacy skills to identify, research and present issues in various organizational contexts.

EDUC 620: Creativity and Innovation (2 units)

Students will learn practical strategies and creative thinking methods to produce innovative results through hands-on experiments, practice and review.

TERM 2

EDUC 523: Diversity (3 units)

Students will tackle issues of diversity, including access and equity, as it relates to culture, ethnicity, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation and ability. Students will also learn how to identify and utilize diversity as an asset in the professional setting.

EDUC 524: Leadership (3 units)

Students will examine leadership principles, concepts and theories that will allow them to reflect on their own leadership styles and apply what they learn to real-life situations and organizational challenges.

TERM 3

EDUC 522: Accountability (3 units)

This course will help leaders understand, analyze and cope with the challenges and demands of accountability.

EDUC 627: Education Performance Problems- The Role of Learning (3 units)

Students will learn to analyze organizational learning and motivation, and make evidence-based recommendations for interventions to promote positive development in organizational contexts.

YEAR 2

TERM 4

EDUC 532: Inquiry Methods I (3 units)

This course focuses on providing students with foundational knowledge about the nature of research and preparing students to conduct “inquiry,” which is the systematic collection and analysis of data for answering research questions and solving identified problems of practice.

EDUC 725: Analyzing Organizational Change and its Effectiveness (3 units)

This course examines how organizational change and reform take place. Students will learn about different organizational systems and structures.

TERM 5

Immersion 2

EDUC 536: Inquiry Methods II (3 units)

As the second in a series of three research methods courses, this course’s main objective is to help students build skills they will need to conduct research for their dissertations. This course will prepare students to develop data collection protocols and instruments as well as to learn how to gather data for their dissertations.

EDUC 730: Using Communication to Facilitate Change (2 units)

Students will apply their written and verbal skills to real-life leadership situations.

EDUC 790 Research (1 unit)

This course is designed for you to practice research and academic writing skills.

TERM 6

EDUC 764A Consulting Project (2 units)

Students will reflect and assess their abilities as a leader in a final report and portfolio that includes program coursework.

EDUC 764B Consulting Project (2 units)

Students will finalize and defend their dissertation in practice, reflective report and portfolio.

EDUC 731: Economics of Organizational Change and Learning Environments (3 units)

This course focuses on budget planning, research and assessing fiscal viability of a project.

YEAR 3

TERM 7

EDUC 652: Inquiry III (3 units)
EDUC 764C Consulting Project (1 unit)

TERM 8

EDUC 732: Building Capacity for Organizational Change (3 units)

Students will learn how to build organizational capacity by fostering personnel growth, and promoting transparency, learning and inclusion in the workplace.

EDUC 764D: Consulting Project (1 unit)

60-Unit Curriculum

Traditional Track

YEAR 1

Term 1

EDUC 508: Creating Communities of Interest (2 units)

Students will establish a professional foundation as well as their philosophy and approach as educators.

EDUC 503: Learning and Motivation (3 units)

This course focuses on design and advancement of learning and motivation outcomes through the examination and application of current research.

TERM 2

Students can choose either 591 or 570.

EDUC 589: Human Lifespan Development (3 units)

Students will learn the fundamentals of physical, motor, mental, social and emotional development, spanning the prenatal period through late adulthood.

EDUC 591: Diversity: Power, Equity and Inclusion (3 units)

Students will learn and develop strategies to empower individuals and marginalized groups by intervening to achieve equitable outcomes in education and communities.

EDUC 570: Research Design and Data Analysis (3 units)

This course covers various research designs and basic statistical methods for professionals, addressing questions and challenges in research.

TERM 3

Students can choose any of the following combinations: 582+579, 582+790 or 579+790.

EDUC 595: Instructional Design (3 units)

Students will learn how to design and develop effective instruction for a variety of content areas and audiences.

EDUC 582: Assessment and Evaluation (2 units)

Students will learn the different ways in which learning, motivation and performance can be assessed, including formative and summative, qualitative and quantitative methods.

EDUC 579: Media Selection and Evaluation (2 units)1

Students will study current research and practical methods for selecting and evaluating media and their role in modern learning environments.

EDUC 790: Research (1 unit)

Students complete directed research and produce a literature review that presents solutions to a professionally relevant problem of practice.

YEAR 2

TERM 4

Immersion 1

EDUC 603: Framing Organizational Change and Leadership (4 units)

This course will help students develop the critical analysis and academic literacy skills to identify, research and present issues in various organizational contexts.

EDUC 620: Creativity and Innovation (2 units)

Students will learn practical strategies and creative thinking methods to produce innovative results through hands-on experiments, practice and review.

TERM 5

EDUC 524: Leadership (3 units)

Students will examine leadership principles, concepts and theories that will allow them to reflect on their own leadership styles and apply what they learn to real-life situations and organizational challenges.

EDUC 523: Diversity (3 units)

Students will tackle issues of diversity, including access and equity, as it relates to culture, ethnicity, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation and ability. Students will also learn how to identify and utilize diversity as an asset in the professional setting.

TERM 6

EDUC 522: Accountability (3 units)

This course will help leaders understand, analyze and cope with the challenges and demands of accountability.

EDUC 627: Educational Performance Problems: The Role of Learning (3 units)

Students will learn to analyze organizational learning and motivation, and make evidence-based recommendations for interventions to promote positive development in organizational contexts.

YEAR 3

TERM 7

EDUC 532: Inquiry Methods I (3 units)

This course focuses on providing students with foundational knowledge about the nature of research and preparing students to conduct “inquiry,” which is the systematic collection and analysis of data for answering research questions and solving identified problems of practice.

EDUC 725: Analyzing Organizational Change and its Effectiveness (3 units)

This course examines how organizational change and reform take place. Students will learn about different organizational systems and structures.

TERM 8

EDUC 536: Inquiry Methods II (3 units)

As the second in a series of three research methods courses, this course’s main objective is to help students build skills they will need to conduct research for their dissertations. This course will prepare students to develop data collection protocols and instruments as well as to learn how to gather data for their dissertations.

EDUC 730: Using Communication to Facilitate Change (2 units)

Students will apply their written and verbal skills to real-life leadership situations.

EDUC 790 Research (1 unit)

This course is designed for you to practice research and academic writing skills.

TERM 9

Immersion 2

EDUC 764A: Consulting Project (2 units)

Students will reflect and assess their abilities as a leader in a final report and portfolio that includes program coursework.

EDUC 764B: Consulting Project (2 units)

Students will finalize and defend their dissertation in practice, reflective report and portfolio.

EDUC 731: Economics of Organizational Change and Learning Environments (3 units)

This course focuses on budget planning, research and assessing fiscal viability of a project.

YEAR 4

TERM 10

EDUC 652: Inquiry III (3 units)
EDUC 764C Consulting Project (1 unit)

TERM 11

EDUC 732: Building Capacity for Organizational Change (3 units)

Students will learn how to build organizational capacity by fostering personnel growth, and promoting transparency, learning and inclusion in the workplace.

EDUC 764D: Consulting Project (1 unit)

Capstone

The EdD in Organizational Change and Leadership online capstone experience is a portfolio contribution that demonstrates a student’s mastery of the program’s proficiencies. The Capstone consists of a dissertation, a reflective self-assessment and additional coursework deliverables that represent core leadership proficiencies.

Dissertation in Practice

The dissertation consists of a highly structured demonstration of a student’s problem-solving skills. In collaboration with an organization of their choosing, each student will:

  • Assess the status of an organization against a specific goal in keeping with the organization’s mission and vision
  • Investigate the causes that appear to be preventing the organization from reaching this specific goal
  • Create a strategic plan for achieving that goal, in consultation with other members of the organization and the relevant research literature on that topic
  • Propose an integrated action plan to address these causes and an evaluation plan to assess the effectiveness of the action plan

Longitudinal Reflective Self-Assessment

Students will engage in a periodic assessment and reflection process regarding the skills and challenges that affect their ability to lead others. These “soft” skills include:

  • The ability to model the behavior they want to see others replicate
  • The ability to "be present" or self-aware
  • Proficiency in managing heated interactions
  • The ability to listen and respond appropriately to others
  • Giving and receiving constructive feedback

Over the course of the program, students will be asked to undertake assignments in which they will practice these different skills, provide a demonstration (i.e., through a submitted video) and reflect on their abilities. This recursive assessment will include reflections being reviewed by a professor and the professor providing feedback, questions and guidance. The results of each assessment, any reflection and planning related to it, and all instructor feedback will be assembled into a final report, synthesized by the student and submitted as part of the Capstone.

Additional Coursework Deliverables

There are additional proficiencies that will not be captured by either the Dissertation or the self-assessment. Approximately five deliverables, each from a different course (and serving as the culminating activity for that course), will be added to the Capstone portfolio to represent the student’s mastery of those proficiencies.

Become the Leader Your Organization Needs

Learn more about earning an EdD from USC Rossier.