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University Bulletin
Graduate Degree Programs

Organization Development and Change (ODC)

WILLIAM J. ROTHWELL, Program Chair
310B Keller Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-863-2581
wjr9@psu.edu

 

Degree Conferred:

Master of Professional Studies (M.P.S.)

 

The Graduate Faculty

 

The Program

The MPS in Organization Development and Change (MPS-OD&C) is an online 33-credit program of study designed for professionals working primarily in organization change and workforce development related careers.

The program will highlight the changing nature of the field of Organization Development, including the impact of the globalization of private and public organizations and the growing importance of organization change and development in the workforce. It will culminate in a field-based project course in which students will demonstrate their understanding of the curriculum and apply it to their professional areas of interest. Students will be expected to complete an organization development-related project and are encouraged to solicit project ideas from a work-related environment to ensure that the problems or opportunities they identify are grounded in the reality of organization development. Upon completion of the MPS-OD&C degree, students will be equipped to work as professionals in corporate development, talent management, workforce development, performance improvement, training and development, and with private employers, government agencies, and non-profit organizations.

Thirty-three (33) credits are required to complete the MPS-OD&C degree program. The course work includes nine prescribed 3-credit courses (27 credit hours), which provide a strategic body of knowledge in assessment, diagnosis, feedback, and marketing of organization development, process consultation, appreciative inquiry, and facilitation of groups and teams; one elective course (3 credit hours) designed to allow students to develop additional expertise in related areas of professional interest and in consultation with their advisors; and one capstone course (3 credit hours), which provides a culminating experience for students to demonstrate their knowledge, understanding, theoretical framework, and practical application of Organization Development and Change, building upon their knowledge acquired from the curriculum.

Admission Requirements

Requirements listed here are in addition to the Graduate Council requirements stated in the GENERAL INFORMATION section of the Graduate Bulletin. The language of instruction at Penn State is English. All international applicants must take and submit scores for the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or the IELTS (International English Language Testing System), with the exceptions noted below. The minimum acceptable score for the TOEFL is 550 for the paper-based test, or a total score of 80 with a 19 on the speaking section for the Internet-based test (iBT). Applicants with iBT speaking scores between 15 and 18 may be considered for provisional admission, which requires completion of specified remedial English courses. The minimum composite score for the IELTS is 6.5. International applicants are exempt from the TOEFL/IELTS requirement who have received a baccalaureate or a graduate degree from a college/university/institution in any of the following: Australia, Belize, British Caribbean and British West Indies, Canada (except Quebec), England, Guyana, Republic of Ireland, Liberia, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Scotland, the United States, and Wales.

Applicants must hold either (1) a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or (2) a tertiary (postsecondary) degree that is deemed comparable to a four-year bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution. This degree must be from an officially recognized degree-granting institution in the country in which it operates.

Applicants to the MPS-OD&C must submit the following materials:

  • Penn State graduate degree application form and application fee;
  • World Campus program application
  • A statement of career and educational goals including documentation of a minimum of two years of related full-time work. The statement should be an essay (2-3 pages in length) that demonstrates the applicant’s written communication skills. A resume should be attached as a supplement.
  • Three letters of recommendation that attest to the applicant’s readiness for graduate study and that he or she has the requisite minimum of two years of work experience
  • Official transcript(s) of all institutions attended
  • TOEFL score, if applicable

Admissions decisions for the program are based on the quality of the applicant's credentials. The decisions are based on a review of the complete application portfolio. During the admission process, students who appear to be better suited for another graduate level program will be encouraged to apply to the appropriate program. Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores are not required.

Degree Requirements

The MPS in OD&C is conferred upon students who earn a minimum of 33 credits of course work while maintaining a grade-point average of 3.0 or better in all course work, including at least 18 credits at the 500-level or above (with at least 6 credits at the 500-level), and who complete a quality culminating field-based project course in consultation with a graduate adviser. The program curriculum includes nine prescribed courses (27 credits), which provide a strategic body of knowledge in assessment, diagnosis, feedback, and marketing of organization development, process consultation, appreciative inquiry, and facilitation of groups and teams; one elective course (3 credit hours) designed to allow students to develop additional expertise in related areas of professional interest and in consultation with their graduate advisers; and one required field-based project course (3 credit hours), which provides a culminating experience for students to demonstrate their knowledge, understanding, theoretical framework, and practical application of Organization Development and Change, building upon their knowledge acquired from the curriculum.

Required Courses

  • WF ED 572 Organization Development for Trainers
  • TRDEV 565 Implementing Training and Development Programs
  • WF ED 582 Assessing and Feeding Back Data: Organizational Diagnosis
  • WF ED 578 Process Consultation
  • WF ED 884 Appreciative Inquiry
  • WF ED 585 Appraising Organization Development and Consulting
  • WF ED 881 Marketing Organization Development and Consulting
  • WF ED 880 Facilitating Groups and Teams
  • WF ED 405 Project Management for Professionals
  • WF ED 595A Field Based Project in Industrial Training

Substitutions for the above required courses, either with resident-instruction courses, alternate online courses, or courses from other institutions, will be considered on a case-by-case basis, and must be petitioned and approved by the Program Chair, with input from the student’s graduate adviser.

Electives

Elective courses can be taken at any time during degree progression. Students will need to obtain prior approval from their academic adviser before taking any 400- or 500-level graduate courses to fulfill the elective requirements. Students may also be able to transfer credits into the program, in consultation with their academic adviser. An extensive variety of elective courses are available; the most current list is maintained on the program’s website.

Culminating Experience

Students will take WF ED 595A, Field Based Project in Industrial Training, and complete an organization development and change related capstone project as a culminating experience.

Student Aid

Graduate assistantships are currently not available. Financial aid opportunities for part-time students with the World Campus are discussed at http://www.worldcampus.psu.edu/tuition-and-financial-aid/financial-aid

Graduate-Level Courses

A minimum of 30 credits of coursework at the 400 level or higher is required, of which at least 18 credits must be at the 500-level and above, with a minimum of 6 credits of 500-level course work. A significant culminating or "capstone" experience or other mechanism to demonstrate evidence of analytical ability and synthesis of material is required. These may typically include, but are not limited to, a paper, an internship, an exhibition, a production, a comprehensive examination, or a capstone course. The specific form of the culminating experience is determined by the assigned faculty in the Workforce Education and Development program.

 

Last Revised by the Department: Fall Semester 2013

Review Date: 11/19/2013

Faculty linked: 8/14/14

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