Program Delivery

Courses in the MSSL program are offered completely online using the Desire2Learn system.

Course Descriptions

In addition to the courses below, a minimum of 9 elective credit hours must be completed. See the course schedule to find out when courses are offered.

SLDR 710    Leadership and Innovation: Lessons Learned
Creative and innovative solutions using examples from history to explore leadership styles used to address and/or change organizational situations will be explored. Students examine historical leaders to uncover personal attributes, qualities, and characteristics that prove to be successful when leading others.

SLDR 728    Levels of Leadership
Analyzes the levels of leadership necessary to transform contemporary and futuristic organizations. Students examine the psychological implications of the differences between managing and leading. Discussions will address the development of effective leaders who are able to transform organizations now and in the future. As a result of this course, students construct a personal leadership plan that includes accountability measures to reflect on their individual effectiveness.

SLDR 740    Leading Change: Ethics & Social Responsibility
Recent studies of leadership suggest that organizations and political units require strong leaders who understand and adhere to ethical standards. The future of US society may depend in part upon persons who are capable of providing ethical, as well as strong, leadership. It is necessary that leaders understand their position imposes an obligation to adhere to ethical standards in all components of leadership. These components include, but not are limited to: communication, inspiration, collaboration, facilitation, manipulation, and even coercion.

SLDR 748    Social Change & Diversity
Examines social changes throughout history as explained by classical and contemporary theorists and applies such theories to current social changes. Students explore the impact of a diverse workforce on leadership practices and decision making while they examine new organizational structures that embrace diversity and a multi-cultural workforce.

SLDR 752    Strategic Decision Making
This 3-credit course will introduce the student to techniques for the collection, identification, analysis, and display of strategic data. The course will include the use and application of descriptive and inferential statistics, the ethical conduct of research, and the strategic importance of data to contemporary leadership and decision-making. The students will complete statistical problem sets and evaluate case studies for the strategic use of statistics. Students will be assigned to work in teams to develop a case study for an organization that demonstrates the concepts learned in the class. The results of this case study work will be presented by the team to the class at the end of the semester.

SLDR 695    Practicum
Applied, monitored, and supervised field-based learning experience for which the student may or may not be paid. Students gain practical experience; they follow a negotiated and/or directed plan of study. A higher level of supervision is provided by the instructor in these courses than is the case with field experience courses.

SLDR 775    Mentoring
Mentoring serves as the final field experience. Designed as a learning opportunity, students are placed in a situation where they serve as a mentor in a military, business, governmental, or non-governmental organization. During this experience, the student explores ways to assess another’s strengths and challenges, evaluate using performance criteria, and provide guidance and support to improve another’s performance.

SLDR 770    Visioning: Strategic Planning
This is the capstone course for the M.S. in Strategic Leadership. The course builds on prior coursework and further develops the visioning and strategic decision-making skills necessary to effectively lead a 21st century organization. Emphasis is placed on the development and execution of strategy. Extensive case analysis is used as the primary method of instruction. The course culminates in the development of a strategic plan in which students synthesize the knowledge and experiences of the M.S. in Strategic Leadership program, including coursework, practicum, and mentoring opportunities.

Contact Info

Dr. Laura Colmenero-Chilberg
Phone: 605.645.7228

Black Hills State University
1200 University St.
Spearfish, SD, USA 57799

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