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How You See It Will Set You Apart
Developed specifically for experienced working professionals from a diverse range of industries, sectors and geographic locations, the year-long, intensive Executive Masters Program in Change Leadership is designed to help individuals and organizations increase their capacity for initiating, managing and sustaining workplace change efforts in increasingly complex and global environments.
Focusing on the application of both psychological and business principles to relevant real-world organizational challenges, the program emphasizes individual, team and organizational learning and transformation through rigorous training in and experience with applied research, reflective practice and the use of theoretical models.
Executives enter the program each summer in small cohorts of 16-24 students and are trained by faculty experts in organization change and consultation using a range of innovative adult learning technologies and various cultural immersion and residential experiences in and around the New York City metropolitan area.
The program is delivered in four 1-week modules extending over one year and includes pre-work, post-work and guided independent study/action research as part of the formal program requirements. Executives will learn about change-related topics at the societal, organizational, group and individual levels and will be asked to integrate their own learning and professional development through various opportunities for practice and reflection.
The program culminates in a 45-credit Masters of Arts Degree in Organizational Psychology, with a specialization in Change Leadership.
Mid-career professionals and aspiring organizational leaders who wish to lead and manage future change efforts are especially encouraged to apply.
As part of the Program in Social-Organizational Psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University, the Executive Masters Degree Program in Change Leadership retains and builds upon a long tradition of using psychological research and theory to address real world practical problems through action research and evidence-based intervention.
The program leverages the scholar-practitioner identity of the program in Social-Organizational Psychology and holds fast to the notion that individual and collective behavior in organizations is best understood by examining the broader context in which that behavior occurs. Additionally, consistent with the scholar-practitioner model that infuses learning at Teachers College, we believe that there can be no action without research and no research without action, particularly in seemingly ungrounded times of economic uncertainty and rapid organization transformation.
The program aspires to not simply offer a series of courses that result in a change leadership degree, but also seeks to:
1) foster the professional development of those interested in leading and managing organization change
2) enhance the knowledge, skills and abilities required to do so
3) become a center of excellence that reinvigorates and redefines professional standards of practice for change practitioners and
4) assist organizations as they address challenges of the contemporary workplace with new research, theory and evidence-based practice.
Our Perspective on Change
The field of organization development and change originated and grew in response to relevant social and business issues, and we believe it needs to do so again today in response to the global economic crisis and the various challenges facing contemporary for-profit, non-profit and governmental organizations. The pressure to reduce workforces, to do more with less and to work ‘smarter’ present an opportunity for committed individuals to exercise leadership and ensure that organizations function efficiently and effectively in rapidly changing and increasingly interconnected global contexts.
The Executive Masters Program in Change Leadership helps executives develop the point of view and the requisite skills and abilities needed to intervene and actively to manage any number of organizational transformation efforts. More specifically, with respect to organization change, we believe that:
1) Organizations are best understood as open systems that are dependent on and continually interacting with the environment in which they reside.
2) Within any open system, all parts of that system exist in a series of interdependent, embedded relations with each other that are multi-level, multi-causal and increasingly complex.
3) Given this complexity, it is impossible to understand individual and collective behavior in organizations without understanding the context in which that behavior occurs.
4) Part of understanding the contextual nature of behavior in organizations is recognizing that it consists of both overt actions as well as covert processes that are under the surface.
5) The overt and covert aspects of organizational life must be fully understood in order to intervene successfully in any client system.
6) Successful intervention requires that individual change leaders learn how to use both theory and experience in reflective, systematic and adaptive ways.
Our goal then is not simply to advise you about what to do with respect to leading change in your organizations, but instead to offer a theory and research-based way to think about doing so. In short, we believe that how you see change will set you apart even more than what you do when faced with it.