The Self-Designed concentration enables you to create a customized concentration that’s exactly right for you. Designed to maximize your flexibility in choosing a course set that best supports your unique interests and educational goals, the concentration invites you to select any three courses from any of the other concentrations, described below.
This degree is offered by AU Online.
Choose any three of the below courses to create your own concentration.
HSA-5210: Program Planning and Evaluation (3 credits)
This course introduces students to the purposes of and strategies for program planning in nonprofit organizations. The primary focus of the class is building the knowledge and skills required of program professionals. Students explore and examine theories, concepts, approaches, and processes fundamental to program planning and evaluation. Using research, reflection and practical application, students will explore the development, implementation, and evaluation of programs that aim to effect change and build capacity of individuals, families, and communities.
MGT-5220: Earth Systems and Climate Change (3 credits)
This course employs a systems approach to understanding the intersection of business and nongovernmental organizations and the Earth system. The geosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and biosphere, and how they are interrelated, are explored with a focus on climate change. Systems thinking emphasizes relationships and interdependencies — students learn to identify the connections between the planet and an organization by considering whole systems, rather than component parts, and discern systems within systems. Students apply systems thinking and their knowledge of the Earth system to analyze organizations and address sustainability challenges, including resource use, waste management, and climate change.
MGT-5222: Diversity and Social Sustainability (3 credits)
Socially sustainable communities and businesses are equitable, diverse, connected, democratic and provide a good quality of life. Social sustainability occurs when the formal and informal systems and relationships actively support the capacity of current and future generations to create healthy and livable communities. From a business perspective, social sustainability is about understanding the impacts of corporations on people and society. This class will examine how social sustainability interacts with diversity, as well as how business decisions should be proactive with identifying and managing the impact on employees, workers in the value chain, customers, and local communities.
MGT-5340: Leading High Performing Teams (3 credits)
This course examines characteristics of high performing teams, common challenges that prevent teams from realizing their full potential, and selected strategies for overcoming constraints on optimal team performance. Students explore the influence of diversity and inclusion on team performance outcomes, along with the evidence-based practices employed by exemplary team leaders in mobilizing others toward the achievement of shared aims.
MGT-5342: Leader Identity and Development (3 credits)
Change agents in every setting confront conflicted situations and have leadership roles therein. Such individuals have an ethical duty to know themselves well enough to “first, do no harm.” That duty includes understanding conflict and identity as enduring factors in ordinary human experience and leadership challenges. Conflicts press for choices among stakeholders’ competing interests and needs, often threatening identity along with the presenting issues. Drawing from developmental, conflict, and leadership theories and applications, this course examines mental models of leadership, how personal and group identities form and change as they develop, and how these factors impact leadership and conflict styles, effectiveness in change making, and capacities for critical reflection and foresight.
MGT-5380: Developing People and Performance (3 credits)
Skillful leaders foster workplace culture, practices, and relationships that support learning, satisfaction, and strong performance among employees. Employees, in turn commit their knowledge, skills, and energy to the organization’s success. Through the interdisciplinary lens of human resource development, students explore the value and benefits of developing people and performance in diverse and inclusive work environments. Theories related to training, organizational development, performance improvement and systems create the landscape for students to explore the practical aspects of organizational culture and systems that support the development and well-being of employees and organizational stability.
MGT-5420: The Healthcare Sector as a Complex System (3 credits)
This course will provide students with an overview of the U.S. healthcare system, its components, as well as relevant policy challenges currently facing us. This course will give special attention to the status of health reform and the role of the state and federal legislators with respect to budgetary implications of healthcare spending. We will focus on the major health policy institutions and important issues that cut across institutions, including private insurers and the federal/state financing programs (Medicare and Medicaid/SCHIP). Attention also will be given to disparities in access to care, the role of pharmaceuticals in health care and the pricing and regulation of the pharmaceutical industry, the quality of care, and the drivers of cost growth.
MGT 5860: Sustainable Business Strategies (3 credits)
Sustainable business strategies leverage the integration of economic, environmental, and social aims into a firms goals, activities, and planning, with the aim of creating long-term value for the firm, its stakeholders, and the wider society. Decision-makers have to balance these goals, but often have difficulties seeing how their decisions contribute to sustainable development at the system level. This class will give leaders the tools to formulate and execute strategies to meet the current needs of the firm and its stakeholders while protecting, sustaining, and enhancing all resources that will be needed in the future.
MGT-6000: Integrated Keystone Project (3 credits)
The Keystone Project course is the culminating experience of the program study. The Keystone Project will consist of an independent research study and/or a professional action project. A suitable project involves both secondary (library) and primary (field) research on a topic pertinent to the field of management, leadership and human services. Students engage in the process of planning, collecting, analyzing and presenting data. As a result, students move from consumer to creator of new knowledge. The culminating product is a written report of the investigation and a presentation to the course professor and peers.
MNM-5110: Nonprofit History, Context, Theories, and Trends (3 credits)
Among the many types of organizations that exist, what is a nonprofit? Are they an aberration in a capitalist economy or an intentional counterpoint? What impels people to establish them and support them? Is it to fulfill a need in society, or in themselves? And are they worth the effort and resources people put into them?
This course will explore all these questions as it surveys the development of the nonprofit sector and examines some of the theories that attempt to explain its existence and purpose. Moving from past to future, it will also discuss some of the trends currently reshaping the sector and the impact they may have upon it.
MNM-5210: Development and Fundraising (3 credits)
Development (also often referred to as “advancement”) is what empowers and supports nonprofits in doing the work of fulfilling their stated missions. If you think of a nonprofit organization’s programs as the essence of what it does for its cause or community, the work of development is that of garnering the resources necessary to make that good work possible. For many (though not all) nonprofits, the key component to resource development is fundraising. This course, therefore, focuses primarily on the fundamentals of fundraising, from preparing a fundraising plan through acknowledging and recognizing donors appropriately for their support.
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