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AMSL - Leadership

Business & Management Programs Graduate Master of Science

Program Delivery

Online Program

Program Level


Degree Designation

Master of Science

Program Type



College of Graduate & Continuing Studies

Program Description

Program Directors: Linda Ratsep, Toni Raftery.

The Leadership (M.S.) program provides a relevant educational experience to graduates who positively impact their organizations and communities as leaders or future leaders. The program's vision is to develop graduates capable of addressing organizations’ toughest leadership challenges with character, integrity, and distinction.


The Leadership program delivers a graduate educational experience to adults around the world teaching them how to leverage human capacity to achieve strategic results. We do this through a blend of academic excellence and rigorous application in our students’ practical worlds using the engaged interaction of our online classroom and faculty.

Program Strategy and the Role of Student Engagement

The Leadership (M.S.) program has a strong application/demonstration component that allows students to not only learn about leadership but also synthesize course content and demonstrate understanding through both academic assignments and professional practice.

The marketplace and global economy require an understanding of strategy and strategic communication for the contemporary leader. Contemporary leaders also must understand how to lead change within their organizations or support change efforts made by others—often in an environment that is continually transitioning. Realities of the global economy have created what is now commonly called the “knowledge-based economy” and the Master of Science in Leadership is structured to provide students with tools, understanding, and vision to address the leadership challenges of our time.

The program will rely upon the quality of our engagement in our students’ practical lives to differentiate our offerings and strive toward our vision—translating theory into our students’ real-world practices every day, online, and on the fly.

Program Specific Admission Requirements

  • A bachelor's degree from an accredited institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education, or an equivalent degree from a foreign institution, as evaluated by WESIERFSpanTran, or CED.

    • Undergraduate GPA of 2.75 or higher

  • If English is not your first language, proof of English language proficiency is required. This can be demonstrated in one of three ways:

    • TOEFL - a minimum score of 550 (paper-based test) or 80 (Internet-based test) is required.

    • IELTS – a minimum composite score of 6.5 is required.

    • The applicant holds a baccalaureate or master’s degree from a college/university/institution in which the primary language of instruction was English.

All eligibility requirements are expected to be met unless noted in specific articulation agreements or memoranda of understanding (MOUs).

Up to 12-semester graduate credits for study conducted elsewhere may be awarded. Norwich complies with VA regulations and guidelines as it pertains to transfer credits.

Additional Program Information

The core curriculum is designed to integrate major leadership issues relevant to individuals who work in organizations at either a direct leadership level, those positioned to directly lead in the future, or those individuals who aspire to lead. Current demographic trends have seen growth among younger executives and added responsibilities for those who may lack experience leading others. Contemporary workforce dynamics illustrate different values than prior generations and the need for new leaders to study topics such as emotional intelligence, knowledge management, and leadership theory.

The Leadership Development Portfolio (LDP) is a required element of the program and a vehicle by which students assimilate course objectives into their professional roles within their organization. The LDP is comprised of student work that demonstrates leadership development consistent with a plan of academic study and professional objectives. Students use the LDP to relate academic content to their professional lives and role within their organization so that they may “live what they learn.”

Additionally, one concentration is required.

Human Resources Leadership Concentration

The Human Resources Leadership concentration focuses on two key areas of study: human resources leadership and leveraging human capacity for strategic results. These two seminars will explore key Human Resources Leadership concepts and best practice development related to strategic and operational planning, process management, maximized use of supportive technology and human capital resources.

Leading Change Management Consulting Concentration

The Leading Change Management Consulting concentration focuses on three key areas of study:

  • Consulting Models

  • The Role of the Consultant, and

  • Implementing Change Initiatives.

The seminars will explore consulting models, how to be a change management consultant and how to implement a change initiative. Studies in these two seminars will provide a MSL student with a solid foundation for being an external or internal consultant. The seminars will address three important questions for prospective students and employers:

  1. “What models and methodologies have proven successful?”

  2. “What are the tips, tools and techniques for being a successful consultant?”

  3. “What are the keys to implementing a change initiative?”

Public Sector Leadership & Crisis Management Concentration

Provides fundamentals of management and leadership in the public sector. Students explore major models of leadership from theoretical, ethical, and practical perspectives. Students develop a thorough understanding of leadership concepts and how to apply them in their own work environment. Leading in crisis situations, including how discussions are made and implemented, how information is communicated in critical situations, how political leaders are held accountable in crisis situations, and how communities can be returned to a state of normality after a critical incident has occurred are key topics covered in this concentration.

The concentration's seminars explore key best practices for public sector leadership and management in areas such as workforce focus, leadership and governance, ethics, information technology, and knowledge management. Seminars include interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary competence, effective leadership and management skills, and action plan development and implementation. The seminars also cover how to create and maintain intergovernmental relationships, form partnerships with elected officials, staff, and private sector business.

Organizational Leadership Concentration

The Organization Leadership concentration requires that students embark on an independent research project, complete it in three phases, by the end of the sixth (last) course. Students are encouraged to identify a corporate partner to focus on in a case study and with whom to practice the skills gained in the organizational concentration courses. If students are unable to use their own employer, they may select another enterprise. Students will receive instructions for completing each phase of the independent research project in the first week of the three concentration courses.

Project Management Concentration

The Project Management concentration focuses on the ability to communicate and interact effectively among managers in order to accomplish business goals. The concentration will first focus on the application of sound project management principles and practices, then focus on

project leadership and team building, and finally, on the application of both as a project manager overseeing and managing a project in real-time.

Following the Project Management Institute practices into the classroom -- first teaching principles and practices to the students and applying these principles and practices in the management of a project.

Supply Chain Management Concentration

The Supply Chain Management concentration focuses on three key areas of study, strategy planning, and operation; logistics design and execution; and, optimization.

These focal areas will explore key supply chain concepts related to strategy, planning, processes, technologies, warehousing, distribution, transportation, procurement, contracts, networks, inventory, capacity, business operations, tools supply and demand, forecasting, and the language of supply chain management. The concentration will provide a solid foundation of supply chain management concepts, principles, application, and assessment, with a focus on continuous improvement. In effect, addressing three important business questions related to supply chain management, "What are we going to do?" (Strategy); "How do we implement?" (Logistics); and, "How do we improve upon what we are doing?" (Optimization).

Technology Management Concentration

The Technology Management concentration focuses on providing students with the knowledge and skills required to be an effective business leader within all areas of business with specialized expertise in technology management. The concentration focus on technology management strategy and decision-making, the role research and development play with regard to technology management strategies, technology project management, and technology absorption, diffusion, and margining within organizations. The Technology Management concentration focuses on providing knowledge and skills required to be an effective business leader within all areas of business with specialized expertise in technology management. Additionally, the concentration will focus on technology management strategy and decision-making, the role research and development play with regard to technology management strategies, technology project management, and technology absorption, diffusion, and margining within organizations.

Criminal Justice and Public Safety Concentration

Our criminal justice and public safety concentration is designed to help students develop the skills needed to pursue or further their careers in law enforcement or transition into another area of public service. This concentration explores the best practices of law enforcement agencies, corrections administration, and public safety management.

Fiscal Management Concentration

This concentration explores the legal and regulatory foundation of financial reporting and accountability for public organizations. Topics include the development of transactions, enactment of appropriations, and incurrence of obligations or encumbrances. Other topics

include financial reporting, analysis of governmental financial performance, costing of government services, and auditing governmental organizations.

Students will be provided with the current study guides published by the Association of Government Accountants' Certified Government Financial Manager, designed specifically to prepare professionals and students for the CGFM certification examination. This concentration also introduces students to four major areas of financial concern: preparation of budgets, creating management strategies for the organization based on the principles of strategic financial management, obtaining financial resources by issuing bonds and levying taxes, and managing cash and employee retirement funds. Students will also examine contemporary perspectives on professional ethics and ethical behavior of leaders in the public sector, particularly in regard to their fiduciary responsibility in investing and managing public funds

Nonprofit Management Concentration

The Nonprofit Management concentration focuses on these key areas of study:

  • Nonprofit leadership and management

  • Nonprofit Administration

  • Transformational Organizational Culture, Human Resource Development and Management

  • Resource Development and Efficiency by Nonprofit Organizations, and

  • Healthcare Management.

The seminars explore key best practices for nonprofit leadership in areas such as workforce focus, volunteer staff management, leadership and governance, nonprofit law, ethics, grant writing, accounting and economics, healthcare information technology, and knowledge management. Seminars will provide a skill set that includes interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary competence, effective leadership and management skills, and action plan development and implementation.

Non Specialized Concentration

The non specialized Concentration provides a foundation through in-depth leadership and management courses ideal for specialized career goals. Areas of focus will offer an understanding to apply key concepts used in the primary functional areas of leadership; apply critical and creative thinking skills and recommend implementable solutions that meet objectives; and demonstrate the ability to communicate and interact effectively as a leader.