M.A. Organization Development: About

At a Glance

Program Type
Master's Degree
Spring 2021
Delivery Method
Field of Interest
Organization learning & Change
Days of Week
2 years
Total Units

AACSB Accredited

The most recognized form of specialized and professional accreditation an institution and its business programs can earn.

Application by permission only, please contact our Student Services and Advising Coordinator Nina Mendia at mendian@​sonoma.​edu

The M.A. in Organization Development prepares you to create more effective human systems. In four semesters, you will gain the practical skills, conceptual knowledge, and field-tested experience to successfully lead business and community improvement efforts.

Under the guidance of experienced faculty practitioners, cohort groups of 10 to 15 students participate in seminar discussions, skill-building activities, and field projects. Classes meet two nights per week and one Saturday per month on the SSU campus. Professional Practice projects require some work during business hours.

The Organization Development program is designed to accommodate the working professional: mid-career individuals preparing to become leaders and specialists in organizational change, process improvement, and human systems redesign. The Program is appropriate for senior leaders seeking to become more effective in their work, and anyone who would benefit from greater personal and professional effectiveness in their life and work. Student cohort

The SSU M.A. in OD is rooted in the awareness that today's increasingly turbulent business, technological, and socioeconomic environments create significant challenges. Organizational research identifies that organizations which are more collaborative, innovative, resourceful, and adaptive are both more responsive to their environment and more productive for those who are a part of the organization. Internal and external success are explored in the program.

To respond to the challenges of moving from static linear bureaucracies to more adaptive and collaborative, organizations must be staffed with managers and specialists who have skills that match these goals. Today's leaders need the ability to:

  • Think systemically, taking into account the strategic dynamics affecting the organization
  • Lead collaboratively, creating the engagement necessary to coordinate successful change efforts
  • Address underlying causal factors rather than settle for superficial fixes
  • Guide the redesign of organization structures and work processes
  • Facilitate group problem solving, decision making efforts, and teamwork
  • Mediate conflicting interests, working with stakeholders to develop a broad consneus for action
  • Be relective and aware of their internal experience and interaction patterns as they impact their effectiveness working with client groups
  • Act with awareness of the social and ethical dimensions of their work