The Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Leadership curriculum has been designed to help you acquire a practical set of skills that you can transfer across various aspects of your life and career. As you build a solid foundation in understanding the roles and major functions of leadership in contemporary organizations, you can gain the tools necessary for overcoming obstacles to effective organizational performance.

In addition to the required courses in organizational leadership, you will also choose from courses in communication arts and sciences; crime, law, and justice; labor and employment relations; management; philosophy; political science; psychology; and sociology.

This program requires that you complete a minimum of 123 credits. To earn this degree, you must successfully complete:

  • 36 credits required for the major
    • 12 prescribed core course credits
    • 24 supporting and related course credits
  • 45 general education credits
  • 24 bachelor of arts degree credits
  • 18–24 elective credits

The degree's 12 credits of prescribed core courses focus on contemporary labor management and supervisory leadership issues. Many different course options are available to fulfill the remainder of the program, allowing you to customize the degree to meet your specific goals.

Course List - Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Leadership

Requirements for the Major (36 credits)

A student enrolled in this major must receive a grade of C or better in all courses required for the major.

Prescribed Courses (12 credits)
Title Abbreviation Description Credits
Introduction to Leadership OLEAD 100 This course introduces key leadership concepts and practices based on current theory and research. It is designed to help students to discover the knowledge and skills that are characteristic of effective leaders. 3 credits
Leadership Development: A Life-Long Learning Perspective OLEAD 409 The course examines the continuing influence of social and environmental factors in shaping leadership and leadership development. 3 credits
Communication Skills for Leaders in Groups and Organizations OLEAD/LER 464 Theory- and research-based communication skills for leaders dealing with work-related problems in contemporary groups and organizations. 3 credits
Collective Decision Making OLEAD/LER 465 Application of theories of decision making to work-related issues in groups and organizations requiring collective resolution action. 3 credits

Supporting and Related Courses (24 credits)

Choose one of the courses from the Conflict Management table.

I. Conflict Management (3 credits)
Title Abbreviation Credits
Conflict Resolution and Negotiation CAS 404

Prerequisite: CAS 100
3 credits
Workplace Dispute Resolution LER 437

Prerequisite: LER 100
3 credits

Choose one of the courses from the Research Methods table.

II. Research Methods (3 credits)
Title Abbreviation Credits
Research Methods in Labor Studies and Employment Relations LER 312 3 credits
Research Methods in Sociology SOC 207

Prerequisite: 3 credits in Sociology
3 credits

Choose one of the courses from the Motivation table.

III. Motivation (3 credits)
Title Abbreviation Credits
Leadership and Motivation MGMT 321

Prerequisite: B A 304 or MGMT 301, or 3 credits of psychology, sociology, cultural anthropology
3 credits
Work Attitudes and Motivation PSYCH 484

Prerequisite: PSYCH 100; PSYCH 200 or STAT 200 or 6 credits of GQ
3 credits

Choose one of the courses from the Ethics table.

IV. Ethics (3 credits)
Title Abbreviation Credits
Human Resources Ethics LER 460

Prerequisite: Take one of the following courses ARMY 402, H P A460, HM 466, MGMT 341, MGMT 441, NAVSC402, NURS 432, PSYCH281, 3 credits in Labor and Employment Relations (LER), or Human Resources and Employment Relations (HRER)
3 credits
Ethical Leadership PHIL 119 3 credits
Additional Supporting Courses (12 credits; 6 of which must be at the 400-level)
Abbreviation Credits
CAS 404, 452, 475 3 credits each
CRIM 100, 113, 482 3 credits each
LER 100, 136, 201, 312, 400, 434, 435, 437, 458Y, 460 3 credits each
MGMT 321 3 credits
PHIL 103, 119 3 credits each
PL SC 001, 490 3 credits each
PSYCH 484, 485 3 credits each
SOC 207, 404, 455, 456 3 credits each

Note: 3 of the 45 credits in the General Education section are included in the requirements for the major.

Bachelor of Arts Requirements (24 credits)
Title Credits
Foreign Language 12 credits
Other Cultures 3 credits
Arts, Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Natural Sciences, Quantification, and/or Foreign Language (beyond 12th credit or a different language) 9 credits
General Education (45 credits**)
Description Credits
Arts – GA 6 credits
Humanities – GH 6 credits
Health and Wellness – GHW 3 credits
Natural Sciences – GN 9 credits
Social and Behavioral Sciences – GS 6 credits
Writing and Speaking – GWS* 9 credits
Quantification – GQ* 6 credits
Integrative Studies (6 credits)***

*A student enrolled in this course must receive a grade of C or better.

**12 credits are included in the requirements for the major.

***This requirement only applies to students starting in summer 2018 or later. Learn more about the Integrative Studies options and consult your academic adviser when choosing courses to fulfill these requirements. 

Electives (18–24 credits)

Please note: Among the above degree requirements, students should incorporate at least 3 credits in US cultures, 3 credits in international (IL) cultures, and 3 credits in writing across the curriculum courses. The above course list includes only courses offered by World Campus. An official degree audit or the recommended academic plan for this program may include additional course options and detailed requirements. All students are expected to complete at least 36 Penn State credits to earn this degree. Please consult an academic adviser for details.

Course Availability

If you're ready to see when your courses will be offered, visit our public LionPATH course search (opens in new window) to start planning ahead.