Online Master’s Degree in Organizational Development

An online master’s degree in organizational development is one of the best degrees available for someone who managers a team of employees in business or government, or for someone already working as a manager within a non-profit or service-based organization. Programs typically provide people with the skills to plan, direct, and coordinate programs that enhance the knowledge and skills of an organization’s employees and help align them with the goals and intentions of the business or organization. As modern businesses and organizations grow, executives within the company rely on organizational development managers to enhance employees’ skills and the overall quality of their output by working with managers from various departments to identify training needs.

Classes for an Online Master’s Degree in Organizational Development

Online master’s degree programs in organizational development will cover a broad range of topics through a combination of academic training and practical application. Students are usually required to complete a significant amount of reading and watch lectures online. Students will learn the psychology behind an employee’s needs for development, and they’ll also learn to quickly master various methods of technology used to train individuals. Students in an online organizational development master’s degree program also learn modern strategies for human resources acquisition, retention, management, and educational development. Some courses that may be included are:

  • Methods of Organizational Research
  • Organizational Interventions
  • Organizational Ethics
  • Developing Self-Directed Work Teams
  • Human Behavior

In most cases, students enrolled in an online master’s in organizational development program are required to complete an internship or work-study as part of the curriculum. This allows students to gain experience of developmental management principles applied in the workplace. In addition, students must complete a final capstone project, or thesis, before graduation. The project’s goal is to demonstrate that the student’s mastery of organizational development techniques, and is usually focused on specific method or area. Students usually must present, and defend their findings before an advisory board, and demonstrate how the project can be applied in the workplace.

A Career as a Graduate with an Online Masters Degree in Organizational Development

After graduation, individuals possessing an online master’s degree in organizational development can usually find a number of opportunities within human resources management or other leadership and management positions. One of the most common careers is as a training and development manager. These types of managers develop training programs, along with executives and managers within the company or organization, to align training and development with the group’s goals. While a bachelor’s degree combined with the right experience is usually enough to gain entry into the field, in certain cases, or in large businesses, a master’s degree in the field may be required, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The BLS also reported that there were about 29,800 jobs in the field in 2010. Positions within the field are expected to grow by 15% by the year 2020.

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