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School for Adult Learning Graduate Programs

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Master of Science in Strategic
Leadership & Design

A graduate degree in Strategic Leadership & Design offers education and development in the areas that will make a difference in today's world: strategies for problem solving and direction in how to conceptualize goals and communicate them effectively.

Unlike an MBA, which emphasizes technical knowledge of current business practices and theory, a degree in Strategic Leadership & Design focuses specifically on problem analysis, developing problem-solving strategies and guiding an organization's human resources.

Job outlook

The Master of Science in Strategic Leadership & Design program prepares you for a wide variety of jobs, including project manager, director, strategic planner, business owner, consultant, or sustainability professional in businesses, non-profit organizations and communities.

Program length & format

The program is 36 credit hours and can be completed in two years. Classes are accelerated into 7.5 weeks, so you can complete two classes per term while only taking one class at a time.

The program is structured as a cohort, meaning students begin the program at the same time and take all classes together. This gives you the opportunity to develop relationships with classmates from diverse career backgrounds.

Class Times & Location

Classes are offered in sequence in a blended online and on-campus format. On-campus classes meet one night per week from 6 to 9:45 p.m.


The Strategic Leadership & Design curriculum focuses on real-life application of course concepts. The course sequence culminates in a capstone experience in which students work with an industry leader to either solve a critical problem facing the organization, explore and make a contribution to industry practice, or complete a field experience.

Recent capstone experiences include:

  • Developing program orientation curriculum for the Indiana Department of Workforce Development's Hoosier Fair Corps Youth Employment Program
  • Creating human resources process efficiencies for PTS Diagnostics
  • Developing a credit-risk management plan for leadership succession for Bank of America
  • Redesigning student internship processes and supports for Marian University
  • Analyzing the UK's National Healthcare Service using the Balanced Scorecard measurement, working with Dr. Naim Slim, director at Maidenstone and Kings Hospital NHS Trust in the UK
  • Creating a start-up strategy for a small business owner

See the full course sequence and class descriptions for the Strategic Leadership & Design program ►


Tuition for 2017-18 is $478/credit hour. Learn more about financial aid for graduate students ►

Technology Requirements

Students will need a computer with Microsoft 7 and Microsoft Office 10, a flash drive, a headset with a microphone, and access to a printer and high speed Internet, as class assignments may involve electronic textbooks, streaming and webinars.

What to expect from the Strategic Leadership & Design program

  • You will learn to develop and implement “process models” to analyze, design, develop, implement and evaluate individual and organizational performance in both profit and not-for-profit settings.
  • You will develop skills in modeling and structuring that will help you meet the needs of individual organizations. Using critical-thinking and problem-solving skills, you will be able to break down complex problems into discrete units and provide a structured, systematic approach to problem-solving. 
  • You will possess the skills and knowledge to meet the demands of senior management and assume leadership roles within any organization. 
  • You will be prepared to lead your organization to greater effectiveness and success through developing strategies, thinking like a senior manager, leading high-performing teams and making a positive difference in the lives of others.

When can I start?

New cohorts begin each fall.

Apply now