New Experiential Leadership Completion Program Available for MAAL Students

leadership completion program

This summer, Master of Arts in Administrative Leadership students will have a unique and exciting option for completing their degree.

The Experiential Leadership Completion Program (ELCP), a three-part development program that helps students grow their personal leadership skills, will include the Leadership Development Experience (Experiential Leadership I), Action Research (Experiential Leadership II) and a focused comprehensive exam.

The Leadership Development Experience (LDE) is a five-day, immersive classroom experience held June 21-25 on OU’s Norman campus. During the Action Research portion of the ELCP, students will work on a personal leadership development plan and learn more about how to increase an organization’s leadership capacity. A focused comprehensive exam makes up the third part of the ELCP.

The ELCP is another option for the Master of Arts in Administrative Leadership degree completion process, in place of a thesis or regular comprehensive exam. The immersion experience is also open to graduate students interested in gaining leadership experience or pursuing the Administrative Leadership certificate.

“The Experiential Leadership Completion Program provides a unique opportunity to enhance leadership skills dramatically, as well as learn how to increase an organization’s leadership capacity while completing their degree,” said Dr. Paul Dyer, lead facilitator for the ELCP. “It’s for students who want to move into leadership positions within their organization, experienced leaders wishing to enhance their performance and students who want to help organizations increase their overall quality of leadership.

“We know the value of a dollar,” Dyer added. “The cost of tuition, travel and, even more importantly, students’ investment of time is significant. We are committed to delivering a very high quality learning experience during the ELCP.”

The classroom experience is highly interactive. It will include discussion, experiential learning, group exercises and behavioral feedback from assessments completed before the classroom sessions begin.

The program will help students increase self-awareness of their leadership blind spots and attain a lifelong process for improving their personal leadership performance.

“A few weeks before the LDE week begins, students receive several journal articles and individual assessments. We will use the personality and other behavioral assessments to prepare personalized reports to help students tailor a specific and individualized leadership development plan to enhance their performance as a leader,” said Dyer. “Over an intense five-day period, they’ll work closely with faculty, consultants and fellow students as they experience learning exercises and in-depth behavioral assessments on OU’s Norman campus. The LDE classroom experience addresses many of the significant challenges that today’s mid- to senior-level leaders face.”

Following the classroom week, students will apply the lessons they learned to their own personal leadership development in the course Experiential Leadership II by completing a developmental action plan crafted during the classroom experience and writing a paper summarizing their experience.

“During this part of the ELCP, students will read several journal articles to help enhance and complete their personal Developmental Action Plan they drafted during the LDE classroom week,” said Dyer. “They’ll then execute their development actions and write a paper detailing their developmental experience.”

The final part of the program is a focused, comprehensive exam. Students will draw on their interdisciplinary learning and the specific information provided during the ELCP to respond to exam questions. Like other Master of Arts in Administrative Leadership comprehensive exams, the ELCP comprehensive asks students to draw widely from their MAAL program experience as they consider interdisciplinary approaches. It will focus on the concepts, theories and applications students encountered during Parts 1 and 2 of the ELCP.

“The comprehensive exam will ask students to demonstrate a solid knowledge of both theory and application of the principles needed to grow an organization’s leadership capacity,” said Dyer.

The ELCP is a smart choice for completing the MAAL. The program will help students increase self-awareness of their leadership blind spots and attain a lifelong process for improving their personal leadership performance. Students will also gain new skills, increase their capacity to build more committed teams and enhance their ability to manage others.

“Nothing is more important to an organization’s success than the quality of its leaders. The ELCP will help students improve both their personal leadership skills, as well as their ability to grow leaders within an organizational context,” Dyer said. “We know that we create value for our students in direct relation to the usefulness of what they learn. We help students develop skills and new approaches that improve performance so that both individual leaders and their organizations reach their goals.”

To learn more about the ELCP, students can contact Paul Dyer at The program will be offered again in May and July of 2018, and more information will be made available when 2018 dates are set.

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Tami Althoff

Tami Althoff holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism. She is a reporter with more than 20 years’ experience working for newspapers, including The Oklahoman. She has covered everything from breaking news to local music and art. She loves sports, especially OU football and basketball games, where she often embarrasses her children by yelling too loudly.