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    Saybrook University
  Apr 25, 2024
2023-2024 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Spring Addendum 
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2023-2024 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Spring Addendum

Ph.D. Managing Organizational Systems

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Overview of Program

​​Ph.D. Managing Organizational Systems (MOS) program explores these systems in their professional and global environments. It engages professionals who want to lead as distinctive members in the forefront of their fields. 
Students accomplish this by assessing organizational systems, which provides a base of knowledge and skills they can use in many settings.  The Ph.D. develops strategic leaders who work in challenging local and global situations, who need to identify and address complex problems, and who learn to collaboratively design and implement innovative solutions that make a sustainable difference. 
Today's organizations are complex systems. Many have globally dispersed operations and all, regardless of size, are globally influenced every day.  Thus, leaders in organizations must be able to recognize and assess the forces that impact them. To thrive, they must mobilize the energy and commitment of their people as co-collaborators, as stakeholders who see themselves as leaders, and as willing participants in transformation as the world's adaptive demands escalate. Expertise in systems-based leadership is essential to meet such demands. 
The Ph.D. curriculum equips professionals to meet such demands to envision and support the kind of systemic change needed for organizations to be resilient in their 21st Century milieu and to operate in a sustainable and socially responsive manner. It aids professionals to develop innovative, successful systems that respond to the emerging global needs for sustainability while creating the conditions for all within an organization to contribute to their full potential.  
The program offers flexibility to chart a course of study that fits students' general or specific areas of interest within the broad focus of organizational systems design and transformation, innovative leadership, collaborative management, distributive organizational behavior, and sustainability and social innovation.​ 

Program Learning Outcomes

  1. ​​Assess, design, lead, manage, and evaluate complex organizational change initiatives in their chosen professions, places of work, and in the wider global community; 
  2. Apply systems thinking to conduct environmental analysis which includes internal and external conditions, create strategies to design, deploy, and evaluate collaborative solutions for pursuing organizational and community level opportunities and challenges; 
  3. Operate within a consistent framework of individual and collective ethics and social responsibility; 
  4. Practice and promote self-awareness, appreciation of diversity, and constructive dialogue to initiate and maintain authentic relationships, leadership, and sustainable collaboration; 
  5. Design and conduct systematic and systemic research that employs robust evidence-based critical analysis that is rooted in scholarship and practice (praxis). 
  6. Distinguish, analyze, and critically assess competing leadership/followership theories and concepts; 
  7. Integrate core theories and concepts of leadership through individual reflection and intellectual projects.​ 

Career Opportunities

Cross-cutting relevance. The curriculum equips professionals to recognize and create necessary long-lasting social, economic, political, and structural changes by learning how to build innovative and responsive solutions with systems-oriented principles and approaches that can adapt and transfer across organizational contexts. 
Application-focused. Professionals develop more sophisticated systems analysis and solution-building by applying their high-level theoretical knowledge to work needed in the trenches of current issues and chosen professions. 
Crossing disciplinary boundaries. The program evolves a culture of recognizing the value of gaining knowledge and practice from multiple disciplines to inform context-specific systems interventions and to be able to communicate across professions.   
Change, adaptive innovation, and transformation. Through immersion in systems thinking and analysis, professionals recognize why 21st Century economic, environmental, and social challenges demand innovative leadership to transform people and organizations with adaptive capacities to thrive while changing the way they engage such challenges.    
The human-information-technology interface. Professionals learn to use the systems-advantage in assessing and designing information-flows and technical resources to support the efficiency and effectiveness of stakeholders at all levels of organizations and partnerships from local to global. 
Collaboration and communication. Professionals apply skills in systems thinking and analysis to drive the design and implementation of collaborative systems for diverse individuals, teams, and organizations to communicate multiple perspectives and approaches to solutions, and to coordinate their routine work and innovative initiatives. 

Program Requirements

Admissions Requirements

​​The total doctoral degree is 60 credits. Besides the 8 research and dissertation focused courses, there are 10 foundational courses in leadership, organizational behavior systems thinking and professional ethics.  There are 2 elective courses, a choice of one of three courses for each elective.  
Transfer Credit Policy:  Transfer credits, to be considered, must have been (a) awarded by a regionally accredited university, (b) earned at the graduate level (master’s or doctoral), (c) earned at the grade level of B or better and (d) evaluated by the Department Chair as equivalent to a degree course for which a substitution is appropriate and conceptually fit with the degree program course of study. No more than 12 credits may be transferred.​ 

University Learning Experience

Virtual Learning Experience (VLE) - Optional, Community Learning Experience (CLE) - Optional


Mode of Delivery

​​Online and Asynchronous.

Length of Program

​​The total doctoral degree is 60 credits. Besides the 8 research and dissertation focused courses, there are 10 foundational courses in leadership, organizational behavior systems thinking and professional ethics.  There are 2 elective courses, a choice of one of three courses for each elective.​ 

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