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Course Descriptions

Master of Science – Learning & Talent Development

The Master of Science – Learning and Talent Development program offers students a well-rounded education that will make students advanced leaders within their organizations. 

AOL 501: Foundations of Evidence-Based Learning

This course is designed to provide an introduction to seeking and applying evidence-based approaches to learning. Emphasis is placed on providing students with a strong foundation for evaluating research and applying findings through readings, discussion, and evaluation/application exercises.

AOL 540: Strengths-Based Leadership

As leadership is at the very heart of Midland University’s graduate programs, students will take this course to explore: 1.) their own strengths as indicated by the StrengthsFinder® assessment and 2.) how to best utilize these strengths in both an individual and organizational leadership role. AOL 540 will introduce a variety of models and theories of leadership that are applicable to a range of educational settings. Students will also develop their own personal leadership philosophy statement regarding adult and organizational learning.

AOL 541: Understanding the Adult Learner

Due to a variety of complex forces, adult learning occurs very differently than does learning as a child. Students in this course will be introduced to the foundational theories and theorists of adult learning as well as an overview of the historical development of adult learning as a professional field.

AOL 542: Diverse Learning Contexts

This course explores the multi-faceted ways that diversity impacts educational practices. Students enrolled in AOL 542 will gain an understanding of the many ways that diversity intersects with adult learner needs in multicultural, multilingual, special needs, gifted and talented, at-risk, gendered, and socio-economic classrooms, communities, and organizations.

AOL 543: Organizational Learning Strategies

Successful leadership in adult and organizational learning is connected to knowing one’s own strengths and identifying the strengths of others in order to accomplish a given task. This course introduces students to the dynamic world of organizational structure, relations, behavior, and learning contexts. Students will gain a better understanding of the constituents involved with learning in organizational contexts as well as identifying aspects of team composition necessary to accomplish complex and multi-faceted learning tasks within these environments. Insights into an organization’s capacity to learn, and capacity to influence the organizational learning process, will also be explored.

AOL 544: Cultural Foundations of Adult Education

This elective course examines the philosophical, sociological, and cultural foundations of adult education and learning opportunities in local, national, and global contexts. Students will explore how adult education opportunities have evolved to meet a particular community’s needs as well as compare and contrast the varying benefits and challenges.

AOL 612: Leadership Theory & Application

The goal of this course is to enhance your leadership and improve your ability to lead with purpose. Learning will occur through the review of literature and through participation in hands on exercises, case studies, simulations, role play activities and online workshops. You’ll be provided with strategies and techniques to effectively lead, collaborate, tap into and mobilize the motivation and energy of various stakeholders, diagnose and navigate complex team/organizational dynamics and influence sustainable change within the organization.

AOL 641: Facilitating Adult & Organizational Learning

Teaching adults is not like teaching children. Adults learn differently and so the methods used to teach adults must also be different. Students taking this course will explore a variety of teaching and facilitation philosophies and methods that reach adult learners in many different settings. Prerequisite: AOL 541 Foundations of Adult Learning.

AOL 642: Building Individual Learning Capacity

While many formal adult learning opportunities occur within a group setting, many informal adult learning opportunities are based on a one-to-one relationship between learner and facilitator. AOL 642 explores the interpersonal dynamics that impact the learner-facilitator relationship. Students enrolled in this course will examine the structure and outcomes of individual adult learning opportunities through communication, education, and psychological concepts. Prerequisite: AOL 541 Foundations of Adult Learning

AOL 643: Workforce Preparation and Engagement

A prepared and engaged workforce provides positive contributions to a community. However, some adults are either not well prepared to enter the workforce or struggle to meet workplace expectations. Using adult and organizational learning lenses, AOL643 examines barriers to successful workforce entry and engagement, as well as strengths-based and educational strategies to overcome those barriers.

AOL 644: Program Design, Administration, & Evaluation

AOL 644 prepares students to design, administer, and evaluate learning programs at both the individual and organizational level. Topics covered in this course include collaborating with stakeholders, effectively planning and administering programs, and using The Program Evaluation Standards to assess and evaluate the success of learning programs. Prerequisite: AOL 541 Foundations of Adult Learning

AOL 645: Coaching and Mentoring in Learning Environments

Students enrolled in AOL 645 will gain a better understanding of how to coach and mentor adults to learn more effectively and grow professionally. The impact of personality, psychology and group dynamics on teaching and learning as well as different theories of coaching and mentoring will be explored in depth. Students will identify their own coaching and mentoring philosophy and style as well as how to adapt that philosophy and style to a variety of learning environments. Prerequisite: AOL 541 Foundations of Adult Learning.

AOL 646: Continuing Education and Professional Development

Most organizations and professions expect that those who work for, or belong to, them will participate in continuous professional development. This course presents both theoretical foundations and practical implications for working with continuing education and professional development programs across the professions and in a variety of settings.

AOL 649: Instructional Design and Technology

This course will examine the current trends, influences, and expectations for the development, implementation, and assessment of curriculum. Consideration is given to negotiating between the sometimes competing interests of standards, assessments, skills currency, technology, multiple feedback sources, and media selection. Students will also have multiple opportunities to analyze educational resources, understand instructional design processes, and explore technological options for learning including social media. Prerequisite: AOL 541 Foundations of Adult Learning

AOL 690: Training Program Capstone

In this course students will use the skills and knowledge developed throughout the program to complete an action project. Students will work with an identified organization to assess learning needs then plan, design, deliver, and evaluate a learning program. Students will present a summary and evaluation of a project to internal and external audiences. Prerequisites: At least 12 credits of Organizational Learning coursework.

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