Frequently Asked Questions
So, you are thinking about going back to school to receive an additional degree in Education Leadership. We understand that this might raise a lot of questions. Here is some information about the the Organizational Leadership emphasis program and use of technology to help you.
How many credits will I need to take?
The Organizational Leadership (OL) emphasis in Education Leadership will consist of 4-credit, 3-credit and 1-credit courses for a total of 33 credits. Students take 15 credits of Education Leadership (EL) core courses and 18 credits (12 required and 6 elective) in the OL emphasis. Elective credits can come from within the Education Leadership program, other graduate programs at WSU or be transferred in from other universities. Elective courses and transfer courses are agreed to, in advance, with your academic advisor.
How long does it take to complete the OL online program?
You can graduate in two years by participating in a program that includes two courses each semester (including one summer semester) of the program. There will be one semester when you are enrolled in three courses if you do not transfer any credits into the program. In the first year, you will complete the Core Organizational Leadership courses. Your second year is focused on the Core Education Leadership courses. Students who need more flexibility or a slightly less intense pace can opt for a three-year plan and enroll in one course each semester.
What courses are in the curriculum?
The course catalog provides a full OL curriculum with detailed course descriptions.
Do the classes "meet" at a certain time during the week?
The five core Education Leadership courses (Scholarship, Systems Thinking, Change Leadership, Common Good, and Communications) are taught in a hybrid format. Some coursework will be online supplemented with some attendance in a synchronized (specific date and time) format. You will join the face-to-face course using video conferencing technology such as ITV, Connect, or even Skype. Typical classes meet during evening hours from 6:00 pm – 8:50 pm (CST). The dates will be available several months prior to the start of the class. You will work with the professor of each course to decide which technological option is best.
The five core Organizational Leadership courses (Leadership and Technology, Managing Change, Innovation and Transition, Education Lean: Methods and Practicum, Project Management and Appreciative Coaching) are taught asynchronously (i.e. when the instructor and student are not physically at the same place at the same time) with the exception of two class periods per course that meet during the semester in a virtual classroom. Occasionally, faculty will set up individual meetings to check-in with the students. The dates and times are determined during the first week of class. Students interact directly with each other and with their faculty through threaded discussions. All readings, assignments and discussions have deadlines and assignments are submitted online. Instructors provide feedback and grading information online in addition to being available via email, during virtual office hours and by phone.
Is there a time limit on completing the degree
You have seven years from the start of your first course to complete your degree, however, we would encourage you to follow a 2 or 3-year plan. Please refer to the Graduate Studies website for more information about this policy.
Do I ever need to come on campus?
No, however we would enjoy seeing you at the commencement ceremony.
What is a typical week for the asynchronous OL courses?
Each week, students are assigned readings, review the class lesson, complete the reflection guide and participate in class discussions. In most courses, students work on a final class project with smaller assignments and papers due throughout the course. You will need to keep pace with the class as facilitated by the instructor. For example, you will have deadlines for participating in discussions and submitting assignments. Missing deadlines for participating in discussions would be similar to missing class in a traditional on-campus program.
Can I still get into the OL Emphasis in Education Leadership program if I am not working in an organization?
Yes, you can still get admitted to the OL program although it is important to understand that the program is geared towards individuals who are currently working in an organization. For example, the discussions and assignments include a lot of sharing of experiences and reflection on perspectives. Course projects are designed so you can apply your class learning to your profession.
I have never taken an online class. How do I know I can do this?
Participating in an online program requires excellent organizational skills and good time management. If you have the skills to do internet searches and to explore this website, you'll have the basic technology skills needed to be in our online classes.
Is it really all online?
Yes, the Organizational Leadership core courses are online and the classes meet several times during the semester in a virtual classroom. The Education Leadership core courses will be hybrid. Courses will be a blend of face-to-face and online. You will join the face-to-face course using video conferencing technology such as ITV, Connect, or even Skype. Typical classes meet during evening hours from 6pm – 8:50 pm (CST). The dates will be available several months prior to the start of the class. You will work with your professor to decide which technological option is best for you.
What support services are available for online students?
You will have access to all the resources that our on-campus students have including library services, advising, job search, etc. Technical support is provided by WSU’s IT staff. Check out WSU’s online resources <http://www.winona.edu/wsuonline/33.asp>.
How does the online learning environment give me flexibility?
The flexibility is found in your ability to access the class and complete the coursework at any time of the day or night. The online classroom is available 24/7 and the instructor participates in the discussions 3-4 times each week.
Are the online courses designed to engage students?
The online courses are developed and designed utilizing Quality Matters (QM) online standards for excellence. Quality Matters is a faculty-centered, peer review process that is designed to guide the quality of online and blended courses.
What technology do I need?
Please refer to the Technology webpage for specific information about technology requirements.
What course management system is used in the online program?
We use D2L course management software for all our courses.