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LDSP 5000/6000/7000 Syllabus

Course Syllabus

LDSP 5000/6000/7000 - Current Issues in Leadership

3 Credit Hours

Course Information

Course Description:

This course is based on a global and a cross-discipline perspective. The course is a study of current trends and practices in public and private sector leadership. Students will read and discuss current news, and research case studies. Independent and team projects are required. Trend tracking and the case study method are an integral part of the course. Specific topics may vary depending on current trends, but will generally include personal mastery and leadership development. Also leading organizations into the future, values-based leadership, corporate citizenship, collaborative leadership, a comparative study of leadership in business and public and non-profit organizations.

Course Outcomes:

The student will be able to:

  • Track and discuss trends, including research and best practices in leadership from a cross- sector/discipline and global perspective.
  • Compare and contrast leadership in business, nonprofit, and public sectors.
  • Think critically to analyze and evaluate leadership trends and issues.
  • Think creatively to develop solutions to leadership problems.
  • Act independently and collaboratively to track trends, identify and resolve leadership issues.
  • Use technology to develop and communicate reports of current leadership trends and analyze leadership cases. 
Prerequisites & Co-requisites:

Admission to the Master of Professional Studies program or departmental permission.

Course Topics:

1. Current trends and paradigms in leadership practice and research.
2. Methods and sources for tracking and sharing trends in leadership practice and research. 
3. Use of the case method to analyze, resolve, and share solutions to leadership issues.
4. Leadership case studies. 

Specific Course Requirements:

Students must be knowledgeable in the use of the microcomputer, word processing, the Internet, and related browsers such as Netscape Navigator or Internet Explorer. It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that their service provider is capable of allowing adequate connection time to complete assignments. 

Textbooks, Supplementary Materials, Hardware and Software Requirements

Required Textbooks:

Please visit the Virtual Bookstore to obtain textbook information for this course. Move your cursor over the "Books" link in the navigation bar and select "Textbooks & Course Materials." Select your Program, Term, Department, and Course; then select "Submit."

Supplementary Materials:

Students will be required to choose case studies from designated publishers for both their individual and team analysis assignments. More information on this is forthcoming. Students should also access current conversations on leadership. If a student is not currently a member in a professional leadership organization that has a listserve or blog, joining one is highly recommended. Below are some suggested sites:

Hardware and Software Requirements:

Minimum hardware requirements can be found here.

Minimum software requirements can be found here.

Common applications you might need:

Web Resources:

Purdue OWL Online Writing Lab (for APA, MLA, or Chicago style)

The Writing Center Online Writer's Handbook

Student Resources:
  • Technical support information can be found on the TN eCampus Help Desk page.
  • Smarthinking virtual tutoring is available FREE of charge. to access Smarthinking, visit the course homepage and select Smarthinking under Course Resources. You also view sample sessions to see what Smarthinking offers and how it works.
  • Information on other student issues or concerns can be located on the TN eCampus Student Resources page.

Instructor Information

Please see "Instructor Information" in the Getting Started Module for instructor contact information, virtual office hours, and other communication information. You can expect to receive a response from the instructor within 24-48 hours unless notified of extenuating circumstances.

Participation, Assessments, & Grading

Testing Procedures:

Readiness Assessment Test (RAT) Scores 15% of overall grade

  • 6 Individual RATs @ 20pts ea. (1/3 of this grade)

  • 6 Team RATs @ 20 pts. ea. (2/3 of this grade) 

Grading Procedures:

Students’ grades will be computed as follows:

Readiness Assessment Test (RAT) Scores 15%

  • 6 Individual RATs @ 20pts ea. (1/3 of this grade)

  • 6 Team RATs @ 20 pts. ea. (2/3 of this grade)

Case Study Analysis 40%

  • Individual Case 100 pts. (1/2 of this grade)

  • Team Case 100 pts. (1/2 of this grade)

  • Peer Reviews from Team Members 50 pts. (1/3 of this grade)

Participation 10%

  • Taped Introduction & Discussion 25 pts. (1/3 of this grade)

  • Discussion Postings 4 @ 25 pts. each (1/3 of this grade)

Assignments 15%

  • Video Discussion of a Current Leadership Trend 85 pts. (1/5 of this grade)

  • Swatch Case Study Question 50 pts. (1/5 of this grade)

  • W.L. Gore & Associates Questions 50 pts. (1/5 of this grade)

  • SAP Case Study 50 pts. (1/5 of this grade)

  • Royal Australian Case Study 50 pts. (1/5 of this grade)

Book Review 100 pts. 20%

Total Possible Points: 1000

Each student must choose a book from instructor’s list on which to write a review. Only one student per book. Email instructor with your first, second and third choices a.s.a.p. Book list and review requirements are posted under Module 1.

Punctuation and Grammar always count and will be figured into the grading of writing assignments. A style book such as Strunk and White is strongly recommended. 

Grading Scale:
below 60F


Assignments and Projects:

Punctuation and Grammar always count and will be figured into the grading of writing assignments. A style book such as Strunk and White is strongly recommended.

Students will be expected to complete one individual case analysis and one team case analysis. The team case analysis must be submitted as a paper and each team must develop a group presentation summarizing their analysis. 

The book review is a ten page paper that includes a Title Page, Executive Summary, Introduction, Body, Conclusion, and Reference Page. APA style is required for citations and reference page.

A Word on Readiness Assessment Tests (RATs): Team RATs will not be accessible until every team member completes an individual RAT and accesses their group discussion concerning the current week’s RAT. Each team should designate one person to fill in the final answers for each RAT. Teams can collaborate on these via e-mail, IM, or chat. Both Individual and Team RATs is open book. There should, however, be no collaboration on Individual RATs. This of course is an honor system. The purpose of these assessments is twofold. First, these assessments will help student’s hone in on the finer points of the readings. Second, they lay the ground work for true team collaboration.

Module 1 Student Introductions

This assignment needs to be completed and unloaded to the dropbox on the first day of this course.

Individual RAT

Team RAT

Module 2 Framing Leadership

Module 3 Authority and Influence

Module 4 The Bigger Picture

Module 5 Making Connections

Module 6 Onward Bound

Each Module will include lecture notes and discussion of the reading assignments. Keeping on track with the modules is imperative for bulletin board discussions and completing RATs.

Class Participation:

Participation is required for successful completion of this course. Each student is expected to communicate with other students in team projects where applicable. Students are expected to learn how to navigate in D2L and keep abreast of course announcements. The D2L assigned e-mail address is to be used as opposed to a personal e-mail address. Technical problems need to be addressed immediately. Failure to submit assignments due to technical problems will not be considered grounds for leniency. It is the student’s responsibility to communicate with the instructor when a problem arises and to obtain technical assistance from the appropriate sources. 

Late Policy:

Assignments must be submitted by due date. 

Course Ground Rules

The following two statements (1., 2.) were derived from the TBR System-wide Student Rules document, released January 2012:


Read the document in its entirety here.

1. Standards of Conduct:

  • Students are required to adhere to the same professional, legal and ethical standards of conduct online as on campus. In addition, students should conform to generally accepted standards of "netiquette" while sending e-mail, posting comments to the discussion board, and while participating in other means of communicating online. Specifically, students should refrain from inappropriate and/or offensive language, comments and actions.

2. Review the TN eCampus Academic Integrity/Academic Honesty Policy:

  • In their academic activities, students are expected to maintain high standards of honesty and integrity. Academic dishonesty is prohibited.

Such conduct includes, but is not limited to:

  • an attempt by one or more students to use unauthorized information in the taking of an exam
  • to submit as one's own work, themes, reports, drawings, laboratory notes, computer programs, or other products prepared by another person,
  • or to knowingly assist another student in obtaining or using unauthorized materials.

Plagiarism, cheating, and other forms of academic dishonesty are prohibited.

Students guilty of academic misconduct, either directly or indirectly through participation or assistance, are subject to disciplinary action through the regular procedures of the student’s home institution.  Refer to the student handbook provided by your home institution to review the student conduct policy.

In addition to other possible disciplinary sanctions that may be imposed, the instructor has the authority to assign an "F" or zero for an activity or to assign an "F" for the course.

Other Course Rules:

Students are expected to:

  • Participate in all aspects of the course
  • Communicate with other students
  • Learn how to navigate in Brightspace
  • Keep abreast of course announcements
  • Use the assigned course management (Brightspace) email address rather than a personal email address
  • Address technical problems immediately:
  • Observe course netiquette at all times.

Guidelines for Communications


  • Always include a subject line.
  • Remember without facial expressions some comments may be taken the wrong way. Be careful in wording your emails. Use of emoticons might be helpful in some cases.
  • Use standard fonts.
  • Do not send large attachments without permission.
  • Special formatting such as centering, audio messages, tables, html, etc. should be avoided unless necessary to complete an assignment or other communication.
  • Respect the privacy of other class members


  • Review the discussion threads thoroughly before entering the discussion. Be a lurker then a discussant.
  • Try to maintain threads by using the "Reply" button rather starting a new topic.
  • Do not make insulting or inflammatory statements to other members of the discussion group. Be respectful of other’s ideas.
  • Be patient and read the comments of other group members thoroughly before entering your remarks.
  • Be cooperative with group leaders in completing assigned tasks.
  • Be positive and constructive in group discussions.
  • Respond in a thoughtful and timely manner.


The Tennessee Virtual Library is available to all students enrolled in TN eCampus programs and courses. Links to library materials (such as electronic journals, databases, interlibrary loans, digital reserves, dictionaries, encyclopedias, maps, and librarian support) and Internet resources needed by learners to complete online assignments and as background reading will be included within the course modules. To access the Virtual Library, go to the course homepage and select the Virtual Library link under Course Resources.

Students with Disabilities

Qualified students with disabilities will be provided reasonable and necessary academic accommodations if determined eligible by the appropriate disability services staff at their home institution. Prior to granting disability accommodations in this course, the instructor must receive written verification of a student's eligibility for specific accommodations from the disability services staff at the home institution. It is the student's responsibility to initiate contact with their home institution's disability services staff and to follow the established procedures for having the accommodation notice sent to the instructor.

Syllabus Changes

The instructor reserves the right to make changes as necessary to this syllabus. If changes are necessitated during the term of the course, the instructor will immediately notify students of such changes both by individual email communication and posting both notification and nature of change(s) on the course bulletin board.


The information contained in this syllabus is for general information purposes only. While we endeavor to keep this information up-to-date and accurate, there may be some discrepancies between this syllabus and the one found in your online course. The syllabus of record is the one found in your online course. Please make sure you read the syllabus in your course at the beginning of the semester. Questions regarding course content should be directed to your instructor.

Last Revised on July 12, 2021